By Michael Kohn, Synod Communicator, Zion, Lexington

Giving has a domino effect. One gift excites another. One’s sharing inspires others to give. In the spirit of healthy competition, the Bible even encourages Christians to outdo one another in showing zeal and generosity. If the challenge of giving is likened to a NASCAR race, the Lutheran Men in Mission of the Western Conference are the pace car, one gift leading to others and serving as a model!

What began as a thoughtful gesture at Synod Assembly by Larry Rikard to help clear Cristo Rey’s Lexington site — the site itself the result of a gift in part by Al and Frances Roberts — grew into Rikard and his business partner Randy Barnes’ donation of their time and major equipment to clear the property, and then their generosity prompted yet another gift.

Then Randy and Larry talked about the strengths and needs of Cristo Rey, a Latino congregation, and the Lutheran Men in Mission in the Western Conference voted to share $1,000 to help remove the cleared vegetation and lay the groundwork for the construction of the first unit, which could begin as early as winter, 2018-19!

How can your congregation join the momentum and make the Roberts’ and Rikard’s seed gifts continue to grow and expand? Cristo Rey’s pastor, Jorge Leone, suggested a creative way of phasing the project which will locate the first phase buildings nicely connected to Oak Drive while saving thousands of dollars, and architects and engineers are busy creating an affordable but striking presence which will recall the congregation’s Latino roots. Think how your congregation can join this exciting work! Call the architect, Michael Kohn, at 803.609.5646 or Bishop Herman Yoos at 803.765.0590 to find how Cristo Rey needs and your gifts might intersect just as the Western Conference Lutheran Men in Mission have built upon other gifts in their own generous way.

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