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June 2024

Dear Friends,

““And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said unto him, Rabbi, when camest thou hither?  Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled. Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed. Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. They said therefore unto him, What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work? Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” John 6:25-35

The time period on the church calendar between the Day of Pentecost and Advent is often referred to as “ordinary time”, because there are only a few major festivals (Holy Trinity Sunday and Christ the King Sunday). Ordinary is an unfortunate name, because it may tempt us to take the blessings of God for granted.

In the appointed Gospel readings during the season of Pentecost, we hear Jesus give sight to the blind, give hearing to the deaf, heal the lame, cast out demons and even raise the dead. In the sixth chapter of his Gospel, John records Jesus feeding of the five thousand. As the crowds follow after Him, Jesus reveals their true concern “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.” Even when Jesus encourages the people to believe in Him, they ask “…What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work?” Even though Jesus had just fed the five thousand, the people saw this as ordinary. We often do the same. Sometimes we even take the cross for granted. Our God is anything but ordinary. In fact, He does the extra-ordinary, by sending His Son Jesus to cleanse us from sin with His precious blood. Through the death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, we have new life in this world, a life that lasts unto eternity. Thanks be to God that He has blessed us and continues to bless us. His mercies are new every morning.

Thank you for your prayerful support during the past school year. We certainly could not do this work without your help. Please remember us in prayer during the summer months as well. Although there are no classes in the summer, there is much work to be done in preparing for the coming school year. We appreciate your fellowship in the Gospel, as we continue to serve our gracious and extra-ordinary God.

“I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now; being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ…”
Philippians 1:3-6

Yours in Christ,
Pastor Chuck Bylkas


In memory of Rev. & Mrs. Andrew Mickelsen
From Joyce Tibbs

In memory of Verna A. Hendrickson
From Ann Lepisto

In memory of Gary Worrall
From Barbara Worrall

In memory of Orval Wirkkala
From Jimmy & Barbara Maunu


Even though the spring semester has just concluded, we have been busy working on the fall class schedule. The fall semester will begin on Wednesday, September 4th.

The “tentative” daily classes to be offered are History of Christianity in America, History of the Laestadian Movement, Anthropology & Christology, Ministry to the Youth, Corinthian Epistles, Romans, Samuel, Kings & Chronicles, and Joshua.

The Monday night class on the Gospel of Matthew will begin on September 9th at 7PM (ET) and will be offered at seminary and on Zoom.

A final schedule should be available soon or view the latest information on our website If you are interested in taking classes or have questions, feel free to call 906-482-3337 or email


CHOICE DOLLARS DETAILS: Eligible clients with membership can recommend where Thrivent distributes some of its charitable grant funds. These recommendations are shared by directing Choice Dollars to enrolled nonprofit organizations, including churches.

Eligibility requirements: To be eligible to direct Choice Dollars as part of Thrivent Choice®, you must be a client with benefit membership. Individual eligibility is also based on at least one of the following:
• Having $750 or more in annual billed premiums of qualifying life and health insurance products.
• Having $20,000 or more in contract value of qualifying life insurance and annuity products.
Eligibility is determined monthly and reevaluated on an annual basis.
Minimum and maximum Choice Dollars designations: Eligible clients will be designated a minimum of 25 Choice Dollars and a maximum of 5,000 Choice Dollars per eligibility period (Jan. 1 to Dec. 31).
Choice Dollars expiration date: Choice Dollars designated during the calendar year can be directed until March 31 of the following year.

For more information about Choice Dollars, visit or call 800-847-4836 or contact your local Thrivent Financial representative.


The Inter-Lutheran Seminary has established an Endowment Fund through Thrivent Charitable Impact & InvestingTM (formerly InFaith Community Foundation). All earnings of the endowment will be used for the seminary’s needs thereby ensuring the continued existence of this funding source. This is the preferred method used by many non-profit entities, especially ongoing religiously focused organizations such as seminaries. To learn more about this organization, go to

We would love to grow our endowment into a major source of ongoing seminary support. Although the seminary still needs the financial ongoing regular contributions of our supporters, please consider the endowment fund for your planned giving needs. For more additional information, please contact Kirk Otto, Jr. at (715) 821-8574 or Cheryl Hendrickson at
(906) 482-3337.

Online giving is as easy as clicking the DONATE button on our website: Simply go to the How to Contribute tab and tap the yellow DONATE button to begin. There are options for credit and debit card donations and even the option to help the seminary cover the PayPal processing fee. (Note we are charged 1.99% + $.49/transaction fee). As always, we are thankful for your continued support!


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Or call 906-482-3337 or email: Thank you!




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Inter-Lutheran Theological Seminary
James Weidner, President
P.O. Box 449
Hancock, MI 49930
Phone: 906-482-3337
FAX: 906-482-0694