July 8, 2021
Covid-19 Community Memorial

Four churches, working in collaboration, Bethel Lutheran, First United Methodist, Grace Episcopal, and St. John’s Lutheran are planning a wide-open public service of mourning, celebration, and remembering our faithful departed during the pandemic. 
It will take place on the lawn at the State Capitol in Madison at 5pm on Sunday, July 11. Open to all members of these churches and all members of the public. We will remember, pray, sing, release butterflies into the air, and hear from the mayor of Madison.
Begin Planning for the 2022 ELCA Youth Gathering
Save the Date!
Are you ready to begin planning for the 2022 ELCA Youth Gathering next summer? Every three years, 30,000 high school youth (those in 8th-12th grades in the 2021-22 school year) and their adult leaders from across the ELCA gather for a week of faith formation known as the ELCA Youth Gathering. Through days spent in interactive learning, worship, Bible study, service and fellowship, young people grow in faith and are challenged and inspired to live their faith in their daily lives.
Registration will open in September and we want you to be ready! We will be holding one more informational meeting for congregational leaders introducing them to the 2022 ELCA Youth Gathering and providing insights to begin preparing their congregations. This training will be held in a hybrid format both in-person AND via Zoom:
Wednesday, July 14, 2021 @ 6pm at St. Luke's Lutheran Church in Middleton
To RSVP for the meeting please click below:
If you have questions please reach out to our Gathering Synod Coordinator:
Pastor Jason Poole-Xiong
(608) 362-0716, ext. 104
July 20 at 2:00 p.m.

Living in the new "Normal" now what?
A conversation with colleagues about what congregations are doing,
how they are feeling and what we can do to help.
All are invited!

What is diakonia®?
  • The diakonia® program consists of 12 different, five week courses. Classes are held via distance learning technology from the convenience of your home with an instructor and other students using your computer and internet connection. Classes meet once a week for three hours.
  • Students may participate in 1 to 6 courses a year. Upon successful completion of all 12 courses, students are invited to participate in a graduation ceremony.
  • Courses are taught by pastors and/or lay professionals particularly skilled in that area of instruction or ministry.
  • Classes combine theological knowledge with practical skills. Assignments and readings aim to be relevant while also developing a solid background on the topic.

Is diakonia® Right for You? Ask yourself:
  • Are you looking for a deeper faith life?
  • Have you been wondering what God has in mind for you?
  • Do you want to be better equipped for Christian service?
If you answered, “Yes” to any of these questions, diakonia® may be just what you’re looking for!

Registration is now open with classes starting in September.

If you are interested in teaching a diakonia course(s) or are a returning instructor please click HERE to indicate your interest and availability for our courses.
Internal Controls Webinar
 Is your church practicing good financial internal controls?
Is your church above reproach?
Whether you are unsure or confident in your church’s internal controls, it is always wise to learn how to strengthen your church’s financial internal controls. Join Converge Great Lakes for this in-depth series on Internal Controls, presented by Melodi Bunting of Wegner CPA’s.
Date: Every Wednesday beginning July 21 to August 18, 2021
Time: 6:00 p.m. CST
Cost: Free to CGL district churches
 $10 for out of district churches
Who Should Attend: Pastors, Treasurers, Financial Secretaries, Elders/Trustees, Church Leaders

Topics discussed will be: Above Reproach (7/21), Assessing Potential Risks (7/28), Internal Control Framework (8/4), Policies & Procedures (8/11), Application Examples (8/18).
 Contact Sarah Motiff
608.244.5000 (ext. 705)

Click on the link below to register for this event.
Care for God's Creation/ELCA World Hunger Team
  • Rev. Cindy Crane, Luther Memorial (Madison, WI)
  • Jane Harrison, First English (Platteville, WI)

  • Pastor Karen Hofstad and Members of St. Paul’s Evangelical (Baraboo, WI)
  • Pastor Holly Slater and Members of St. Paul’s Liberty (Deerfield, WI)

  • Bishop Andy Taylor, the Staff, and the congregations of the Pacifica Synod

Churchwide Partners:
  • Mr. Willie Langdji, Regional Rep, Madagascar, West Central Africa Area, Global Mission
  • Ms. Anne R. Langdji, Regional Rep, Madagascar, West Central Africa Area, Global Mission

We give thanks at this time for the ministry of those who celebrate their anniversary of ordination during this coming week:
  • Laurine Skrenes, July 11,1977, Retired Deacon living in Sun Prairie, WI
  • Kathy Jacobson, July 13, 2003, Retired Pastor living in Dodgeville, WI katbadger79@gmail.com 
  • Raimie Bakken, July 13, 2003, ELCA Call Region 5 Candidacy Leadership Manager, living in Cambridge, WI ramie.bakken@gmail.com
  • Larry Pinnow, July 14, 1963, Retired Pastor living in Madison, WI larry.pinnow@gmail.com

May these leaders continue to be blessed for service!
Synod Quick Links
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As always we would love for you to continue to share your news. If you have something you would like considered for publication in What Matters, send it to us via email to Stephanie Bill, Communications Manager at stephanieb@scsw-elca.org. The deadline for consideration of inclusion in the current weeks e-newsletter is 12:00 p.m. (CT) on Wednesday.
Care - Connect - Equip