How QCM became CALM

October, 2008

I hope that you remember that QCM was AQuad Cities Ministries@. Back in 2003, what had been a loosely organized group of pastors and lay people who were meeting monthly to try to figure out how to get the four churches (Redeemer, Elizabethton; Trinity, Bristol; Bethlehem, Johnson City and Concordia, Kingsport) fired up and moving and growing and becoming aware of their purpose for being.

When asked what was needed most, every church representative said that outreach to the community, finding projects that could be done together, and working as partners was what was really needed. One example of our shared ministry was to put up a Christmas tree at Sycamore Shoals and give out 150 handouts, telling what Christmas was about and explaining the Chrismon symbols. We also began sharing ideas with each other and in various ways became a help to each other.

The QCM sponsored the Deacon Ministry Program, (formerly called Lay Ministry Training). The program was intended to train people in assisting pastors with their ministry and/or serving as vacancy lay ministers to congregations calling a pastor or too small to be able to afford a pastor. We have had 6 people who have completed their training and are serving in various ways in their churches.

Another example of ministry is the exploration and the beginning of  a new congregation in Rogersville, TN. Deacon Tom Kyner has spearheaded this endeavor, with the help of Pastor John Freitag from Morristown.

Mid-South District and QCM worked together to bring Pastor Erwin Lueker into our area to serve as interim and dual pastor for Redeemer in Elizabethton and Trinity in Bristol.

In the Spring of 2006, the Mid-South District urged us to expand our group to include Christ of the Cumberlands in Harrogate, Our Savior in Morristown, St. Paul in Sevierville, Mountain Side Lutheran in Linville, NC, and Holy Trinity in Bristol.  When we agreed to include these churches, we needed a new name, so we are now CALM (Central Appalachian Lutheran Ministries).

We sense that God can open new doors of opportunities for us to encourage, assist and support each other and strengthen His ministry in our area through this organization.

Pastor Jack McWhirter, CALM Chaplain