Church Family News

The 2019 Assembly of the Virginia Synod, ELCA has  designated October 20, 2019  as  “Tent of Nations Sunday,"  the beginning of the olive harvest.

Tent of Nations Sunday has  three purposes : it is a day for corporate and individual  prayers education  of congregations and individuals, and  encouraging visits  to the Tent of Nations to learn and volunteer at the Nassar family farm (west of Bethlehem in the West Bank) to experience and participate in its mission of building bridges of peace and understanding between people. 

Congregations and individuals can learn more online at  Tent of Nations ( including information   on   farming and peace-building workshops, and through  Friends of Tent of Nations North America ( ) , an all-volunteer charitable organization.

This Sunday we will pray and remember the Tent of Nations project. Please talk to Rich Leahy if you want to know about it more and if you want to support it financially or other ways. We pray together:

God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,
We praise you for dwelling among us, Word made flesh, born of Mary in Bethlehem. We thank you for Palestinian Christians in Bethlehem and throughout the Holy Land today, who continue to witness to the Good News of Jesus. Give them, and us, the faith to be “Living Stones” in our communities. On this Tent of Nations Sunday, we ask for your continuing blessing to be upon the Nassar family and their 100 year-old farm in Bethlehem, that it may continue to be a “Tent of Nations” where people of the world come together with “heart and hands to change the land.” 

Give courage and strength to the Nassar family in this peace-building work, and to all Lutherans in the Holy Land. We pray that their love and hope in the face of conflict and occupation may continue to bear fruits of the land and cooperation and peace among people. Sustain and expand their ecological stewardship of the land so that it may bear bountiful crops while it builds bridges between people. Bless the educating and empowering of women through the Women’s Center and children through Camp programs.
“Tent of Nations” Sunday, October 20, 2019
Christ the King Lutheran Church
Virginia Synod ELCA
Pastor Elizabeth A. Yates

Thank you for Helen Ida for organizing the celebration and for all who helped the pot luck and came to have fun together. It was a little cool but we enjoyed the Sunday afternoon.

Pan de jamón cooking demonstration

We learned to bake and tasted a Christmas delicacy from Venezuela. Marco explained to us that this food comes from different influences like native people in Venezuela but also Spanish and Italian. The mix of sweet and salty ingredients, raisins, bacon, turkey, and green olives gives a unique taste that is wonderful on the French bread dough. Roll it all up and bake it on 350 degrees for about 25 minutes.


Looking for New Preschool Committee Members.  After many years of service as chair and co-chair of the Preschool Committee, Patty Marbury is stepping off the committee, and we are looking for new members to fill this important leadership role. 

If you have an interest in this ministry, please let Pastor Viktoria or Lois Shepherd ( ) know. No particular background experience is required. 

We thank Patty for her many years of wise leadership and dedication! 
Lois Shepherd, Co-Chair

To come together to learn and grow in prayer, individually and collectively. We will meet from 1PM to 2:30PM each Monday for the next 8 weeks. (Sept 23-Nov 11). Come Join us.

We are reading: Henry Nouwen: The Only Necessary Thing.

We will begin with a short prayer and a sharing of highs and lows. Then we will spend about an hour in a discussion of the readings. Please read the designated chapters prior to the meeting. As you read we suggest you look for/ note your thoughts about the readings.

During the last 15 minutes we will close in shared prayer.
10/21 Chapters 9 and 10.     Community;  Action and Intercession
10/28 Chapters 11 and 12     Forgiveness; Hinderances
11/4  Chapters 13 and 14     Eucharist;  Death and Eternal Life
11/11  Summary
For more information contact:
Laurel McClurken
Linda Roberts
Synod and ELCA News
A Call for Dignity and Respect in Politics

Recently, Bishop Eaton added her name to a Statement of Support titled "Golden Rule 2020: A Call for Dignity and Respect in Politics." This project was developed through a convening hosted by the National Institute for Civil Discourse in Washington, D.C. earlier this year.

Churches have an important role to play in helping to heal America, and we hope and pray that local congregations will be active in efforts to increase understanding and bridge divisions in our country between now and the 2020 election.

To this end, we encourage Christians of different political views, to come together on Sunday, November 3, 2019--exactly one year before the 2020 election--to participate in Golden Rule 2020: A Call for Dignity and Respect in Politics. On that day, we invite congregations and individuals to do two things:
  1. Pray for the healing of the divisions in our country, and 
  2. Promote the use of the Golden Rule in our own political discussions and election activities in 2020 Learn more and read the full statement.
Lost and Found Youth Event
If you are interested, let the pastor know.

is our annual weekend retreat for youth in 7th and 8th grade and their adult advisors. We have Large Group gatherings that consist of singing, energy, comedy, worship and a presentation on our event theme. After each Large Group gathering each person is part of a Small Group made up of about 8 youth and a couple adult leaders where participants will get to know other Lutheran youth from Virginia and discuss life, faith and other topics that arise throughout the weekend. On Saturday afternoon there is large chunk of Free Time during which we will also hold out annual Talent Show. In the evenings you will relax in your Cottage and talk with other youth and adults from your congregation and other congregations about how the weekend is going.

For more information on Lost and Found and
to register for the event,   click here .
Message on racism and white supremacy

On Sept. 13, Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton issued a statement regarding actions the 2019 Churchwide Assembly took to address “the deadly power of racism and white supremacy.” The actions included offering a public apology titled “Declaration of the ELCA to People of African Descent,” adopting a resolution condemning white supremacy and adopting a resolution to establish June 17 as “Emanuel 9 Day of Repentance.” Eaton said, “Standing equally under the judgment and promise of the gospel, we, as a church, can recognize the overt and covert ways that a culture of white supremacy denies full humanity to all people, and we can work to dismantle it.”  
L ook for an update to Global Mission social media

As we bring a close to Always Being Made New: The Campaign for the ELCA, we’re transitioning to new ways of lifting up the ministries of our global companions. We will continue to support the same critical ministries and lift up the stories of global engagement and the work of our companions under the name: “Global Mission.” Starting Oct. 15, you’ll notice that our   Facebook ,   Twitter  and  Instagram  pages will transition to the new “ELCA Global Mission” name and a new link. Follow us now to keep up with the latest updates! After the transition, you can find us under the name “ELCA Global Mission.” Check back next month for the updated social media links.
  Annual State ECUMENICAL LARCUM Conference  

being held in Virginia Beach, Virginia at Holy Spirit Catholic Church on  Friday and Saturday, November 22 and 23, 2019.   Please note this is a week earlier than usual .

LARCUM (Lutheran/Anglican/Roman Catholic/United Methodist) Conference being held in Virginia Beach, Virginia at Holy Spirit Catholic Church on  Friday and Saturday, November 22 and 23, 2019 . Fr. James Loughran, SA, Director of the Graymoor Ecumenical and Interreligious Institute will present the historical development of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, the challenges to the modern day movement and practical ways in which local ecumenical communities can celebrate this year’s theme  “They Showed Unusual Kindness” .Please visit  to learn more. Registration fee is $35 and includes a box lunch - registration closes November 8, 2019.

...“as we gather annually throughout the world to pray for the unity of Christians we are reminded of the importance of need for “unusual kindness” in the dialogue that leads to growth in unity. We do this in a world where separation and division hinder the quest for Christian Unity. “... Fr. James Loughran, SA. Click below for the program. PROGRAM OF THE ECUMENICAL CONFERENCE

On Nov. 9, 2019 , the world will commemorate the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. As we look back to remember this important moment in human history, we are reminded that there is much work to be done to tear down the walls that divide us today. … My friends, I encourage you, your congregations and your communities to join together in proclaiming this truth — that we are one human family.”
— The Rev. Rafael Malpica Padilla, executive director for Global Mission
Join us for a FREE, 2-day course featuring Victor Vieth called “When Faith Hurts".

This course deals with the intersection of child abuse and faith communities. Held on November 12-13, 2019 from 8:30 Am to 5:00 PM at Lexington Presbyterian Church. Topics include:
  • When Faith Hurts
  • When Child Abuse Hits Home: Corporal Punishment, the Law and the Faith Community
  • Understanding the Impact of Trauma on Children
  • Recognizing and Responding to Sexual Offenses Committed by Children, addressing emotional and spiritual injuries, care in action: a collaboration between faith and child protective communities, responding to allegations of child abuse within a congregation

To register for this event,  click here . For an informational flyer  click here . For more information about the speaker,   click here .
Theological Touchstones for Disagreeing in the Body of Christ

This article was published on October 1 in the Journal of Lutheran Ethics. Given some of the conversations happening in our Synod and across the ELCA, it would seem that congregations in our midst are not immune to differences of opinion among God's saints. Whether we are viewing congregational finances, times of transition, or theological or societal questions, these theological touchstones might be helpful in framing Christian dialogue.

The authors -- Amy Carr and Christine Helmer -- offer three touchstones in particular, rooted in Word and sacrament. From our confessional position where "for the true unity of the church it is enough to agree concerning the teaching of the Gospel and the administration of the sacraments," the authors point us toward:

  1. remembering our baptismal adoption as the covenantal framework for all ecclesial disagreement.
  2. in communing at the Lord’s Table, eschatological trust infuses our current grappling with enduring conflicts.
  3. mindfulness about two orienting tendencies that take turns animating many expressions of sin: presumption of our own righteousness on one hand, and on the other, despair of divine mercy and of creation’s goodness
Community News
Developing Relationships Is A Work of Art: Characteristics of Peaceful Coexistence
Saturday, October 19, 12 to 3 pm, Trinity Episcopal Church, 1118 Preston Ave. ( A White Feather Project )
Don Gathers and Michael Cheuk will be featured panelists.
Sunday October 20
Welcome: Amanda Nelsen                   
Greeter:  Constance Johnson
Ushers:  Ali Griffith & Lewis Horton
Crucifer/Acolyte/Chalice: Nora Giesecke
Assisting Minister:  Nano Masters
Children Moment:  Christa Escobar
Lector:  Jack Milligan
Cantor:  Amanda Nelsen
Altar Guild: Heidi Jones
Nursery: Zoe Martin
Snack:  Linda Imhoff & Sue Hess
Coffee/Clean up:  Yvonne Osheim & Susan Horton
Counters:  Christa Escobar & Mark Giesecke
Sunday October 27
Welcome: Duane Osheim                   
Greeter:  Karen Love
Ushers:  Tom & Caroline Hecmanczuk
Crucifer/Acolyte/Chalice: Sylvie Bon-Harper
Assisting Minister:  Pat Dwiggins
Children Moment:  Tony Marbury
Lector:  Rich Leahy and Alice McKenna
Cantor:  Pat Dwiggins
Altar Guild: Jessica Ney-Grimm
Nursery: Christa Escobar
Snack:  Christine Giesecke & Caroline Hecmanczuk
Coffee/Clean up:   Gail Milligan & Kara McClurken
Counters:  Lynn Stephenson & Lois Johnson
St. Mark Lutheran Church (ELCA) of Charlottesville, VA
(434) 293-3311 |