October Newsletter Now Available
Confirmation – May 20th, 2018
Confirmation Presentation by Logan Faltersack
New Sermon Audio from Pastor Jon
Confirmation Students Lead Well Project
— Several local churches join in. —
By Gay Griesback – For the Daily News
HARTFORD — Redeemer Lutheran Church has its own “Fantastic Four” — confirmation students that have inspired a community to give a gift that will improve the lives those who face the daily struggle of getting clean drinking water.
Owen Otto, Madison Henning, Lindsay Arvidson and Logan Faltersack are barely into their teens, but their energy and wisdom inspired six Hartford-area churches to contribute collections from their Wednesday Lenten services to fund the construction of a well.
“They’re pretty sharp kids — it’s been a great opportunity to work with them,” confirmation mentor Scott Lopas said.
In addition to Redeemer Lutheran, St. Kilian and St. Mary of the Hill Catholic churches, First United Methodist, St. John’s United Church of Christ and St. Aidan’s Episcopal Church took part.
“It doesn’t matter what denominations came together — it was for the good of one project,” First United Methodist Church of Hartford Administrative Assistant Becki Swenson said.
Redeemer Lutheran’s Confirmation students Madison Henning, Lindsay Arvidson, Owen Otto and Logan Faltersack have become known as the “Fantastic Four” for their work on getting a community well to raise awareness about those without access to clean drinking water.
Confirmation mentor Sheila Bauer said funds will go to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Good Gifts program.
From vaccinations to trees, animals, water and education projects and small business loans, the Good Gifts program uses donations where they are needed most within the wider category of the gift chosen by donors.
At Christmas, the congregation donated $1,000 toward the Good Gifts program but for Lent, students wanted to donate $2,500 — enough money to construct a community well.
The students have helped out at church fish frys and recently raised $360 by collecting donations for the Hartford Food Pantry and Casa Guadalupe at a church Souper Bowl of Caring. Spearheading the well project was their most ambitious mission to date.
The Rev. Jon Breimeier, interim pastor at Redeemer, said the students studied scarcity of water in other parts of world.
“The more they looked into it, the more they found it sobering — how much water we have available and how much we use compared to other parts of the world,” Breimeier said.
The more they looked into it, the more they found it sobering — how much water we have available and how much we use compared to other parts of the world.
Henning said the class brought the fundraising idea to the congregation and Bauer said the group made a display representing water usage throughout the world.
Information included some somber statistics:
■ While 71 percent of the Earth is covered by water, only 51 percent of the earth’s population has access to it.
■ There are 780 million people that live without clean drinking water.
■ Although 12 gallons of water per day is considered a sustainable amount for a person, Americans use 158 gallons of water daily.
“We learned from the kids what a huge difference a well makes. It means that the children and adults don’t have to walk for hours to carry hundreds of pounds of water,” Breimeier said.
Students also shared the information with the other congregations.
“We used the opportunity to educate ourselves, not just at Redeemer but at all our churches,” Breimeier said.
“It was a group effort,” Faltersack said.
Breimeier said once the contribution is received by Good Gifts, there is a possibility the church will be notified of exactly where the well will be built, but finding out the location isn’t the point.
“Lack of clean drinking water is a problem that is pretty pervasive. To know we will be making a huge difference is what we are after,” Breimeier said.
Breimeier said they have received assurances that if there is a shortfall, different groups within the churches will make up the difference.
“We know we’re going to get there,” Breimeier said.
Otto recommends the project to future confirmation classes.
“Everyone deserves clean drinking water and a lot of people don’t have that,” Arvidson said.
Those interested in donating to the Redeemer confirmation students’ Good Gift well project can call Anne at 262-673-2550 or find out more online at the ELCA Good Gifts Web Page.
“It doesn’t matter what denominations came together — it was for the good of one project.” – Becki Swenson, First United Methodist Church of Hartford Administrative Assistant
Redeemer Lutheran confirmation students Madison Henning, Lindsay Arvidson, Owen Otto and Logan Faltersack lead effort joined by St. Kilian and St. Mary of the Hill Catholic churches, First United Methodist, St. John’s United Church of Christ and St. Aidan’s Episcopal Church to raise money to build a community well.
Redeemer’s Giving Tree
A permanent Giving Tree is now located in the Narthex! It’s simple to use and benefits many worthy causes in our community and at Redeemer. Simply remove a tag from the tree, bring in the donation on the tag and place it into the proper bin at the foot of the tree. Many thanks to Matt Nettesheim for constructing this amazing work of art (including LED lighting), to Jenny Nettesheim and Sheila Bauer for managing this project, and to Thrivent for providing a grant to help get in “off the ground”. We look forward to many years of use in service to others.
Community Free Lunch
Served the last Saturday of each month at St. Aidan’s Episcopal Church starting at 11:30 a.m. Come for community fellowship and a good meal. If you are interested in volunteering, please talk to Barb Menden.
Food Pantry Sunday
The third Sunday of each month has been designated as Food Pantry Sunday. Please bring non perishable items and place them in the barrel in the Information Area.