Max Miller, the new pastor at Miller’s Trinity Lutheran Church, was officially installed Sunday, Oct. 27. Bishop’s associate Susan Marone, AIM, had charge of the installation service.
Miller has been at Trinity Lutheran since September 1, and says he’s impressed with his new home. Prior to coming to Miller, his first call was to New Home Lutheran Church in Mitchell, where he served four years.
Miller grew up in the Lansing-Saginaw area of Michigan. He attended college, and then spent several years in the work force before attending the Lutheran Theological Seminary for four years at Gettysburg, Pa.
He credits his home congregation at Bethlehem Evangelical Lutheran Church in Lansing for providing support and inspiration. “Because of their love and caring, I felt called to enter the ministry,” he says.
Miller served his internship at Pine Ridge, through the South Dakota Synod. The experience inspired him. “I found South Dakota to be warm and friendly,” Miller explains. His time spent on the reservation influenced him to seek a place to serve in the Dakotas region.
“I’m still friends with the people in Pine Ridge,” he says. “It takes time to build up relationships, and they mean a lot to me. It’s all about relationships.”
Trinity’s new pastor is also a published author. “Eli’s Tears,” the first of a trilogy, is available on Amazon, at Barnes & Noble, and on the author’s Website, www.mdmillerbooks.com.
Miller describes the work as a “post-apocalyptic fantasy,” and is a story of friendship that is tested through time.
The second book of the trilogy, “Rise of the Queen,” has yet to be released; Miller is now working on the third book.
“I wrote the first book in a couple of months, and the second took a couple of years. The third is not complete.”
He says his first literary venture is doing, “very well, especially considering I do the writing as a hobby.
But his favorite hobby is backpacking, closely following by kayaking, hunting (especially archery deer), and other outdoors endeavors. He “dabbles” in photography, too.
“My first love is the church,” Miller says. He considers himself “very mission-minded,” and he’s been on numerous mission trips, both in the U.S. and abroad. Kenya, he says, has the second-highest number of slums in the world (behind India), and his mission trip there was an eye-opening experience.
As, in a way, was his internship at Pine Ridge. “Most people aren’t aware, or don’t want to be aware, of the problems there,” he commented.
He cites the number of quilts that are sent to Pine Ridge by the quilters of Trinity Lutheran Church…another way of demonstrating faith through action.
His aspiration as the “new pastor on the block” is to be involved in conversations with other pastors, other groups, and to concentrate on the Christian theme of caring throughout life’s many situations.
It is, as he says, “all about relationships.”