Paying It Forward as a Church

Gifts to the Live On Fund have come from interesting sources through the years. The Lord’s leading is the only common denominator.

One interesting story is the congregational giving of a church named Park Place. The church was established in 1937. Park Place was a large church with as many as 1100 members at its peak. However, over time, particularly in the decade between 1950-1960, the demographics shifted as a freeway cut through the center of the neighborhood. By 2000, there was only a remnant of the church members still attending – about one hundred total. Efforts to merge with a neighborhood congregation were not fruitful.

No one wanted to see the valuable property go into decline, so in January of 2007  discussions focused on a possible timeline for closure. At the congregational meeting, a Resolution for Dissolution was approved. The provision called for selling the church building and dissolving the congregation by October 2007.

A vote was taken on Sunday, June 27, 2007.   33 members were in attendance. 32 members voted to close and only one voted no. It was a sad day.  There was, however, a form of resurrection in store for Park Place.

On October 7, Park Place as an entity entered into an agreement with the Mission Endowment Fund, now known as the Live On Fund.  Park Place donated $100,000 of their existing funds through the Lutheran Foundation of the Southwest to help the Synod develop leaders through seminary scholarships.

The Lord’s hand blessed the agreement and on December 8, Inglesia De Jesuscristo del Fundamento purchased the entire property for the cost of $900,000.00. In total, nearly one million dollars was disbursed for the future of Lutheran ministry in the Gulf Coast.



A Generous Fundraiser, Kathryn Haueisen

Heard of Kathy HowWiseThen? If not, she has a delightful blog she will let you in on that is a hint as to how to pronounce her German last name. Kathy is a pastor, teacher, consultant, author, wife, mother, grandmother, and marvelous friend-in-Christ who gets around our synod’s Lutheran circles. She has made giant advances in multiple ministries and though she pretends to be semi-retired—her schedule is non-stop. Reverend Haueisen has been a significant contributor to many ministries for many years. She is a networker extraordinaire.’

It all started with Kathy sensed she had a “call” on her life. Somehow, the Lord made a way for her to attend seminary in Austin even though her husband and two daughters lived south of Houston. With God’s grace, they made it work and she completed school. Since her ordination in 1986 she has served as an associate pastor at Christ the King in our synod and a few other places. She learned the most about raising money from working at Lutherhill as a director with this beloved camping ministry. While she was there, the camp went from a deficit to a healthy budget. Retired Dr. Charles Oestreich, former president of Texas Lutheran University, taught her what he knew and served as an amazing mentor she still reveres today.

For many years, she has been an avid supporter of the Live On Fund—the synod’s mission endowment cause. Kathy has a heart for the Live On Fund for many reasons. She had great respect for Bishop Paul Blom when the fund was originally created and was selected to serve on the volunteer committee. At the time she made the commitment to the cause, she had already experienced the benefits of the fund through others. She knew the young pastor Brad Otto had received a scholarship for seminary from the fund. A member of the “call committee” for Campus Ministry, she saw first hand the difference Pastor Brad Fuerst was making on the college campuses of University of Houston and Rice University. She began as a board member with a committee to help the fund grow, and because of its significant work, she never stopped her support. Her legacy of support is evident in the work of her own daughter Carol, who now serves on the committee as a board member extending her work to a new Lutheran generation.

Kathy has been helpful working as a campaign consultant at ELCA Lutheran Churches teaching about the benefits of giving and rewards of materializing dreams for our communities of faith. Because she asks others to live out their faith in generosity, she lives what she proposes others do—give to the Lord’s causes! Thank you Kathy, for the commitment you have made to the Live

On Fund and the continual legacy of love for the church you provide every day in so many ways.