ForwardingFaith at Faith, Whitetop

The Virginia Synod is Forwarding Faith! Faith Lutheran Church in Whitetop part of the Mount Rogers Parish, led by Pastor Harvey Atkinson is one congregation that’s shown their support for the ForwardingFaith Campaign. Recently, members of Faith Lutheran Church made a significant contribution of $6,000 to the ForwardingFaith campaign. The contribution is divided between a $1,000 contribution from the youth fund and a $5,000 contribution from members of the congregation. This contribution from Faith Lutheran Church is just one way for them to give back to the faith formation programs that have been a source of enrichment and fulfillment for members, as well as a tribute to the involvement Pastor Harvey has had with faith formation programs like ACTS and Power in the Spirit over the years.

ACTS is the Ambassadors Community for Theological Study is intended to enrich and equip laity for intentional service as ambassadors for Christ in homes, churches, and in their communities. It provides comprehensive exposure to the foundations of Lutheran faith through classroom and experiential education.

Power in the Spirit is an inspirational conference for everyone who wishes to explore God’s call to service through joyous worship, Bible study, keynote addresses, workshops, and fellowship.

“They’re a generous congregation in a lot of ways,” Pastor Harvey explained, “They do a lot of things in their community,” and that outward generosity is thanks in part to the Lay Leadership that is fostered through faith formation programs like ACTS.

The ACTS program is one of the most significant faith formation ministries that Faith Lutheran Church has been involved in. “They’ve really benefited from the ACTS classes, tremendously, and that’s what drove a lot of this contribution, I believe,” Pastor Harvey said. From Faith Lutheran Church, five members have received their ACTS certificate from the ACTS program, and two more are working and will earn their certificate from the ACTS program within the next year and a half. From the congregation’s involvement in ACTS, Pastor Harvey says he’s seen in impact in how members of Faith Lutheran Church engage with their community outside the church, “They reach out to the whole community, and a lot of that action has sprung from what they have encountered in ACTS.”

Pastor Harvey has also been an active presence in the ACTS programs for a number of years, most recently assisting as host for the satellite site for Western Virginia congregations, and serving as an ACTS small group leader, but as he joked, “[Faith Lutheran Church] was way ahead of me!” members at Faith have been participating in ACTS before he was called to be their pastor as a part of the Mount Rogers Parish.

ACTS alone is not the only program that Faith Lutheran Church benefits from, as youth leadership in the congregation has been forming thanks in part to the Virginia Synod youth ministry programs. Rose Pennington is a member of Faith that stands as an example to the youth leadership that has been fostered through Virginia Synod faith formation programs like Winter Celebration. Rose will be serving on this summer’s Kairos planning group.

The ForwardingFaith campaign continues to climb. Just over $2.1 million has been received in gifts and pledges so far. As the ForwardingFaith campaign continues, individuals and congregations can help join the effort and support these important ministries.

For more information on the ForwardingFaith campgain, and how you and your congregation can get involved visit www.forwardingfaith.org
Do You have an announcement, upcoming event or news story idea? Send it to Emily Pilat at pilat@vasynod.org and make sure to follow our
Announcements
Synod Assembly 2017: Ambassadors for Christ: Forwarding Faith

Synod Assembly is here!  June 9-11  will be our time to get together as the Virginia Synod to fellowship, learn about the wider church, do business, and learn more about worship.  Presiding over the Bishop's election and our ELCA representative  this year will be the  Rev. Rafael Malpica Padilla , Executive Director‐ELCA Division of  Global Missions. 

For more information on Synod Assembly, click here
Virginia Synod Kairos 2017
Kairos  is our annual week-long faith formation event for youth who will be in 9th-12th grades in the coming fall. It is a chance for youth who are already committed to a life of faith to be part of a unique Christian community for an entire week, to have a fresh experience of the grace and presence of God in that community, and to develop habits for discipleship that can be taken home as they live out their call to be “Ambassadors for Christ.” Kairos is different from our weekend events in that congregations do not send advisors with youth; the event staff serves as small group leaders and dorm advisors for the week. “Kairos” is the New Testament Greek word for “special time.” It is used whenever God’s people want to talk about a time of change, of renewal, of God’s special work in the believer and the community.

For more information and to register for Kairos, click here

Roanoke College's Theology for Teens
Our second annual summer camp introducing teens to biblical and theological scholarship, exploring contemporary challenges & how their faith tradition can meet those challenges. Starting Sunday July 16, 2016 through Sunday July 22, 2017 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.

For more information and to register for T4T, click here

Virginia Synod LAUNCH 2017
LAUNCH  is an event for youth who have just graduated from high school. Its purpose is to give them a chance to take stock of where their faith life has led them so far and also to provide an opportunity to engage in discussion on matters of faith and life that are likely to face them as they move on to the next stage of their lives, whether it be the workforce, military or other public service, college, or something else. If participants are veterans of our Virginia Synod ELCA Youth Events (Lost and Found, Winter Celebration, Kairos, etc.), they will find that this event is structured differently. We will spend our three full days together in a rhythm of worship, informal presentations to the whole group, small group discussions, and individual reflections that engage the mind as well as the spirit.  Of course, there will be time for fellowship and relaxation and enjoyable meal times together.

For more information and to register for LAUNCH, click here

Power in the Spirit 2017: "On Our Way Reforming!"
Hosted at beautiful Roanoke College in Salem Virginia, Power in the Spirit is an inspirational conference for everyone who wishes to explore God’s call to service through joyous worship, Bible study, keynote addresses, workshops, and fellowship. In addition, congregational leaders—teachers, organists and choir directors, choir members,committee or council members, family life consultant, pastors, and others—will find Power in the Spirit nurturing and challenging as they consider their mission and ministry.

The Reformation didn’t “fix” the Church. In fact, you might say it’s just one example of how we’re always “recalculating” our way forward as individuals and as a Church. In that spirit, this year’s theme for Power in the Spirit 2017 is:
On Our Way Reforming!

For more information and to register for Power in the Spirit, click here

Veterans and Faith Group Meeting: Military Service and the Transition to Civilian Life...
Does Spirituality have a place in the conversation?
Veterans and Faith is the first of four evenings for Veterans, Active Duty Military Service Members and friends and family with food, fellowship and discussions by and for Veterans. The first gathering will be held, June 15th at 7 PM, hosted in conjunction with Three Rangers Foundation at Faith Lutheran Church 2730 Bridge Road, Suffolk. 

These gatherings will be held quarterly, with the second event scheduled September 14th, 2017.

To view and download a flyer for Veterans and Faith, click here

The Tri-Annual Gathering of Lutheran Men in Mission: The Bold Gathering

Every couple of years, men from all over the country gather together for a weekend huddle that is called the BOLD GATHERING!

In 2017, join us in Minneapolis to be encouraged, to worship, and to connect and serve!

Hundreds of us will be gathering in the Minneapolis Marriott City Center to celebrate being bold daring followers of Jesus Christ!

The Lutheran Men in Mission Business Meeting is the pre-conference event that starts on Thursday.

To register for The Bold Gathering, click here 
For information on the 2017 Lutheran Men in Mission Tri-Annual Gathering, click here

Women of the ELCA Tenth Triennial Gathering
Mark your calendars for the Tenth Triennial Gathering, July 13-16, 2017, at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Minneapolis, Minn. 

We are real women talking about our faith. About our doubts and challenges. About joy and what inspires us. We’ll experience simple conversations between friends—old and new—that will develop into a movement sweeping the church, inspired and infused with the Holy Spirit.

To register for the Tenth Triennial Gathering, click here 
For information on the 2017 Women of the ELCA Triennial Gathering, click here

Caroline Furnace: Have you registered for summer camp?
It's our 60th Anniversary and we're celebrating with a summer of old favorites and new programs. Our traditional summer residential programs are designed for rising 1st-12th graders. Family camp is perfect for families with younger kids who want to try out camp together.

To register for summer camp at Caroline Furnace, click here 
For information on the 2017 summer schedule and pricing, click here

National Lutheran Communities & Services Community Impact Grants 2018
Each year, National Lutheran Communities & Services (NLCS) awards grants to organizations that share in the same passion of serving seniors. Grant proposals for the 2018 period will be accepted starting on June 1, 2017 and must be submitted on or before August 15, 2017.

NLCS strongly believes that its mission extends beyond the physical boundaries of its residential communities and service offerings. With funds solely from investment earnings, we are committed to supporting the work of other non-profit organizations, including congregations and community-based programs that address the critical needs of seniors who are aging-in-place. For more information please visit: www.nationallutheran.org/impactgrants

11 Steps to Increase Giving in Your Church
Scripture doesn’t shy away from conversations about money, but church leaders often do. Learn some simple and effective ways to create a culture of increasing generosity in your church, including suggestions for joyfully engaging givers at every age and stage of life. We’ll talk about transforming your weekly church offering into a time of celebration, coaching church leaders to effectively talk about stewardship, creative ways to thank your givers, why a major gifts strategy makes sense for churches, how to keep your offering numbers steady during the summer, and more. 

We've had ALDE member pastors ask for more discussion on the latest trends in congregational stewardship, and we listened. This is for you! If that's not you, please share the webinar with any pastors and congregational leaders; seminary students and officials; and district/synod/national church leaders you know who could benefit. We want this to lead to rich discussion and beneficial ideas sharing. If you can't attend live, you may still register for the webinar and receive a recording. 

Webinars cost $75. Register now

For more information on the ALDE webinar, click here

Job Opportunities
Part-time Church Secretary

Part-time church secretary, 10-12 hours/week. QuickBooks knowledge needed. Small church in the Vinton area. If interested, please call 540-342-1715 and leave a message.

Part-time Church Secretary

Part-time church secretary, 10 hours/week. Two church parish in Northern Rockingham County, Timberville Lutheran Parish. If interested, please call 540-896-4241 to leave a message or email tvilleparish@gmail.com to submit a resume.

Part-time Youth Ministry Coordinator Position

Grace and Glory Lutheran Church in Palmyra is currently seeking a part-time Youth Ministry Coordinator to join our staff.

Skills needed for this position:  

  • Ability to thrive in a team environment
  • Maintain healthy relationship boundaries
  • Strong communication skills
  • Self-motivation
  • Ability to relate to people at all age levels
  • Effectiveness relating through advanced social media and computer skills
  • Strong event planning/coordination abilities
  • Ability to work with existing ministries, but also to create new opportunities to involve the wider community in mission
  • Understanding, appreciation, and desire to engage in intergenerational models of ministry

A job description is available from the church office. Please call 434-589-2217 or email gglcelca@embarqmail.com for more information.


If you or anyone you know is interested, please submit a cover letter, resume’, and 3 references to the church office before June 23. We will begin interviews shortly thereafter.

ELCA Hunger Advocacy Fellow

Through the support of ELCA World Hunger, ELCA Advocacy works in partnership with statewide advocacy ministry networks across the United States to end hunger by engaging directly with local, state and national governments and equipping people of faith to seek justice through advocacy. Each office relates to the synods in their state and works closely with hunger leaders and synod teams. ELCA Advocacy is a ministry of the ELCA Domestic Mission Unit. This is a twelve-month, non-renewable contract position.

The Hunger Advocacy Fellow will participate in a 12-month transformative experience that combines leadership development and faith formation with impactful advocacy that moves us toward an end to hunger and a just world where all are fed.

The 2017 Hunger Advocacy Fellow is a full-time contract employee (with benefits) of the  Virginia Interfaith Center

For more information and to review the full job listing, click here
All job postings can also be found online at  www.vasynod.org/job-opportunities. If you have a position opening you would like posted, please email Emily Pilat at  pilat@vasynod.org.