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November is my favorite month. November means long sleeves and scarves. November is getting together with family. November is being surprised by the first snowfalls. November is thanksgiving and gratefulness. I think saying thank you is super important. I think being gracious and grateful are tremendous emotions. I think being thankful is underrated.

When we give thanks, we give something greater than the gift we received, whatever it was. The greatest gift one can give is thanksgiving. In giving gifts, we give what we can spare, but in giving thanks we give ourselves. One who says Thank you to another really says, We belong together. Giver and thanksgiver belong together.
[Gratefulness, the Heart of Prayer by Brother David Steindl-Rast] Thanksgiver. Have you heard that word before? What an awesome word. Are you a thanksgiver? How are you a thanksgiver? When have you last been a thanksgiver? Thats how Paul began every one of his letters. As a thanksgiver. Giving thanks for the people to whom he was writing. He would thank them for their faith, their perseverance, their welcome. Paul was a great thanksgiver. Thats what all of you were to me on the last Sunday in October. You were than ksgivers. I just about melted into a puddle on the floor when you said thank you to me as your pastor in the midst of Pastor Appreciation Month. Its my turn to say thank you to you for the flowers, the cards, the gifts, and the words of appreciation. Thank you for the gifts that you share with me each day as your pastor. As Brother David writes, one who says thank you to another really says, We belong together. We are partners together in ministry. What if we began every day as a thanksgiver? Or ended each day as a thanksgiver? What if we tried it if only for November? I think we may find that it strengthens our faith, our relationships, our ministry together, and our entire way of life. Theres nothing to lose; lets start thanking. Im thankful for you, thanksgiver. Pastor Lindsay

Red Oak Grove Lutheran Church Council Minutes - October 14, 2013
The meeting was called to order by President Diane Maxwell. Pastor Lindsay led in devotions. In attendance: Bill Maxwell, Bob Kittelson, Diane Maxwell, Ardell Swenson, Gary Ulland, Scott Basness, Shad Rudlong, Nancy Schwartz, Dean Christianson, Angie Wagaman, Pastor Lindsay, and Laura Tjomsland. Pastors Report: Pastor Lindsay reported on the plan for the rest of the year including Reformation, All Saints Day, Confirmation lock-in with Owatonna church, picture board in hall, food shelves, fall decorations, Nov. 3 5 Pastors required meeting. She made 15 visits, 8 with communion, 2 Prairie Manor services, 1 baptism. The Secretarys Report was accepted as presented. The Treasurers Report was accepted as presented. WELCA Report: Guest Day was held and 116 attended. Deacons Report: No report. Trustees Report: No report. Old Business: Reviewed the auction, great help from the auctioneers, crowd was slim and therefore sales were smaller than expected. WELCA served lunch and also sold some of the baked goods on the auction. Discussion about when and if there should be another auction. No decision was made. Thanks to all who donated and who helped the day of the auction. Discussion on the elevator covered the need for an alarm service and or some type of a phone. We have been working with the original company to work out an agreement on the phone service. There are several past due accounts with the service company, Diane Maxwell and Pastor Lindsay are looking into that area more completely. Also there was a situation at Guest Day with the elevator and the Blooming Fire Department was called in for assistance. A motion was made, seconded and passed to donate $50.00 to the fire department. More information will be gathered regarding the phone system. Installation of the doors in the education wing was discussed. Hopefully, they will be installed before the winter season is in full force. Also the cement work around the door and the well was brought up. It was suggested to call a few other contractors. New Business: Items discussed included things that need to be addressed with the custodian, some lighting issues and the puzzle for the Boys and Girls Club of Blooming Prairie. A motion was made, seconded and passed to donate $100.00 to the fund raising event. A report on Thrivent Choice Dollars was made as information only. The meeting adjourned and concluded with the Lords Pr ayer. Respectfully submitted, Laura Tjomsland, Council Secretary

The annual Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service will be held at 7 p.m. at St. Columbanus Catholic Church in Blooming Prairie on November 24th. This is a joint venture with First Lutheran and Red Oak Grove. An Ecumenical Choir will be singing and your voice is needed! Practice for the choir will be held at St. Columbanus at 6 p.m. on November 24th. Red Oak Grove has received $1,548 in Thrivent Choice Dollars so far this year! Thank you to all who designate to ROG! And did you know? If you designate your Choice Dollars by November 3rd to Red Oak Grove, that amount will double. The Mitten Tree will soon be ready to fill with caps, mittens, scarves and gloves! These items will be given to the schools in Austin and Blooming Prairie. THANK YOU to everyone who put their coins in the Noisy Coin bucket last month. With an additional $25 from Hannah Circle, we sent a total of $113 to Lutheran Disaster Response to help with the need in Colorado after the severe flooding.

The Red Oak Grove Sunday School children will present their annual Christmas Program on December 15th during our regular Sunday worship. Please join us for that special service which tells a great story from many, many years ago! Program practice will begin during Sunday School on November 3rd. [Please note this change from the original SS schedule.] Your regular attendance during rehearsals is appreciated! The ADVENTure is back again! Following program practice on December 1st, ALL are invited to join in an Advent celebration! There will be take-home crafts to make, projects to give to our homebound members, and goodies to make and eat! Parents, kids, grandparents everyone is invited to join in the anticipation that leads us to Christmas!