Pacifica Synod News & Notes
June 29, 2022

We share with you the following news, resources, information and event updates taking place within our synod and throughout the ELCA.
If you have items or information to share, please email Terri Robertson at If you know of others who aren't receiving our emails, please share this with them and encourage them to contact us using the above email or sign up here.
Current Synod News & Resources

Pacifica Synod Office of the Bishop Closure
July 4, 2022

The Pacifica Synod Office of the Bishop will be closed on Monday, July 4, in observance of Independence Day.

We will resume regular business hours on Tuesday, July 5.
Coaching for All Seasons
Monthly Gathering for Rostered & Lay Leaders
Thursday, July 7
“They Do Not Teach This at Seminary!
with Pastor Jeremiah Smith
Thursday, July 7
11:00 a.m. to noon PDT/8:00 to 9:00 a.m. HST

Pre-registration is required to receive the Zoom link to attend. Click HERE to register now!

Brought to you by your Pacifica Synod Coaching Team to support Synod leaders during challenging times. Each monthly offering brings a presentation on a current topic and an opportunity to discuss it in a small group facilitated by an ELCA coach.

There is nothing like a first call to learn that seminary education leaves a thing or two about parish ministry out of the curriculum. In these sort-of-post-Pandemic days, leading a church resembles a first call experience. Who better to talk about lessons learned than someone who is living it?

Pastor Jeremiah Smith is a first call pastor at Parkside Lutheran Church in Buffalo, NY. Curious and willing to experiment, Pastor Jeremiah will share lessons learned with Pacifica Synod’s Coaching For All Seasons. He served his internship at St. Paul, Fullerton, before accepting his first call in 2017 to Parkside, an urban church looking for revitalization. His first five years of parish ministry have taught Pastor Jeremiah several valuable lessons.

Join Coaching For All Seasons on Thursday, July 7, at 11:00 AM for what promises to be a fresh perspective on first call parish ministry – its opportunities and challenges.
Pacifica Synod has invested in training coaches to work with rostered and lay leaders one-on-one or in groups. A coach's role is to support leaders in naming challenging issues and identifying constructive responses to them. 
For more information:
Visit our Synod Coaching web page for resources as well as previous presentations. If you would like more information about coaching, please contact Deenna Eley, Pacifica Synod Coaching Coordinator at
Feeling Called to Serve?
If you are already discerning to serve the church in a pastoral or deacon role, great! Let me know how I can assist you in your process. If you are not yet discerning but have the desire, I am here to journey with you. If others tell you that you would make a great pastor or deacon and you’d like to learn more, I am also here to assist you.

Please contact me at or let me know how I can contact you. Thank you.

IRS Announces Standard Mileage Rate Increase
Beginning July 1, 2022
The Internal Revenue Service has announced an increase in the optional standard mileage rate for the final 6 months of 2022. Taxpayers may use the optional standard mileage rates to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business and certain other purposes.

For the final 6 months of 2022, the standard mileage rate for business travel will be 62.5 cents per mile, up 4 cents from the rate effective at the start of the year. Read more.
From the ELCA
Bishop Eaton Issues Pastoral Message
on SCOTUS Ruling Regarding Roe v. Wade
June 24, 2022

Dear church, 
Whatever personal perspective one might take on the June 24 abortion ruling from the Supreme Court, it is the legal framework in which we now minister, and I wish to speak a pastoral word at this time.
The Supreme Court has voted to overturn Roe v. Wade, removing federal constitutional protection for safe and legal abortion and leaving decisions about abortion law largely to the states. As a result, safe and legal abortion will likely not be accessible in every state. This church’s 1991 social statement Abortion argues that “the number of induced abortions is a source of deep concern” but teaches that the practice should be legal (pp. 3, 9-10). In other words, “Laws should be enacted and enforced justly for the preservation and enhancement of life, and should avoid unduly encumbering or endangering the lives of women” (p. 9). Overturning Roe v. Wade and placing decisions about abortion regulation at the state level encumbers and endangers the lives of all persons who need to make decisions about unexpected pregnancies.
First, as a pastor of this church, I want to acknowledge that this decision affects many people, especially those whose pregnancies unfold in complex situations and the people who love them. Many now find their moral agency restricted because federal law no longer guarantees access to legal and safe abortion. They already face difficult moral questions, and the Supreme Court decision only adds to their anguish. As our social statement reminds us, we have both the freedom and the obligation to serve neighbors in complex situations. As a church, we are called at this moment to recognize and spiritually support people who are struggling with decisions around pregnancy. 
Second, as presiding bishop, I want to remind this church that, despite this new legal landscape, we continue to depend on our social teaching for guidance. Our social statement provides the moral framework for our church's communal discernment and ministry, holding in tension both the strong Christian presumption to preserve and protect all life as well as the complex moral situations in which pregnancy sometimes occurs. Our social teaching is complex and does not hew to clear categories or labels such as “pro-abortion” or “anti-abortion.” 
That complexity is reflected in several points. The statement recognizes that pregnant persons have moral agency; they are the ones to make decisions about a pregnancy (see pp. 5-6). This church and its ministers trust them to decide but expect them to make such decisions in relationship—with God, self, partner, family, ministers and others.
I also want to underscore for the whole body of Christ the statement’s exhortation “that those who counsel persons faced with unintended pregnancies respect how deeply the woman’s pregnancy involves her whole person—body, mind and spirit—in relation to all the commitments that comprise her stewardship of life” (p. 5).
Further, our church teaching holds that there are no exclusive rights in pregnancy. A pregnant person does not have an exclusive right to abort a fetus at all points during the pregnancy. A developing life does not have an exclusive right to be born (p. 2). This church does not support abortion as a normative form of birth control but rather understands it as necessary in some morally responsible circumstances. This church does not condone late-term abortions except in extreme circumstances, which must be determined by the individual with their medical caregivers (p. 7). 
This church acknowledges that individuals and religious traditions hold divergent viewpoints over when life begins. These divergent views are not only scientific but also biblical and cultural. The ELCA social statement acknowledges these ethical ambiguities and states that “the closer the life in the womb comes to full term the more serious such [moral] issues become.” (p. 7).
As we live into this new legal framework, we can respond to and minister in the current situation, for instance, by ministering to individuals who seek abortions; advocating for laws that provide free or affordable health care, child care and education; providing and promoting sex education; continuing to be a community of discernment where thoughtful and diverse perspectives can be shared and heard; and advocating for state laws that provide legal, safe and affordable abortions, and against legislation that would outlaw abortion in all circumstances (p. 9). 
Finally, I wish to remind everyone that this church supports peaceful means of expression within a diverse society. Peaceful protest is a crucial element of civic engagement; violent protest is not, and this church reproves it. Likewise, this church is on record against hate speech. Let us be instruments for peace where there is none. Let us listen to one another. Let us serve the needs of neighbors in all the complexities life presents. God calls us to be for others, just as God in Christ is for us.
In Christ,

The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton 
Presiding Bishop 
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America 
ELCA Young Adult Ministries News
Now Is the Time: Young Adult Small Group Study
What: Now is the Time small group study - each week, you will go through the study and reflect on videos created by young adults of African descent.

Who: This study is primarily for young adults of European descent.

When: 5 weeks, July 11 - August 15, sign up for the time that works best for you.

Where: Virtual small groups on Zoom

Throughout this study, we will reflect on the different sections of the study guide and reflect on videos created by young adult BIPOC leaders in our church. The five-part study resource, with a guide and participant materials, is available here.
Young Adult Coaching Cohorts
Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program
Now includes Rostered Ministers
Dear siblings in Christ,

Pursuing God’s call to ministry has caused many of us to assume financial burden. Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) is a program that may allow individuals to get the remainder of their federal student loans discharged. Every ELCA rostered minister is receiving this email because of the potential benefit of the PSLF program.

Until July 2021, the PSLF program excluded church workers from consideration, but that exclusion has been removed, and many pastors and deacons may now be eligible. This is an opportunity for those who have served congregations or specialized ministries to greatly reduce the burden of their educational debt.

Determining whether you qualify for PSLF and completing the application process can be cumbersome, but there are resources available to help you. You can schedule an appointment with:

LSS Financial Counseling also provides a financial counseling blog with additional information.

The waiver period, during which more people and loans qualify for PSLF, is currently scheduled to end Oct. 31, 2022, so don’t wait to act.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is pleased to once again partner with LSS Financial Counseling and Portico Benefit Services. They are here to help you navigate this unique opportunity.
New Resources for God's Work. Our Hands. Sunday
On Sunday, September 11, congregations of the ELCA will join together for “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday, our annual day of service.

As you explore opportunities to participate in your community, has everything you need to plan and promote your day:

Old Lutheran has T-shirts and other items available for purchase. The deadline for ordering your congregation’s personalized T-shirts is August 19.

Don’t forget to share your congregation’s participation with the ELCA! Send stories and photos to so that together we can celebrate what God accomplishes through you.

Participate on social media using #GodsWorkOurHands.
Ukraine & Eastern Europe Crisis Response
Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine on Feb. 24, millions of people have fled the country and are seeking refuge in neighboring countries including Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. There are major humanitarian concerns for both internally displaced people and refugees. Many of these Ukrainians fleeing their homes need shelter and such basic necessities as food, water and toiletries. Care for people also includes pastoral and psychological support to address the trauma they’ve endured.

There are a number of ways that you can support relief efforts through your financial gifts. Below are some of the Lutheran organizations involved in these efforts.

Lutheran Disaster Response
Lutheran Disaster Response is accompanying our companions in Ukraine, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia, as well as such ecumenical partners as Lutheran World Federation and Church World Service, in their humanitarian responses to the crisis. These partners provide refugees with immediate support and supplies such as food, blankets, water and hygiene kits. Click here to learn more.

You are invited to watch this video from Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton about the situation in Eastern Europe and the ELCA’s response. To share this information with your congregations, download this bulletin insert.

Lutheran World Relief
Right now, Lutheran World Relief teams are working with partners in and around Ukraine. Your congregation’s gift will deliver urgent support and care, like: food, shelter and other critically needed items; Mission Quilts and Kits for families who fled their homes; and medicine and supplies for clinics. You can give online at or by mailing to LWR, PO Box 17061, Baltimore, MD 21297-1061. Please write “Ukraine" in the memo line.

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service
LIRS stands committed to providing the absolute best care to refugees and immigrants who arrive in the United States, and we are working hard to bolster the refugee resettlement program to welcome more new Americans. To make a gift that will impact the lives of those we are serving domestically, visit  
From Our Other Partners
Lay Preaching
With Rev. Dr. Shauna Hannan
by making the practice of preaching more collaborative and participatory.

Led by Rev. Dr. Shaunna Hannan, Professor of Homiletics at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (of California Lutheran University).

Seeking congregations interested in revitalizing their congregation’s preaching ministry!

What you need: 4-5 lay people from a congregation along with their Rostered Leader to form a small group to journey through this program together.

Six sessions with your congregation team joining several other congregations teams including some individual time with Shauna Hannan, Professor of Homiletics at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (of California Lutheran University).

This is a gift to you from California Lutheran University Congregational Relations. We hope to lighten the load of Rostered Leaders, increase the capacity of lay leaders and come alongside congregations to strengthen your preaching capacity.

Interested? Fill out this form:

Contact Desta Goehner,
Director of Congregational Relations, Cal Lutheran
Building Your Anti-Racism Team: Next Faithful Steps
Hosted by: The ELCA European Descent Lutheran Association for Racial Justice (EDLARJ)

Audience/For whom: Anybody in the ELCA, specifically interested in connecting with other folks building or working at a synod, campus or congregational anti-racist team.

As with any team, having shared goals is really important for doing effective work. The team should decide what their function will be by identifying their goals. Each racial justice team is unique to a specific congregation and community context. The goals of the team should be defined keeping that in mind. The main areas that a team focuses on falls into three areas: internal team goals, congregational goals, and community goals.
Register Now for
LRCC Summer Camps!
Register for Summer Camp HERE
Register for Family Camp HERE
Care Connections Network - Aging. Better.
Care Connections Network is changing the face of aging in Orange County. We are dedicated to helping older adults, 50 and over, age in their own homes and communities. We connect our members to the community programming and expertise they need to continue living lives of purpose and promise. We strive to empower older adults by offering educational opportunities to help them age with confidence, social and cultural events to keep them connected with the community, referrals to vetted service providers and a volunteer program providing additional support and assistance.
To find out more about upcoming events and other services, click here for the Care Connections Network June newsletter.
ELCA & Other Partners
News & Ministry Links

ELCA Advocacy Connections - May/June 2022

ELCA Worship News - June 2022

ELCA Administration Matters - May 2022

ELCA Disability Ministries - June 2022

ELCA World Hunger "Go & Do News" - June 2022

ELCA Global Links - June 2022

ELCA "Seeds Monthly" Newsletter - June 2022

ELCA Foundation "Insights" - February 2022

ELCA Lutheran Men in Mission Ambassador-Gram - Spring 2022

LDR Western Region - June 2022

Job Postings
Church Administrator (Part-Time)
First Lutheran, San Diego
First Lutheran Church in downtown San Diego is looking for a part-time Church Administrator. The Church Administrator position includes both office administration and ministry coordination tasks. The position will be responsible for supporting the Pastor and volunteers in their ministry work as well as a myriad of administrative, financial, communication, and facility related duties. The position requires a proactive individual who can plan, prioritize, manage activities and make decisions with minimal supervision. An outgoing and welcoming personality is necessary in order to support the work of the Church and to coordinate with Third Avenue Charitable Organization (TACO) that is co-located on the site. Additionally, the individual must have knowledge and appreciation of the Christian faith and the workings of a congregation. The ability to handle sensitive issues and confidential information is essential.

The position is for a 30-hour work week in the office with flexibility for evening meetings as needed and approved. The position is as a non-exempt employee. Contact or leave message at 619-234-6149, Ext. 1 for more information.
Organist, Accompanist, and Pianist/Keyboardist
Our Redeemer, Garden Grove
Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Garden Grove is looking for an organist, accompanist, and pianist/keyboardist for contemporary worship. One or more persons could do one or all phases of the job. Compensation to be determined. Organist will play for traditional liturgical worship services.  Accompanist will play piano for choirs, ensembles and soloists. Contemporary service pianist/keyboardist will play with praise band – being able to lead from piano/keys is a plus. 

Please contact the church office at 714-539-9541. Applications are being accepted until July 15, 2022.
Office Manager (Part-Time)
King of Kings, Oceanside
The King of Kings Lutheran Church Office Manager is responsible for the day to day operation of the church office including reception, bookkeeping and clerical duties. The Office Manager supports the congregation’s ministry. They coordinate and organize office activities, bookkeeping and payroll using QuickBooks, greet and assist visitors at the office, generate weekly service bulletin and monthly newsletter, calendar maintenance and coordination.

Qualifications for the position include experience with administrative and clerical work, proficiency in Microsoft Office suite and QuickBooks, excellent communication skills, friendly and professional demeanor.

This position is part-time. If interested, please submit a resume by email to:
Director of Children's Ministry (Part-Time)
Our Savior's, San Clemente
Our Savior's Lutheran Church in San Clemente is looking to hire a part time Director of Children’s Ministry to oversee programs for children ages birth to 3rd grade. Major responsibilities would be during Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings. Pay would be $25,000 per year.

Please direct any questions or send resumes to Pastor Cole McGlynn at
Church School Principal/Chief Administrator
Christ Lutheran, West Covina
Christ Lutheran in West Covina is seeking a Church School Principal/Chief Administrator to oversee their church school, Pre-school to 8th grade. This is a full-time position with benefits. Experienced principal preferred. Open immediately and interviewing now.

Contact Shirley Jett at 951.205.8223 for more information and details about salary.
Webinars and Other Events
Rethinking Silence
Free Webinar - June 30
Lombard Mennonite Peace Center
Fall Events
The Lombard Mennonite Peace Center (LMPC) will hold two events in person this fall in Arizona. 
Conflict Transformation Skills for Churches will be hosted by Trinity Cathedral in Phoenix, AZ on Saturday, September 24 from 9:00am to 4:30pm. The fee is $99 for individuals, or $84 apiece for groups of four or more. Click here for more info.
Mediation Skills Training Institute for Church Leaders will be held at the lovely Franciscan Renewal Center on November 14-18, 2022. The fee is $1500 for tuition, materials, lodging (single occupancy), and all meals. Click here for more info.
Both workshops are grounded in Scripture and rooted in Bowen family systems theory. Participants acquire skills that will help them deal more effectively with various forms of group conflict.
Those who would be unable to attend MSTI without financial assistance are encouraged to fill out and submit this scholarship form to LMPC. More information about Lombard Mennonite Peace Center (LMPC) may be found at
Stephen Ministry Bridge Leader's Training Course
Synod Scholarships Available
Stephen Ministries St. Louis is now training caring ministry leaders through a live, interactive online training experience called the Bridge Leader’s Training Course (BLTC). This event fully trains Stephen Leaders—the pastors, church staff, and lay leaders who begin and lead Stephen Ministry in their congregation.

The BLTC draws on newly redesigned and updated Stephen Ministry resources to equip participants with the skills and know-how to lead all aspects of their congregation’s Stephen Ministry. This includes training a team of congregation members as lay caregivers (called Stephen Ministers), matching them with hurting people in the congregation and community, and offering ongoing guidance and support to Stephen Ministers as they provide one-to-one, Christ-centered care to people experiencing a wide range of life difficulties.

To learn more about Stephen Ministry, visit or call (314) 428-2600. Additional information about the Bridge Leader’s Training Course is available at

Did you know that the Pacifica Synod offers scholarships for lay persons attending Stephen Ministries training? These are available through the Cathryn Wright Fund. More information about the scholarship and the application to apply may be found on our synod website here.

We Remember in Our Prayers
We ask that you hold the following people and situations in your thoughts and prayers:

  • For Larry Dodson (Pacifica Synod Council member).
  • For the Sierra Pacific Synod, this church and all who are experiencing pain and have been hurt due to recent events.
  • For Matt Deming, son of Deacon Phil Deming.
  • For the people of Ukraine, Russia and neighboring countries affected by this violent conflict.
  • For the Afghan people, our allies, and vulnerable populations in the midst of this humanitarian disaster.
  • For the people of Haiti in the face of earthquakes, tropical storms and political unrest.
  • Those affected by wildfires, floods, tropical storms and other natural disasters, as well as emergency personnel responding to these situations.
  • For those in countries facing political and civil unrest - Ukraine, Afghanistan, Cuba, Haiti, Myanmar and others.
  • For peace in Palestine and Israel and for those who have lost loved ones and their homes due to violence and unrest.
  • Our nation and its leaders.
  • Those affected with the COVID-19 virus and those who have lost loved ones.
  • Our healthcare providers, first responders and all who continue to care for those battling COVID-19.

In our synod e-newsletter, prayer requests may be shared for our synod's rostered ministers, spouses, key lay leaders and congregations.

 Prayer requests included are subject to the following guidelines:
  • Only the names of those to be prayed for will be included in our communications. Additional information (with permission) may be shared with the bishop or synod staff, but will not be publicized.
  • Those being prayed for must have provided the requester with explicit permission for their names to be shared with the synod.
  • Names will remain in the synod communications for one month, unless we are notified by the Conference Prayer Coordinator to extend the request.
  • Prayers MUST be added through your Conference Prayer Coordinator, who will submit the prayers to the synod office for distribution.

The following people are serving as your Conference Prayer Coordinators:

E. San Diego Conference - The Rev. Richard Vevia -
W. San Diego Conf - The Rev. Cyndi Jones -
Harvest Conference - The Rev. Laura Ziehl -
Raincross Conference - The Rev. Kent Tuohino -
Big Bear Conference - The Rev. Matt Anderson -
Saddleback Conference - The Rev. David Mattson -
Son & Surf Conf - The Rev. Jennifer Schultz -
Rejoice Conference - The Rev. Anne-Grethe Nielsen -
Hukilau Conference - The Rev. Keith Wolter -
Pacifica Synod - ELCA
Lutheran Center for Mission & Learning
1801 Park Court Place, Bldg. C, Santa Ana, CA 92701