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                                                                                             May, 2016
                         The Virginia 
Bringing you news of the Virginia Synod since 1921.

Rebekah Williams makes
soap for ForwardingFaith

Rebekah works on soap production 

            Rebekah Williams, a Danville 6th grader, is well on her way toward a $100 goal for the ForwardingFaith campaign by making and selling soap.
            The shape and color of the cakes of soap look like the ForwardingFaith blue arrow. Buyers may choose the scent from clove, lavender, tea tree, grapefruit, plain or cinnamon. Orders may be placed with her mother, Pastor Meredith Williams, Ascension, Danville, for $1 at .
           All of the money goes directly to Forwarding Faith. Rebekah said her goal is "to help make sure kids and people in my Synod have someone to help them grow in faith."
            Contributions from individuals and five Synod congregations for ForwardingFaith have almost reached $520,000, according to Ellen Hinlicky, campaign director.
In This Issue
Lutherans in the news
ELCA Bishop's column
Pinwheels support child abuse awareness
Strickland to speak on worship theme at Assembly
Hosting the Passover Meal at Trinity, Newport News
Tapestry in the Virginia Synod
Taylor lectures: "Images of God"
A working spring break
Brandon Oaks: now a life plan community
Christ, Roanoke, lets light shine for 100 years.
College Peace month...backs Israel-Palestine dialogue
Cafe Dennis at Lynchburg...raises $28,000 for Forwarding Faith
Crumley Archives needs to expand
A reading buddy for Minnick students
Lutherans, Episcopalians to talk on full communion
Lutherans in the news
          Sheila Umberger, director of Roanoke public libraries and a member of Christ, Roanoke, has received a national award, the Peggy Sullivan Award for Public Library Administrators Supporting Services to Children. The award for an administrator "who has shown exceptional understanding and support of public library service to children" will be presented at an American Library Association conference in June. Umberger, a Bristol native, studied at the University of South Carolina, Southern Seminary and Wayne State College. Under her leadership, Roanoke libraries have developed Star City Reads, free book distribution, enhancement of space for children Books on Buses, a mobile lending library.
             Pastor Harvey Atkinson has accepted a call to St. James, Chilhowie, St. Matthew, Konnarock, and Faith, Whitetop, after service in the Walker Mountain Parish, St. Luke, Holy Advent and Lebanon, in Wythe County for 15 years. A Virginia Tech graduate and former high school teacher, Atkinson is a graduate of Gettysburg Seminary. He will preach on a rotating basis, assisted by lay leaders.
            Pastor Cathy Mims, dean of the Tidewater Conference, has accepted a call to serve as associate pastor at First Lutheran, Norfolk. She has served with her husband, Pastor Scott Mims, at Good Shepherd, Virginia Beach, for almost nine years. A graduate of Indiana University and Southern Seminary, she and her husband have served a congregation in Pennsylvania, St. John, Roanoke, and Good Shepherd for a total of 18 years.
             Among the 455 graduating seniors at Roanoke College on May 8 will be Danielle Bosdell, Messiah, Mechanicsville, and Bridget Gautieri, Cranford, NJ. Both will be attending Philadelphia Seminary in the fall. Another graduate, Karen Griffith, daughter of Pastor Harry Griffith, Our Saviour, Virginia Beach, will start a year of ELCA Young Adult Global Ministry in Senegal.
            As one of three grand award winners in the Roanoke Regional Science Fair, Chi Chi Ugochukwu, St. Mark's, Roanoke, will compete in an international science fair in Phoenix, AZ, on May 8. Her project is anti-bacteria/cancer agents.
            Trinity Ecumenical Parish welcomed 36 new members in March. Also, Sharon Sicher has been employed in the new position of director of ministries to children youth and families. She has served in a related capacity since 1999.
           Ryan-Michael Blake, a native of Wilmington, NC, and a music graduate of Lenoir-Rhyne University, has been employed as director of music at First, Norfolk. He has led music at Trinity Lutheran, Newport News, and an Episcopal congregation in Portsmouth.
            At St. Stephen, Williamsburg, Tara Grove of the William and Mary Law School has received th Federalist Society's Paul M. Bator Award for a legal scholar who demonstrated excellence in legal scholarship, commitment to teaching and concern for students.
            Good Shepherd, Rapidan Parish, has received Thrivent Action Team funds to purchase raised bed gardens for Sunday School children to plant vegetables which will be shared with a food pantry and the congregation.
            Christ, Fredericksburg, members raised $7,641 for the ELCA World Hunger
40 Days of Giving during Lent. This was more than three times the goal of $2,500. Of this amount, $5,000 was sent to the World Hunger Challenge and $2,641 was sent to the Synod's Papua New Guinea Malaria Sunday campaign.
            Thirteen volunteers, mainly from Holy Trinity, Wytheville, traveled to Charleston, SC, to work with Habitat on a Thrivent Builds program. Holy Trinity workers have made a dozen or more mission trips since they started after Hurricane Katrina.
            In Madison County, a Mount Nebo Revitalization Team has been formed to talk about "new ideas to share God's word, invite neighbors and friends to our wonderful family church and minister to the community around us," according to the Rapidan Parish newsletter.
             Olivia Hodge, St. Michael, Blacksburg, won a $5,000 STOP Hunger Award which includes a $5,000 scholarship and $5,000 for the Micah's Backpack program and the Bruin Space Closet.
            At Bethel, Winchester, Pastor Heidi David-Young is proposing washing feet in and around Winchester "to spread love, healing and compassion in our community." She asked people interested in being part of a "footwashing cell of love" to meet May 14.
            Pastor Lou Florio, Messiah, Mechanicsville, a volunteer police chaplain, has noted that Peace Officers Memorial Day, paying tribute to officers who have died in the line of duty, will be observed on May 15. His congregation plans to honor officers with special church sign messages and social media posts.
            At Our Saviour, Williamsburg/Norge, Dr. Eric Crump, retired Gettysburg Seminary professor, preached on April 3. Also, a Holocaust Remembrance Day service is planned for Thursday, May 5, at 6 p.m. A Holocaust Humanity exhibit of art created by children in ghettos and concentration camps will be featured.
            A memorial garden is planned by Trinity, Pulaski

Love your neighbor   
     by Presiding Bishop Elizabeth A. Eaton
Bishop Eaton 
"Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?" He said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.' This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."
(Matthew 22:36-40).
At the end of March, I spent a delightful week with the bishop and rostered leaders of the Montana Synod at their annual theological conference. The added bonus was that we were joined by the bishop and clergy of the Episcopal Diocese of Montana and by Michael Curry, presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church. There are many things that are unique to our particular traditions, but it became clear that we share a whole lot more. At one point during a presentation, Curry leaned over to me and said that if he closed his eyes he would swear that he was at one of his own meetings.
            During the convocation two participants, one Lutheran and one Episcopalian, noted that other civic and religious leaders had issued statements about the need for civil discourse during this election season, and they wondered if the leaders of the ELCA and Episcopal Church could do the same. Both were clear that they didn't want a political statement or an endorsement of any party or candidate. They just felt that some of the rhetoric was no longer appealing to our better selves, but was opening a door to division and suspicion. They wanted to know if their faith communities could speak a word to our people that could bring some clarity and hope.
            It's worth noting that the first part of the First Amendment has to do with religious freedom: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." By the time of the Bill of Rights, the United States was already home to those who had been at least hindered in their religious life because of established religions in former countries and in this country. Dissenters from England, Roman Catholics and Quakers faced opposition and suppression from the state. The First Amendment was intended to keep the government out of religion. It wasn't intended to keep the religious community from speaking to or participating in government.
            Lutherans don't withdraw from the world. Martin Luther believed that people of faith have a duty to participate in the political sphere and, when necessary, to call civil authorities to account. He also offered this helpful explanation of the Eighth Commandment: "We are to fear and love God, so that we do not tell lies about our neighbors, betray or slander them, or destroy their reputations. Instead we are to come to their defense, speak well of them, and interpret everything they do in the best possible light" (Small Catechism).
            Now to the issue of civil discourse during this political season. I understand that the world is a dangerous place; I understand that many in our country feel left behind and left out. There are legitimate security, foreign policy and domestic policy concerns. Candidates and political parties have the duty to speak to these concerns and make the case for their platform.
            During the theological gathering, Curry held up Jesus' answer to the lawyer that love of God and love of neighbor, and the standard by which we treat others, should be the way we engage society. Political speech that doesn't ensure that the "other" is treated with the same respect and care that we would wish for our own brother or sister or father or mother is not what God intends for God's beloved community.
            We are Easter people. We have been redeemed by the indescribably beautiful act of love on the cross. I ask that we, and those seeking office, would remember that we are entrusted with a redeemed world, and we must always remember that those who disagree with us are also those for whom Christ died.
A monthly message from the presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Her email address: This column originally appeared in Living Lutheran's May issue. Reprinted with permission.
Pinwheels support child abuse awareness   

Volunteers from St. Paul's, Hampton, Lutheran Family Services and Peninsula area Exchange clubs planted a garden of more than 800 pinwheels in support of National Child Abuse Awareness Month in April.
Strickland  to speak
on worship theme at Assembly

        The Rev. Kevin Strickland, director for worship formation and liturgical resources of the ELCA, will give four presentations about worship, the theme for the Virginia Synod Assembly, at the annual gathering at Roanoke College June 10-12. As keynote speaker, he also will be the official ELCA representative.
            Strickland, former pastor of Holy Trinity, Nashville, Tenn., was named to the national post two years ago. A graduate of Newberry College and Southern Seminary, he formerly was chair of the Southeastern Synod Worship Team.
            Two resolutions have been submitted to Synod offices and others may be filed before a May 11 deadline, according to Skip Zubrod, who is handling arrangements for the Assembly. The first two resolutions call for support of military personnel and an advocate for the Tapestry diversity team in each conference of the Synod.
            The Assembly will elect a treasurer to succeed Zubrod, who has served two terms, as well as four members of the Synod Council---two lay female and two lay male. One and possibly two ordinations may be part of the annual Saturday night service at St. Andrew's Catholic Church in Roanoke. A discussion of a new ELCA initiative asking members to consider future priorities and directions will be held Saturday afternoon.
            A musical group led by Pastor James Bolick of Epiphany, Richmond, will play Friday night in a social program sponsored by National Lutheran Communities & Services. Chaplain Bill Boldin of the Village at Orchard Ridge, Winchester, will be the Assembly chaplain.
Trinity, Newport News, is host for Passover Meal    

            Trinity, Newport News, was the host site for a neighboring synagogue's Passover Meal on April 22.  Emet V'Or congregation needed a social hall, Trinity was the host and the Jewish congregation invited Trinity members to come to the table. Rabbi Scott Guardin (left) and Interim Pastor Jim Cobb of Trinity are shown here.
Tapestry in the Virginia Synod    
     by Pastor Tim Waltonen
            A joyous Eastertide to all our pastors and their people!
            What stunning Lectionary Readings for the season: the Easter witness of the early church from Acts and Revelation. In Acts the revelations to the apostles to venture across color lines and national boundaries and social exclusions; to go "without discriminating between them and us" (Acts 11:11). We see Revelation as an Easter hymnbook before it is anything else, "for the healing of the nations" (Rev. 22.2). We have been multicultural, multi-racial, from the earliest days of the Christian movement!!
            And Tapestry (formerly the Virginia Synod All-Inclusive Outreach Team) has embraced this vision all along and has been enabling conversation and raising consciousness in Synod Council, at Synod Assemblies and in clusters of congregations from Virginia Beach/Hampton to Richmond and Roanoke to Strasburg. We will be active again at Assembly this June-watch for opportunities to get on board.
            We are positioned to be the logical local resource for Bishop Eaton's "Called Forward Together in Christ" initiative for the ELCA: A mission in our generation and for the future. As we keep the faith and cross those lines and "have love for one another" (John 13:35), our culture will see a Body that is becoming a "tapestry;" it will be our "brand."
            If you want to see tapestry, stop by our display table at Assembly. You will see a real, homemade tapestry, made by our daughter Cynthia, when she was a tween. It's two feet long with reddish/orange fringe on both ends and, in between, row after row of strands of yarn in yellow, beige, deep red, lilac, maroon, teal, navy blue, black, tan, gray, purple, and greens. There are some rough spots, understandable for a first venture, but still a treasured creation. It's a table runner now, setting on a two-drawer file cabinet in our busy study. It's a daily reminder of our Synod's team and a metaphor for our inclusive future.      
Taylor lectures: "Images of God"
      by Rev. Dennis Roberts 
bass diana butler
Butler Bass 

             Diana Butler Bass, scholar and author of nine books on American religion, presented the first James H. Taylor Memorial Lectures at Holy Trinity, Lynchburg, in March. Taylor, a nuclear engineer and longtime member of the congregation who also served as a stewardship resource person in the Virginia Synod for several years, was an avid scholar, passionate advocate for the care of creation and expansive thinker. The lectures were made possible by his family and friends.
             Bass, whose newest book, Grounded, was published last October, used that work as the outline for her three presentations exploring traditional images of God, how people are looking for God in the world today and the spiritual revolution that is now underway. She began with the projected image of a 16th-century painting that portrayed God as a Caucasian, white-haired old man in the clouds.
            This was only one illustration that she used to explain the vertical, hierarchical, three-tiered concept of the universe that held sway for many centuries. This is the image of God that "haunts the Western imagination," Bass said. "Christianity once sat on a mountain top of power and privilege. . . The church was a kind of holy elevator with a specially-trained class of holy elevator operators," she continued, to much laughter from the 200 clergy and laity in attendance.
              "There is far less certainty about God's location in the world today," Bass noted, and the question "Where is God?" is "one of the most consequential global questions of our time." Because of the horrors of the events of centuries past and the evolving cosmology of the 21st century, our understanding of God is moving to the horizontal. "There is a pattern of God all around us--a deeply spiritual theology that relates to contemporary concerns, provides meaning and hope for the future, and possesses surprisingly rich ties to wisdom from the past. . . God has moved off the mountain, and everyone is trying to figure out what that means for their lives and the life of the planet," said Bass.
                 Sharing her statistical analysis of current surveys and studies of religion that indicate an increasing number of people no longer identify with any particular religious tradition - the "nones" and the "dones"--Bass then explained that belief in God remains surprisingly widespread in North America and an increasing percentage of people are reporting spiritual experiences. "People believe," she said, "but they believe differently than they once did."
                 Bass concluded that the spiritual revolution that is underway does not destroy the church unless the church "ignores it, denies it, dismisses it, or pushes it away." Finding God in the world - in the intersections between Divine Love, all of creation, and human community - is an invitation to new birth. "That new birth is happening," she said. "It is time for the church to wake up. There is nothing worse than sleeping through a revolution."      
A working spring break
     by Jean Etsinger

            For a group of Virginia college students who spent five days in Manatee County, Fla, on a spring break mission trip, the best part wasn't what they accomplished. It was the people they worked with. They hadn't anticipated "how personal we were able to get with a lot of the people who are on the ground level," Corey Clevenger, a graduate student in architecture at Virginia Tech, said.
            The six students and their two campus pastors carried out tasks at Our Daily Bread and its Loaves and Fishes "convenience store," at two Manatee County Habitat for Humanity work sites, and at Gloria Dei. "The proximity with people was great," Corey said. "We were able to hear employees' stories - how Pastor Don Wisner speaking at March 8 they came to be where they are, the satisfaction they get from helping others."
            The group drove straight down from Virginia in a van, arriving at Gloria Dei late at night on Sunday, March 6. They left before dawn on Saturday, March 12, for the drive back. On Monday they worked at Loaves and Fishes helping clients select groceries. On Wednesday they helped in the kitchen at Our Daily Bread, serving a mid-day meal for nearly 200 people. On Tuesday and Thursday they cleared lots for three future Habitat homes not far from Our Daily Bread.
             "We were our own team of eight - the first group to work clearing the sites, picking up trash and broken bottles," Corey said. He noted that Habitat often has a hard time getting volunteers on Tuesdays and Thursdays. (People with day jobs tend to come out on Saturday, the other day that Habitat schedules volunteer teams.) The first home to be built where they were working is for a woman with a young daughter. "We were trying to clear away broken glass to make the yard safe for the little girl to play," Corey said. On Friday they worked outdoors at Gloria Dei, plastering cracks in walls, painting, weeding and taking down dead palm fronds.
            The group attended Lenten worship on Wednesday evening. "It was nice to meet some members," Corey said. "We got to explain what we were here for." He pronounced the Rev. Don Wisner, who gave the SPRING BREAK . . ."awesome.%" Another student said, "That was the best worship ever!" Everyone loved the warm weather, "going to the beach every chance we could," Corey said. It was an easy walk, since the group slept on the floor of the fellowship hall. They also enjoyed a dip in the pool at the home of RuthAnn and Paul Russel, got to try the ice cream at Holy Cow, took in a Pirates-Red Sox spring training game, and attended the annual community gathering of the justice advocacy group Sarasota United for Responsibility and Equity (SURE) at Riverview High School in Sarasota.
             Roughing it wasn't all that rough, according to Corey: "The two leaders had a harder time" getting up after a night on the floor. The drive down wasn't arduous either, he said. The van accommodated 15 passengers and "gave us enough space to spread out." The group consisted of Virginia Tech students Corey, Tommy Hyres, Adam Malinchak and Emma Sparks; their campus pastor, Rev. Joanna Stallings; New River Community College students Britanny Cupp and Melani Miller; and their pastor, Rev. Drew Tucker. Overall, the mission experience was an opportunity to "get out of our comfort zone, to have new experiences," Corey said. "We got to know more about each other and the world around us."
            Jean Etsinger is a member of Gloria Dei Lutheran. Anaa Maria Island, Fla.

Brandon Oaks: now a life plan community    
            Brandon Oaks has changed its designation to life plan community from its previous term, continuing care retirement community (CCRC).
            This corrects a "misleading impression of what communities like Brandon Oaks are," said Joe Hoff, executive director. People in the market "have looked at CCRCs and thought we're all about 'care' whereas the people that actually move to communities like us know we're all about getting the most out of life," he explained.
            Life plan communities are nothing like those CCRCs of 30 or more years ago, Hoff said. "While, as a not-for-profit LifeCare community, we certainly are proud of our health care services, we offer so much more." He listed such services as residential homes with full-size appliances and amenities of new homes, fitness and wellness programs, fine dining, creative enrichment programs and socializing opportunities, as well as home maintenance, housekeeping, yard work and snow shoveling.
            The life plan community name came from research and surveys by two national organizations. The name draws attention "to our community being about life, not just care," Hoff said. New residents of Brandon Oaks often say they should have moved in earlier, he said, so this will help people decide to "take maximum advantage of all we have to offer."
Christ, Roanoke, lets light shine for 100 years    
           "Let the Light Shine!" is the theme for a centennial celebration of Christ, Roanoke, climaxing with a special service and reception on Sunday, May 29. A calendar of events is planned this year..
            The Social Ministry Committee and Social Club will host a special events night on May 5. A centennial story-telling night will feature stories from the past of the faith community, along with desserts popular in past decades. Historical tours of the church will be conducted after the 11 o'clock service on May 15 and 22.
            The League of Lutheran Kids (Sunday School children) are leading a 100 Gifts project to make donations for a local service agency each month of the anniversary year. they also are collecting items for summer camp at Caroline Furnace.
            The congregation was organized as Virginia Heights Lutheran on May 10, 1916, with assistance from St. Mark's, Roanoke.  A building on Grandin Road in Roanoke was dedicated the next year and the present church was dedicated in 1950. The Christ Lutheran name was adopted in 1948.
College Peace month
backs Israel-Palestine
            For a second year, Roanoke College students tackled the difficult issues of the Israel-Palestine conflict with a goal of inspiring dialogue and critical thinking from different perspectives. In a series of Peace Month events, they heard refugee stories from students, a refugee exhibition by Bshara Nassar of the Nakba Museum in Washington, a teach-in by college professors, a Heartbeat concert with Israeli and Palestinian musicians and a keynote speaker, Avi Smolen, from New York City.
            The Salem campus is "pro-solution of a two-state existence where all citizens of Israel/Palestine may live and travel with freedom and equal rights, no longer fearing to dwell side by side with their neighbors," said Linnea Kremer, a college junior who is one of the planners for the events. "I want people to know that this is still an issue," said Leah Weinstein, one of the Jewish student organizers of the events. "You can help this go away."
            The leadership team for the events in March and April was comprised of a Jew, a Buddhist and two Christians "working toward providing the college campus and surrounding community with meaningful dialogues," Kremer said. "One of the main focuses of the Peace Month was how refugees play a role in the conflict and why it is important to understand their presence, not only in Israel and Palestine, but all over the world."
            "We recognize there are many realities of the conflict but the importance of coexistence and honest, thoughtful conversation between Israel and Palestine is vital in moving toward peace and justice for both parties." Kremer said dialogue, critical thinking and reflection are meaningful for the two countries, as well as universal principles all countries should strive to exercise.
            This conflict is unique, she said, but there are aspects that all people can reflect upon and relate to, such as integration of races and ethnicities in society, dialogue between different parties and providing a rich, diverse environment for younger generations. Kremer said Roanoke students have been very supportive of the Peace Month program.
            Danielle Bosdell, a Roanoke senior, said Avi Smolen, the keynote speaker, said there has got to be "productive discomfort" in order for people to be heard and for others to listen about the issues between the two countries. Bosdell said that on television news and on the political stage "all we see is the scary stories that make us think there is nothing that can be done to resolve any of it, when in reality there has been a lot of interfaith dialogue and friendships formed that are making ripples in this ocean of chaos."
The Heartbeat concert is "a perfect example" of what is being done, she added.   

Cafe Dennis at Lynchburg 
raises $28,000 for Forwarding Faith 

            The Virginia Synod's ForwardingFaith Campaign will be the recipient of over $28,000 from a gala dinner held at Holy Trinity, Lynchburg, on Friday, April 8. That amount represents the proceeds and special gifts from the congregation's Café Dennis, a triennial benefit dinner that features the culinary creations of Holy Trinity's Pastor Dennis Roberts. This was the ninth Café Dennis during Pastor Roberts' 25 years at Holy Trinity.
            Bishop James F. Mauney was a special guest for the evening, which included music by the James River Swing and Sway Band, dancing, and live and sealed bid auctions. The auction featured items and services donated by members and friends of the congregation, such as artwork, foreign language or craft lessons, time at vacation homes, catered dinners, baked goods, gift baskets, and various other sundries. Local businesses, arts organizations and local non-profits also contributed a number of items, such as gift certificates, antiques, interior and garden decor objects, and concert and event tickets. In addition, the Holy Trinity Senior Youth who served as wait staff for the dinner received over $700 in tips in support of their Luther Heritage Tour to Germany this summer.
             Bishop Mauney thanked the congregation for ". . . a glorious evening of generosity, faith, joy, fellowship, and great, great fun!." He wrote: "Some in this campaign will pull out a checkbook and make a wonderful gift in a matter of seconds with a pen and a loving heart of thankfulness to God. Friday evening, Holy Trinity came out to write themselves, their goods, their homes, their talents, their time, along with precious funds given by Council and individuals, across a gift made for the ForwardingFaith campaign together that literally took months of effort to complete."
Crumley Archives needs  to expand     
          The James R. Crumley Jr. Archives, serving the congregations of ELCA Region 9 from its location on the Southern Seminary campus, "needs to expand to carry out its ministry to the ELCA institutions, synods and congregations in the Southeast and Caribbean," according to Pastor David Seymour, development officer.
            The archives, named for the late Bishop James R. Crumley Jr., a Roanoke College graduate, houses records from six centuries, 13 generations, in 20 languages and is among the most heavily consulted ELCA archives. Seymour said the archives depend on the generosity of individual Lutherans for nearly 80 percent of its operating budget. Prayers and financial support are needed, he said.
            The archives is more than a depository for institutional records, according to Seymour. "It tells the story of the church, the Lutheran expression of the Body of Christ, moving and acting throughout the area now designated as Region 9. It is an amazing, divine story that must be preserved."   Donations may be sent to the James R. Crumley Jr. Archives, 4201 Main St., Columbia, SC 29203.
A reading buddy for Minnick students  
Pastor Addison and
reading pal, Zoe

            The Rev. Floyd Addison may have retired from the ministry and from Virginia Lutheran Homes but he is doing worthy work as a reading volunteer at the Lutheran Family Services Minnick School in Roanoke, first at the main campus and now at the Starkey Station location.
            On Thursday mornings, he reads with students and has conversations that range from the merits of the characters in "Scooby Doo" to the difference between fiction and non-fiction. Pastor Addison came to Minnick after volunteering with second- and third-graders at a public elementary school for three years, something he enjoyed. But after attending an LFSVA "Lunch and Learn," he decided to start volunteering at the Roanoke Minnick School main campus.
            This year he switched to the Starkey Station location, also in Roanoke, which has older students with more complex challenges. He says that his time with the students has made him more aware of what they and their families face, and also aware of the need for volunteers. "Each student needs and receives your undivided attention one-on-one as you listen, engage and encourage them," he said. "And as always, when it comes to this kind of volunteering, you almost always receive much more than you give." Anyone interested in attending a Lunch and Learn or volunteering at one of the Minnick schools, Day Support Centers, or Group Homes may call Leah Hatcher at 540-562-8486 or email her at
Lutherans, Episcopalians
to talk on full communion
         In a major ecumenical event, two nationally known liturgical scholars-Lutheran and Episcopal-will speak on "In the Breaking of 
of the Bread, Finding Christ in Full Communion" at Shrine Mont Conference Center at Orkney Springs, Shenandoah County May 16-18.
            The speakers will be Dr. Gordon W. Lathrop, professor of liturgy emeritus at Philadelphia Seminary, and the Rt. Rev. Neil Alexander, dean of the School of Theology at the University of the South, Sewanee, Tenn. Alexander formerly was bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta. Lathrop, who lives in Arlington, has taught at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria and Yale Divinity School. He helped prepare the current ELCA worship book and he was president of the North American Academy of Liturgy.
            The gathering is planned to offer Lutherans familiarity and a working knowledge of the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer and how to preach at an Episcopal church eucharist. Also, it is designed to offer Episcopalians familiarity and a working knowledge of evangelical Lutheran worship and how to preach at an ELCA church holy communion. For anyone, the event provides an opportunity to speak to national ecumenical representatives from both churches.




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