Kairos 2018: "Faithside Out"
Kairos, the Virginia Synod youth event for rising 8th through rising 12th graders was held, July 22nd through the 27th at the campus of Roanoke College in Salem. This year over 110 youth and adult participants engaged and witnessed the theme “Faithside Out” based on John 16:33.
The verse was presented to the Kairos community by this year’s Planning Group, made up by Emil Baggs of Epiphany, Richmond, Camden Brewer of St. Michael Blacksburg, James Eddleton of Our Saviour, Christiansburg, Sarah Furr of Muhlenberg, Harrisonburg, Lily Pingel of Grace, Waynesboro, Natalie Schaus of First, Norfolk, and Michael Sheets of Martin Luther, Bergton. The group worked with the event’s chaplain Pastor Andrew Bansemer, as well as Lizzie Campus and Alec Alderman who both served as advisors to the group. The Planning Group helped shape the week-long event, spending months in preparation before the participants arrived making sure everything was prepared, and their hard work was well recognized this year.
The most visible presence that the Planning Group takes on throughout the week is performing skits for the Kairos community, translating the week’s verse into a relatable story for participants at Kairos. This year’s planning group found themselves focused on how to respond to faith challenges, and the internal conversations they have with themselves in response to conflicts they encounter day to day. As a result, this year the Planning Group skits took inspiration from the Disney Pixar film Inside Out, which shows the internal dialogue and struggles of a girl as she grows up.
Each skit revolved around a high schooler named Lily, her four internal voices of Logic, Discouragement, Anxiety, and Anger, as well as two of Lily’s friends who both challenge and support her in her faith journey. Throughout the week, the Kairos community got to listen in on Lily’s internal voices, learn about the different insecurities she has her life and faith, and how her internal voices respond. By the end of the week, a new voice, Peaceful Joy arrived and helped Lily and her inner voices fully realize that her faith crisis is not hopeless after all.
As participants at Kairos broke off into small groups, they got the chance to reflect on the week-long theme and verse, and relate it back to their own faith life through conversation, games, and activities. They also got the chance to work together to plan and prepare a proclamation based off of an assigned passage.
These proclamations are a chance for each Kairos small groups to communicate to the community what they have discovered about their passage, and the conversation surrounding it in a way that announces the good news of God’s love to the rest of the community during the Thursday afternoon’s large group. The Kairos small groups are asked to live with the text as they work on their proclamation throughout the week, diving into it through conversation and planning to find the nuances of the word. This year small groups presented to the Kairos community an exciting variety of presentations, from humorous skits featuring elaborate handmade costumes to presenting handcrafted tokens to the Kairos community that small group members felt best reflected the meaning of their passage.
On Wednesday night it has become a tradition to hold a service called “Prayer around the Cross”. This service provides Kairos Community an opportunity to meditate, pray, and sing with others around a wooden cross laying in the center of the chapel. During this service the community is invited to write on the cross on the floor. Some of the concerns brought to the cross are visible, some kept hidden, and others only known to God. During this service the Kairos community also has the opportunity to go up to the pastors at the event for prayers and absolution.
During the week Assistant to the Bishop, The Rev. Kelly Bayer Derrick as well as Bishop Humphrey both visited the Kairos community. Pastor Kelly shared with the Kairos Community that she is a resource for those considering a call to ministry, as well as an advocate for justice with groups like Tapestry, VICPP, World Hunger, and other ELCA justice initiatives. While speaking to the youth, Bishop Humphrey lifted up the ForwardingFaith campaign which has been ongoing in congregations across the Synod. Many with many adult leaders, pastors who are present for Kairos are proof of the value of faith formation events, as they return to serve following their own valuable experiences at Virginia Synod youth events.
This year’s Kairos was filled with laughter, joy, worship, and deep conversation that encouraged participants to reflect on their faith life, daily stresses that test our faith, and the gift of God’s peace and joy in our lives. If you had youth, adult leaders, or a pastor present during Kairos, ask them about their week! They’re sure to have many stories to share about their time spent together, “Faithside Out”.
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
Lutheran Disaster Response: U.S. Wildfires
Intense heat in the western United States has fueled a number of wildfires. The Carr fire in Shasta County of Northern California has been particularly dangerous. So far, the fire has claimed six lives, with seven people missing, more than 95,000 acres burned, more than 1,000 homes destroyed and 38,000 people evacuated.

Lutheran Disaster Response is working with Lutheran Social Services of Northern California and the Sierra Pacific Synod to respond to this fire. As the fire is still raging, we continue to assess the ever changing situations to determine the best ways to respond. Your gifts will help us deliver a robust response to address needs in the devastated communities.

Gifts to Lutheran Disaster Response designated for "U.S. wildfires" will be used to help those affected by wildfires until the response is complete. Together, we can help provide immediate and long-lasting support. Give today to support this response and others like it.

Please pray for the people who have been affected by wildfires in California. May God's healing presence give them peace and hope in their time of need. Pray that God will deliver comfort to those who mourn the loss of loved ones and strength to those who are working diligently to contain the fires and care for affected communities.

Gifts to " U.S. Wildfires " will be used to assist those affected by the wildfires until the response is complete.
Fall 2018 ACTS Course
This year's spring ACTS course will be held October 20th and November 10th at Grace Evangelical Lutheran in Waynesboro (or at two Simulcast locations). The Rev. Dr. Timothy Wengert will present on Lutheran Confessions.

For more information on the Fall ACTS course and to register for this fall's course,  clic k here .
Goodness & Mystery
Illustrating Faith with Fabric
A liturgical art display from Studio Three 17, Goodness & Mystery will be held on Sunday, August 26 from 10 AM to 4 PM located at the Woltz Pavilion at the Godfrey Miller House
28 South Loudoun St. Winchester, VA 22601.

There you can meet the artist, Norma Fredrickson and browse a display of stoles, paraments, and art for beyond the sanctuary.
Introducing Three Sides Podcast
Three Sides is a monthly podcast featuring stories from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). As a church that believes God is calling us into the world – together, Three Sides will present diverse voices from across the ELCA.  Listen as we share unique stories from across this church.
 
In our  introductory episode , Shanna Crawford, Philip LaDeur and Andrew Steele talk about why they’re excited to co-host the ELCA’s new podcast. Our hosts also give listeners a sneak peek of the first episode, “Women who lead,” which launches in August.

To subscribe and listen today, click here.
Reflect, Renew, Recommit Seminar
September 24-29, 2018
Reflect, Renew, Recommit (3R) , a week long discernment retreat will be offered September 24-29, 2018 at Lutheranch in Tallapoosa, GA.  This experience creates a safe place for rostered leaders and spouses to process, share, worship, embrace prayer practices, use tools for vocational support, and discover a newfound community.   If you know a leader that might find this retreat helpful, please invite them prayerfully to consider attending. 
 
The total cost to attend is $1100. Synods will be asked to support leaders in sharing the by contributing $550 toward their tuition. Participants will contribute $550 and spouses an additional $300.
 
For more information please contact: Tiffany Pieters, 3R Registrar, at  tiffany@scsynod.com  before August 15. If you have questions about the week, please reach out to Tammy Devine ( tdevine@porticobenefits.org ).

To see the 3R informational brochure, click here. To register for the event click here.
2019 Impact Grants—Apply Now!
Impact1890—A National Lutheran Program is pleased to announce the availability of Impact grants for the 2019 year. Each year, Impact1890 awards grants to non-profit organizations that share in the same passion of serving seniors, particularly those who are aging in place in Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia. All grants must address at least one of the following urgent needs faced by seniors:

  • Social isolation
  • Transportation
  • Housing
  • Navigating and accessing health care and social services
  • Chronic disease management
  • Dealing with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and memory loss

Does your organization qualify? Proposals will be accepted June 1, 2018 – August 15, 2018. To learn more about the submission of grant proposals visit www.impact1890.org. Questions? Contact us at grants@impact1890.org or 301-354-2703 and ask for Impact1890.

To download a flyer with info on Impact1890's Impact grants, click here.
Strategy Survey on HIV and AIDS
The ELCA Strategy on HIV and AIDS wants to hear from you and has put together a survey to better understand the many ministries of congregations and organizations as they relate to health and specifically around the response to HIV/AIDS. Please consider taking a few minutes to share more about ministry in your congregation or organization and help inform the work around the ELCA's Strategy on HIV and AIDS. To take the survey, click here .
Job Opportunities
Part-Time Organist/Pianist at St. Timothy Lutheran
St. Timothy Lutheran is a small congregation located in Vinton. We have an immediate opening for a Part-Time Organist/Pianist. The position requires playing for an 11:00 a.m., Sunday worship service and monthly music planning with the Pastor. Weekly choir rehearsal is desired but negotiable; no choir during the summer months.

All inquires may be made at sttimothy1201@verizon.net or by contacting the church office at 540-342-1715.
Prison Chaplain
Do you know someone who might be called by God to serve as our next Chaplain at Marion Correctional Treatment Center? Would you help us find the ONE? Please help us by spreading the news - just ten hours a week!

To learn more, click here .
Part-Time Coordinator of Programs, St. Luke Lutheran Church in Richmond
St. Luke Lutheran Church in Richmond, Virginia is recruiting a Part-Time Coordinator of Programs. The Coordinator of Programs is a person of committed faith, with a passion to further the ministry of
St. Luke through intergenerational programming. This position is responsible for the creation, development, and implementation of programming, with one special focus on the needs of younger members, young adults, young couples and families and a second special focus on seniors which includes but is not limited to Education, Fellowship and Outreach.

For a complete position description, and information on how to apply, click here.
ELCA Hunger Advocacy Fellow- Washington, DC
Through the support of ELCA World Hunger, ELCA Advocacy works to end hunger by engaging directly with local, state and national governments and equipping people of faith to seek justice through advocacy. 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 2018 Hunger Advocacy Fellow is a full-time contract employee (with benefits) of the ELCA Advocacy office in Washington D.C. The Fellow will serve as a member of the ELCA Advocacy national staff team.

Focusing on analyzing and addressing the root causes of hunger and economic injustice, and promoting a holistic approach to hunger ministry, the Hunger Advocacy Fellow will build ELCA World Hunger capacity to end hunger by deepening and expanding Lutheran advocacy efforts in synods, coalitions and networks.

For a complete job description, and to apply for this position, click here.
If you have a position opening you would like posted, please email Emily Pilat at  pilat@vasynod.org