Peace Lutheran Church (LCMC) of Nevis, MN hosted the second graduation service of the season for the Institute of Lutheran Theology (ILT). On Sunday, June 26th, Linda Nicklason received ILT’s Master of Religion degree and Pastoral Ministry Certificate. Rev. Nicholas Hopman, pastor of Peace, presided at the Holy Communion service. The Rev. Timothy J. Swenson, Dean of Student and Religious Life at ILT, preached the day’s sermon, conducted Linda’s Graduation ceremony, and presented Linda with her diploma.
Graduate Nicklason completed her studies at the Institute of Lutheran Theology in May of this year. ILT prepared her with theological education and pastoral ministry certification for being of greater use to her church both locally and wherever she may be called. Nicklason was the twenty-fourth graduate of ILT to be prepared for service to the church by either its graduate program or its certificate program.
In conferring the Master of Religion degree and a Pastoral Ministry Certificate upon Graduate Nicklason, Rev. Swenson announced "Linda Nicklason, you have successfully completed the requirements for the Master of Religion degree and the Pastoral Ministry Certificate. On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Institute of Lutheran Theology, and upon the recommendation of its faculty, I hereby confer upon you this Master’s degree and ministry certificate and entitle you to all the rights, privileges, and responsibilities pertaining thereto." Both Nicklason and the congregation stated their witness to this conferring of rights, privileges, and responsibilities.
In his sermon on the appointed text, Luke 9:51-62, for the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost, Rev. Swenson preached on our sinner’s bondage to agendas… bound like those Samaritans and would-be disciples were bound to their particular agendas. Sinners are so bound to their agendas that they must die to them in order to be set free, to be given freedom for freedom’s sake. Freedom for freedom’s sake is to live from Christ in faith and toward the neighbor in love.
After the worship and graduation service, the congregation hosted a grand celebration for Linda: there was an egg bake breakfast followed by cake and coffee.