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April 2021

Dear Friends,

“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. 10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. 11 For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, 12 Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. 13 And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me. 14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil…Hebrews 2:9-14

O Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is done,
The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won,
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting,
While follow eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring;
But O heart! heart! heart!
O the bleeding drops of red,
Where on the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen cold and dead.

This is the first stanza of a beautiful poem by the great poet Walt Whitman. The poem is quite moving and serves as a wonderful tribute to Abraham Lincoln following his death. The poem depicts our former president as the captain of a ship arriving home after the mission is accomplished. Amidst the cries of jubilant voices rejoicing in triumph, the ship finds her captain lying on the deck “fallen cold and dead.” Indeed, Abraham Lincoln navigated the American nation through a dreadful civil war. Although Lincoln succeeded in preserving the Union, he would die less than a week after the war had ended, by way of an assassin’s bullet.

We as Christians have an even greater Captain, Jesus Christ. The Captain of our salvation navigated the stormy seas of this life, bearing the suffering and sin that is rightfully ours. Through the blood that He shed, our sins have been forgiven. Unlike the death of Abraham Lincoln, the death of Jesus Christ was part of God’s plan all along. Our Captain tasted death for every human being, so that death itself might be destroyed. Also, unlike Lincoln, Our Captain rises from the dead to swallow up death in victory. “It is finished!” The mission is accomplished. Jesus Christ has delivered us from sin, death and the devil through His death and Resurrection. May God bless you all in this blessed Easter season. Let the bells ring and our voices sing: Christ is Risen! Alleluia!

“So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. 55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? 56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”  I Corinthians 15:54-57

Yours in Christ,
Pastor Chuck Bylkas


In honor of Pastor Wayne Juntunen
From Richard & Renee Riemersma

In memory of Elmer Yliniemi
From Ellie Puumala

In memory of Edward J. Puumala
From Ellie Puumala

In memory of Don Bielinski
From Pamela Bielinski

In memory of Alice A. Harju
From Roger A. Harju

In memory of Jack Munter
From Roger A. Harju

In memory of Ernest Bylkas Jr.
From Judy Bylkas

In memory of Ernest Sr. & Martha Bylkas
From Judy Bylkas

In memory of Linda Aho
From Steve & Marilyn Dahlmeier

In memory of Melissa Dahlmeier Roeser
From Steve & Marilyn Dahlmeier

Honoring Paul & Lorraine
From Bob & Gert Antioho

InFaith works collaboratively with Thrivent and its financial professionals to help individuals make the most of their gifts. Through InFaith, thousands of donors have given more than $1.68 billion in gifts to the charities and causes closest to their hearts. The Inter-Lutheran Theological Seminary is pleased to hold its endowment fund with InFaith Community Foundation, a national public charity that serves individuals, organizations, and the community through charitable planning, donor advised funds and endowments.

Supporters of an endowment fund can make outright gifts like cash, securities, real estate, or deferred gifts at death such as charitable life insurance, bequest, charitable trust or gift annuity. Then transfer new contributions to be held and invested by InFaith. Supporters may receive a charitable tax deduction for their gifts. Endowment fund assets are invested in a large, fully-diversified pool of low-cost institutional investments.

Individuals who create a donor advised fund through InFaith may choose from a broad range of giving options. Certain portfolios include investment in Thrivent Mutual Funds.


Have you ever have used to do your shopping? Now AmazonSmile offers the same products, same prices and same service and will also donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to Inter-Lutheran Theological Seminary whenever you shop on AmazonSmile.

Simply log use in by using this link….
which will bring you directly to in support of our organization.

The Thrivent Choice® program offers a way members can recommend where Thrivent Financial distributes some of its charitable outreach funds. As a benefit member, your ownership of Thrivent Financial products and services help make this support possible.

Remember….If you are an eligible member 16 and older you can recommend how to distribute Thrivent Financial charitable grant funds thought Choice Dollars®. Member eligibility and the Choice Dollars designated are based on:
• Holding a Thrivent Financial volunteer leadership position; or
• Having $750 or more in annual premiums of qualifying
insurance products; or
• Having $20,000 or more in contract value of qualifying products.
For more information about Choice Dollars, visit or call 800-847-4836 or contact your local Thrivent Financial representative.

formerly InFaith Community Foundation

Recently announced, InFaith Community Foundation and Thrivent have an expanded partnership, which will include a shared brand and client experience. This will allow InFaith to continue to provide all the same offering and services. They will be operating under a new name, Thrivent Charitable Impact & Investing, which highlights the close relationship they have had with Thrivent since their inception. The Inter-Lutheran Seminary has an Endowment Fund through this organization. Funds contributed to the endowment are not used for current day to day operations. Only the annual 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.

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) 294-4343 or Cheryl Hendrickson at (906) 482-3337.


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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