Aug. 27 2019
Abdurazak Kedir Abdu—A Refugee’s Story
This story submitted by Pr. Fred More, co-chair of the Refugee Ministry Task Force at St. John Lutheran Church, Winter Park, Florida. It is one in a series of stories being shared over the next several weeks about congregations engaging with their neighbors.

Abdurazak Kedir Abdu, a refugee from Ethiopia, arrived at Orlando International Airport on October 17, 2017 where several members of St. John Lutheran Church, Winter Park, were on hand to welcome him. That warm reception marked the beginning of a 20 month story of strangers meeting for the first time, becoming a blessing to each other and resulting in a friendship that would last well beyond their time together. Abdu, which he prefers to be called, was on a refugee’s journey and the people of St. John would walk with him every step of the way.

The people of St. John soon learned that Abdu is a tireless advocate for human rights, especially the rights of women, children and individuals with disabilities.
Upcoming Events from Florida Council of Churches

The Florida-Bahamas Synod Advocacy Table invites you to consider the following events being sponsored/supported by congregations, leaders, and the Florida Council of Churches. Please share these events with those in your networks who might be interested in participating.

Dreaming God's Dream Retreat (before CoM) 
We're looking for another two dozen pastors from across the state and faith traditions who will help develop faith-rooted organizing "un-network". Rev. Dr. Alexia Salvatierra will lead the retreat Oct. 13-14.
Conference on Ministry

Rostered Ministers are invited to this fall's Conference on Ministry, an annual gathering and chance to connect, be refreshed, and be nourished by fellowship, learning and worship. This year's COM will include more workshops and space for collaboration and connection around contextual realities. REGISTER HERE.

Dates: Oct. 14-16 (New to Synod and Conference Deans arrive Oct. 13)
Location: Life Enrichment Center, Leesburg
“Come here...and take your place at the table” Luke 17:7
All women are invited to the 2019 Fall Gathering
hosted by the Florida-Bahamas Women of the ELCA (November 8 - 10, 2019, Leesburg, FL)
Register online at or download your PDF registration form and submit it via mail or email to our registrar, Diane Cummings at
Visit the website for workshop titles, descriptions, and presenters.
The registration deadline is October 15, 2019 (October 1 for Voting Members)
Did you know that we have a scholarship program for the Fall Gathering?  We know it’s not always easy being you. We don’t want you to choose between paying for prescriptions, groceries, or daycare and being in fellowship and worship with your sisters in Christ. Learn more about SHARE THE SPIRIT at
Mark your Calendar
Click on the calendar to go to the synod calendar to learn more about these events
For Your Information
Becoming an Inclusive Church Training in Orlando

Reconciling Works Central Florida chapter is planning to lead a B.I.C. (Becoming an Inclusive Church) training in Orlando on October 5. Participants are expected to be from Lutheran, Episcopal, Methodist and other denominations. Enrollment is limited to 24. If you are interested in attending, email Dale Truscott (at, who is planning the event.
Upcoming ALOA Webinar

ALOA has much to offer Lutheran congregations in the area of Older Adult Ministry. In addition to the resources on our website, ALOA offers regular Webinars on key topics for Older Adult Ministry that are practical and free of charge.  Find complete information and register at  

August Webinar 
ALOA - Seniors in Transition
Thursday, August 29, 2019
Noon Eastern Time
An interview with Chrislyn Carson about "Seniors in Transition" - a resource to help older adults make pro-active decisions about one of the hardest decisions older adults face: where they will live in the later years of life. The discussion will go over a template to help congregations develop an interactive, eight week class for older adults from the church and community. The series of classes will explore options for staying at home and options for moving to a care facility of some kind. 
Both webinars are free of charge, 60 minutes max. 

Register in advance at  Once you register, you'll receive a confirmation email with information on how to access the webinar.
By the Grace of God
The Reverend Dr. Mary Hinkle Shore
has been called as Rector and Dean of
Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary
of Lenoir-Rhyne University
Your prayers and presence are requested
for a Service of Installation and Eucharist
Tuesday, September 10, 2019
10:30 a.m. in Christ Chapel
Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary
4201 North Main Street
Columbia, South Carolina
All are invited to a luncheon in Reinartz Hall and the Student Union after the service and to Dr. Shore's lecture titled "Christ Is Risen: Proclaiming the Gospel in a Culture of Fear" at 1 p.m. in Stavros Lecture Hall.
R.S.V.P. for lunch by Tuesday, September 3, to .
Rostered ministers, bishops, and other judicatory leaders are invited to vest and process. The liturgical color of the day is green. Those representing academic institutions are invited to process in academic regalia. All participating in the procession will vest in Branham Conference Room at 10:00 a.m.
Bishop's Calendar
  • Synod Office
  • Vacation
  • Synod Parish Deacon Retreat
  • Reformation, Orlando
  • Synod Council (Venice)
  • Hope, The Villages (Installation of Pr. Bruce Dillman)
If this newsletter was forwarded to you and you would like to subscribe to receive it in the future, please click HERE .