Be The Blessing Is Here!

Be the Blessing is Here!

Last weekend we launched our Be the Blessing emphasis here at Ascension, with Ed Klodt’s message inviting everyone to think about the “Thin Spaces” where Heaven and Earth meet – often right where we lovingly serve God. The BtB initiative includes $60,000 that has been set aside as seed money, either for growing existing ministries or beginning new programs or ministries.

Here’s how it works:

First: identify a need for which you would like to request funds and enlist others in helping you fill that need if appropriate.

Then: fill out and submit the grant request. HERE IS A LINK to the Grant Request Form.

OR, if you would like to find an existing Ascension ministry that could benefit from your special talents or spiritual gifts:

First: To help you identify a ministry you might find rewarding, HERE’S a direct link to the ELCA’s online  spiritual gifts test.

If you prefer to download, print, and score the test yourself, HERE is the link to download and print the test.

Once you know your spiritual gift, CLICK HERE for our online tool for matching your spiritual gifts to existing Ascension ministries.

OR, if you already believe you have a pretty good idea of your spiritual gift and would like to go directly to choosing a ministry, HERE is a downloadable list of Ascension ministries and HERE is an online list with links to each ministry’s web page.

All of these elements and more details can be found at HERE at our BtB online headquarters.

Meet Our Be the Blessing Team

Behind the scenes, the Be the Blessing Team is reviewing and approving requests that will activate each of us into ministry.

Let’s meet the BtheB team members . . . 

Dave Harkins has been an Ascension member for almost 30 years. He is currently Ascension’s Treasurer and served four years on the School Board as Treasurer.  He has been active with the Gifts of Hope annual campaign for the last 12 years and has worked with the Matthew 25:35 Outreach team. Dave has also been involved in volunteer activities in the community outside Ascension, including the Conejo Senior Volunteer Advisory Committee and as a tax preparer at the Conejo Senior Center. 

Tim Hillman is a lifelong member of Ascension, having been baptized and confirmed here. He has also helped teach our confirmation classes. Tim studied criminology, religion and ecology at California Lutheran University and is currently a Park Ranger with Conejo Open Spaces. He’s passionate about activating people into service through Be the Blessing.

Ed Klodt and his family have been Ascension members for more than 35 years. He has served in a multitude of ministries and committees. Ed is currently Immediate Past President of Ascension’s Church Council and heads up the Be the Blessing Team.

Stephanie Pagano on the team provides a vital link to our Early Childhood Center and School. She is in her third year teaching at Ascension Lutheran School, and she currently teaches our fourth graders. Stephanie has integrated many service projects into her classroom curriculum, ranging from ministering to the disadvantaged in our community and even coordinating having children singing Christmas carols for low-mobility seniors.

Kathleen Rudrud is another longtime Ascension member, having held key roles at Ascension for more than 45 years. She has served on Church Council, Ascension’s School Board, the Global Ministries Team, small group leadership and many other ministries. Service – and activating others to service – has been a key goal in her work at Ascension.


Here is the video played at the February 18  worship services. Early Childhood Center Director Jenni McCoy and Ascension Fair Trade Ministry leader Carol Bjelland talk about two Be the Blessing grant projects – one a short-term project, and one that enhances an already-existing ministry. Simple. Powerful. And so very full of blessings! Who’s next? (Thanks for another great video, Mark Foreman!)