Weekly Update
Announcements From Around the Virginia Synod
Living Out Matthew 28:
Baptizing in the Name of the Father, The Son, and Holy Spirt
The people of two small congregations in Augusta County are still smiling after 17 people were baptized in April, a group made up of both children and adults.

The joy was evident in Rev. Rod Ronneberg's voice as he was recalling the occasion.

"If you would have told me that this was going to happen when I got here in the summer of 2014, I would have said, 'that's a nice dream.'"

It looks like that dream became a reality last month. Rev. Rod Ronneberg serves Faith Lutheran Church in Staunton and St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Churchville on a part time basis. His idea was to come to Virginia to retire but it looks like God (and the Bishop) had other plans for him.

Both of the churches are small so when Pastor Rod came on board he said that he felt like a mission developer and wanted to begin exploring different ways to reach the community. After discovering that some of the church members could no longer come to Sunday morning worship because they were required to work during the weekends, he decided to try to have a Wednesday evening Eucharist service.

"Sometimes in our traditional setting it is hard to think outside the box," he said. "The mid-week Eucharist is addressing people who aren't able to come to church on Sunday. We get caught up on the holiness of Saturday and Sunday but a day is holy anytime the word is preached and the sacraments are administered."

As a result of the Wednesday service, there were nine baptisms at Faith Lutheran. On April 3rd the two congregations who share Rev. Rod Ronneberg had a joint service where members from both Faith and St. Peter's gathered to celebrate. The morning gave the members from St. Peters a good vision of what the following week would look like as they looked forward to the eight baptisms on their own church calendar.

"People inside the congregation have been encouraging people to come," Pastor Ronneberg said. "Everybody is beginning to see what happens when the whole congregation embraces the mission."

Both churches are living into the great commission in Matthew 28 where Jesus calls his followers to go out and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

"Both days were filled with joy and happiness and it has continued, as the realization has set in that there is new life in both congregations through baptism and as they sense the purpose of what they are doing as worshiping congregations who are reaching out."

Now that both congregations are growing, Pastor Ronneberg is beginning to explore Christian education options. Many of those who were baptized began their involvement with Faith through the Wednesday service because they have to work during the weekends. This takes Sunday School off the table as a viable option for many.

As the context of the community has changed it looks like these congregations are changing the way they sow their seeds of faith--and the harvest speaks for itself.

As Rev. Rod Ronneberg said,"Sometimes when you take a little chance for the sake of the mission, you will probably be surprised at how it turns out."
 If you want to submit an announcement, please  check out the Submission Guidelines and send your submission to fuller@vasynod.org.
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As members of the ELCA, we believe that we are a church that belongs to Christ. There is a place for everyone here. As we continue the conversation on racism in the United States, we must look within our own congregations and communities.

Do the people in our pews reflect the people in our neighborhoods? How do we take steps to invite and welcome our neighbors?

Join Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton on Wednesday, May 25, from 7-8 p.m. (CDT) for a live webcast where we explore what it means to be a welcoming congregation within the ELCA.

We encourage you to invite a group to view the webcast together. If you are unable to view it live, the webcast will be recorded and available at:  http://livestream.com/elca

Download the Synod Assembly Guidebook App Now!

The Guidebook App is being built and updated as we finalize information for the 2016 Synod Assembly. Get access to the schedule and be the first to know everything about the Assembly by clicking here to Download Our Mobile App. 
Theology For Teens at Roanoke College: July 24-29
Rising 10th and 11th grade teens!
Ask the big questions
Live on campus for a week
Learn with professors and Roanoke College students

Sunday July 24, 2016 through Friday July 29, 2016
An all new, week-long summer program introducing teens to biblical and theological scholarship, exploring contemporary challenges & how their faith tradition can meet those challenges.  We will focus on the life & thought of Dietrich Bonhoeffer-a church leader who met the challenges before him-we will explore today's social issues & encounter other faiths by engaging the students with leaders from those various communities.  Come and discover a sense of mission, be equipped with theological tools to enable you to meet the challenges facing the church today. Go to www.roanoke.edu/t4teens for more information.

Job Opportunities
All posts can also be found online at  www.vasynod.org/job-opportunities. If you have job opening you would like posted, email fuller@vasynod.org. 
Day School Teacher--Chesapeake, VA
Grace Lutheran Day School, a ministry of Grace Lutheran Church in Chesapeake, is seeking an experienced preschool teacher for the 2016-17 school year. Candidates should possess a high school diploma AND a certificate in early childhood education OR a bachelor's degree in early childhood education. First aid and CPR training are also desired. Teaching experience with 3 and 4 year-old children is required. Hours are 8:30am-12:30pm, Monday thru Friday from September until mid-May. Candidates will be subject to criminal background checks with social services and the State Police. The hiring process will begin in mid-June. Contact Jody Miller for an application at 757-420-4704 or  secretary@gracelutheranchesapeake.org
Lutheran School of Theology, Chicago-  Director  of  
As the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago lives into its Public Church curriculum, it is essential that our Director of Admissions reaches out to a new generation of visionary leaders. The Director of Admissions will lead the task of recruitment and admissions, chiefly (but not exclusively) for our first degree programs: the Master of Divinity and the two Master of Arts degrees. The Director will serve as a representative of LSTC through contacts with colleges, churches, synods, and other organizations. Because the Director will engage a broad range of prospective students, it is essential that s/he brings a high degree of intercultural competency.  Full time position with ELCA benefits. For a full description please go to: 

United Campus Ministries (UCM) of Christopher Newport University (CNU), located in Newport News in the heart of historic Hampton Roads, Virginia, wishes to hire a campus minister (ordination preferred) to serve the university students and the university community. UCM is specifically seeking someone who is motivated, energetic, and exemplifies Christian values and love so that they can guide, support, and encourage the students to explore and grow their Christian faith.  This is a part time position and involves meeting with and developing relationships with the students and the rest of the university community, planning activities, providing spiritual counsel, service and outreach opportunities and enjoying fun fellowship with the students and the university community.
 If you feel called to apply for this rewarding position, email your resume and cover letter to the Personnel Committee Chair, Suzanne Howell at bsh-887@verizon.net , no later than 11:59 PM on June 15th, 2016. Please use "UCM Position" in the Subject line. A detailed job description will be sent to you. 

Congregational Communications Facilitator-Yorktown, VA
St. Mark Lutheran Church in Yorktown is looking for a Congregational Communications Facilitator.  This position supports the Pastor and the Parish Administrator in the production of all worship service materials and coordination of special events.  He/she shall perform receptionist responsibilities and facilitate parish and public communications.  Secondary responsibilities include clerical support to the St. Mark Preschool and CafĂ© St. Mark.  This is a part-time salaried position with normal duty hours Monday-Friday, 9 am - 3:30 pm.  Position may require occasional weekend and after normal duty hours.
Job Skill Requirements:
  • Possess knowledge and experience in use of computers, office software, and office equipment (to include copiers, printers, facsimile, MS Office, Excel, PowerPoint, multi-phone system) and be proficient with social media outlets/applications
  • Able to work in a team environment
  • Possess outstanding communication, customer service, and people skills
  • Willing and able to learn new skills and work tools.
Please submit cover letters and resumes to personnel@smlconline.org .
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