April 3, 2018

Bold - Passionate - Faithful
  • Easter Message from Bishop Eaton
  • MissionPartners100 Testimony: Redeemer, Lauderdale Lakes
  • Youth Gathering Scholarship Support

  Events Coming up:
  • Clergy Study Day: Spiritual Care for those with Dimentia and those Caring for them
  • Building an Inclusive Church Training
  • Cross+Gen Life Conference
  • Southern Seminary Alumni Day

For Your Information:
  • Synod Assembly Information Updated
  • Assembly FAQs
  • Assembly Service Project Info
Click the calendar above for more information about these events
April 8 - Messiah Music Series--An Americana Experience
April 10-12 - Respite Retreat, Luther Springs
April 15 - Organ Concert, Advent, Melbourne
April 18-20 - "True to Myself" Retreat by Portico (at Lutheranch)
April 21 - BIC Training, All Saints, Lutz
April 21 - Installation of Pr. Terri Courter, Living Lord, Bradenton
April 24 - Boundaries Workshop, Emmanuel, Naples
May 5 - Heart of Florida Conference Gathering
May 18-19 - New Facilities Dedication, Luther Springs
Easter Message from Bishop Eaton
Mission Partner 100 Testimony:
Redeemer, Lauderdale Lakes
Mission Partners 100 (MP100) is a grant ministry of the Florida-Bahamas Synod that provides funding to ministries for building and property-related renovations that will support and enhance ministry. MP100 funds are available as congregations throughout the synod contribute, and are then given to congregations throughout the synod. In this way, MP100 is a way to 'be church together' as congregations contribute to and are benefitted by collaboration and partnership. The article below is one of several MP100 stories that will be shared over the next few weeks. To learn more about MP100, contact the synod office (813-876-7660)
submitted by Pr. Fay Golding

The community at Redeemer, Lauderdale Lakes was overjoyed to receive the gift of $7,677.69 from the Florida Bahamas Synod to help us refurbish our sanctuary. We have been talking about refurbishing, trying to raise funds and applying for grants but accomplishing capital projects is difficult when you are struggling to meet operational expenses. Your gift gave us real hope that we could finally achieve this goal.

 No picture could adequately convey how dilapidated the carpet looked after years of traffic and deterioration from wear and tear and constant cleaning. But by the grace of God we were finally ready to be rid of it. On 11/26/2017, we launched Project Refurbish with a Thrivent Action Grant, pledges from congregation members, and other funds raised, including the generous gift from the Florida Bahamas Synod. The congregation was told to look around at the carpet because they would see it no more. The first picture is of the removed discarded carpet rolled up and ready for the trash. Phase one of the project is complete: the nave now has commercial grade VCT. Everyone is in awe about how light and airy the sanctuary is and how much larger, and joyful it seems since this work has been done. Phase two will be to refurbish the upholstered pews and re-carpet the chancel area in the same color as the pews. 

Thanks be to God and to all who made this possible.
ELCA Youth Gathering Scholarship Support
As we continue to pray for and support the youth of our synod who will be attending the 2018 Youth Gathering in Houston, we give thanks for the generosity of individuals and congregations who are committed to making sure that all who want to attend are able to attend. We have received over $6,000 in scholarship donations!!!

Based on the expressed and anticipated needs, we are aiming to raise a total of $18,300 to share in scholarships. The total cost for one student or adult to attend the gathering (flight, registration, and food/boarding) is $1,200.

With the amount we have already received, we are praying for about $12,000 in additional donations. This equates to (roughly):

  • Each of the 179 organized congregations, congregations under development or synodically authorized worshipping communities in the synod donating $67 each; or
  • 24 donations of $500 each; or
  • 120 donations of $100 each; or
  • 240 donations of $50 each; or
  • 480 donations of $25 each.

Congregations or individuals can send a check to the Florida-Bahamas Synod with "Youth Gathering scholarship" in the memo line. Any funds not given for scholarships this year will be used for scholarships for the next Youth Gathering in 2021.

If you have questions about the Youth Gathering or other ways you can support the youth and adults who are attending, please contact Chris Dickman, Synod Gathering Coordinator (fbsgathering@gmail.com), or Sue Mendenhall, Youth/Young Adult Program Coordinator (suem@fbsynod.org).

Upcoming Events
Clergy Study: The Spiritual Care of Those with Dementia and Those Who Care for Them
The following invitation comes to our clergy from the office of the Central Gulf Coast Diocese of the Episcopal Church. Please share the invitation with those who would be interested.
Friday, April 13
9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Clergy Study Day with the Rev. Colette Wood
The Spiritual Care of Those with Dementia and Those Who Care for Them

St. Jude's Episcopal Church
200 N Partin Drive
Niceville, FL 32578

The Reverend Colette Wood will facilitate a day of education on the spiritual care of those with dementia and those who care for them.  Additionally, Rev. Wood will talk to us about the work being done in the Diocese of Massachusetts to establish more intentional congregational care of the elderly.
The Rev. Colette Wood is the author of Do This, Remembering Me: The Spiritual Care of Those with Alzheimer’s and Dementia ; chaplain to two senior living facilities in Massachusetts, including their memory care units; and is rector of All Saints Episcopal Church in Whitman, Massachusetts. Wood has faced dementia at a more personal level when her father began to manifest symptoms of Alzheimer’s. Her presentations combine clinical and personal perspectives. 

Of people living with dementia, Wood says, “When everything else is crumbling around them, God remains intact and is very present. Faith is etched in the heart and spirit, so it only stands to reason that dementia cannot rob people of their faith. While the disease steals many things, the presence of a loving, healing God is remembered and is very real to those with memory loss.”

Cost of the event: $20 (includes lunch). 
All clergy are invited and welcome.

Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. The program will begin promptly at 10 a.m. and end at 3 p.m. 

Building an Inclusive Church Training,
All Saints, Lutz
Interested in learning about becoming a Reconciling in Christ congregation? All Saints Lutheran is hosting a “Building an Inclusive Church” training on April 21, from 8:00-3:00 at All Saints, Lutz . There are a few more spots open for visitors. The cost is $10 and includes lunch. Please contact the office at All Saints if interested: 813-963-0969.
Cross+Gen Life Conference Registration
We are pleased to announce the Cross+Gen Life Conference website is now LIVE!
What happens when the wisdom of the elder and the wonder of the child collide in the same sacred space every week?

Promise. Hope. Joy. Depth. Fun.
Cross+Gen Life.

Faith Inkubators invites you to join with people from across the globe and across denominations to hear from some of the most passionate and gutsy trailblazers in cross+generational faith formation.
  • Case Studies – Enjoy a dozen “Ted Talk-ish” Case Studies presented by Cross+Gen pioneers. Experience the stories of those currently leading change in their own settings. After their presentation, you will have the opportunity for an in-depth Q&A session to discover how their experiences and insights might influence your own ministry.
  • Workshops (New in 2018) – Choose from a variety of skills-based workshops led by Case Study presenters from our three previous Cross+Gen conferences. Hear from these national leaders – what they have learned from implementing Cross+Gen ministries and what do they now know for sure?
  • Vision Sessions – Be inspired by Dr. Rich Melheim, founder of the Cross+Gen movement. Catch a vision of the church we call Cross+Gen – a church for all ages and stages together.

Learn how these Cross+Gen practitioners have succeeded, how they have failed, and how they are failing forward for the sake of the church. Go forth with a plan, a passion and a posse to support you in your own designs for Cross+Gen faith formation.

We are thrilled to be back at the YMCA of the Rockies for the 2018 Cross+Gen Life Conference. We look forward to the multiple benefits of all conference attendees and presenters staying and eating onsite together:
  • relaxed fellowship
  • meeting friends old and new
  • time for in-depth discussions
  • no need to drive to a hotel at the end of the day!

Surrounded by the breathtaking majesty of the Rocky Mountains, the setting is sure to nurture and refresh body, mind and soul.

REGISTER NOW to secure your spot at the conference. We strongly encourage reserving your Room & Board Package as soon as possible as Faith Inkubators has reserved a limited number of rooms. When reserving your room & board package, you have the option for your credit card to be charged now or on September 5.

Remember, the earlier you register for both the conference and your room & board, the more you’ll save.

We look forward to seeing you in Colorado!
Southern Seminary Alumni Day
Plans for the 2018 Alumni Day are in place for Thursday, April 26 , at the Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary. It promises to be a day of inspiration, fellowship, and learning. Registration begins at 9:00 a.m. A Festival Eucharist follows. Dr. Fred Whitt, University President, will engage attendees in a conversation, followed by a lunch for which a reservation must be made. Previous seminary classes are urged to come as groups. Former LTSS professor, Dr. Thomas E. Ridenhour, will present the Yost Lecture. The day will end in fellowship with an Oompah-pah band. For details and to make a reservation, go to  https://www.lr.edu/ltss/alumniday .
For Your Information
Assembly Information
59 days to Synod Assembly!
The Synod Assembly page of the web site has been updated to reflect the most up-to-date information on this year's assembly. Go there to find:
  • link to register
  • standing rules of procedure and information about plenary
  • information about Saturday's "Death by Chocolate" dessert bar and the "Hunger for the Gospel Games"
  • Bios for both Pr. David Lose (Keynote Speaker) and Pr. Stephen Bouman (ELCA Churchwide Representative)
  • Workshop information
Common FAQs for Synod Assembly
Please watch and share this video with those who will be attending the Synod Assembly.

Please note that you may register to attend on Saturday ONLY (for $25), which allows you to attend workshops, hear the Keynote Speaker, participate in interest group networking, and enjoy the evening fellowship events.
Assembly Service Project
While the impact of one person’s donation is critical and makes such a difference at Harbor House, think of the impact that 200 congregations in the Florida-Bahamas Synod could make! Here’s how your congregation can bless and made a difference with Harbor House:

Receive a “noisy offering” prior to the synod assembly. Checks are great, but collecting coinage and bringing that to the assembly to put into the large water jug with everyone else’s coins is a great visual of how congregations working together creates a larger blessing. The money received will go towards a much needed generator.
 Collect items from your conference list. We have taken the needs expressed from Harbor House and divided them among each of our conferences. Please refer to the list below.
Collect the following gift cards:
  1. Wal-Mart, Target & Bealls Outlet = $10, $15 & $20 increments
  2. RaceTrac, Wawa, 7-11 & FlyingJ = $20 increments
  3. McDonalds, Burger King, ChickFilA & TacoBell = $5 increments
  4. Visa/Mastercard for incidentals/gas = $5, $10, $15 & $20 increments

Each congregation may choose to hold a drive for items (or a specific item) from your Conference’s list. Or put the word out for people to just bring gift cards (we will have a “tree” at the assembly where all the gift cards brought in will be attached!). Or take up a “noisy” offering of loose change during April or May. You can do just one, two, or all three! Be creative! Be generous! Be the blessing for this ministry that will change lives for our women and children in need, right here in Central Florida! And know you are going to make a huge difference in the lives of people who really need to see what the love of Jesus is all about.
Office of the Bishop
Bishop's Schedule
April 3-17, 2018

  • Tampa Office
  • Dallas, TX (Ecumenical Stewardship Event)
  • St. Armand's Key, Sarasota (50th Anniversary)
  • Luther Springs (Respite in the Wilderness Retreat)
Florida-Bahamas Synod 813-876-7660