Northeastern Iowa Synod congregations were out in force with
other ELCA congregations around the country doing service projects of all kinds
from working on butterfly gardens, playgrounds and bike paths, to fixing up people’s
houses, visiting and bringing baked goods to residents of care centers, tying
quilts and blankets and putting together kits for Lutheran World Relief, to
giving away vouchers to free ice cream.
Folks from St. John Lutheran, Farmersburg began early.  It started when Sunday School teacher Becky
Fuelling saw “The Adventures of Flat Jesus” in the July/August issue of Living
, a newsletter of the Synod Home Life Network.
“I was already a big fan of Flat Jesus from the Synod
Assembly,” remarks St. John Pastor Jenny Edinger.
  (Here’s more information about Flat
Jesus at the Synod Assembly
.)  “We
wanted to use Flat Jesus to reach out to the community.”

Since God’s Work. Our Hands. Sunday was also the first day
of Sunday School, the education board decided to use Flat Jesus to invite all
the children in town to Sunday School.
On Saturday, Pastor Edinger, Becky and another family with children walked
around the whole town of Farmersburg.  “We
went anywhere there were any children” handing out Flat Jesus with an
invitation to Sunday School the next morning.
They handed out a total of 50 Flat Jesuses.  And it did bring some new families to church
the next day.

“The smiles on the faces of the children, when we handed them Flat Jesus were priceless,” notes Becky. Some parents reported their children played with the flat Jesus for hours after that.


St. John is a small church in a small town.  Sometimes we think only large churches can do
innovative and creative projects.  But here’s an example of a creative idea anyone can do. People
will be talking about Flat Jesus in Farmersburg for a long time.   
Here’s a video about making Flat Jesus

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About The Rev. Dr. Joelle Colville-Hanson

The Rev. Dr. Joelle Colville-Hanson has been Director for Evangelical Mission, ELCA for the Northeastern Iowa Synod since late 2013. Part of her job description is to help leaders and congregations use social media and other digital means for outreach and mission. She writes and edits this blog as well as runs the social media accounts for the synod.




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