Year in Review2 min read

2017 was an exciting year for the Michigan District’s Here We Stand (HWS) campaign, as demonstrated by the numerous successful events that took place and in the substantial financial growth of the campaign itself. Following is a brief snapshot of the past year’s successes.

Hearts for Jesus/Kids to Camp – Through the generosity of many of our Lutheran schools children, families, and staff, $31,207.84 was provided to send nearly 200 children to the four week-long A2E Sports Camps/VBS programs that took place in Detroit, Pontiac, and Benton Harbor during the summer.

Reformation 500 Challenge – this five-month walk/run/bike challenge had many people involved in raising funds for HWS and their respective congregations or schools.

Here We Ride – Approximately 80 riders of all ages participated in this day-long biking event hosted by Bethany, Charlevoix. These two exercise events (Ref. 500 and Here We Ride) raised $10,910.81 for HWS and congregations/schools.

District-wide 500th Anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation Worship Service – On October 15, the Breslin Center in East Lansing was filled with approx. 13,000 people of all ages to celebrate this historic anniversary of the Reformation. As a result of the Worship Service, nearly $60,000 was received in offerings to benefit the initiatives of HWS.

Congregational participation – We began the year with 52 participating congregations, and as of December 18, there were 107 that made gifts and commitments.

Donor participation – As of December 18, there were 1,170 individual (non-congregational) donors to the campaign. That is an increase of 750 from the end of 2016.

Financial growth – The HWS campaign grew significantly during the past year. Through December 13, over $2.09 million in new gifts and commitments were received, and over $2.17 million in cash was received to be distributed among the four campaign initiatives.

Church Extension Fund Matching Gifts – During 2017, the Michigan District received $200,000 in campaign matching funds. We are grateful for our partnership with CEF and for the generous support of HWS they provide.

Crafted by Truth Bible Reading Program – The year began with approximately 1,700 participating in the one-year Bible Reading program and ended with about 6,125 participating, a dramatic increase of over 4,425 in one year! To date, over 200 have completed the Bible reading program.

As you can see through this Campaign Year in Review, HWS is a broad-based initiative designed to encourage participation and spiritual growth in numerous ways. Please prayerfully consider how you personally, or your congregation, may become involved in 2018. Together we can, and are, making a difference for future mission and ministries in the Michigan District and beyond.

For information, or to talk about how you or your congregation can participate, please contact Ray Zavada, Campaign Director, at or Linda Ekong, Campaign Administrative Assistant, at

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About the Author

Ray is the Michigan District Assistant to the President - Development

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