On Sunday, July 24, 2022, the members of Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church voted unanimously, 117-0 to call Pastor Trina Johnsten to be our new lead pastor! She will take some time off and finish up her contract, beginning her call Monday, September 12. We look forward to many years of ministry together!
As the Ministry Site Profile nears completion, nominations will be invited from members of the congregation. Nominees for the position of Pastor must be on the clergy roster of the ELCA or eligible full communion partner denominations. Those include the Presbyterian Church (USA), Reformed Church in America, United Church of Christ, The Episcopal Church, The Moravian Church, and United Methodist Church. Nomination forms will be offered to the congregation for this purpose, or members can provide names to the committee in writing, accompanied by as much information as possible, so as to aid the synod office in identifying the nominees. Nominees are not to be contacted by either the call committee or by the individual making the nomination. Rather, the synod office will determine if nominees in question are open and available for call. Receiving a nomination does not guarantee that the candidate will be presented to the Call Committee. Other factors of congregational fit and suitability are considered by the synod staff.
There are literally thousands of pastors in the ELCA and there is no way the Synod can know all of them and whether they might be the perfect candidate for ORLC. But you know this congregation. You know a good sermon when you hear one. If you are traveling these days and you have an opportunity to worship at an ELCA congregation either on line, or in person, and you hear or see a pastor that you think would be the perfect fit for us, why not scribble down some notes on what impressed you about the person, and let the Call Committee know? Forms for submitting a nomination are available by the church office, as well as the church website.
Thank you for your continued prayers for the Call Committee as we learn, grow, work, and pray together through this call process.
In an ongoing effort to respond to current conditions, make wise decisions on behalf of the congregation, and because as Christ’s people we are called to love our neighbor, at the August 17 meeting of the Council the following was proposed and passed:
It is moved that ORLC follow the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines regarding Covid recommendations.
The current recommendations from the CDC are that if you live in an area of substantial or high transmission (Lewis and Clark County is currently an area of HIGH transmission), both vaccinated and unvaccinated people should wear masks when indoors.
The way this will impact our life together is that as of Sunday, August 22, we ask that masks be worn in worship and at all meetings and activities held in the ORLC building, and that when possible a six-foot distance be maintained between those not living in the same household. We will also be discontinuing food and coffee fellowship for the time being since that encourages the removal of masks.
In making this decision, Council was advised by members of the congregation who are medical and public health professionals, consulted with the Lewis and Clark County Public Health Department, and checked to see what policy was in place at other similar congregations in Helena. There was lengthy discussion and a wide variety of opinions, but in the end the decision was made that as Christ’s people we set an example to the world when we stand with the most vulnerable among us, in this case the children who cannot yet get the vaccine and others who due to health issues are at risk from serious complications should they be infected. We also took into consideration the current capacity of local hospitals.
Council and the pastoral staff will be closely monitoring what comes from the CDC and local public health officials, and as the situation changes will be updating the ORLC Covid-19 Plan accordingly. Ongoing updates will be in the weekly Thursday Messenger (e-news) and on the ORLC website. If you have any questions, Jan Martin (Council president), Pastor Kendra and Pastor Trina are available.