Preserving the Collective Memory of this Church
This article comes from the ELCA publication Stories of Faith in Action, a free annual publication that highlights how God is changing lives through the ministries funded by your congregation's unrestricted offering of Mission Support which is shared with our Synod and the ELCA churchwide organization. Together, we serve God's people across the United States and around the world through our 9,300 congregations, 65 synods, and one churchwide organization.
At the ELCA Archives, we routinely receive phone calls or emails from ELCA congregations or their members. The requests are varied but members are usually seeking guidance, advice or information about either their congregation’s history or its own records and archives. The reasons they contact us are as varied as the questions they ask: their congregation is celebrating a milestone anniversary and needs information on its history; a congregation is merging or closing and has questions about what to archive; staff call with questions about recording information in the parish register or
how long they need to retain offering envelopes. On occasion, a member has a historical record—a book, pamphlet or photograph—to donate because it’s something that documents the history and ministry of one of the ELCA’s predecessor church bodies.
Connecting with ELCA congregations is one of the best aspects of my work. Providing information, advice or guidance, or accepting a donation of historical material to add to our collection represents a partnership we have with congregations and their members. I see us working toward the same goal—to preserve the collective memory of this church. These records are a witness to our joys and sorrows, our faith stories, our mission at work in the world, our beginnings and endings, and ultimately our hopes and aspirations for this church. Together we continue our work of sharing a message of God’s grace.

— Cathy Lundeen, ELCA archivist, Chicago
  To read more from Stories of Faith in Action, and to learn more about Mission Support  click here
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Winter Celebration 2017
Winter Celebration is our annual weekend retreat for youth in grades 9 through 12 and their adult advisers.  We have Large Group gatherings that consist of singing, energy, comedy, worship and a presentation on our event theme. After each Large Group gathering, each person is part of a Small Group made up of youth and a couple adult leaders where participants will get to know other Lutheran youth from Virginia and discuss life, faith and other topics that arise throughout the weekend.

For more information, and to register for Winter Celebration  click here
Virginia Synod Bishop Election Feedback Requested
It is an exciting time in our synod as we approach the election of a new bishop at our 2017 Synod Assembly. Many of you already know that Bishop Mauney has announced his retirement next year and, so, we are preparing for the tenure of a new leader. 
We need the help of congregational members and leaders - that's you! In much the same way as we prepare to call a new pastor in our congregations, we want to prepare to call a new bishop with as much attention and prayer as possible. 
These survey results will be helpful for those who are potential nominees, which are determined by ecclesial ballot, to know how we see the ministry needs in our synod. It will also help the 2017 Synod Assembly voting members to know the mind of the Virginia church as they enter into the election process.  
To begin the survey click here
Virginia Interfaith Center For Public Policy's Day for All People in Richmond, Virginia
The Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy will hold its annual Day for All People when people from across the state visit their legislators in the General Assembly on Wednesday, January 25. The event will start with registration at Centenary United Methodist Church.

Participants will be able to see the Assembly in session and to visit their delegate or senator. They will hear from experts in important areas of legislative action and meet
supporters of the advocacy work of the Interfaith Center.

Registration, covering breakfast and lunch and the all-day event is $30. Student registration is $15.

To complete your registration online click here  
Reformation 500 Observances
As the second oldest Lutheran college in the USA, the mission statement of Roanoke College declares that we "honor our Christian heritage by nurturing a dialogue between faith and reason." In this spirit, Roanoke College announces a series of special academic events from late 2016 through the anniversary year 2017 in commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and in coordination with the 175th anniversary of the college's founding.

For more information on this and future events from Roanoke College celebrating the Reformation click here
2017 YAGM Application 
Imagine, for a moment, stepping into an experience that will transform your life. A year dedicated to serving others, experiencing a new culture and living in deep mutual relationship.

If you or a loved one are between the ages of 21-29, consider applying to the ELCA Young Adults in Global Mission (YAGM) program, a one-year, international, faith-based service opportunity in one of 11 country programs around the world.

The YAGM application is live and ready! Online applications can be found at , and are due Feb. 15, for service beginning in Aug. 2017.

For questions, please contact or call 773-380-2562
7th Day 2017

7th Day is our annual overnight event for youth in 5th and 6th grades and their adult advisors. During the weekend participants are part if a “Shepherd Group” with other youth and adult leaders and explore a story of the Bible through drama, games, crafts, and music. In the evening youth and adults will have time to relax in their Cottages with their congregation and other congregations from Virginia and discuss how 7th Day is going.

For more information, and to register for 7th Day click here
Register Now for the Spring 2017 ACTS Course
Join us March 11th and April 1st at Grace Evangelical Lutheran in Waynesboro (or at two Simulcast locations). Hear Rev. Dave Delaney present an introduction to the Old Testament, providing participants a broad view of the history of Ancient Israel and how their scriptures came to be.

For more information, and to register for the Spring ACTS course, click here
Theology For Teens at Roanoke College: Save the Date
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
This week-long summer program introduces teens to biblical and theological scholarship, explores contemporary challenges, and how their faith tradition can meet those challenges.

For more information on this event, please contact Dr. Ned Wisnefske at
Job Opportunities
Philanthropy Director Winchester, VA
All job postings can also be found online at . If you have a position opening you would like posted, please email Emily Pilat at