Dear Friends of Divine Savior,
We are living in unprecedented and unpredictable times. It is amazing to see how much has changed in just the last two months. Although challenging, it is a powerful reminder that our times are in God’s hands. We can plan, prepare, and project, but in the end we take comfort in the words of Psalm 31:15. We cast all our anxieties on Him, because He cares for us! How comforting to know our all-powerful and ever-loving Father is in control and cares for each and every one of us.
On May 7th the Governing Board of Divine Savior Ministries met and discussed many aspects of our ministry. What follows is a summary of the meeting:
· We are grateful for our dedicated and talented staff. It is amazing how quickly we were able to adjust the way we operate in our church and academy ministries. This required incredible effort and flexibility, but we are proud of the way our team handled this challenge. God’s Word continues to be preached and taught across our campuses despite these challenging circumstances.
· We are doing everything we can to minimize the impact of the pandemic on our ministry. We were approved for an SBA loan and are reviewing budgets in every department. Our marketing has pivoted towards virtual tours and online admissions. God has blessed our efforts thus far, and we have been able to retain our entire team. It is too early to say what the fall will look like, but we are doing all we can to position ourselves for every scenario.
· We said goodbye to Sienna's Governor, Pastor David Bivens and to DSM's Vice President of Marketing and Growth, Dana Kirchoff. Pastor Bivens accepted a Divine Call to serve as a professor at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, and Dana Kirchoff resigned to pursue another career. We have enjoyed our time together, are grateful for their work, and pray for God’s richest blessings to them both.
· After a thorough analysis that included a demographic study and non-matriculant family interviews, we committed to an action plan in Delray that we pray will increase enrollment. This plan includes expanding our Founding Families campaign, emphasizing our DSA Community Center to create more traffic, partnering with connected families in the community, creating a halftime early childhood option, and increasing our program offerings. Prior to the pandemic we had good momentum, and it is our prayer that God continues to bless our efforts moving forward.
· We approved a policy to name new and/or existing buildings and programs to recognize donors or a religious, cultural, or historical event. The Governing Board may also choose to honor the unique lifetime contribution of a particular individual important to the history and development of Divine Savior Ministries.
· We agreed to move forward exploring the addition of a high school program on our Sienna campus in the Fall of 2021. Due to the uncertainty of how the pandemic might affect these plans, we established a series of benchmarks in order to determine the feasibility of the high school moving forward. These benchmarks include fall enrollment, parent intent, and high school registrations. It will be exciting to see what God has in store for His ministry in Sienna.
We thank you for your continued support and ask that you keep Divine Savior in your prayers. In these unique times it is truly a joy to serve our Savior with you!
Pastor Carlos Leyrer
President – Divine Savior Ministries