Hurricane Relief Day – September 9

Gulf Coast Synod Disaster Response

You can help this week.

Our Gulf Coast Synod has organized a Hurricane Harvey Work Day. It will be this Saturday, September 9. There are several crews being organized. One crew will be out of Lutherhill, which will help in Fayette County. Visit the Synod web page link below to find out more:  Click Link.

Please note that the sign up deadline to be part of one of these crews is Wednesday, September 6.


Our Hurricane Relief page is being updated frequently.  Check out that page to find more way to help.  Monetary donations are especially helpful at this time.

Click here for the link to our Hurricane Relief page.

God’s Work, Our Hands Day 2015

School Kits 4

Join Hands–God’s Work Our Hands report (from Dianne Sager):
In April, Ted and I attended the Synodical Convention in Houston. At the convention, we became interested in the Join Hands–God’s Work, Our Hands program. I became convinced that we could make that happen at MLLC. Nancy Eilers and myself each applied for monies from Thrivent Financial– Action Teams and were approved. Nancy applied for funds for School Kits and I applied for funds for Personal Care Kits. Each team received $250.00. In September, we choose a date to take items out of original packaging and pack for the upcoming shipment to LWR, that will happen the Monday after Easter. We packed 120 School Kits and 50 Personal Care Kits. We still lack about 150 pens for the School Kits.

Here are our volunteers for this event: Dianne Sager, Nancy Eilers, Thelma Hinze, Carol Carmean, Donna Mueller, Karen Dooley, Beverly Cucuzza, Diana Wunderlich, Ann O’Hara, and Dianna Gerland.

School Kits 7 School Kits 6 School Kits 5

School Kits 3 School Kits 2 School Kits 1

Presiding Bishop’s 2014 Christmas Message


We are a congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.  We are led by Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton.  It is an annual tradition that our presiding bishop presents a Christmas Message of some sort.  This year it was a video message which connects the manger of Jesus to the cross of Jesus.  Click here for the link to this video.

Gulf Coast Synod Bishop’s Christmas Message

Bishop Mike Rinehart BW

We are a congregation of the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod.  We are led by Bishop Michael Rinehart.  In some way each year he presents a Christmas Message for the church.  This year he offers a video message for us.  Click here for a link to this Christmas Message video.

We are in the 12 Days of Christmas, and this is a wonderful time to reflect on God’s goodness and his message of hope in the midst of darkness and sin.

Three Generations at WELCA Convention 2014

Colette Cindy Janette airport

We had three generations of women in one family attend the 2014 Triennial Gathering of the Women of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (WELCA).

Here is a report of this special event from Colette Wunderlich, who attended with her daughter Cindy and her granddaughter (and Cindy’s daughter) Janette.  See the photo above of these three generations at the airport on their way to Charlotte, NC, for the gathering.

Thank you to Colette, Cindy and Janette for representing MLLC at this special event.


Notes about the Triennial Convention:

Cindy, Janette, and I are thankful for the opportunity to attend the Triennial Women of the ELCA Convention in North Carolina in July. We would like to thank Martin Luther Women of the ELCA for their financial and prayerful support. The theme was “of many generations” and we three generations were proud to represent MLLC. Several babies were in attendance and at least six ladies over 90 years of age.

We attended Bible studies, workshops, worship, communion, and servant events. There were guest speakers, offering opportunities, and singing with no inhibition in English, Spanish, and Swahili. They put the words up and everyone sang, 2400 of us! Many of the 50 states were represented and the Virgin Islands. Our Companion Synod sister from The Central African Republic was unable to leave her country.

The workshops I attended were Streets to Live On: A WELCA Model about organizing or renewing units, Generations: The Quilt of Our Lives with great stories by Mrs. Alex Haley, Better Understand Mental Illness, and Story Matters which encouraged continual growth in faith love, and obedience in the will of God. I attended the WELCA unit workshop on Friday and wrote down many ideas from others but didn’t think any were just right for our younger women. Cindy attended that same workshop on Saturday and I was so excited when she came out and said, “Mom, I think I’ve got it, an idea for our younger women!” I’ll let her tell you about it sometime. We were told any group that does things in the name of WELCA, like our quilting group, whether there is Bible study or not, can be counted as a WELCA group. During our workshops, Janette attended the group events for about 20 girls including quilting.

Of course there was time for food and drink. We walked several blocks one night to eat at Emeril’s Charlotte, NC restaurant and I managed to sample some North Carolina beers.

The next Triennial Convention will be in Minneapolis, MN in July 2017. I’m going to start saving now.



Janette shown with many of the other girls at the Triennial Convention.

Janette with girls WELCA

Janette back home in Carmine quilting with a mentor/friend Jenell.

Janette Janell Quilting WELCA

Celebrating 100 Years of Service: Ladies Aid

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Celebrating 100 Years of Service

Martin Luther Lutheran Church Ladies Aid

1914 – 2014

This past Sunday, June 1, 2014, we celebrated the 100th Anniversary of the MLLC Ladies Aid.  Here is the history which was prepared as part of the celebration.  Note the photo above of the members of Ladies Aid who were available to for the celebration at worship this past weekend.


History of the Ladies Aid of Martin Luther Lutheran Church of Carmine, Texas.

On June 1, 1914, Pentecost Monday, seventeen ladies met at the Martin Luther Lutheran Church in Carmine to organize a Ladies Aid.  Pastor John Harder, the MLLC pastor at the time, helped to adopt a constitution and elect officers.  The first officers were: President, Bertha Eisenhauer Umland; Secretary, Selma Hackemack Hoppe; and Treasurer, Leonie Rummel Weyand.


Other charter members were: Mary Brau, Alma Weyand Doerr, Agnes Umland Hoppe, Antonio Weyand Kollatt, Nannie Koehler Knoche, Louise Koehler Brau, Emma Goerdel Menke, Leonie Menke Neese, Emilie Kollatt Stuermer, Lena Drawe Sump, Kathleen Etzel Weyand, Ida Weber Weyand, Lula Coleman Weyand, and Louise Marburger Winnisderfer.


Many of the earlier members of Martin Luther were descendants of German immigrants.  They, and their descendants, still spoke the German language in the home and in most of their daily affairs.  The church records were handwritten in the German script.  The Ladies Aid records were also written in the German language in the earlier days.  The Ladies Aid was known as the Frauenverein [Women’s Organization].  In the early years of the organization, meetings were conducted in German.  Tradition was that women of the Ladies Aid would sing a song in German at the funeral of a member.


As a way of contributing to the projects of the church, the first Bazaar was held in March of 1936.  The purpose was to raise money for the church and Sunday School.  The women made beautiful articles of linens, aprons, bonnets, hand-crocheted doilies, and embroidered scarves for sale at the Bazaar.  Plenty of cakes, pies, sandwiches, etc. were donated by the members of the Ladies Aid.  The food was not sold, but one could make a donation in a glass placed on the tables.  Ladies from local and surrounding churches came for an afternoon of fellowship.  This was an annual event at Martin Luther for over twenty years.   Today, the Ladies Aid continues to support the different projects of MLLC as well as local and other projects of the ELCA.


The Ladies Aid has observed the 25th in 1939, the 50th in 1964, the 60th in 1974, the 80th in 1994 and the 90th in 2004.  Members were recognized at each anniversary for their years of membership.  Today, on our 100th anniversary of the Ladies Aid we recognize three ladies who have been members for 60 years or longer:  LeVerne Hinze (63 yrs.); Elvira Dallmeyer (62 yrs.); and Ora Lee Levien (60 yrs) – see photo below.  The two oldest living members today are Bernice Loewe (92) and Elvira Dallmeyer (90).

Ladies Aid Jun0114 3

Throughout the years the church organizations have changed, but the Ladies Aid has always maintained its basic structure and name.  Today, the women’s groups are called “Women of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America”. Martin Luther Lutheran has two bible study groups: the Ladies Aid and the Mary Group.  Today, the Ladies Aid has 23 members.  The present officers are: Susan Ray, president; Shirley Mueller, vice-president; Carol Carmean, secretary; Nancy Eilers, treasurer; Mission officers: Nancy Eilers, community; and Dianne Sager, Action.


On this day in 2014, the Ladies Aid asks God to increase in them the spirit of faith and love to help make them worthy of their heritage.  “Wir Beten an unseren Vater den Herrn, durch Jesua Christus, sein Sohn.”  Translation:  We pray this through your son, Jesus Christ, our Lord.


Other historical photos of the Ladies Aid anniversaries:

These photos are on permanent display in the Fellowship Hall at MLLC.

Founding Members


25th Anniversary 1939


80th Anniversary 1994


90th Anniversary 2004


Synod Assembly 2014


We are thankful for our delegation of voting members at our synod assembly this year. These include: Dana Smith, Dennis Smith, Jennifer Tinker, and Pastor David Tinker. This group is representing our congregation at the assembly of the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod. This is taking place May 8-10 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Holy Week Message from our Presiding Bishop


Photo from the Flossenburg Chapel, as noted in the Good Friday Message.  This photo is from this blog site:  click


We are in the midst of Holy Week 2014.  We have moved from the joyful entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, and we remember that he is headed to the cross.  As we follow in the way of Jesus we reflect on the truth of the cross.  Here is a powerful message from our ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton.

Click this link for the Good Friday Message


Presiding Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) – the Rev. Elizabeth Eaton

This was first published in “The Lutheran” magazine, and comes to us through our Texas Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod web site blog.

First Communion: Is my child ready to receive?


First Communion Class begins March 9, 2014, at 10:15 a.m.

First Communion will be celebrated on Thursday, April 17, at our 7 p.m. Maundy Thursday Service.

If you would like your child to participate, please contact Pastor David Tinker. or 979-278-3388


How do I know my child is ready to attend First Communion Class?

He/She may. . .

*have expressed interest in participating during worship, perhaps copying your movements at the altar

*have begun to ask questions about why we take Holy Communion

*have begun to reach for the Holy Communion elements which are offered to you

*have a foundation in Christ through attendance in Christian education or worship, or through family conversations, devotions or prayer

*be able to speak about God (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) as loving and trustworthy

*pray the Lord’s Prayer and be able to say other simple prayers (such as at bedtime and meals)


The following questions can help you determine the readiness of your child to receive her or his first Holy Communion.


The most important question is about God’s gift of Grace for your child: 

***** Has your child been baptized?

If your child is not yet baptized, please speak with a pastor to set a date for your child to receive this Sacrament. It is understood that Holy Communion is for the baptized children of God.


Other questions to consider:

*Is your child comfortable in various locations around the church, like the altar?

*Does your child have a basic, age-appropriate awareness that God loves him or her?

*Does your child understand the idea of “right” and “wrong”, and can grasp the basic notion of “forgiveness”?

*Will your child extend his or her hands when asked to do so?

*Will your child be able to understand the basic concept that Holy Communion is a gift from God to each person?

*Does your child seem to have a basic trust that they are a child of God?

*Does your child seem interested in what goes on in church during Communion?

*Does your child interact enough with others to receive the bread and wine?

*Is your child aware enough of others in the congregation and their needs to show respect for the communion experience?

*Are you prepared to help make the process positive?

*Are you prepared to continue to fulfill the promises you made at your child’s baptism to bring him or her regularly to the Lord’s Table?

Only the first question requires a “Yes” before your child can be considered ready to receive his or her first communion. Use the others to generate discussion and to plan, in consultation with Pastor David Tinker, for your child’s preparation to begin receiving the sacrament and the gifts it brings.

Contact Pastor David Tinker if you have any questions about Holy Communion. He would be happy to help answer your questions.



Some history about changes in the practice First Holy Communion:


Over a generation ago (1969) many Lutheran congregations began separating First Communion from Confirmation. Thus, they began preparing children to receive their first communion when they reached fifth grade. Both the former American Lutheran Church (ALC) and the former Lutheran Church in America (LCA), predecessor church bodies of our Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), affirmed this practice. In its 1989 publication “A Statement on Communion Practices” the ELCA affirmed the fifth grade and/or ten years of age as an appropriate and desirable guideline for when a young person, after appropriate preparation, may first commune. This is not the end of the story, so please read on.

However, it became apparent that focusing on a particular age as the primary criterion for determining when first communion is received did not adequately consider other important factors, e.g., a child’s maturity, a child’s experience in the church, a child’s family as a supportive context for faith, discipleship and understanding, etc.

After years of study and conversation, in 1997 the ELCA issued a new First Communion guideline as part of a larger document on the centrality of Holy Baptism and Holy Communion in the life of faith.

This document lifts up a biblical based Lutheran understanding of the Sacraments intended to help us avoid a “legalistic” and “mechanical” approach to how parents, pastors, and congregations raise up our children in the Christian faith. Regarding Holy Communion the statement recognizes that:

*“Baptized children may begin to commune on a regular basis at a time determined through mutual conversation that includes the pastor, the child, and the parents or sponsors involved, within the accepted practices of the congregation.”

*“Ordinarily this beginning will occur only when children can eat and drink, and can start to respond to the gift of Christ in the Supper.”

*“In all cases, participation in Holy Communion is accompanied by (instruction) appropriate to the age of the communicant.”

*“There is no command from our Lord regarding the age at which people should be baptized or first communed. Our practice is defined by Christ’s command (“Do this”), Christ’s twin promises of his presence for us and for our need, and the importance of good order in the Church. In all communion practices congregations strive to avoid both reducing the Lord’s Supper to an act effective by its mere performance without faith and narrowing faith to intellectual understanding of Christ’s presence and gifts.”


Notes from “The Use of the Means of Grace: A Statement on the Practice of Word and Sacrament”, Augsburg Fortress, 1997, pages 41-43.