Texas District Annual Gathering


What do you call it when Lutherans

from across Texas get together to

eat great food,

fellowship with like-minded believers,

share ministry opportunities,

be challenged by incredible teaching,

and worship the Most Awesome God?


We call it the LCMC Texas District Annual Gathering!


JULY 31 – AUGUST 1, 2020



Keynote Presenters:

Dave Drum | J17 Ministries, Tucson, AZ
Rick & Robyn Bezanson | Amazing Grace, Glendale, AZ
Ted Doering | Narrative Church, Round Rock, TX


Bryce Formwalt | LCMC Texas / Harvest Workers
Enrique Estrada | Mexico Mission International

Registration opens May 1!



Have an interesting ministry idea or insight to share? The District Council is looking for breakout presenters to lead 40 minute workshops on ministry topics of interest at our upcoming gathering. Submissions are due by April 15!


Are you interested in having a display table for your ministry at the Annual Gathering? Do you know a business or organization that partners with churches that would like the opportunity to be represented with a display table in Victoria? Please email to request a table! Questions, call Bryce Formwalt: 512-942-7776.


New this year, we are looking for businesses or organizations that are interested in sponsoring our Gathering and receiving advertising space in our program booklet. Half page ads measure 5×3.5 inches can be purchased for $50. Full page ads measure 5×7.25 inches and can be purchased for $100. Sign-up for ad space during registration, which will open by May 1.



Make plans for your Middle and High School students

to attend this year’s Youth Gathering July 31-August 1 in Victoria!

Are you interested in helping to plan the Youth Gathering this year? Do you have questions about the Youth Gathering? Contact Bryce Formwalt for more information: or 512-942-7776.

Registration opens May 1!

Contact Bryce Formwalt at 512.942.7776.




The Highlights:

  • Check-in begins at 5:00 pm on Friday
  • The event will conclude at 4:15 pm on Saturday
  • This Gathering is for ALL PEOPLE! All are welcome!
  • Youth Gathering (grades 6-12) happening simultaneously
  • Pre-Gathering Leadership Seminar led by author Greg Finke
  • Pre-Gathering Women’s Seminar highlighting Child Advocacy Center ministries
  • Keynote Presentations by Greg Finke, Mark Vander Tuig, and Daniel Emery Price
  • 3 Breakout Sessions with 15 different breakouts to choose from
Hosted by Faith Lutheran Church, 1326 E Cedar Street, Seguin, Texas



Greg Finke, Dwelling 1:14

Greg Finke is the founder and Executive Director of Dwelling 1:14 and author of books, Joining Jesus on His Mission: How to Be an Everyday Missionary and, Joining Jesus – Show Me How: How to Disciple Everyday Missionaries. Dwelling 1:14 is a non-profit ministry which helps leaders disciple people to join Jesus on his mission in the places they already live, work and go to school. The name Dwelling 1:14 refers to John 1:14 and the incarnational, missional nature both of Jesus and those who would follow him into the world. Greg offers consulting and training experiences for congregations and their leaders in discipling, living missionally, and multiplying missional community environments.
Greg will be delivering a keynote entitled Mission of the Cross. Often times people simply look at the cross through the lens of personal salvation and live life primarily on the sidelines of God’s activity in the world. But Greg will show us how Jesus’ atoning sacrifice on the cross not only saves us, but also gives us a mission and compels us to live on the frontlines of God’s Kingdom building activity in our own communities. Using Ephesians 2:8-10 as his foundation, Greg will educate and inspire us towards an exciting new way of living as everyday missionaries in our local communities.
Greg is a graduate of Concordia University, Chicago and Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. Before founding Dwelling 1:14, he served as pastor of two congregations in Michigan and Texas for 21 years. Greg and his wife, Susan, have three daughters and enjoy life as neighborhood missionaries in League City, Texas.

Mark Vander Tuig, Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ

Mark Vander Tuig serves as the Service Coordinator for Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ. He is an ambassador for Jesus’ Great Commission everywhere he goes. On the move a lot, Mark endures countless hours in airports and airplanes, rental cars and hotels, to do his best to help churches keep the mission of Jesus ever before them and to teach people how to share their faith with others. He defines his personal calling to “strengthen the congregations we have and to plant the ones we don’t.”
Mark will be presenting a keynote entitled, CrossTalk. All around the world, Christians find themselves surrounded by people who either have never met Jesus or are not connected to a local church. Mark will present research that indicates that while most are hesitant to walk in the doors of a church, that does not mean they are not interested or curious about faith. Then, he will help to identify ways to talk about Jesus that are normal and natural to us. He believes that God has placed us in this world to be his witnesses and it is time for us to once again find our voice.
A graduate of the University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, Iowa and Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota, Mark served as pastor of three congregations in Minnesota and Iowa prior to accepting the call to be Service Coordinator in 2010. Mark and his wife, Candice, reside in Altoona, Iowa and are the proud parents of two grown daughters, Laura and Emily, and even more proud grandparents of Elliot, Joel, and Hannah.

Daniel Emery Price, 1517 and Christ Hold Fast

Daniel Emery Price serves as the National Conference Director for 1517 and oversees and directs the Here We Still Stand Conference annually. 1517 strives to oversee and empower a variety of theological resource platforms including a podcast network, a publishing house, an online Academy, a speaker network and an annual national conference. Through each platform, 1517 seeks to provide a message of hope to strengthen individuals and congregations, as well as model ways of engaging the culture in a manner that is thoughtful, courageous, and Christ-centered. Daniel is also an author, a church and conference speaker, and co-host of the podcasts 40 Minutes in the Old Testament and 30 Minutes in the New Testament. Together with Erick Sorensen, Daniel has co-authored a recently released book, Scandalous Stories: A Sort of Commentary on Parables.
In his keynote entitled Cross-Examined, Daniel will offer insight into living unashamed and forgiven lives in light of the cross as followers of Jesus. It is vital for the mission of the church that disciples of Jesus stop hiding from our own sin in shame and instead be honest with ourselves and others about the pain and brokenness of real life and the triumph of God’s grace and mercy in the midst of the mess. By letting the light of God’s grace expose the darkness, our lives can be examined by the cross and true freedom can be found.
Prior to dedicating himself full-time to para-church work, Daniel had previously served as a church planter, pastor, and worship leader. He currently lives in Northwest Arkansas with his wife and their daughter.




We are excited to announce our second annual YOUTH GATHERING for ALL STUDENTS grades 6-12! Students will grow in their faith through learning from inspiring presenters and doing ministry with others their own age from across the state! Along the way, they’ll meet lots of new friends, have fun, eat some great food, and be encouraged to live faithfully in their everyday lives.
Coinciding with the Annual Gathering, the Youth Gathering has its own schedule (in this packet). Cost is just $25 and includes snacks, lunch on Saturday, and a t-shirt. Transportation and lodging will be the responsibility of each church and/or family. Please spread the word about this awesome opportunity for your students!
Questions? Contact Bryce Formwalt: 512-942-7776 or


Our Pre-Gathering Leadership Seminar will take place from 1:00 to 4:30 pm on Friday. Join us as Greg Finke, author of Joining Jesus on His Mission: How to Be an Everyday Missionary, leads us in this practical workshop to help equip congregational leaders and pastors to lead disciple-forming, mission movements in and through local congregations. Participants will be challenged to consider how God may be calling them to shift priorities, introduce new methods, and leverage existing ministries to transform the discipleship and missional culture of his or her congregation. All pastors, seminarians, and congregational leaders are encouraged to attend. Please make sure you add the “Pre-Gathering Leadership Seminar” option onto your ticket when you register. Cost is $20!


Do you have children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews? Do you ever worry about their safety? Please join the Ladies of Faith for the Pre-Gathering Women’s Seminar on Friday from 1:00 to 4:30 pm. Together, we will learn about a nationwide safety program called radKids presented by Guadalupe County Child Advocacy Center Executive Director, Christy Williams. You will also learn the role of a Child Advocacy Center in your community and how you and your church can help. We will have the opportunity to tour the new Child Advocacy Center facility in Seguin!! And, in addition, women from across Texas will have the opportunity to fellowship with one another and discuss the ministries women are engaging in through their local congregations. All women are encouraged to attend. Please make sure you add the “Pre-Gathering Women’s Seminar” option onto your ticket when you register. Cost is just $10!


Pitmasters from Faith, Seguin will be preparing a BBQ feast as a dinner option on Friday night. Dinner will be served from 5:30 – 6:30 pm. Advance tickets may be purchased with registration for just $10. Price at the door will be $15. Proceeds from the BBQ Feast will go to benefit Latin American Lutheran Mission based out of Laredo, TX.






“How to be an Everyday Missionary” – Greg Finke, Dwelling 1:14
Are you ready for some practical, concrete steps that you can take to join Jesus on His Mission in your everyday life? Then this breakout is for you! Building upon his keynote, Greg will provide next steps to help you discover and answer God’s call for you to join him in mission. There will also be a time for questions and answers. Offered Sessions 1 & 2
“The Good News About Marriage Paul Owens, St. Paul, New Braunfels
Before God created his church, before he established the nation, he established marriage and the family. Marriage is a big deal and has profound impact on our nation and on your congregation. What is the status of marriage in America? What do people in your congregation know, believe, and demonstrate about marriage? How can your congregation help? Offered Sessions 1 & 2
“Be Prepared – LCMC Retirement Plan for Pastors and Staff” Annette LaPlant and Sheila Heid, LCMC 403b Plan
Being prepared takes forethought, planning and action. Learn how to be successful with your finances now so that you can retire comfortably. LCMC has established the LCMC 403(b) Retirement Plan to ensure your future is secure. Offered Session 2
“A Relationship Restored” Percy Smerek, Trinity, Stonewall
God offered fellowship to us, but we were caught up in the brokenness of our sin (self-centered nature). What God has offered us in Jesus is a life of renewed fellowship bought by the blood of our rescuer and the presence and invitation of the Holy Spirit. Our words reflect that fellowship with God and each other. Offered Sessions 1 & 2
“Safe and Sound – Handling the Issues of Church Safety and Security” Kurt Hetherington, American Church Group of Texas
Incidents of violence against churches have risen almost 2,400% since 1999! How is your church working to protect the flock? This session will show you how to make strategic decisions to improve its safety and security without compromising the church’s core mission. Every church needs to have a safety plan and be made aware of the insurance coverages needed to protect the church and those who serve in it. In this session you will see the practical resources that can meet the needs of any size church in any setting. Offered Sessions 1 & 2
“Theology of the Cross” Daniel Emery Price, 1517 & Christ Hold Fast
The heart of the Christian faith is an easy thing to get wrong. Debates over holiness, sanctification and what we should and should not do often eclipse the radical center of everything God has done for us. The theology of the cross calls us back to a faith rooted in the blood-soaked cross of Christ and invites us to be honest about ourselves, our sin and our savior. Offered Sessions 1 & 3
“Developing Faithful Stewards” David Eibel, Living Word, Grapevine
Faithfulness is God’s measure of success for the Church. How then do we develop faithful stewards? We don’t. God does. But God uses us to call our fellow brothers and sisters to take God up on His promises, model faithfulness, and remember the definition of success. This breakout will offer a biblical examination of God’s promises, and a practical way to structure a congregational stewardship emphasis. Offered Sessions 1 & 3
“Christ Caring for People Through People” Pat DeDear, Our Saviour’s, Victoria
Do you hear Jesus calling you? As a Stephen Minister, Jesus will take each step with you on this journey. He will go ahead of you to prepare the way. Jesus will give you joy to minister to people who simply need a “listening” ear and maybe a little guidance. Come and learn how you can answer God’s call through Stephen Ministries. Offered Sessions 1 & 3
“Changing Worship” Stan Simonik, Immanuel, Alice
Attitudes in worship are changing. Most of today’s young people prefer an informal setting where they can connect with God emotionally as well as cognitively. This breakout session will help smaller congregations develop a strategy for introducing an informal, yet still liturgical, praise service into their worship schedule, and more effectively reach out to younger generations. Offered Sessions 1 & 3
“LCMC – Lutheran Men” David Kight, First Lutheran, El Campo
Many people likely do not know about Lutheran Men. In this session, David will highlight the ministry of Lutheran Men for participants to get involved and share with the men in their own congregations. Come and learn about LCMC – Lutheran Men. Offered Sessions 1 & 3
“Crosstalk” Mark Vander Tuig, Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ
Are you ready to share your faith with total strangers? If so, then this talk might not be for you! But if you are struggling with what to say and how to say it and want to hone your skills and ask your questions in a safe environment, then this is definitely for you! Offered Sessions 2 & 3
“Workers for the Harvest” Bryce Formwalt, LCMC Texas District
In Matthew 9, we hear Jesus tell his disciples that the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. The vision of LCMC Texas is to multiply disciples and churches, and we need to help prepare Workers for the Harvest. Come and hear the latest details on how God is calling LCMC Texas to develop an online training center to develop next generation church leaders and missionaries and to move ordinary people from the pew and into mission. Offered Session 2
“Refusing to Die: Choices Congregations Must Make to Survive and Thrive!” Jim Craver, Faith, Seguin
Let’s face it, we no longer live in a “Leave it to Beaver” world, so why do so many congregations still minister as if we do? This breakout will offer several biblical principles to assist congregations that refuse to die! As Lutherans, we have the deepest understanding of Law and Gospel – how can we live and proclaim that clearly? Come and learn! Offered Sessions 2 & 3
“Church Administrators Peer to Peer Network / Best Practices” Griffin Teggeman, St. Peter, Georgetown with Tracy Hoffart, Trinity, Hempstead
We recognize frequent weaknesses in the tools, processes and/or training necessary to accurately manage church administrative tasks. Furthermore, areas where one congregation is weak may be the same area where others are exceptionally strong. Join us in discussing the new LCMC Peer to Peer Network / Best Practices as we cover a variety of the tasks and challenges we all face and how to use this new community to help resolve them. Topics include software and technologies, membership and financial management, e-giving, reporting, communications and others. Offered Sessions 2 & 3
“End of Life Issues from a Christian Perspective” Barbara Geistfeld, Lutherans for Life with Ric Landvatter, Faith, Seguin
Do you know what will happen to your estate and your family when you die? Do you have documents to direct your end of life care that are honor the sanctity of Life as taught in Scripture? In this session, Barb Geistfeld will discuss hospice, feeding tubes, life-support, palliative care and other end of life issues in a way that honors and values your life as a Child of God. Ric Landvatter will then share his personal testimony of approaching death and dying as disciple of Jesus diagnosed with cancer. Offered Sessions 2 & 3


Contact Bryce Formwalt at 512.942.7776.


Youth Gathering


Students from across Texas connecting on a fun, faith-filled weekend!






Make plans for your Middle and High School students

to attend this year’s Youth Gathering July 31-August 1 in Victoria!

Are you interested in helping to plan the Youth Gathering this year? Do you have questions about the Youth Gathering? Contact Bryce Formwalt for more information: or 512-942-7776.

Registration opens May 1!





Contact Bryce Formwalt at 512.942.7776.


Regional Events



Pastors (active and retired), Youth Ministers, Ministry Staff, Spouses, and Congregational Leaders who want to learn and grow.
And spread the word: you don’t have to be LCMC to come. If you know a Christian leader who would benefit from participating with us, please pass along the invitation!


A Day conference for continuing education and mutual encouragement.

When & Where:

Stay tuned for Dates and Locations for our Spring 2020 events.  Typically, events will be held regionally across Texas and will begin at 9 a.m. and conclude by 2 p.m.


Early Bird Price = $12 
Late Registration = $15 
Register using the form below.
Contact Bryce Formwalt at 512.942.7776.

Winter Retreat


January 26 – 28, 2020

Concan, Texas


Leadership Track led by David Drum


Devotional Track led by Fran Braun



Pastors, seminarians, ministry staff, congregational leaders and spouses.The retreat is an opportunity for ministry leaders and spouses to get away and be enriched through a time of fellowship, worship, prayer, education, and recreation.


Our Winter Retreat offers two parallel tracks.  Participants may choose the Leadership Track or the Devotional Track.  Everyone on both tracks will share together in common worship and fellowship times.
The Leadership Track will be led by Pastor David Drum of J17 Ministries from Tucson, Arizona.  David will speak on “The Missing Link that Leads to Burn Out”, “Answering Jesus’ Prayer”, and “The Primary Purpose of the Church”.  
The Devotional Track will be led y Fran Braun of Faith, Seguin.  Fran will lead a Bible Study on “Prayer for Everyday Life” with sessions on the purpose, practice, and power of prayer.


The Winter Retreat is held at the end of January each year, begining Sunday evening and concluding at Noon on Tuesday.  
Come when you can; leave when you must!


Our Winter Retreat is held in Concan, Texas, a beautiful resort community located along the Frio River.  The Dream Catcher and Rain Dancer cabins serve as our retreat home. Each is designed to host large family gatherings in various sleeping accommodations.  We do our best to accommodate married couples in private rooms with queen bedrooms, but we may not be able to do so depending on the total number of registrants.


Early Bird Price = Typically $65 + a food item to share
Late Registration = Typically $80 + a food item to share
Contact Bryce Formwalt at 512.942.7776.

Having trouble with the Registration form? Click here to open form in a new tab.


Local Clergy Conferences

Texas is big. 

We live in the internet-age, where distance is no longer an obstacle to communication. Even so, our pastors frequently get together the old fashioned way: in person. With a bible in one hand and a mug of coffee in the other, they engage in deep theology and casual chit-chat, and everyone goes home better for the exchange.


Hill Country

Coastal Bend 

North Texas