* The board of directors of Valparaiso [Ind.] University has affirmed its chapel's affiliation with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod but also provides for spiritual needs of the growing ELCA student population. Worship schedules will now show whether the service is authorized by the LCMS or ELCA. The ELCA can authorize ordained women to preside at its services, thereby addressing concerns voiced in recent years.
* Aid Association for Lutherans raised $142,055 for victims of the March 1 tornado in central Arkansas. Lutheran Brotherhood gave more than $74,000 to the east central region, which includes Arkansas. AAL also provided more than $390,000 following the Ohio River Valley flooding and more than $2.5 million for victims of the flooding in the Red River Valley.
* An archive of work by theologian Joseph Sittler is being established at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, where he served as professor. The archive will include more than 100 audiotapes of speeches and sermons. Sittler, who was once named by Life magazine as one of America's 10 best theologians, died in 1987.
* The three seminaries of the Theological Consortium of Greater Columbus, which includes Trinity Lutheran Seminary, Columbus, Ohio, will buy a shared library automation system, creating an on-line catalog of 360,000 volumes. The three-year project will cost $1,680,000 and will be among the 10 largest theological collections in the United States.
* "Dial Bishop Anderson," a monthly recorded message on various subjects by the ELCA presiding bishop, received nearly 4,000 calls its first month. The number is (773) 380-2930 or (800) 638-3522, Ext. 2930. His message is also available on the World Wide Web at www.elca.org/ob/Anderson.html.
* Missionary children born in Madagascar before 1948 donated $30,000 for relief aid after a cyclone hit that country earlier this year.
* Two synods are beginning missions in conjunction with Prison Congregations of America. The Nebraska Synod is developing a congregation at the Nebraska Men's Prison and the Western Iowa Synod's start is at the Rockwell City/Fort Dodge prisons.
* The Associated Collegiate Press awarded The Midland, the student newspaper at Midland Lutheran College, Fremont, Neb., its All-American award for journalism excellence in collegiate student publications.
* California Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks; St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minn.; Wartburg College, Waverly, Iowa; and Wittenberg University, Springfield, Ohio, were named to the 1997-98 Templeton Honor Roll for Character-Building Colleges. The honor cites schools that inspire students to strengthen their moral reasoning, encourage spiritual growth and moral values, promote community building and continually assess their character-building activities. Augsburg College, Minneapolis, received a $10,000 award from the Templeton Science-Religion Course Program competition.
* The National Council of Churches of Christrecognized the ELCA for its financial support and partnership, citing the work with its Burned Churches Project by Gaylord Thomas, director for community development services for the Division for Church in Society.
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