A new Lutheran Family Ministry Network (LFMN) is being formed to help family-ministry practitioners stay in touch and to help LCMS District and Congregational Services — Family Ministry develop resources for them, says Rev. Jeffery Schubert.
Schubert, director of LCMS District and Congregational Services — Family Ministry, told Reporter that the new association comes after surveys and visits he has made throughout the Synod which point to the need for such a network.
“Family ministers want to network to share ideas, resources and things that work,” Schubert said in a letter last month to 1,700 LCMS family practitioners, in which he invites them to become charter members of the network. “And, they want someone to provide a wide variety of services, support and encouragement.”
Schubert said that LFMN members, whose annual membership fee is $325, will have “an array of benefits that far exceed the cost,” including:
- opportunities to network through video conferences, electronic chat rooms and national conferences;
- an electronic family-ministry bulletin;
- free participation in local Marriage Enrichment weekend retreats, counselor training in LCMS Family Ministry’s Prepare-Enrich program, on-site ministry consultation and strategic planning, and books, kits and other helps;
- integrated support services;
- discounts on family-ministry resources;
- access to LCMS Family Ministry’s files and archives; and
- a forum to discuss family-ministry certification in the Synod.
Schubert said that those who are not members of the network would pay for such benefits “on an a la carte basis, and may incur fees for service.”
For instance, Schubert said that the usual $1,000 per-day fee for service for a Marriage Enrichment facilitator would be waived if the planner of the event is an LFMN member.
Membership in the new network is open to anyone. Those who did not receive the Family Ministry mailing and are interested in joining may contact Schubert at LCMS Family Ministry, 1333 S. Kirkwood Road, St. Louis, MO 63122-7295; (800) 248-1930, Ext. 1716; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted Feb. 2, 2004