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    Needed! If you have clothes racks you would be willing to let us use for the rummage sale to hang clothing on, please contact Karen in the office (983-3369). We also would like paper grocery bags for our bag sale on Saturday. If you have some, please drop them off at church. Thanks!

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 beAugust 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.

 If you are interested in helping out, please contact Pastor Blenkush.

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).

July Elim Home Coffee


Volunteers are needed to serve coffee at the Elim Home on Sunday afternoons July 15th from 2-3 PM. Everything is provided by the Elim Home. If you can help, please sign up on the clip board sent around during Sunday morning service or call the church office.

Ice Cream Fundraiser
Volunteers needed!

Zion will be serving up ice cream for a fundraiser during RecFest, July 26-29, at Rec Park. If you can help, sign up on the clip board during church or call the church office at 320-983-3368.

The serving hours are:

Thursday - 5:30 - 9 p.m.

Friday - 2-9 p.m.
Saturday 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
SUnday - 10:30 a.m. - 2;W

Camp Onomia Golf Outing and Fundraiser: 10 AM Scramble on July 30 at Stones Throw Golf Course in Milaca- Gather your foursome and join us for a great afternoon of golf, friendship, and conversation! We will get together afterwards in the clubhouse for some awesome awards! It will be a fun day to support the ministries of Camp Onomia by helping to send a kid to camp! Sign up online at Camp Onomia's web site, email CampOnamia@gmail.com or grab a form off the kiosk. $75 per person includes: 18 holes, cart, fun, and prizes!

Milaca Community Library presents

Life in the Sea – Friday, July 27, at 10:30-11:30 am at the Milaca Library – Children, ages 5-12, will learn about ocean ecosystems, measure themselves against a great white shark, and learn how sea creatures adapt to fit their environment. Registration required. To register go to the Events Calendar at ecrlib.org.
Blessing of the Graduates

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

Blessing of the Quilts
was on May 20th

Blessing of the Quilts –Throughout the year a handful of quilters gather to cut, stitch and sew handmade quilts that will provide warmth and comfort to individuals and families in need. On Sunday, May 20, we took time in our worship service to bless these gifts of love and compassion before sending them out into the world, both locally and globally.

This past year Zion’s quilters made around 91 quilts. We would like to thank Zion’s Dorcus Quilters: Carole Kiel, Nancy Hoskins, Iris Anderson, Mary Anderson, Ardy Becklin, Michelle Hoskins, Myra Norrgard, Arlene Rice, and Sandy Warmanen.

How many quilts does it take to cover all the pew backs at Zion? How fast can those quilts be folded and boxed to be taken to LWR  and then to wherever in the world they are needed. See a few photos.
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.
Zion's Summer Book Club 

During the summer months our Zion Book Club will meet and read these three books:

"Babette's Feast" by Isak Dinesen (Sunday June 24th)

"The Bible Dalesman” by Clyde Edgerton (Sunday, July 29th) 

“A Scandalous Beauty” by Thomas Schmidt (Sunday, August 26th)

We'll meet at Zion at 7 p.m.

Zion Softball

The  Adult Softball League is underway. Watch the home page This Week at Zion or the Zion bulletin for game days and times. The more fans that show up, the better the team plays so come down to Rec Park and watch our team play ball! If you are interested in playing, please call Sam Vanderplaats (651.529.2932).
               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 June we collected $63.00

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.
Rummage Sale for Debt
July 26th-28th

Calling all members!
This is the time to get rid of those gizmos, whozits, whatzits, and thingamabobs you don't need anymore. This year we are changing up our sale format. Our Rummage Sale will coincide with the Milaca Community Garage Sale during the Rec Fest,  July 26th thru 28th.  The sale will be held in the Educational wing and all proceeds will go toward Debt Retirement. Please only bring items that are clean and in good condition. No computers or TVs.
  • Rummage Sale Hours: July 26th & 27th (8am – 5pm - everything 50¢ unless marked) and July 28th, 9a.m. – 1p.m. and $3 bag sale from 11 a.m.– 1 p.m. Come in and check out the treasures!

We need to borrow your clothes racks to display donated clothing and grocery bags to package up the things we sell. Thanks!
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, and Trent, Cindy, and John 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

to Bob and Bertie for driving their convertible and

to Arlene who rode in the convertible.

To all who walked in the parade: Ardy, Pastor, Jean, Karen, Mary Jo, Brittany, Aiden, Jeremy, Reina, Oliver, and Jack.

To Jenny and Trent, Pastor and Julia, Steve and Lisa, Jean, Brittany, Cindy, and Kim for setting up and operating the Brat/Hotdog stand.

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/Hotdog 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 & Caroil 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.


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


               August 9th


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 barcodes to help the work of our church. We will receive five cents for every Our Family barcode 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,  August 5th
The WELCA Fair Trade Center has been open for several months on the first Sunday of each month, selling coffee, chocolate, tea, knives and cards. The original plan was to “give it a try'” for a year. Now, WELCA has decided to continue in 2017 due to the wonderful way our congregation has responded by buying these products and assisting the growers to make a living for themselves. Through Lutheran World Relief they have not only been the middle man but have taught the growers a better way to raise their crops. I read how some are now being able to support their families and have increased their produce immensely with this assistance. Equal Exchange (LWR) is 30 years old this year and they are the largest and most successful worker coops in the world. However, in the last 10 years their success has been limited due to more obstacles. We need to sell as much coffee, chocolate and tea as we can to keep this project successful. We thank you sincerely for buying our Fair Trade products and look forward to seeing you at our center each month. We also have coffee available for sale in the fellowship hall every day with instructions for payment on the top of the display. Please remember that the things we sell in our Center make lovely gifts; Christmas is coming. WE ALSO WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT WE SERVE FAIR TRADE COFFEE THE FIRST SUNDAY OF EACH MONTH DURING THE COFFEE HOUR. TASTE AND ENJOY.!!!!  

        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)


Stewardship of our leisure time

I commend enjoyment, for there is nothing better for people under the sun than to eat, and drink, and enjoy themselves, for this will go with them in their toil through the days of life that God gives them under the sun. Ecclesiastes 8:15

Busy-ness keeps us from living with joy and peace in today’s 24/7 world, but Scripture reminds us that this is hardly new. Ecclesiastes was written some 2,500 years ago! Ecclesiastes does not give license for mindless pleasure-seeking, but rather affirms that our hard work should be balanced with time for relaxation and enjoyment with friends and family.

Saints and mystics have long touted the need for rest and renewal. In the monastic tradition it’s referred to as otium sanctum – Holy Leisure. Not just wasting our free time, but using it for renewal. As steward/disciples, we aim to use our leisure time wisely. Here are some ideas:

  • Keep the Sabbath: God actually commands us to stop working one day per week, as Exodus 20:8-11 makes clear. It’s one of the Top Ten! Though we are prohibited from working on the Sabbath, there is no prohibition against leisure. (Why else would God give us a day off?)

  • Plan your vacation: Even if you’re taking simple STAYcation, plan your time for maximum rest and enjoyment. Visit local museums or historic places. Take day trips to local parks, mountains or waterways. Invite friends or family over. Select books to read, movies to stream and games to play.

  • Manage your schedule: Are you a slave to your appointment book, driven by other people’s priorities? Put yourself first – scheduling in time for leisure. Even if it’s just 30 minutes here and there, make – and take – time for yourself!

  • Find an activity you like: What do you do just for you? Exercise? Read? Scrapbook? Play an instrument? Walk? Fish? Discover – or REdiscover – what brings you joy, then make time to do it.

  • Socialize: Friends and family make life enjoyable. Spend time with them. Ideas: a hike, a picnic, a meal on your deck, drinks under the stars, a game of cards or a board game.

  • Invest, don’t waste, time: Many activities pass the time but don’t give back much in renewal or refreshment. Choose activities wisely.

God expects us to work, but not work ourselves to death. Sabbath and leisure time provide means for us to find balance in our life, as well as friendship, love, renewal and purpose.

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, August 8th, 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.