Bishop Hutterer: Just Visiting

Teach us to number our days and recognize how few they are; help us to spend them as we should.
— Psalm 90:12

While working at Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest, I once met a refugee woman named Anastasia. When I asked her what she appreciated most about her new life in the United States, she told me it was the food in her cupboard, the water coming from her sink, and the fact that her children could go to school. She felt safe. 

It really reminds you of the things in life that can be so easily missed. 

I have a goal of visiting all of the 100 ministry sites throughout the Grand Canyon Synod within the first two years of my term. I have visited many of you, about 35 so far, and I am so grateful for you and the ministry that God is doing through you. 

I am grateful for the folks that greet me with a smile and a handshake. The choirs, the organs, the bands, the pianos, the hymnals, and the screens. The coffee, the cookies, the lemonade. The emails (the kind ones and the challenging ones too). The well-worn stretch of freeway and time behind the wheel to think. The box of food collected for the food pantry. The quilts made and sent with me to share with those in need—a reminder they are not forgotten. The congregations who have opened their doors for safe shelter. The letters written and sent that advocate for a just world. 

I am grateful for the bread and wine that we share in remembrance of Jesus—his love for us and the challenge to be in the world. 

We do such a good job of staying busy or filling our lives with worry that we just don’t notice the gifts of our everyday lives together. 

Don’t miss today’s blessings. What is happening in your life that grounds you in the present with gratitude and joy? Where do you see signs of abundant life? 

In the light of Christ’s love, 


The Rev. Deborah K. Hutterer
Grand Canyon Synod of the ELCA