Meet Jinoue Cherizard

Haitian Education Leadership Program Alumna

Pharmacy – Class of 2016

Throughout primary and secondary school, Jinoue was consistently regarded as a model student. “I was always at the top of my class,” she recalls. “And all of my teachers loved me.”Besides earning top grades herself, Jinoue also volunteered as a tutor for her peers, and found time to participate in a literature club, a dance troupe, and a youth group at her church.
 
But Jinoue’s family struggled financially, with her parents – a subsistence farmer and a vendor in the local market – barely making enough for the family of six children to get by. Despite her impeccable academic record and excellent reputation, university seemed out of the question for Jinoue until her school principal told her about HELP.
 
Today, Jinoue is working towards fulfilling her lifelong dream of becoming a medical professional. “I want to be an advocate for the healthcare of the Haitian people,” she says. “I hope to play a role in ending some of the public health epidemics we face as a country.” Jinoue continues to thrive academically, and is able to focus on her university studies without the stress of economic hardship. “I’m thankful to HELP because it provides a path to success for promising young people like me,” she says.
Once Epiphany’s sponsorship student is selected, we will share his or her profile and keep in touch through the entire education journey. In the mean time, learn more about Haitian Education Leadership Program Alumni here
 
You can make a donation toward sponsoring our student through online giving, by cash or check designated for “Haiti HELP” or by texting “HaitiHelp 100” or whatever dollar amount you wish to donate to 833-941-1494. Learn more about GIVE+ TEXT.


Catching up with Larry Hoffsis

Dear Epiphany:
 
I’m excited to participate in the celebration of Epiphany’s 60 years of ministry. It will be an honor for me to serve as a guest preacher, along with the other former pastors.
 
It is likely that God called me to Epiphany to give me an opportunity to experience ministry in a setting new to me — that of a growing suburban community.
 
I had already experienced life in a congregation of farmers, having grown up in St. Paul Lutheran Church in north central Ohio. My first parish, St. John Lutheran Church, was in a small town in Sidney, Ohio. When God’s call came to serve Epiphany, I was in my thirteenth year of ministry at Old Trinity Lutheran Church, a metropolitan church in a large urban setting in downtown Columbus.
 
The call to suburban Epiphany came in 1979. I retired in 2000. That means I had the privilege of spending 21 years at Epiphany, a ministry which involved expansion of racial and ecumenical relationships locally, as well as numerous partnerships globally.


Catching up with Pastor Josh Nelson

by Pastor Josh Nelson
 
Greg Van Dunk and Jane Lane happened to attend a concert by noted Lutheran folk musician, John Ylvisaker. Since John and I had known each other for some years, he recruited me to be his pianist for a handful of Ohio concerts, and though I was serving a church in Akron, OH, I jumped at the chance to be on the road for a few weeks with John. Well, at this concert, Greg and Jane sought me out and they must have started scheming about possibly getting me to come to Epiphany as a musician/pastor. That idea didn’t pan out, but later, when Greg took a new call to Wisconsin, Epiphany contacted me about considering the Associate Pastor position. I had indeed begun interviewing back in the Iowa and Minnesota areas, thinking I would head back to my old home region, which was home areas for Beth as well. But we agreed to interview at Epiphany anyway, and had such a fantastic and enjoyable interview experience (over Super Bowl weekend), that we decided if the church offered to call me, we would take it. Which is indeed what happened. And we moved down to the Centerville area in June. One additional funny memory I have of the interview is that when the first question was asked, my wife Beth – who is not a shrinking violet – jumped in and said, “Let me take that one,” and so she answered the very first question that was asked!  


Let’s Write a Song Together

by John Benjamin

 
Do you have a gift for poetry? I’m looking for lyrics for a new worship song, which will be sung for the first time at our worship services on Sunday, October 6, for Epiphany’s 60th Anniversary celebration.
 
Your lyrics should focus on celebrating God’s blessings to and/or through Epiphany. You write the lyrics; I write the song.
 
Here’s how it works:
  1. Write new lyrics to “O Little Town of Bethlehem” (this is the meter John’s tune will fit).
  2. Write as many or as few verses as you wish.
  3. Send your lyrics by August 25 to John Benjamin.
  4. John will arrange the lyrics submitted, incorporating as many authors as possible into the finished product.
 
Feel free to pass this invitation on to other friends of Epiphany who may not receive our weekly newsletters!
 
Contact me with questions!


Greetings and Blessings from Boone

by Becca Gummere
 
I count my blessings that my first call was to Epiphany. Moving from Columbus, where I’d just graduated from Trinity Lutheran Seminary, I began my call at Epiphany in August of 1993, and during the next seven years enjoyed serving alongside Pastor Larry Hoffsis, Pastor Josh Nelson, and later Pastor Fritz Wiese.
 
Since leaving Epiphany in April of 2000, I served three years as pastor of Circle of Grace, a mission development congregation in Cary, North Carolina, and four years at Grace Lutheran Church in Boone, North Carolina, where I split my time between associate pastor and campus pastor roles with students at Appalachian State University. When I moved to Boone in 2003, daughter Maggie Carey and son Liam Carey joined me here, falling in love as I had with these beautiful mountains. Read more…


Celebrate 60 Years

by Pastor Charlie Woodward
 
As we continue to ramp up for Epiphany’s 60th anniversary celebration, there are many opportunities to observe and rejoice in our rich history alongside each other with guest pastors, a concert and visitors from Germany. Please save upcoming dates and plan to participate! We look forward to sharing this time together with you!
 
Epiphany Lutheran Church welcomes former pastors to preach at the Far Hills Campus at all Sunday morning services. There will be a reception and time for fellowship offered on each of these special Sundays.
  • Greg Van Dunk – July 14
  • Becca Gummere – August 4
  • Josh Nelson – August 18
  • Larry Hoffsis – September 22
  • Fritz Wiese – October 27


Haitian Education & Leadership Program

by Natalie Heimann
 
Less than 1% of the Haitian population receives a college education, due to abject poverty. Of those who actually are able to attend and graduate college, 85% will leave the country in search of opportunities elsewhere.
 
Through HTF’s partnership with the Haitian Education and Leadership Program, or HELP, some of the best and brightest young students in Haiti are given an opportunity to attend university. The mission of HELP is to create, through merit- and needs-based scholarships, a community of young professionals and leaders who will promote a more just society in Haiti. On top of an accredited university education, HELP scholarships provide students with textbooks, living stipends, housing, academic advising and counseling, leadership curricula, as well as study abroad and internship opportunities. After graduation 80% of HELP students remain in Haiti, having learned the importance of making a difference in their society.
 
In 2018, HELP received 453 eligible applications. However, due to financial limitations, the program was only able to offer scholarships to approximately 15% of those students. The only thing keeping this program from training new leaders is funding. Here is where our support comes in!
 
Epiphany is committed to sponsor a single student throughout their entire time in the HELP program — totaling $12,000 per year for four years.
 


Give Us a Sign & Some Jesus on the Side

by Kathy Whited
We Hunger for Life
 
John 6:24-35 (NRSV)
24 So when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into the boats and went to Capernaum looking for Jesus.
 
25 When they found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you come here?” 26 Jesus answered them, “Very truly, I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves.
27 Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For it is on him that God the Father has set his seal.” 28 Then they said to him, “What must we do to perform the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” 30 So they said to him, “What sign are you going to give us then, so that we may see it and believe you? What work are you performing? 31 Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'” 32 Then Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is that which[a] comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” 34 They said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.”
 
35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”
 
Somewhere along the line, I learned or perceived that it is bad to ask for a sign from God, as if we might be testing God, bargaining with God, or lacking faith in God. In this passage, Jesus explains that the work of God is belief in him (Jesus) whom he (God) has sent. So the crowd asks for a sign–really? It appears that the crowd might be suffering from short-term memory loss. Read more…


More Than a Meal

Lenten Devotion: Week Two

Matthew 14:13-21 (NRSV)
Feeding the Five Thousand
13 Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14 When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick. 15 When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16 Jesus said to them, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17 They replied, “We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.” 18 And he said, “Bring them here to me.” 19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20 And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. 21 And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.
 
One could say that the feeding of the 5000 is a story that “buries the headline.” Jesus wouldn’t be content to just “wow” us by stretching the food supply, would he? So what is the “headline” we could learn in this story?


Ash Wednesday 2019

by Pastor Tracy Paschke-Johannes
 
Matthew 6:1-6 (NRSV)
Concerning Almsgiving
“Beware of practicing your piety before others in order to be seen by them; for then you have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2 “So whenever you give alms, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be praised by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 3 But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your alms may be done in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
 
Concerning Prayer
5 “And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 6 But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
 
Matthew 6:16-21 (NRSV)
Concerning Fasting
16 “And whenever you fast, do not look dismal, like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces so as to show others that they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that your fasting may be seen not by others but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
Concerning Treasures
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; 20 but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Like many people, I watched in grief and sadness as wildfires raged in the western states in 2018. I couldn’t imagine the pain of families evacuating with only the clothes on their backs, only to return and find their homes, and their neighborhoods reduced to ashes. To understand the scope of the wildfires, news websites created interactive maps–I typed in my zip code, and a map with the square miles of the fire was superimposed over our region. One fire destroyed an area that would span from Middletown to Kettering. It is humbling and terrifying to imagine that everything you have, all that you worked for, could be gone in an instant.


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