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31st Equipping the Saints Conference set for Feb. 2

By Victoria Advocate
Jan. 11, 2013 at midnight
Updated Jan. 10, 2013 at 7:11 p.m.


The 31st Equipping the Saints Conference begins at 8:30 a.m. Feb. 2 at St. Mark's Lutheran Church, 400 N. Esplanade St., in Cuero, across from McDonalds.

Equipping the Saints, an annual event sponsored by the Bluebonnet Conference, formerly known as the Victoria Conference of Churches, is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Packets containing registration forms, descriptions of workshops offered, workshop leaders and information about the catered luncheon and child care are available from ELCA Lutheran Churches in your community. Facilities are handicap accessible and early registration is requested.

Registration for the event begins at 8:30 a.m. on the day of the event with an opening worship service at 9:30 a.m.

The theme for this year's event is "Doing Ministry in Church and Community." While the event is sponsored by Lutheran congregations, it is open to people of all denominations.

Equipping the Saints, with its many workshops, provides insights and Biblically based practical tools to equip persons to do congregational and community ministry and mission. Workshops offered address the numerous ministries of the church - youth, worship, outreach and evangelism, global mission, stewardship and personal finances, Bible study and Christian education and service. Workshops offering opportunities for personal and spiritual growth are also available.

This year's speakers include:

The Rev. Dr. Norm Beck is Poehlmann Professor of Theology and Classical Language at Texas Lutheran University and ELCA pastor at St. John's Lutheran Church in Stockdale (Denhawken). He received his doctorate from Princeton Theological Seminary. Beck is active in Jewish-Christian-Islamic dialogue, the Jesus of history and early church development research, and the current political and religious situation in the Middle East.

Dave Sather is an accredited fiduciary investment manager, certified financial planner and president of Sather Financial Group.

Kelly Drastata, who is addressing heart health for women, is a heart transplant recipient.

Leo Shannon is a deacon with the Roman Catholic Church and a chaplain with Hospice of South Texas.

The Rev. Sharon Wiggins has served congregations in Virginia and Texas and spent several months in Bethlehem as part of a program with the World Council of Churches. She spent time with a Christian Peacemakers Team learning firsthand how Quakers, Brethren and Mennonites practice peace.

The Rev. Charles A. Fredrickson is pastor of The Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd in San Antonio and previously served as a ELCA missionary in Nagoya, Japan, and as pastor of Meito Christ International Church. He served three Japan Evangelical Lutheran Churches at their four mission points and has traveled extensively outside the U.S., including as a tour leader in Greece in the footsteps of St. Paul.

Sharon Jaks is a member of the Southwestern Texas Synod Worship Resource Team and a member of the Music Ministry at United Dr. Martin Luther Lutheran Church in Shiner.

The Rev. Dr. Elaine Gomulka is pastor at United Dr. Martin Luther Lutheran Church in Shiner.

Evan Moilan is executive director of the Lutheran Foundation of the Southwest and previously served at Lutheran World Relief, executive director of Lutherhill Campus Ministries in LaGrange and began his career in campus ministry at Arizona State University.

The Rev. Dr. Anamae Storbeck is a "worker priest" serving as interim pastor at Salem Lutheran Church in Southeast Travis County and employed as a district specialist and most recently as a member of the General Motors Early Response Team in the Business Resource Center for Customer Care.

Dolores Tucker and Alice Summers are caseworkers with the Services To At Risk Youth program.

Anthony Netardus is the Texas agricultural agent with DeWitt County.

Janice Pfeffer is a family consumer services staff member for Texas A&M University, serving in Colorado County.

The Rev. Susan Briner is the bishop's associate for the Southwestern Texas Synod, ELCA. She previously served as senior pastor of St. Luke's Lutheran Church in South Carolina and had a 15-year career at computer software company Nortel Networks.

The Rev. Herb Beyer, dean of the Bluebonnet Conference and chair for annual Equipping the Saints.

Registration packets are available from any Lutheran church in your area, or you can contact the host church, St. Mark's Lutheran Church in Cuero, at 361-275-2845 or e-mail stmarkscuero@sbcglobal.net or Pastor Herb Beyer at 361-798-0155 or 979-725-6186 or 979-562-2573 or email beyerfam@hughes.net.

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