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02 Sep
0

Announcing the New Duane and Marjorie Hingst Education Endowment Fund

(September 1, 2021) St. Louis, Mo – The St. Louis-based Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA) is pleased to announce the newly established Duane and Marjorie Hingst Education Endowment Fund established in memory of Duane Hingst and in honor of his wife, Marjorie Sandfort Hingst.  Duane was recently called to his heavenly home this summer and is survived by his wife, Marjorie and his three children. His children decided that in honor of his lifetime service to Lutheran education and what would have been his 90th birthday on October 9, 2021, establishing this named endowment would be a perfect vehicle to continue his legacy and honor their parents.

Dedicated to Lutheran education, Duane who served as the Executive Director of Lutheran schools for the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod’s Missouri District, began his ministry as a Lutheran school teacher. Like many Lutheran school teachers, he also served as choir director, basketball coach and an overall champion of Lutheran education.  He believed strongly that Lutheran schools provide individualized education, which extended to extracurriculars that included sports, band, choir, field trips and more.  He was passionate that all children who wanted to attend a Lutheran school could do so; finances should not be a factor in their ability to attend.  “The benefits of a Lutheran education extend far beyond the classroom; the influence of caring teachers and pastors help shape a worldview with Christ at the center of every choice one makes,” says their daughter Dawn Anderson.

Establishing the Duane and Marjorie Hingst Education Endowment to benefit the students and schools served by the Lutheran Elementary School Association seemed like a natural choice to honor Duane’s legacy in Lutheran education.  LESA has awarded more than $6.5 million in need-based tuition assistance impacting the lives of 3,882 children through its Building Blocks Scholarship Fund. “LESA is delighted that Mr. Hingst’s family has decided to honor Duane’s ministry through the establishment of this endowment. His legacy of service to Jesus Christ and to Lutheran schools in our community will live on in the lives of the students served by the proceeds of this legacy gift,” says Sue Nahmensen, Chief Executive Officer.  “LESA is blessed to hold $10 million in endowments restricted for Building Blocks Scholarships and Programs and Operations.”

We invite you to continue helping children attend Lutheran elementary schools now and in the future by donating to the Duane and Marjorie Hingst Education Endowment Fund. Click here to learn more.

More than 8,300 children of all faiths attend Lutheran Pre-K, elementary and high schools in the St. Louis Metro Area, making it the second largest private school system in the Bi-State Region.

Founded in 2004, LESA provides educational support services to 34 member schools – including four National Blue Ribbon Schools and three National Lutheran School of Distinction – and three related agencies. LESA is a Recognized Service Organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.

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Katherine Auble
Director, Fund Development & Marketing
Lutheran Elementary School Association
11123 South Towne Square, Suite F
St. Louis, MO 63123
314-200-0797

 

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27 Jul
0

LESA’s Brew in the Lou Festival Returns to Francis Park – Oct. 9, 2021

(St. Louis, Mo) July 11, 2021 – Brew in the Lou is back! After taking a break last year due to the pandemic, the St. Louis-based Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA) is excited to announce that our 9th Annual Brew in the Lou Festival will return to the Lily Pond at Francis Park, Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021, from 1-5 p.m.

Brew in the Lou is a one-stop tasting event showcasing St. Louis’ best beer, wine, spirits and food. Proceeds support scholarships and educational services for children of all faiths at 34 member schools in the St. Louis area.

Wristbands are $40 advance/$50 day-of-event and include unlimited tastings (while supplies last) and a keepsake commemorative glass. As always, children, babies and pets are welcome! New this year: VIP tickets for $100/person. Tickets include VIP access to exclusive food and beverage offerings, private bathrooms, a special VIP glass and a Brew in the Lou Passport featuring 30 beer, food, spirits and merchandise offers valued at $300 and valid until October 9, 2022.

Wristbands are on sale now – to purchase, call (314) 200-0797, or visit LESAstl.org at: https://lesastl.org/2021-brewinthelou/

It’s been a long year and we can’t wait to taste and toast with you again on the banks of The Lily Pond. Our 2019 event showcased more than 100 breweries, restaurants and craft artisans – including 45 local and regional craft breweries – and raised a record $120,000 for Lutheran education. And 2021 is shaping up to be even better. Our list of confirmed breweries, distilleries, wineries and restaurants is growing by the day: Brick River CiderCrossroads Brewery, Mackenzie Brewing, Shoehorn BrewingLieferbrau BreweryExcel BrewingMain & Mill Brewing Co.Six Mile BridgeSchlaflyRockwell Beer Co.Narwhal’s Crafted Ice, Wood Hat SpiritsMaplewood Brewery & DistilleryMillpond Brewing & IncubatorAB Pilot BreweryModern BreweryJ. Rieger & Co.Center Ice BrewerySt. Louis Hop ShopPRP WineF & R Wine ImportsSteampunk Brew Works2nd Shift BrewingSouthside AlchemyBeer Sauce Shop, KomBlu KombuchaLucia’s Pizza Co.Dogtown PizzaBaetje Farms Artisan Goat CheeseDouble G Ham, and St. Paul’s Kettle Korn, plus Series SixLulaRoe Clothing BoutiqueKoala PouchesPost Pouring Co. CandlesBenton Park Prints, Gloria’s Unique BoutiqueDebbie Fenlen PhotograpyOne Life Fitness, St. Trinity Cemetery and more.

In the meantime, don’t miss our Buy 1/Get 1 Brew in the Lou Summer Passport Special to support Lutheran schools and your favorite watering holes as they rebound from the pandemic. For just $30, you’ll get access to more than $600 in beverages, menu items and special discounts at more than 25 of your favorite breweries, distilleries, wineries, restaurants and other venues through Oct. 9, 2021.

For vendor & sample provider applications, visit https://lesastl.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/Vendor-Application.pdf.

Covid-19 Information: Due to the uncertainty regarding future COVID guidelines, Brew in the Lou attendees will be required to comply with any and all guidelines, regulations and recommendations in effect on October 9, 2021, the date of the event, as directed by the St. Louis Department of Health. Please note that refunds will not be issued to attendees who are unable to comply, regardless of circumstances.

About LESA

More than 8,200 children attend LESA member Lutheran schools in the St. Louis Metro Area, making Lutheran schools the second-largest private school system in the Bi-State area. A Recognized Service Organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, LESA represents 34 elementary and high schools and five related agencies. For more information, visit www.www.LESAstl.org.

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Media Contacts:

Katherine (Kit) Auble

Director Fund Development and Marketing

(314) 200-0797

kauble@lesastl.org

www.LESAstl.org

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27 May
0

LESA Schools Receive $65,000 Boeing Grant to Meet Covid Tech Needs

LESA has secured a $65,000 Boeing grant to help schools meet new technology needs connected to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Seven LESA schools will benefit from the grant: Green Park Lutheran in south St. Louis County, Immanuel Lutheran in Olivette, Lutheran North Middle School in Florissant, Our Savior Lutheran in Fenton, Trinity Lutheran in Edwardsville, Trinity Lutheran in St. Charles, and Word of Life in south St. Louis. 

LESA’s 35-member schools were among the first to re-open for full-time, in-person learning last August, but as schools worked to keep students safe, healthy and engaged throughout the year, they also faced unexpected expenses. Sue Nahmensen, LESA’s CEO, says the new funds will allow schools to upgrade and plan ahead for the coming year by stocking up on Google Chromebooks and adding interactive tools like Promethean Boards, SmartBoard projectors, and Google Jamboards to classrooms.

“I am always amazed at God’s grace and goodness, and this grant award is yet another example of how He provides for us in all times,” said Sue Nahmensen, LESA’s CEO. “All praise to God for this most recent and wonderful blessing for the schools and students that LESA serves!”

The grant is funded by the Employees Community Fund (ECF) of The Boeing Company, one of the largest employee-owned and managed funds of its kind in the world.

About LESA

More than 8,200 students attend Lutheran schools in the St. Louis Metro Area, making it the second largest private school system in the Bi-State Region. A Recognized Service Organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, LESA represents 31 elementary and 4 high schools, including three National Blue Ribbon Schools and three National Lutheran Exemplary Schools. To learn more about our schools and our mission, visit www.LESAstl.org.

Boeing Employees Community Fund

One of the largest employee-owned and managed funds of its kind in the world, the Employees Community Fund (ECF) of The Boeing Company has been empowering employees to make greater impact by pooling their tax-deductible donations for more than 60 years. Employee advisory boards provide combined employee donations to nonprofits in their community through ECF grants. Boeing pays all administrative costs so 100 percent of every employee dollar helps strengthen local communities.

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Katherine (Kit) Auble
Director, Fund Development and Marketing
314-200-0797
kauble@lesastl.org
www.lesastl.org
www.facebook.com/lesastl.org

Brenda Kimberlin
Communications & Outreach Coordinator
Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA)
www.lesastl.org
314-496-1799 – cell
bkimberlin@lesastl.org

 

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27 May
0

Meet Vernon & Joann Schroeder, LESA’s 2021 Heritage Club Honorees

Watch it Now Vernon and Joann Schroeder: Why We Support Lutheran Schools

One of the many highlights of our first-ever Cooking for Kids livestream event and auction was a moving video tribute to Vernon and Joann Schroeder, our 2021 LESA Heritage Club Honorees. Vernon and Joann are the living embodiment of Christ’s love and we are continually humbled by their support. During our live event, Sue Nahmensen, our CEO, shared the ways that Vernon and Joann are creating a lasting legacy for children. 

“I would like to introduce the Heritage Club honorees Vernon and Joann Schroeder. This award recognizes individuals who are members of the Heritage Club of the Lutheran Elementary School Association’s (LESA) Founder’s Society. It is reserved for those who have included Lutheran Elementary School Association of St. Louis in their will, trust and/or estate plans, or have named LESA as a beneficiary (whole or partial) of an insurance policy or retirement account, and/or have established an endowment fund.”

Watch it Now:

“What moves us is our love for Christ. Our love for Christ. Can we share that with someone else?”

Vernon & Joann Schroeder

 

 

 

“Vernon & Joann Schroeder are members of Child of God Lutheran Church in St. Peters, volunteer at SSM Hospital, have two children, and are both alumni of Lutheran elementary schools – an experience that they will tell you has laid a foundation for both of them throughout their life, sort of like a roadmap, guiding them through life’s best and worst times. They recognize that not everyone can afford this educational opportunity, and they want to help.”

“Recently, Vernon & Joann created a named endowment to benefit LESA that will provide scholarships for years to come for children of all faiths enrolled in Lutheran schools. They consistently support our annual programs. The Schroeders exemplify Christ’s love in their love for one another but also for those less fortunate. Vernon and Joann, thank you for your generosity and commitment to Lutheran education.”

Thank you Vernon & Joann. Your legacy gifts are so very meaningful and will impact the lives of children and families for years to come.

Are you ready to create a lasting legacy for children? To learn more about matching gifts for named endowments, or making an estate gift to LESA, visit the Support LESA section on our website, or contact Katherine “Kit” Auble, our Director of Fund Development and Marketing, at 314-200-0797 or kauble@LESAstl.org, to get started.

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27 May
0

Student Leader Anna Spelbring to Donate June ‘Anna Bakes’ Sales to LESA

Watch it Now: Anna’s Acceptance Speech

Anna Spelbring, 14, has had a busy spring.

In March, the Belleville teen learned she’d been selected to receive LESA’s 2021 Lutheran Student Christian Leader of the Year Award. In April, she accepted her award during a chapel presentation at her beloved elementary school, Zion Lutheran School in Belleville, and online during LESA’s annual Cooking for Kids Virtual Tribute Dinner-Auction. In May, she graduated from Zion, Belleville, where she’d moved in the third grade when her father, Rev. Chris Spelbring, became associate pastor for Zion Lutheran Church

Now, as Anna begins her much-deserved summer vacation, this busy child of God is adding a new challenge by donating the June proceeds from Anna Bakes for World Vision, the charity baking project she started as a child, to LESA and the 35 Lutheran schools we serve. 

“I don’t know why I was so driven, but the Holy Spirit was working in me,” said Anna, when she accepted her award during LESA’s online Cooking for Kids livestream event and auction. “I took a passion that God gave me and used it to be a light for others.”

Watch it Now: Anna’s Acceptance Speech

Anna combined her passion for baking and serving others after attending a Christian concert that included a presentation by World Vision, a humanitarian organization that sponsors and serves children and communities around the world. “They had a speaker at the concert,” said Anna, who was 10 at the time. “I was really moved. I thought, wow, this is really cool.” After the concert, she and her sister looked through photos of children in need and decided to sponsor a little boy who lived in El Salvador. The cost was $40 a month. To pay for it, she turned to her favorite pastime. 

“Baking has always been my number one favorite hobby,” said Anna. 

She started by selling homemade treats to teachers, staff and congregation members at Zion Lutheran Church. As word grew, she and her mom put together a Facebook page called Anna Bakes for World Vision, where she accepts orders, shares photos and gives video updates on what she’s baking and raising each month. As her sales and batches have increased, she’s added new charities to the mix, including Zion Lutheran Church and Open Door Ministries. Anna’s specialties are snickerdoodles and coconut macaroons dipped in chocolate, but she also offers a special treat each month. For the LESA fundraiser in June, she’s planning Treat Boxes filled with “red, white and blue” snacks, like dipped rice crispy treats, chocolate-dipped pretzels, chocolate-covered Oreos, and merengue cookies.  

“Anna handles all of the communications, transactions and baking all on her own,” said Principal Ananda Baron, who nominated Anna for the award. “Her kindness and servant heart have set her apart as a leader in her classroom, and that leadership extends to our entire student body and school.”

“I feel extremely blessed to have attended Zion,” said Anna, who also played basketball for Zion and flute in the school’s orchestra. 

Anna’s award, which includes a $500 scholarship underwritten by the Lutheran Church Extension Fund, recognizes Lutheran elementary schools students who demonstrate courage, compassion, leadership, academic achievement and a commitment to their community.

In the final words of her acceptance speech, Anna shared a powerful call to action with her fellow Lutheran school students: “Find your passion, find what you love and use it to glorify God in all you say and do.”

For information on order deadlines, box sizes, pick-up times and suggested donation prices, look for Anna’s June video post at Anna Bakes for World Vision. And if you’d like to support LESA and Anna from afar, you can also order and donate a box to clients served by the Belleville Community Interfaith Food Pantry.

About Cooking for Kids

Cooking for Kids is LESA’s largest annual fundraising effort to support and sustain the future of Lutheran Christian education in the St. Louis Metro Area. Last year’s event raised $257,000 for need-based scholarships and educational resources such as STEM programs, professional development and curriculum guides.

Since 2004, LESA has awarded more than $6.5 million in financial assistance to families of all faiths in St. Louis and southern Illinois. To help advance that mission, the Lutheran Legacy Foundation has pledged to provide a generous match for endowment gifts and pledges made in 2020. There is also a $50,000 match for scholarship gifts raised at Cooking for Kids that is  being offered by a generous donor.

About LESA & Zion Lutheran School

More than 8,200 children of all faiths attend LESA member Lutheran schools in the St. Louis Metro Area, making Lutheran schools the second-largest private school system in the Bi-State Region. A Recognized Service Organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, LESA represents 31 elementary schools, four high schools and three related agencies. Visit www.LESAstl.org.

Zion Lutheran School is a nationally accredited PreK-8 school located in Belleville, Illinois. One of the oldest schools in the Metro East, Zion Lutheran was founded by Zion Lutheran Church in 1861 with the intention of providing a Christ-centered approach to education to nurture a child’s faith, equipping him/her to use it on a daily basis and to share it with others. Today, Zion, Belleville serves children of all faiths in Early Childhood through 8th grade. For more information, visit https://zionschoolbelleville.org, or contact Erica Stelling, Admissions & Marketing Director, at 618-234-0275 or estelling@zionschoolbelleville.org.

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Media Contacts:

Katherine (Kit) Auble
Director, Fund Development and Marketing
314-200-0797
kauble@lesastl.org
www.lesastl.org
www.facebook.com/lesastl.org

Brenda Kimberlin
Communications & Outreach Coordinator
Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA)
www.lesastl.org
314-496-1799 – cell
bkimberlin@lesastl.org

Erica Stelling, Admissions & Marketing Director
Zion Lutheran School, Belleville
618-234-0275
estelling@zionschoolbelleville.org

 

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27 May
0

Cooking for Kids Livestream Event Raises $275,000 for Lutheran Schools, Scholarships

Watch it Now: 2021 Cooking for Kids Livestream Event & Auction

The St. Louis-based Lutheran Elementary School Association raised a record $275,000 for Lutheran schools in St. Louis and southern Illinois thanks to an extraordinary matching gift and the success of its first-ever Cooking for Kids livestream event and auction, which streamed online April 17, 2021.

Proceeds from the event will help LESA meet an ongoing critical need for tuition assistance for students of all faiths attending Lutheran schools in the St. Louis area. Applications for need-based tuition assistance are up 55 percent since the pandemic began last spring. The funds raised will also support educational resources such as STEM programs, counseling services, professional development and curriculum guides for LESA’s 35 member schools

“Cooking for Kids is our largest and most critical annual fundraiser,” said Sue Nahmensen, LESA’s CEO. “Many of our families are still struggling to recover from job loss and other hardships related to the economic shutdown, so these funds will have an immediate impact on our schools and families.”

In place of a live event, Cafe Napoli owner Tony Pietoso, a Lutheran North alum and co-founder of the Napoli family of restaurants, created two custom Cafe Napoli Cooking Kits to benefit Lutheran schools. The kits – Ravioli Truffle Burrata and Chicken Parmesan – included ingredients, cooking instructions and access to an exclusive online cooking demonstration featuring Tony in Cafe Napoli’s kitchen. The dinners, which sold for $60 each, also featured a premium bottle of imported Italian wine selected by Tony’s son, Ande Pietoso, general manager of Cafe Napoli in Clayton. In the days leading up to the online event, a team of 16 LESA volunteers delivered 217 Cafe Napoli Cooking Kits directly to purchasers’ doors.

“Lutheran education changed my life because it made me a better person and made me who I am today,” said Pietoso, who grew up in Lutheran-run orphanages in Italy after his parents became unable to care for him and his siblings. Pietoso, who moved to St. Louis as a teenager to play soccer for Lutheran North, shared his remarkable story in a video that aired during the livestream event. 

The presentation, hosted by Master of Ceremonies Jim Dankenbring and auctioneer Dave Drewes, also featured a live, online auction, a Building Blocks Scholarship Fund-a-Need appeal, a 50/50 drawing and special tributes to our Lutheran luminaries – 2021 Lutheran Student Christian Leader Anna Spelbring, a graduating 8th grader at Zion Lutheran School in Belleville, and 2021 Legacy Honorees Vernon & Joann Schroeder – and a video “Thank You” for the 500 Lutheran educators who have been teaching students in-school throughout the pandemic. The event attracted 593 online guests, including 174 auction winners. Items included Cardinals “green seats,” Blues tickets, one-of-kind jewelry and sports memorabilia, and exclusive golf and vacation packages. 

Since 2004, LESA has awarded more than $6.5 million in financial assistance to families of all faiths in St. Louis and southern Illinois. To help advance that mission, the Lutheran Legacy Foundation has pledged to provide a generous match for new named endowment gifts and pledges made in 2021. 

To donate to LESA, or participate in next year’s Cooking for Kids, contact Katherine (Kit) Auble, LESA’s Director, Fund Development and Marketing, at 314-200-0797, or kauble@lesastl.org

About LESA

More than 8,200 students attend Lutheran schools in the St. Louis Metro Area, making it the second largest private school system in the Bi-State Region. A Recognized Service Organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, LESA represents 31 elementary and 4 high schools, including three National Blue Ribbon Schools and three National Lutheran Exemplary Schools. To learn more about our schools and our mission, visit www.LESAstl.org.

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Media Contact:

Katherine (Kit) Auble
Director, Fund Development and Marketing
314-200-0797
kauble@lesastl.org
www.lesastl.org
www.facebook.com/lesastl.org

 

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29 Mar
0

Planned Giving: Easter and the Gift of Eternal Life

Why do I need an estate plan?  Even as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus this Easter Season we also know that His victory is so sweet because it gives eternal life even as our present lives here on earth are finite. 

An estate plan, and the gift plan that designs how God’s gifts will be distributed to the family you love and the ministries you care about, begins with a face-to-face conversation about end-of-life issues. Yet “end of life” is not really accurate for a child of God.  Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and life … whoever lives and believes in me will by no means die, forever.” 

Planned Giving: One Family’s Story

Don and Mary recently reviewed their estate plan and their plan for gifts found within that estate plan.  They reaffirmed the decisions they made ten years ago were still the best decisions for showing love to their children and grandchildren, and for supporting their congregation and other ministries that mean so much to them. 

In their review, they found that they needed to clean up some beneficiary designations that had gotten out of alignment with that plan.  They also found that over the last ten years, God had blessed them with even more gifts than before and that their gift plan would be even more of a blessing.

With the support of their LCMS Foundation Gift Planning Counselor, they decided to call together a family meeting.  One child objected saying, “Mom and Dad, quit being so morbid.”  But they proceeded on with the gathering.  They began by reading their family blessings.  By the end of those four paragraphs, everyone had tears running down their faces, thankful for the love and faith they shared. 

Then Don and Mary explained their gift plan to their family, pointing out the gifts their family would receive someday and their support for the Lord’s work that always had been a hallmark of this family.  Then, they prayed.

As their children and grandchildren were loading up into cars to leave, with hugs all around, great peace was upon them all and a confidence abounded. That day they had a chance to remember that life in Jesus goes on forever.  Your LCMS Foundation Gift Planning Counselor can help.  

Teresa Nelson, LESA’s LCMS Foundation Gift Planning Counselor, can meet with you at no charge and is completely confidential. To  learn more, call or email Teresa at 319-351-6529 (cell), or teresa.nelson@lfnd.org.

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28 Mar
0

Café Napoli to Headline Virtual Cooking for Kids to Benefit Lutheran Schools

Café Napoli owner Tony Pietoso is cooking things up in the kitchen to support Lutheran schools and the educators who changed his life.

Pietoso, an alumnus of Lutheran North and co-founder of the Napoli family of restaurants, will headline the St. Louis-based Lutheran Elementary School Association’s 2021 Cooking for Kids Virtual Dinner-Auction, Saturday, April 17, 2021 at 7 p.m. Proceeds from the event will support need-based scholarships and educational resources for students of all faiths attending 35 Lutheran schools in the St. Louis area.

“Lutheran education changed my life because it made me a better person and made me who I am today,” said Pietoso, who grew up in Lutheran-run orphanages in Italy after his parents became unable to care for him and his siblings. “The caring they gave me, the love they gave me, pretty much made me who I am today. It was good guidance from the beginning. I owe Lutheran schools everything right now.”

Pietoso moved to St. Louis when he was 15 after the former director of one of the orphanages, Al Landes, invited him to play soccer for Lutheran North, where Landes had moved to teach. Pietoso went on to play soccer for St. Louis Community College before making St. Louis his permanent home.

To honor Al Landes and all of the Lutheran educators who helped shape him, Pietoso and Café Napoli are offering two Chef Tony Pietoso Cooking Kits for purchase to benefit Lutheran schools – Ravioli Truffle Burrata and Chicken Parmesan. Each kit includes the necessary ingredients and a premium bottle of imported Italian wine selected by Tony’s son, Ande Pietoso, general manager of Cafe Napoli in Clayton. Kits are $60 each and include a recipe, detailed instructions and a link to an exclusive cooking demonstration featuring Tony in Cafe Napoli’s kitchen. Kits will be delivered directly to your door, and each purchase is entered to win a gift card to Café Napoli. (Order Deadlines: Orders placed by Thursday, April 15 will be delivered Saturday, April 17 (event day). Delivery can be also delayed to the week of 4/26, if diner prefers. Orders placed after after April 15, will be delivered the week of April 26.)

The virtual event includes a live auction, scholarship fund-a-need, 50/50 drawing and special tributes to our Lutheran luminaries – Zion-Belleville student Anna Spelbring – LESA’s 2021 Lutheran Student Christian Leader, Legacy Honorees Vernon & Joann Schroeder (photo, left) and the 500 Lutheran educators who have been teaching students in-school throughout the pandemic. Master of Ceremonies Jim Dankenbring and auctioneer Dave Drewes will host the event. Bidding for the online auction opens April 10 at LESAstl.org. Premium prizes include a Bourbon Tasting in Kentucky, a week-long stay in Sanibel Island, Florida, Dinner for Four at the new Tony’s Restaurant in Clayton, Cardinal’s Field Box Seats, Blues Hockey Tickets, Bose Sunglasses, an autographed Tony La Russa Jersey, Massage Envy Gift cards and other gifts for Mother’s Day, birthdays and more. The virtual program is free of charge. 

Cooking for Kids is LESA’s largest annual fundraising effort to support and sustain the future of Lutheran Christian education in the St. Louis Metro Area. Last year’s Cooking for Kids raised $257,000 for need-based scholarships and educational resources such as STEM programs, professional development and curriculum guides.

Since 2004, LESA has awarded more than $6 million in financial assistance to families of all faiths in St. Louis and southern Illinois. To help advance that mission, the Lutheran Legacy Foundation has pledged to provide a generous match for endowment gifts and pledges made in 2020. There is also a $50,000 match for scholarship gifts raised at Cooking for Kids that is  being offered by a generous donor.

To sponsor the program or tribute ad, or donate an item for this year’s Cooking for Kids, contact Katherine (Kit) Auble, LESA’s Director, Fund Development and Marketing, at 314-200-0797, or kauble@lesastl.org

About LESA

More than 8,200 students attend Lutheran schools in the St. Louis Metro Area, making it the second largest private school system in the Bi-State Region. A Recognized Service Organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, LESA represents 31 elementary and 4 high schools, including three National Blue Ribbon Schools and three National Lutheran Exemplary Schools. To learn more about our schools and our mission, visit www.LESAstl.org.

For more information:

Katherine (Kit) Auble
Director, Fund Development and Marketing
314-200-0797 – office
kauble@lesastl.org
www.lesastl.org

Brenda Kimberlin
Communications & Outreach Coordinator
Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA)
www.lesastl.org
314-496-1799 – cell
bkimberlin@lesastl.org

 

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28 Mar
0

Zion-Belleville Student is LESA’s 2021 Lutheran Student Christian Leader

Anna Spelbring – who started a charity baking project to help a child in El Salvador – will be honored April 17 during Cooking for Kids’ live online tribute event to support Lutheran education.

Anna Spelbring, an eighth-grader at Zion Lutheran School in Belleville, has been named Lutheran Student Christian Leader of the Year by the St. Louis-based Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA). The award, which includes a $500 scholarship underwritten by the Lutheran Church Extension Fund, recognizes Lutheran elementary schools students who demonstrate courage, compassion, leadership, academic achievement and a commitment to their community.

Anna, 14, was selected for serving her faith and her community through Anna Bakes for World Vision, the charity baking project she started to sponsor a child in El Salvador through World Vision, a global Christian humanitarian organization that she learned about at a Christian music concert that she attended with her family. “They had a speaker at the concert,” said Anna, who was 10 at the time. “I was really moved. I thought, wow, this is really cool.”

After the concert, Anna looked through photos of children in need with her younger sister. They were struck by the photo of a little boy named Marvin who lives in El Salvador. Anna said she decided that day that she would sponsor Marvin for $40 a month – even though she had no idea where she would get the money. “We had to figure out how to pay for it!” laughed Anna. 

She found a solution in her favorite pastime. “Baking has always been my number one favorite hobby,” said Anna. She started by selling treats to teachers, staff and congregation members at Zion Lutheran Church, where her father, Rev. Chris Spelbring is the associate pastor. She and her mother have since started a Facebook page called Anna Bakes for World Vision, where she accepts orders, shares photos and gives video updates on what she’s baking and how much she’s raising each month. As her sales and baking production have increased, she’s added new charities to the mix, including Open Door Ministries and Zion Lutheran Church’s Honduras Mission. Anna says her specialties are Snickerdoodles and Coconut Macaroons Dipped in Chocolate.

“Anna handles all of the communications, transactions and baking all on her own,” said Principal Ananda Baron, who nominated Anna for the award. “Her kindness and servant heart have set her apart as a leader in her classroom, and that leadership extends to our entire student body and school.” 

Anna is also Vice President of Zion’s Student Council. In her nomination form, Baron praised the teen for finding “creative ways to connect our community of students” during the pandemic by helping to organize events like Favorite Candy Tournament, a Christmas Door decorating contest, dress-down days for chapel offerings, and a March food drive that collected 7,000 non-perishable food items for the Belleville Community Interfaith Food Pantry and a Zion community outreach ministry that will provide Easter Backpacks for kids in need. 

“I feel extremely blessed to attend Zion,” said Anna, who plays basketball for Zion and flute in the school’s orchestra. “I feel free to be myself here.”

Anna will receive her award online Saturday, April 17, 2021, during LESA’s annual Cooking for Kids Virtual Tribute Dinner-Auction. The event, which includes an online auction, will be live-streamed at LESAstl.org this year due to COVID-19 precautions. Proceeds from the event will support scholarships and educational resources for students of all faiths at 35 Lutheran schools in the St. Louis area and southern Illinois. Bidding will open online April 10, 2021 at LESAstl.org for hundreds of items, including jewelry, art, sports memorabilia, special event tickets and other prizes.  

Cooking for Kids is LESA’s largest annual fundraising effort to support and sustain the future of Lutheran Christian education in the St. Louis Metro Area. Last year’s Cooking for Kids raised $257,000 for need-based scholarships and educational resources such as STEM programs, professional development and curriculum guides.

Since 2004, LESA has awarded more than $6 million in financial assistance to families of all faiths in St. Louis and southern Illinois. To help advance that mission, the Lutheran Legacy Foundation has pledged to provide a generous match for endowment gifts and pledges made in 2020. There is also a $50,000 match for scholarship gifts raised at Cooking for Kids that is  being offered by a generous donor.

About LESA

More than 8,200 children of all faiths attend LESA member Lutheran schools in the St. Louis Metro Area, making Lutheran schools the second-largest private school system in the Bi-State Region. A Recognized Service Organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, LESA represents 31 elementary schools, four high schools and three related agencies. Visit www.LESAstl.org.

Zion Lutheran School is a nationally accredited PreK-8 school located in Belleville, Illinois. One of the oldest schools in the Metro East, Zion Lutheran was founded by Zion Lutheran Church in 1861 with the intention of providing a Christ-centered approach to education to nurture a child’s faith, equipping him/her to use it on a daily basis and to share it with others. Today, Zion, Belleville serves children of all faiths in Early Childhood through 8th grade. For more information, visit https://zionschoolbelleville.org, or contact Erica Stelling, Admissions & Marketing Director, at 618-234-0275 or estelling@zionschoolbelleville.org

###

Katherine (Kit) Auble
Director, Fund Development and Marketing
314-200-0797 – office
kauble@lesastl.org
www.lesastl.org

Brenda Kimberlin
Communications & Outreach Coordinator
Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA)
www.lesastl.org
314-496-1799 – cell
bkimberlin@lesastl.org

Erica Stelling, Admissions & Marketing Director
Zion Lutheran School, Belleville
618-234-0275
estelling@zionschoolbelleville.org

 

 

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04 Feb
0

Photo Gallery: National Lutheran Schools Week 2021

Click the photo box above to see highlights from National Lutheran Schools Week 2021!

Thousands of students at 35 Lutheran schools in the St. Louis area celebrated National Lutheran Schools Week – January 24-30, 2021 – with dress-up days, fun activities, special treats, and service projects. Several schools also celebrated their 100th Day of School!

The theme of this year’s celebration was Sent to Serve, based on Matthew 20:28: “The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Nationwide, 180,000 children in more than 1,900 preschools, elementary schools and high schools celebrated National Lutheran Schools Week this year! The week, which occurs annually during the last week of January, gives Lutheran school students and staff a public opportunity to proclaim and celebrate God’s work among us in schools of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod.

For more information on National Lutheran Schools Week, visit https://www.lcms.org/lutheranschoolsweek.

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