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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Study guides
7/1/2015
July 2015:

Responding to racial justice

Despite the best wishes and intentions of millions of U.S. Christians, race continues to be a major issue in our nation. African-Americans and Latinos face challenges in income and education, and they are more likely to get in trouble with the law. The much-publicized deaths of unarmed African-American suspects have raised questions anew about how our criminal justice system treats people of different races. As another reminder that the violent extreme of racism is still with us, on June 17 a white gunman allegedly killed nine African-Americans at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Charleston, S.C. Presiding Bishop Elizabeth A. Eaton has called on Lutherans to acknowledge “the deadly sin of racism” in our nation, to repent and mourn, and then “to get to work” to fight it.

Your download includes six pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: 'Do justice'
Exercise 2: Lutheran connection
Exercise 3: Hatred among us
Exercise 4: Education, wage and wealth gap
Exercise 5: Legal problems
Exercise 6: 'Get to work'

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7/1/2015
July 2015:

Adages

They are the words we keep in our minds and hearts, and they help shape who we are and how we interact with our world. Proverbs, adages, maxims, words of wisdom—these help form the background of our lives. They amuse us, they teach us, they inspire us, they connect us to higher truths, or they can steer us in the wrong direction.

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: Favorites
Exercise 2: Bible adages
Exercise 3: Negative adages
Exercise 4: Hurtful adages
Exercise 5: Mugs, T-shirts
Exercise 6: Advertising adages
Exercise 7: Wisdom, truth
Exercise 8: Musical adages
Exercise 9: Consider the source

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6/1/2015
June 2015:

10 under 40

The ELCA is showing its age, as membership and leadership tend to be older than the population at large. Though our overall church culture may be behind the times, younger leaders are helping show us the way forward.

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: Inspiration
Exercise 2: Aging members
Exercise 3: Changing needs
Exercise 4: Aging leadership
Exercise 5: Emphases
Exercise 6: Young achievers
Exercise 7: Youthful desire
Exercise 8: Young leaders

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6/1/2015
June 2015:

Sacred return

From art to poetry to government service, the 10 leader profiles in the cover article illustrate many “outside the box” ideas and interests for ministry. Whose profile did you find most inspiring or interesting? Why?

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: Justice
Exercise 2: Continental scope
Exercise 3: Poverty, problems
Exercise 4: Local Indian history

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5/1/2015
May 2015:

That socially responsible thing

A rising global population means more and more people must live on our earth and share its finite resources. It also means Christians have more and more neighbors whom we are commanded to love as ourselves. Socially responsible living presents principles that enable us to achieve both ends.

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: My neighbor
Exercise 2: Responsibility
Exercise 3: Tithing
Exercise 4: Prayer
Exercise 5: Money log
Exercise 6: Money's purpose
Exercise 7: Living wage
Exercise 8: Energy use
Exercise 9: Go green

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5/1/2015
May 2015:

The Holy Spirit

It’s easy for us to relate to Jesus, who was, after all, a fellow human being as well as the fullness of God. We can also understand God the Father because all of us have human fathers. But the third person of the Trinity, the Spirit, is harder for us to grasp, even though it plays an essential role in our lives, faith and church. As Lutherans, we know this very well.

Your download includes four pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: 'Spirit'-ual Lutherans
Exercise 2: The creed
Exercise 3: Born of the Spirit
Exercise 4: The promised Spirit
Exercise 5: Pentecost
Exercise 6: Spiritual experience

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4/1/2015
April 2015:

After the after

Our lives of faith are shaped by the cross of Christ. We live because Christ gives us new life. For all of us, our faith journeys move us from what we once were to what God wants us to become.

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: Change moments
Exercise 2: Then and now
Exercise 3: Transforming encounter
Exercise 4: Changed lives
Exercise 5: 'Being saved'
Exercise 6: Death to life
Exercise 7: Slaves to freedom
Exercise 8: Writing exercise

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4/1/2015
April 2015:

Restoring creation with faith

The environment is arguably the most important issue humanity will face in the next generation. Climate change, projected expansion of fossil fuel use, pollution and a population explosion will tax the Earth’s resources as never before. Many scientists wonder if our planet will be habitable for our descendants unless we change course. What is a Christian response?

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: God's creation
Exercise 2: Lifestyle changes
Exercise 3: Green church
Exercise 4: Activism
Exercise 5: Worldview change
Exercise 6: Love our neighbor
Exercise 7: Population explosion
Exercise 8: Hope

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3/1/2015
March 2015:

Our malaria moment

Thanks to Lutherans across North America, the ELCA is on target to reach its Malaria Campaign goal of  $15 million. But it means much more than just a benchmark fulfilled. It means lives saved and communities preserved; global partnerships strengthened; and brothers and sisters across the globe working together for the sake of our neighbors.

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: Neighbors
Exercise 2: Local efforts
Exercise 3: Malaria minded
Exercise 4: Stunning toll
Exercise 5: Children's toll
Exercise 6: Wiped out where?
Exercise 7: Stronger together
Exercise 8: Success story

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3/1/2015
March 2015:

'The best conversation ever'

At least for our journey on earth, death presents a common destiny for all of us—rich or poor, powerful or weak, good or bad, Christian or atheist. And yet many don’t plan for it, talk about it or even think about it. Advance directives can help ensure that we think through how we want to spend our final days, that we let our wishes be known, and that our loved ones won’t have to guess.

Your download includes three pages of exercises and discussion questions, plus a copy of the article from The Lutheran.

Exercise 1: Culture of avoidance
Exercise 2: Peaceful passing
Exercise 3: Bitter ends
Exercise 4: A good end
Exercise 5: Quality of life
Exercise 6: Decisions
Exercise 7: Legal issues
For action

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