Love Was in the Air

One of the great joys of being a pastor is the opportunity to walk alongside families for the major moments in their lives. As we celebrate Valentine’s Day this month, we will spotlight four of the weddings we were delighted to be a part of in 2017. We hope you’ll enjoy! Perhaps you’ll even remember watching four of these brides grow up at Zumbro. -Pastor Lisa Kipp

Kaylen Christensen & Ben Margotta

Daughter of Melissa and Todd Christensen

About 15 years ago, Todd and Melissa joined a “dinner 8” small group at Zumbro. They loved their new friends so much, that after their small group time was up and they were asked to join a new group to meet more folks from Zumbro, the group rebelled. They kept their small group as is and fondly named themselves the “Church Group Gone Bad.” In many ways, the group has become like a second family for one another, celebrating holidays together and always showing up for major family celebrations.

Melissa shared, “Having our dinner group friends at the wedding was very important. That group is like family to us; we have been together for about 15 years!”

As for Kaylen, the role this group has played in her life is priceless: “This group has been through a lot together over the many years. Watching them form and remain together has helped reiterate to Ben and me the importance of close friendships. Also, it has helped motivate us to be more involved in church groups. We are slowly starting to get into the church life at Trinity Lutheran Church in St. Peter (where we live).”

Support from the Christensen’s Zumbro friends is priceless for Kaylen and Ben.

This group certainly knows how to pass on faith … and have a good time. Before the wedding, the ladies of the “Church Group Gone Bad” threw a special bridal shower, and they all showed up in bridesmaids’ dresses!

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How beautiful, how vulnerable, how resilient!

A couple mornings ago we stood at the rim of Ngorongoro Crater – one of the wonders of the natural world. Together with Mt Kilimanjaro, Ngorongoro is a major revenue producer for Tanzania. This conservation area is a huge volcanic crater housing an abundance of wildlife: gnu, gazelle, warthogs, lions, hippos, even a rare rhinoceros. The lack of woodlands makes for easy viewing.

But my eyes were drawn to the south, outside the crater, where the green hills rolled away into the distance and sky and farmland blur together.

I think, “How beautiful! How vulnerable!” But also, “how resilient!”

Soon after we watched the birth of a gnu, and the work of the baby to take its first steps. Again, I thought, “How amazing! How vulnerable! How resilient!”

Like creation, our relationship with the staff of Iambi Hospital requires ongoing care, but our Lord Jesus gives vitality to our relationship. Without God, we can do nothing; with God all things are possible.

by Sue Jenkins