On Oct. 20-22, Rev. William D. Beyer, pastor of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Clayton, N.C., and chaplain for the 2nd Brigade (BCT), 108th Division (IT) in Garner, N.C., was the Pastor-In-Residence at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. The Pastor-In-Residence program is designed to have a Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS) pastor spend three days on the Concordia Seminary campus in order to share his knowledge and expertise with the Seminary community. Pastor Beyer is a 1996 graduate of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.
On Oct. 20, Beyer met with students for informal discussion in a format called “Fireside Chat.” The discussion covered some of Beyer’s experiences in church planting. He spoke to the students about starting his current congregation from scratch, without a core group of members or any facilities in existence when he accepted the call to start a mission congregation in Clayton N.C.
Beyer served as preacher during the Seminary’s morning chapel service on Oct. 21. Following this, he visited classes where he spoke informally concerning his experiences as a pastor. He also met individually with students and faculty members for the remainder of the day.
On the final day of his campus visit, Beyer delivered a convocation address to the entire Seminary community. His address, “A Brand New Church from an Old Brand,” related some of his church-planting experiences in North Carolina. Topics included how to approach prospective members and how to have people “experience” church instead of just “be” in church. Beyer also showed a video of his church, where worship services are held in a roller skating rink.
“It’s been a great experience. I’ve been so excited to see the interest of the students,” Beyer commented. “The students have been very attentive in listening to my thoughts and ideas; they’ve asked some very insightful questions.”
The Pastor-In-Residence program is part of three “in-residence” programs held each year at Concordia Seminary. For three days in the winter quarter, a Missionary-In-Residence follows the same general pattern of activities on the Seminary campus. In the spring quarter, a LCMS district president serves as District President-In-Residence. On Jan. 19-21, 2004, the Missionary-In-Residence will be Dr. Richard Meyer from New Orleans, La., and on March 29-31, 2004, the District President-In-Residence will be Rev. James Linderman of the Texas District.
For more information on the in-residence programs at Concordia Seminary, contact Rev. Larry Rockemann, vice president for student life, Concordia Seminary, 801 DeMun Ave., St. Louis, MO 63105; 314.505.7201.