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Linda Johnson Seyenkulo
Visited Zion !

Our Missionary, Linda Johnson Seyenkulo, joined us on July 8th for worship. Linda is an ordained ELCA pastor serving in Liberia, West Africa.  She is curriculum developer and teacher at the Louis T. Bowers Lay Leaders and Ministers Training Center in Totota, Liberia.  In addition, she is called as Associate Pastor at St. Andrew's Lutheran Church in Monrovia, Liberia. Her special areas are teaching New Testament, Bible Study Leader training, Theology and Preaching.  Pastor Linda is married to Rev. D. Jensen Seyenkulo who is the Bishop of the Lutheran Church in Liberia. They have three children, Apu, Kenata, and Yongor who all reside in the U.S.  As a point of interest, Linda grew up in Aitkin, Minnesota and remembers high school athletic events between Milaca and Aitkin!

Worship and Brunch at Zion

The third "Come and Be Fed" Brunch will be August 12th.

Our goal is simple – to be fed spiritually, physically, and socially. Come join us for worship, bring a friend or two, and stay for a delightful brunch and wonderful fellowship.


Zion's Summer Book Club

During August our Zion Book Club will meet and read Gilead (Note change of book) by Marilynne Robinson on Aug. 26. We will meet at Zion (unless otherwise noted) at 7:00PM. Come join the conversation! All are welcome!

When you shop at Amazon, you can earn money for Zion! Make your purchases thru AmazonSmile and 0.5% of the price of all eligible purchases will go to Zion! All you need to do is chose Zion as your partner and do your regular Amazon shopping with AmazonSmile. Check it out before the next time you shop at Amazon.
August Food Pantry
Volunteers needed

August Food Pantry Volunteers – Due to a miscommunication from the Food Pantry Zion is responsible for helping at the Milaca Food Pantry for the month of August, not July. Two volunteers are needed for two different times on Thursdays from 9:45 a.m. - noon and 3 - 5:30 p.m.  If there is a day that you can help at the Pantry, please sign up on the clipboard passed around during worship or call the church office (983-3368).

Feed My Starving Children



In the spirit of “God's Work. Our Hands,” sign up now to join 25 folks from Zion as we head down to the Coon Rapids FMSC site where we will pack food from 11:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. on September 22nd

We'll car-pool for the trip down. Please consider coming. It is rewarding work and the whole experience is fun.

LWR School Kits

Again this year, Zion’s Women or the ELCA will be collecting items for Lutheran World Relief School Kits. Each kit contains eight items:

+ Four 70-sheet notebooks (280-300 sheets total) of wide- or college-ruled paper approximately 8” X 10½”; no loose-leaf paper

+ One 30-centimeter ruler, or a ruler with centimeters on one side and inches on the other

+ One pencil sharpener

+ One pair of blunt scissors (safety scissors with embedded steel blades work well)

+ Five unsharpened #2 pencils with erasers

+ Five black or blue ballpoint pens (no gel ink)

+ One box of 16 or 24 crayons

+ One 2½” eraser

WELCA will be collecting these items through September. If you have question, please contact Ardy Becklin (320.983.2443) or Carole Kiel (320.983.3537).

Guidelines: Please give new items only. Please do not donate items with any religious symbols or messages. Please do not donate any items decorated with a U.S. flag, patriotic or military symbols, or references to the armed forces, including camouflage.

Loretta Stacy Quilt Trunk Show - Renowned long-arm quilter and pattern designer Loretta Stacy will be presenting her original designed quilts and unique patterns at Trinity Lutheran Church on Tuesday, August 28th at 6:30 pm. This special quilt show is open to all and is sponsored by Krazy Quilters of Milaca. Refreshments served and patterns will be available for purchase.

Blessing of the Graduates

Congratulations to our graduates - Spencer, Emma, Joelle, Travis, Tim, Jacob, Jonathan, , Will, Lauren, and Sidney.

Almost Meatball
Supper Time!

The 25th Annual Zion Meatball Supper is just around the corner. This is one of Zion’s major fund raisers to help the youth of our church.  A large portion of the proceeds is used towards offering post-secondary scholarships for our Zion high school graduates. This completely homemade supper will be served right at Zion on Wednesday, Sept. 26. Supper will be served from 5 PM to 8 PM. The meal will consist of handmade meatballs, real mashed potatoes & gravy, scalloped corn, fresh carrots, and real coleslaw. Beverages are included along with those famous homemade pies prepared by the women (and men) of Zion. The meatball supper has been successful every year due to the men, women, and youth that help organize and run this great event. Please write this date down and let chairman (Randy Hemstad) know you are willing to help. Make sure to invite your neighbors and family to come to Zion for the best supper ever. 

Summer Music

During the summer months we are looking for individual who might be willing to contribute to our worship with some special music. Instrumental or vocal – solo, duet, ensemble – you name it – we'd love to have your involvement. Call the Church Office to check the worship schedule.
Photos from the Fika!

Come see a lot of photos from the Swedish Fika - a LOT of photos! If you were there, you are in at least one of these photos, so page thru them and find yourself.
Key Committees!

Check out one (or more) of these committee meetings and find out how you can serve Zion!

 Evangelism Team
 Joy of Giving Team 
 125th Anniversary Committee
 Worship and Music Ministry Team .

Talk to Pastor Blenkush and watch the calendar for meeting times.
               Donuts 4 Debt

On the last Sunday of each month Zion’s Evangelism Team is providing donuts for our Fellowship Hour.

Your free will donation will help us “nibble away” at our Debt Reduction effort. 

In July we collected $52.00.

Every little bite helps!

The tastiest 125th Anniversary fund raiser is now available!  "Milaca's Best" cookbook contains all the best recipes from present and past  Milaca residents. If you are looking for well tested recipes or comfort food recipes or just plain good food recipes, you need this cook book. And they make great gifts for just about anyone who eats. The cookbooks are only $17 each or 2 for $35. Look for them on the table at the Fair Trade Market or in the church office.
Support Camp Onomia

"Camp Onomia offers a life changing experience that invites
 all people
to encounter Christ and Creation and Community.

We hope that you will be able to join us for Wednesday evening Soup Suppers during the Lenten Season. A freewill offering during these suppers are designated towards our campership funds. So… speaking of camp…it’s not too early to start thinking about registering for summer camp. We are very fortunate to have been able to offer a campership to all those attending a church camp in the past. Zion sponsors Camp Onomia and early bird discounts need to be in by March 15. Camp Onomia offers themed programs for all ages and for families, too! Brochures and campership request forms can be picked up at church. Contact, Pastor Steve, the church office, or Jenny Niedzielski if you have any question about this.

   Zion's Missionary

We have chosen to support The Rev. Linda Johnson Seyenkulo in Liberia as your new missionary. Linda grew up in Aikin, Minnesota. She serves as Curriculum and Trainer at the Louis T. Bowers Lay Leader and Minister Training Center in Totota. She teachs lay leaders, deacons, and pastors as well as helping to develop a Lutheran Seminary in Liberia. (more info) In 2018, we will need 100 sponsors to give a gift of $20 to reach our goal of $2,000. If you'd like to be a sponsor, please sign the sheet in the Narthex or fill out the slip you'll find in the Sunday bulletin.


     Thrivent Action Teams

Thrivent Action Teams If you’re a Thrivent Financial member, you can lead a Thrivent Action Team to bring people together for a one-time project to help others by coordinating an educational event, conducting a service activity, or organizing a fund raiser. Thrivent provides: Resources to help you plan the event, promotional items, and a Community Impact Card with $250 of seed money. Learn more and apply online.

Thank you -

To Dan, Jenny & Trent Niedzielski,
Cindy Biederman, and John Glauvitz for preparing and serving last
Sunday’s Come and Be Fed Brunch.
To everyone who helped with the parade. All the women who helped put stickers on the Swedish fish. Thanks to Bob
& Bertie Nickerson for driving their convertible and Arlene Rice
for riding. Thanks to all those who walked in the parade: Ardy
Becklin, Pastor Blenkush, Jean Boggs, Karen Edmison, Mary Jo Gruba,
Brittany Kreger, Aiden Mikla, Jeremy Mikla, Reina Mikla, Oliver
Swenson, and Jack Swenson.

to Jenny & Trent Niedzielski, Pastor & Julia Blenkush, Steve & Lisa Sauer, Jean Boggs, Brittany Kreger,
Cindy Biederman and Kim Lubrant for setting up and operating the
Brat/Hot dog stand.

to the Family and Friends of Wes Johnson! Back when Carol
Johnson passed away her husband Wes Johnson asked that all memorials
be dedicated to the Carol Johnson Campership Fund. This past month
the family of Wes Johnson made the same request and as a result the
Wes & Carol Johnson Campership Fund received $1,105.00 in
additional support intended to help the youth of Zion make camp
possible. Thank You!

to Bob & Michelle Bengson and John & Ardy Becklin for providing last Sunday’s Brunch in conjunction with our
2nd Come and Be Fed Sunday!

to those of you who contributed to the last Sunday’s Free will Offering on behalf of Camp Onomia 
as we raised an addition $244.00 to help us meet our goal of $1000 to help support our ministry partner.

to Bob & Michelle Bengson and John & Ardy Becklin for providing last Sunday’s Brunch in conjunction with our 2nd Come and Be Fed Sunday!

to those of you who contributed to the Come & Be Fed free-will offering on behalf of Camp Onomia as we raised an addition $244.00 to help us meet our goal of $1000 to help support our ministry partner.

to everyone who donated items, set up and ran the Rummage Sale during the week of July 26-28. Also to everyone who baked items for the bake sale!

to Zion’s Ice Cream Scoopers during last month’s “Strummin’ on the Rum/RecFest.”

to everyone who contributed to our VBS program to help defray the costs.

to Nancy Hoskins for sewing a new cloth for the altar.

If there is someone that you feel we need to acknowledge and thank for their contribution to Zion, please let the church office know.


               September 13th


On the second Thursday of every month, Pastor Blenkush and Pastor Bauer from Trinity visit and provide a Service of Holy Communion for the residents and guests of the Elim Home and Country Meadows. If you would like to come and assist with the residents or simply come and participate, please do. The service begins at 10 a.m.
      Our Family Bar codes

Eunice Circle is collecting Our Family bar codes to help the work of our church. We will receive five cents for every Our Family bar code when we send in batches of 500. This is an easy way we can make a difference. Bar codes can be put in the containers in the Narthex or the kitchen. Thanks!
          Solar Power now at
             Phebe Hospital !
    Next: "Current for Curran"

While we often have a lot of questions when we or a loved one has to be in the hospital for tests or surgery, the one questions we rarely have to ask is, "Will the power go out?" We take our electricity for granted. But halfway around the world, power outages at Phebe Hospital occur daily - even during critical surgeries.  But now, Phebe Hospital has a reliable energy source - solar power  is in action as you read this.

 In 2014, the Women of the ELCA pledged to support a portion of a $2.5 million dollar solar photovoltaic (PV) installation at Phebe to provide the hospital with consistent and reliable energy. Now it is about to happen! The ship carrying the container filled with the last equipment needed for installation sailed January 23rd and installation began in March of 2017.  Mary Jo Metzler who got WELCA involved in PV4Phebe got to help pack that final shipment.

Phebe now has solar power and the plan is to do the same for Curran Hospital.  The project is called "Current for Curran!" Check back for details on that project. Both projects share the Facebook page called Skip the Grid.

Please continue to pray for the people in Liberia who will benefit from these live-saving endeavors. Pray for the people dedicated to telling the story of how the light of the world saves lives in many ways.

See a few photos from Zion's Solar Sunday here.  Read a thank you note from Mary Jo Metzler here.

           Fair Trade Center
       1st Sunday of the month

The next Fair Trade Center will be on Sunday,  September 2nd

Stop by the Fair Trades Center – On the first Sunday of the month, Women of the ELCA sell Fair Trade high quality coffee (whole bean or ground), tea and chocolate bars to support the alternative Fair Trade system that empowers farmers, strengthens communities and benefits the environment. They also sell boxed greeting cards, packages of decorative napkins, and knives and cutlery. “Milaca’s Best” Cookbook and 125th anniversary mugs are also for Sale! We are located in the Narthex as you go into the Fellowship Hall for your refreshments. Helping others is our goal. Praise God!

        Quasquicentennial (125th)
 Anniversary of Zion!


This year,  Zion Lutheran is celebrating its 125th Anniversary. Together we have set a series of goals that include marking this milestone by lifting up the ministries of the congregation, stirring a spirit of revitalization and paying down the debt. There are plans to host events that highlight Zion’s history and culture. Check the 125th Anniversary Calendar for details. In order to assist with the debt reduction, we will be executing an assortment of fund raisers - selling cookbooks, coffee mugs, host meals at member homes, and much more. We kicked off the year on Sunday, Jan. 28, with the dedication of our new Archive Cabinet and a Congregational Brunch. If you have question or ideas, contact either Pastor Stephen Blenkush or our planning team chair Mark Boggs. The next 125th Anniversary Committee meeting is on July 17th at 6 p.m.

      The 125th Anniversary
  Archive Cabinet

The cabinet is in place and has been dedicated! (see photos and get news)

The cabinet is in the southwestern corner of the Fellowship Hall for all to enjoy. In the center is the baptismal fount that has been in the library. It will be lighted and contain 3/8 glass shelves with hidden door openers.

All the things that are hidden in the library that no one knows about will go into this cabinet.  We have two beautiful scrapbooks made by Eileen McBroom and Martha  Norrgard.  We have pictures of the original church and old church directories and anniversary programs and lot lots more.

          Save Your Teal’s
         Grocery Receipts

Don’t throw those grocery receipts from Teal’s Market away! Bring them to church and look for the marked basket in the kitchen. Jenny Niedzielski will turn them in every so often and Zion’s Youth Fund will receive a 1% rebate on qualifying purchases.

        Zion's Meal Ministry

 Every once in a while someone from the congregation gets ill or has a death in the family. And when that happens, imagine the level of appreciation felt when someone from church shows up at the door with a ready to eat meal. Here at Zion, we have had individuals who have prepared meals for people who are going through tough and challenging times. This gesture of kindness was not only appreciated by the recipient. But it was also gratifying for those who prepared the meals. Zion's Meal Ministry is an effort to make this a formal ministry here at Zion and to create an efficient and organized way to provide this ministry to others. Does this sound like something YOU might be interested in getting involved with? If so, contact either Pastor Blenkush or the Church Office (983-3368) and you will be contacted when the first organizational meeting is set.

“Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap;
for the measure you give will be the
measure you get back.”     (Luke 6:38)



Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.” (Luke 6:38)

Stewardship of Our Church

At all times there must be and remain one holy, Christian church. It is the assembly of all believers among whom the gospel is purely preached and the holy sacraments are administered according to the gospel. Augsburg Confession, Article VII

Steward-discipleship means taking care of all that God has blessed us with. We think of our health, our relationships and our money, but our church? You bet!

The church the only organization whose primary purpose is to bring people into intimate relationship with God and also gather them as sacred community. Without church, how would people grow in faith? How would the Gospel be spread to all nations, as Jesus commands in Matthew 28:19, 20?

So what does it mean to be a good steward of our church? Here are some ideas:

  • Focus: We are dedicated to God’s Word and Sacrament as the means by which God’s grace is poured into us and out to the world. Our service projects and social events may flow from this, but they are secondary.

  • Community: As the Augsburg Confession (above) declares, the church is the community of God’s people dedicated to Word and Sacrament. We build strong community through healthy relationships guided by principles of Christian love, trust, honesty, truth, forbearance, forgiveness.

  • Building: Our building is NOT the church, but a tool of the church for ministry. We provide the resources to maintain our building as useful for the Gospel, but feel free to move on if it no longer serves.

  • Resources: Understanding that ministry to God’s people takes resources, we give generously of our time and talents. We strive to give a tithe – 10 percent of our financial blessings.

  • Faith formation: It takes learning and practice to grow closer to God, both as individuals and community. We support and participate in studying the Bible and theology. We promote and engage in spiritual practices that feed our souls.

Although we tend to think that our church has a mission, it’s more accurate to say that God has a mission, and that mission has a church. We grow in faith as people and community when we dedicate ourselves to good stewardship of our church.

                                                                                               --Rob Blezard

Copyright © 2018, Rev. Robert Blezard. Reprinted by permission. Pastor Blezard serves as an assistant to the bishop of the Lower Susquehanna Synod and works as content editor for www.stewardshipoflife.org.

Invest in Zion's Youth and help sponsor a Campership. Help provide the opportunity for more kids to go to camp.  A Campership will pay half  cost of camp - up to $200 for week-long camp and $100 for weekend or half-week camp. To receive a campership, fill out the Campership Request form. If you can help provide camperships, please do invest in our youth!

       Help us keep in touch!

If you have changed from a landline to a cell phone or if you do most of your calling and receiving of messages on your cellphone, please share them with the Church Office. Thanks!

Hi - my name is Arlene Rice and I reside in the Milaca Park Apartments (aka the Hi Rise). Many of you are aware of the noon meal offered Monday through Friday at a cost of $4.00 to anyone over 60 at this site. In order to keep this in operation we need others than the residents of Milaca Apartments to come to dine with us. The churches in the area are invited to choose a day each month to attend and enjoy a meal with us. I have volunteered to keep the Zion members informed and look forward to having a group come each second Wednesday of each month.  

Zion's Day at the Dining Site is Wednesday, September 12th. Please come and join us and enjoy the great meal, fun and fellowship. 

Remember – you can come here to eat any weekday for $4.00 for people over 60. Come and pick up a menu and visit us often.

PS - No one over 60 will be denied a meal because they can't pay.

                                                    Online Reflections

Interested in keeping up with all the great opportunities and ministries going on within our Northeastern Minnesota Synod? Go to www.nemnsynod.org and click the Online Reflections tab and click to sign up to receive weekly updates. Now you too can stay on top of what’s going on in our synod and church!

               College Addresses


    We want to keep in touch with our college students. If you or someone you know is attending college, please contact the church office with the address information. We want to keep in touch with our young adults!

             Got Facebook?    

    If you are a Facebook user, type in “Zion Lutheran Church, Milaca, MN” and stay up-to-date on events and activities here at Zion!

              for Worship

Consider providing flowers for the Altar at sometime during 2017. There is a sign up sheet on the bulletin board in the entryway.



Zion's Evangelism Team has a ministry called HomeTouch. A weekly mailing is sent to Zion's members who are homebound or restricted in their ability to get around, The mailing includes a devotional reading and an activity page. If you know of anyone in the congregation who is not already getting the mailing and should, please alert the church office or Jan Brown.

Worship Schedule

There is one Sunday service at 9 a.m. followed by the Fellowship Hour and starting again in October, Sunday School. 
More about worship.

Home Visits
by Pastor

Has Pastor Blenkush been invited to your home for a visit? If not, please feel free to give him a call, talk to him in person or fill out the blue communion card. He would love to stop in for a visit!

Coffee and Fellowship on
Sunday Mornings

Join us Sunday mornings after the worship service and share coffee and fellowship with old and new friends at Zion. Have a treat and a cup of coffee and a little conversation.

Please sign up to serve one Sunday soon. Look for a sign-up sheet on the Information Kiosk in the Narthex.

Tuesday Morning
Bible Study

Learn and enjoy fellowship at the same time with Tuesday Morning Bible Study at 10:30 a.m.  Check the Learn This Month page for more learning opportunities.

WELCA and Circles

Come to WELCA's bi-monthly meetings, and be part of a Circle - morning or afternoon. You can enjoy serving and learning and fellowship all at one time! See the calendar for meeting times. More info about WELCA.