From the Vicar

The Peace of the Lord be with you!

As the school year draws to a close, and we enjoy a few extra hours of glorious sunshine, I would like to update you, people of Zion, on my current place in the process of becoming a pastor.

I have just completed my junior year at Luther Seminary. This next year will be my final year in the pursuit of a Masters of Divinity (MDiv) degree. It has two parts: 1) my internship at Zion and 2), further classes at Luther Seminary. To complete the latter, I will still be traveling to the Twin Cities one day a week. However, this year will especially focus in parish work here at Zion, my designated internship site.

After internship, a synodical Candidacy Committee will determine whether or not I am to be approved for service in the Church. Once approved, I will be assigned to one of 9 regions in our church, the ELCA. Then, I will be assigned to one of the synods (“districts”) within that region. Consideration is given for personal preference and familial circumstances. Once assigned, I will enter the call process, by which my name will be put forth to congregations that need a Pastor. Once I am called by a congregation I will be ordained and installed to serve the Church in the preaching of the Gospel and the right administration of the Sacraments.

At the same time, I will continue serving the Navy/Marine Corps as a Chaplain Candidate. When I complete my MDiv, a board of Senior Chaplains will determine whether I am qualified to supercede. Once approved, I will be made a full-blown Chaplain, and assigned to serve a Navy or Marine Corps Reserve Unit.

For at least three years I will serve as a parish Pastor full-time, while serving as a Chaplain in the Navy/Marine Corps Reserves. Once I have completed those three years, I can elect to pursue either a tour of Active Duty or continued service in the Reserves.

I have been fortunate to receive such knowledge, insight, and faithful inspiration as your Vicar, and am enthused to receive more from you every day in the name of Jesus Christ in His Holy Spirit. There is much to do in this next year, and I have the confidence given me through the Gospel, that the Son has set us all free (John 8:36). In that spirit of freedom, I will commend myself to His people and His ministry, “that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them…” (2 Cor 5:11-21). It is an honor and a privilege granted by our most gracious Lord that I continue to serve you.

Fides ex Auditu
Vicar Joe