Want updates about COVID-19 and Grace re-opening? 
CLICK HERE for the latest from Grace.

Grace Open for Worship!— Grace is open for in-person worship! Head to the Grace website to access the online sign-up for worship services. For the time being, those who want to worship in-person must sign-up for a time slot prior to attending, and masks are required, ages three and up, as mandated by the City of Milwaukee. Sign-up sheets go live Wednesdays at 7 p.m.

Divine Call Returned—Pastor Ryan Kolander, currently serving as the pastor of Palabra de Vida Lutheran Church in Detroit, MI, has returned his call to serve as our associate pastor here at Grace. Look to future GraceNotes and email communication for details as to when the next call meeting will be.

Wedding—Grace members Shannen Oesterreich and Adam Kocsis were united in marriage at Golden Mast Inn, Okauchee on Saturday, Aug. 1.
May God bless this couple in their new life together.

Grace Bible Study Days: COVID-Style!—Every summer (for nearly four decades!) we have celebrated the grace of God with fun, food, fellowship, and faith-inspiring Bible studies during Grace Bible Study Days. Years past feature a meal, adults and kids in Bible study, and a sing-along. But in-person GBSD can’t happen under the current COVID-mandates. Will GBSD still happen? You bet! We are going to double-down and dove-tail with the Same Page Summer Bible reading challenge and offer Corinthian Questions Aug 4- 6. On those days, you will read 1 Corinthians 5-8, 9-12, and 13-16. You will also receive an email with a link to a video teaser for each set of chapters you read, featuring one of Grace’s pastors posing questions that may have crossed your mind as you read. You are then invited to bombard the pastor’s email inbox with your own questions on those chapters (he’ll get back to you within a few days). And, parents: there will also be kid-friendly Bible stories and activities sent to you with link via email! Let Grace Bible Study Days: COVID-Style begin!

First Fridays Presents “America, I Like You”—First Fridays is back! Tim Rebers, tenor and Maggie Rebers, piano, present “America, I Like You: Songs by, for & about Americans” on Friday, August 7, 2020 at 5 p.m. in the sanctuary. The program will showcase a variety of classical, folk, jazz, and musical theater selections that are distinctly American. Attend either in-person (masks required), or watch from the comfort of your home via the Grace YouTube channel! Concert is free, donations are graciously accepted.

Happy Hobby Hour: Cigars—Happy Hobby Hour is returning with an annual favorite—cigars! Join Grace members Joe Gruszka and Troy Hergert on Friday, August 14, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. in the Grace Center surface parking lot for cigars and fellowship! Learn briefly about the history of cigars and the different types out there. Cost is $5 and includes delicious appetizers, one free drink ticket, cigars, and raffle entry. Physical and social distancing will be encouraged, masks required (per City of Milwaukee ordinances), and hand sanitizer will be provided. Attendees will be able to pay cash in-person, or sign-up and pay online via Eventbrite.

7th-8th Grace Catechism Class—In preparation for communicant membership at Grace Lutheran Church, students (typically in 7th and 8th grades) will deepen their understanding of the Bible’s teachings by studying Martin Luther’s Small Catechism over a two-year period. Students will need Luther’s Small Catechism (CLICK HERE to obtain a copy via NPH), a Bible, and Student Guides. After the introductory meeting on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020, parents will teach the lessons using Parent Helps. Student Guides and Parent Helps will be provided at the introductory meeting. Students and parent(s) will then meet on the first Monday of each month with the pastor to review and discuss what was learned and to preview the next lessons. If there are any questions along the way, contact Pastor Huebner or Pastor Hackmann: call the office at 414-271-3006, or send them an email--Pastor Huebner at jhuebner@gracedowntown.org, or Pastor Hackmann at bhackmann@gracedowntown.org

5th-6th Grade Confirmation Class—Parents of children in a non-WELS Lutheran elementary school, we plan to start up confirmation classes in October here at Grace. Last year, we started a 5th and 6th grade class to go along with our 7th and 8th grade course. If your child is going into 5th or 6th grade, isn’t attending a Lutheran Elementary School, and you haven’t already heard from us, please email Drew Carter at dcarter@gracedowntown.org for information and to add your child’s name to our list!

Job Opening at Grace—Grace is seeking candidates to fill one (1) part-time custodian position in the Grace Center. Responsibilities include cleaning work and event spaces as well as assisting with special event set up and take down. Position is for 10 hours a week; candidates must be able to work a flexible schedule including nights and weekends. Great opportunity for students and night owls. For a full description and details, contact Dave Egelseer at admin@gracedowntown.org or 414-271-3006.

Spam Emails from Pastor Strong—Unfortunately, Grace members have been reporting that spam emails, claiming to come from Pastor Strong “asking for a favor” with no details as to what the favor is, are being sent to them. Please do not engage with these emails! Send them to your spam or junk folder, report them to Google directly, or alert our communications coordinator Amanda Schumacher. Do not forward the emails to anyone or Grace staff. All official Grace email communication comes through a MailChimp account (like the weekly weekend worship email), and all called workers and staff email addresses are not Gmail addresses—official email addresses will always feature @gracedowntown.org as the address. At this trying time of reaching members electronically, please use discernment and double check email addresses before responding to anyone. Thank you!

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New Beginnings: Drive Thru Baby ShowerOn Saturday, Aug. 8, from 12-3 p.m., New Beginnings (9215 W. Wisconsin Ave., Milwaukee) is hosting a drive-thru baby shower for its mothers and babies! Items most needed include gift cards (Walmart, grocery stores, etc.), baby and toddler clothes (newborn, 3-6 months, and 2T-3T), diapers (newborn, 1, 5, and 6 sizes), and baby books. To sign-up or for more information, email Carmelita at carmelitaa@homeformothers.com.

30th Annual Friends of Wisco Golf Outing—Registration is now open for the Friends of Wisco Annual Golf Outing, rescheduled for Monday, Aug. 24, at Ironwood Golf Course in Sussex (W270N6166 Moraine Dr. #3332). Cost is $160 per person with shotgun start at 10 a.m. Price includes: green fees, golf cart, lunch and dinner, and two drink tickets. For registration and sponsorship information visit bidpal.net/wlhsgolf20. Registration is limited. Please sign up by Friday, August 14.

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A Message for the Long Range Planning Committee

Dear Grace Members, 

Every five to seven years, Grace gathers a committee of staff, councilmen, and members to start thinking ahead and facilitating long-range planning of congregational goals. We do not undertake this as a pursuit of unbridled ambition, but rather as an honest analysis of where we are, and as an aspirational look to where God's gifts might be applied in the future. 

We will be texting, emailing, and calling for congregational input in the coming weeks as we survey members. We want as much feedback as possible as we reflect on the past and set our sights on 2025/2030.  

We know that many of us are concerned with daily health and well-being at the moment. While we pray continually for God's mercy and blessing during a pandemic, we also confidently lean on God to fulfill his promises of faithfulness and care, no matter the circumstances. As we do everything God-willing, we also strive to make use of all the time and resources he has allotted.

In Christ’s Service,

Grace Long Range Planning Committee