Jesus went about all the cities and villages...preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom and teaching them many things in parables. When asked by His disciples why He spoke in parables, Jesus replied: to you it has been given to know the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven and to know what has been hidden since the foundation of the world.
By teaching us this wisdom Jesus intended that every disciple, especially those whom He has called to be shepherds of His people, become a "wise scribe" -- trained for the kingdom (Matthew 13:52) -- who is able to help people make sense of their life story in light of His stories (that is, the parables of Jesus).
In order to equip us to understand the meaning and application of this teaching from Jesus, Dr. Jeff Kloha will conduct two days of teaching on the parables of Jesus at our 2016 Spring Pastors' Conference.
Venue: Trinity Lutheran Church, 131 Mountain Way, Morris Plains, NJ
Host Pastor: Rev. David Behm...(973) 538-7606...email
Dates: May 6 (Friday) and May 7 (Saturday), 2016
Time: 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. (four sessions each day)
+ 8:30 a.m. -- 9:00 a.m. -- gathering time, with a light breakfast
+ 9:00 a.m. -- 9:15 a.m. -- opening devotion
+ 9:15 a.m. -- 10:30 a.m. -- session #1
+ 10:30 a.m. -- 10:45 a.m. -- break
+ 10:45 a.m -- Noon -- session #2
+ 12:00 p.m. -- 12:45 p.m. -- lunch
+ 12:45 p.m. -- 2:00 p.m. -- session #3
+ 2:00 p.m. -- 2:15 p.m. -- break
+ 2:15 p.m. -- 3:30 p.m. -- session #4
It is my hope that you will join Dr. Kloha and be blessed with this wisdom from the teaching ministry of Jesus.
ALSO, please reserve on your calendar the two days of teaching that Dr. Jeff Gibbs will bring to your pastoral ministry as he teaches on "discipleship in the Gospel of Matthew" -- June 16-17, 2016 at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 1640 Amwell Road, Somerset, NJ (four sessions on Thursday and four sessions on Friday)
It is my intention to labor well these remaining thirty months as your District President, with my last day being September 1, 2018. In order to do so, there are six strategic focuses:
(1) to visit every ordained and commissioned minister, along with every NJD congregation, in order to affirm and encourage these Members of Synod in their ministry labors and to receive their input and suggestions regarding their ministry needs so that the NJD might better serve them in the months and years ahead
(2) to strengthen the teaching office of the church through an intensive focus on "the parables of Jesus" -- for Jesus taught them many things in parables...beginning with the teaching ministry of Dr. Jeff Kloha on May 6-7, 2016 (Trinity Lutheran Church, Morris Plains)
(3) to strengthen the church's understanding of discipleship because the most frequent word used in the New Testament to describe the life of a Christian is the word "disciple" -- and the primary ministry of the church is to "make disciples of all nations"...in order to help us understand the life and ministry of a disciple Dr. Jeff Gibbs will be teaching on "discipleship in the Gospel of Matthew" on June 16-18, 2016 (Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Somerset)
(4) to build upon the teaching labors of Dr. Kloha and Dr. Gibbs by providing exegetical, homiletical and teaching resources on the appointed lectionary readings in Series C (2016), Series A (2017), and Series B (2018) that address the parables of Jesus and the life of a disciple
(5) to strengthen the urban ministry work among NJD congregations in Newark and Trenton
(6) to explore "what it means to be the Lutheran Church in the 21st Century" through a series of four convocations in 2017 and 2018:
+ Reformation convocation on the "coram relationships" with Dr. Robert Kolb (January 27-28, 2017)
+ coram Deo: my relationship in the sight and presence of God
+ coram meipso: my relationship in the sight and presence of self
+ coram hominibus: my relationship in the sight and presence of others
+ coram mundo: my relationship in the sight and presence of the world
+ Convocation on the Word for "the Word did it all" (spring/summer 2017)
+ the Book of Acts...as the Word of the Lord grew
+ theses on "a theology of the Word...for the Word did it all (LW 51:77)"
+ Convocation on the Ministry of the Church (fall 2017)
+ theses on the mission and ministry of the church
+ theses on the office of the pastoral ministry
+ theses on the office of the priesthood of all believers
+ Convocation on the North American Religious Context
+ responding with "a symbol of our time" (March 2018)
+ responding with "a ministry for our time" (May 2018)