My church newsletter column for St. Peter Lutheran Church, Greene, Iowa, for July, 2017.
5 Things You Should Know About Our Synod
As I write this, I’ve just returned from the 2017 Northeastern Iowa Synod Assembly. St. Peter Lutheran Church is one of 152 congregations in our synod, and 65 synods make up the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Each year at Synod Assembly, pastors and congregational representatives gather to worship, conduct the synod’s business, and learn about what God is doing around the church. THANK YOU to Laurie Shultz for serving as our congregation’s representative! Since most of you didn’t get to be there in person, here are 5 things to know about our synod this year:
1. Reformation 500 –The keynote speaker spoke about Martin Luther posting his 95 Theses 500 years ago, on October 31st, 1517. The Protestant Reformation he began calls the church back to a renewed focus on the Gospel – the good news of God’s love for the world revealed in Jesus Christ! [More on the Reformation 500…]
2. ELCA World Hunger – Our synod as a whole gave $302,903 to ELCA World Hunger this year, supporting projects globally such as wells and the malaria campaign, as well as closer to home like a food pantry in Waterloo, community meals in Waverly, and a men’s shelter in Dubuque.
4. Care Centers – $44,000 in distributions from the synod’s endowment fund supported 11 Lutheran church-affiliated nursing homes in Northeastern Iowa.
4. Leadership – Our synod’s major effort to provide scholarships for our seminary students is working! This fall, 15 people are entering the pastoral candidacy process, up from 2-4 per year. The synod’s Fund for Leaders has grown by $129,914 this year, to $250,060 and more is needed.
5. Disaster Relief – Over 150 flood buckets were collected at the Assembly (St. Peter gave 2!). These will be stored in Mason City, Deborah, and Waverly in preparation for future flooding. Finally, did you know our synod’s disaster fund provided $10,000 for flood relief right here in Butler County?
It’s exciting to see how God is using our church to bless people far beyond our own congregation! Blessings to you this summer -Pastor Daniel Flucke