A reception to honor the Rev. Kathryn Brown will be held from 2:30 to 4:30 on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013,at Augustana Lutheran Church, 520 University Avenue, Grand Forks. A short program will begin at 3:15 pm.
After graduating from Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Pastor Kathy was ordained in her home church, United Lutheran Church, Grand Forks, on August 26, 2001. She began her service as Augustana’s pastor on Sept. 1, 2001, and served that congregation with great dedication until her recent resignation following a period of health-related disability.
The Nov. 23 reception will be hosted by the Augustana Church Council and the congregation’s Mutual Ministry Committee. Members of both groups note Pastor Brown’s many contributions to the church and to the larger Grand Forks community. These include her commitment both to ministry within the congregation and outreach to unchurched populations in the larger community, her work with individuals recovering from addiction (including personal and spiritual support, and education of fellow clergy on needs of recovering persons), her efforts to diversify and enhance the congregation’s worship experience, and her efforts to strengthen ties with churchwide and global priorities of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
In 2007 Pastor Brown, with a committee of Augustana members and others, obtained a three-year grant from the ELCA’s Evangelical Outreach and Congregational Mission to offer a variety of services to persons in addiction recovery and their families. Services included pastoral care, monthly recovery worship services, and (in cooperation with UND’s Department of Counseling Psychology) supportive counseling services within a faith-based perspective for persons coping with a variety of life problems.
Pastor Brown also introduced the Augustana community to Luther Seminary’s GIFTS program, a certificate program designed to prepare lay leaders across denominational lines to pursue specialized ministries, such as children and youth ministries and programs in congregational and community care. An Augustana member participating in the GIFTS program described it as life-changing and noted that “Pastor Kathy lifted up everyone’s gifts and encouraged them to step out of their comfort zones.” Many Augustana members have emphasized Pastor Kathy’s gift for proclaiming God’s Word in a clear and Grace-filled manner, and many have been inspired by her commitment to service, social justice, and “being God’s hands in the world.”
Pastor Kathy will be greatly missed at Augustana Lutheran Church. All friends, family, and colleagues, whether or not members of Augustana Lutheran, are cordially invited to attend her reception on November 23.