Deaconess Cara Patton of Butte, Mont., was installed as coordinator of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod’s Recognized Service Organizations program Sept. 9 at the LCMS International Center in St. Louis.
Recognized Service Organizations (RSOs) are independent organizations that serve to foster the mission of the LCMS — reaching into communities to provide services beyond the scope of traditional church ministry — and agree to operate in accordance with the beliefs and teachings of the church. Some 300 social-service and education organizations around the country currently hold RSO status with the Synod.
LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison presided over the rite of installation and preached on Phil. 4:1-7.
The Lord “will guide you, Cara,” Harrison said. “He won’t give you too much to bear. He’ll push you right up to the edge but He doesn’t usually shove you over.”
Harrison told Patton to be confident because her sins are forgiven in Christ.
Patton’s responsibilities include building and maintaining relationships between RSOs and LCMS districts, congregations and other partners; assisting in evaluating and processing RSO status applications; and conducting site visits and assessing RSO efforts to foster the mission of the LCMS.
“Cara’s deaconess training has given her the experience of the mercy work that many of our RSOs engage in as they serve people in need,” said Deaconess Dorothy Krans, director of RSOs for the LCMS. “Her field work and internship have provided her with the understanding of the strengths and challenges of faith-based organizations. I expect that Cara will be great addition to our team as we work together with our RSOs in spreading the Gospel and carrying out Christ’s call to love and care for others.”
Patton, 23, is a 2013 graduate of Concordia University Chicago, River Forest, Ill., where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in theology with the LCMS Deaconess Certification. She minored in biblical languages. She served her deaconess internship from July 2012 to May 2013 as coordinator of The Bridge Ministry, an inner-city outreach ministry to the homeless operated by the Federation of Lutheran Churches of Cincinnati and Vicinity.
To learn more about LCMS Recognized Service Organizations, visit lcms.org/rso.
The coordinator of the Synod’s RSO program position was included in the LCMS restructure and is covered by the Synod’s budget.
Updated Sept. 27, 2013