More Than 50 Years of Pastoral Ministry

“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? Now eagerly desire the greater gifts. And yet I will show you the most excellent way.” (1 Corinthians 12:27-31)

So, what do you want to be when you grow up? That’s a question we have all heard at one time or another, probably when we were young and still riding a tricycle or playing with our dolls. Teachers and counselors in high school ask about our dreams and plans for college and life after college, just to get a handle on how to lead us, as students, through the classes and courses that we would need in order to reach our goal. Sometimes, we know exactly what we want to be when we grow up. Sometimes, we need to sign that Document of Intent to get a tuition break for the ministry to be totally sure.

Pictured here, you will see a man who has been one of God’s faithful servants since before he rode a bicycle – and we won’t talk about the dolls. Bernard Ansorge attended St. John’s College in Winfield, KS, while it was still a 4-year academy, 2-year college for students interested in church work. After graduating from St. John’s, he went to Concordia Senior College in Fort Wayne and then to the seminary in St. Louis. His first congregation was a mission field church that he planted in Jackson, MS, where he grew and experienced the life of the church in the early ’60s. In 1969, he was called to Ascension in Huntsville, AL, where he has been ministering to the people for the past 51 years.

Suffice it to say, he loves his calling. This past fall, he baptized his great-grandson, Alexander James. He has mentored four vicars in four years, all of whom have (or will) become excellent pastors in their own congregations.

And if you ask him, now, at the age of 82, what does he want to do when he grows even older? He wants to continue to serve until he’s 100. He’ll reconsider his options, then.



Holy Trinity Easter Eggstravaganza

Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Covington, LA, shared the message of God’s love and His Son’s resurrection with 100 children (and their parents!) on Saturday, March 13! God made a way for many Gospel seeds to be sown on this special day, an event that was open to the community.

Children who attended Holy Trinity’s Easter Eggstravaganza spent two precious hours playing games, decorating cookies, collecting Easter eggs, playing in bounce houses, taking photos at a baby chick photo booth, having their faces painted, and – most importantly – hearing the message of God’s ultimate and unfailing love for them (from Holy Trinity’s puppet ministry!). The event was generously sponsored by a Thrivent Action Team grant. Thanks be to God for allowing us to be a blessing to those in our community and make His love known!



St. Matthew Gulfport Celebrates 100 Years

100 Years of Reaching Out with God’s Friendship is the theme of the 100th anniversary of St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Gulfport, MS. While there are (have been) several events planned throughout the year, the main celebration will be November 3, 2019. Southern District President, Rev. Eric C. Johnson, has agreed to be our guest speaker on that day. We are also fortunate to have three retired ministers in our congregation who are participating in our planned events.

A very special event will be held on September 15th. St. Matthew’s quilters make lap quilts for cancer patients at Memorial Hospital in Gulfport. On that date, there will be a special blessing of quilts in which the total number of quilts made will reach 1,000 (100 times 10).

Former members and friends are welcome to join us at any time, but especially on November 3rd.

Chapel of the Cross Supports LSU Food Pantry

During the months of December 2018 and January 2019, the members of Chapel of the Cross Lutheran Church, located on the campus of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, collected food items to be donated to the LSU Food Pantry. The mission of the LSU Food Pantry is to provide supplemental food to students in need who may experience hunger or food insecurity. The food pantry exists to address the issue of situational hunger among LSU students. Chapel’s LWML members are committed to making this food donation project an ongoing effort.

Christ Lutheran in Albertville Celebrates Christmas Fellowship

The members of Christ Lutheran Church in Albertville, AL, gave assistance to the children as they decorated the church for Christmas on Sunday, December 2, after the worship service. When everything was perfectly arranged, everyone gathered in the fellowship hall for a spaghetti cook-off dinner.

Ladies had prepared four pots of different sauces available to sample over ample amounts of noodles. This was all accompanied by salads, garlic bread, and lots of dessert. Gatherings of celebration were held throughout the Christmas season, ending with a scrumptious potluck dinner at a member’s home (Ralph and Lyn Dorsch) after the New Year. Here, Rev. Warren Ruland conducted a game of quizzing our members by asking biblical questions. There was laughter as everyone tried their best to out-do one another. Our congregation was truly blessed this Advent season as we prepared, celebrated, and welcomed the Christ child into our midst once again!!!