June 19, 2019
A Reconciling in Christ synod
Claiming our Gifts: Radical Hospitality at the Border
During Synod Assembly, Bishop Jim reflected on our call as Lutheran Christians to accompany those seeking refuge in the US, and our Border and Immigration ministries we celebrated for their ministry. We are Christ's Church, Better Together indeed!
Together in Welcome: A letter encouraging accompanying refugees and migrants
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

The gospels recount the story of Jesus as a migrant, in need of welcome and reception. And Jesus identifies with every wanderer, every displaced person, every refugee, asylum seeker and migrant, when he tells the crowd, “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” (Matthew 25:35). For 80 years, Lutherans in the United States have joined together to respond to God’s call to love the neighbor who comes to us as stranger and sojourner. Since 1939, LIRS (Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service) has led the Lutheran movement to welcome vulnerable migrants and refugees in America. Together we have equipped and supported over half a million new Americans, while advocating boldly for policies that protect those we serve. Meanwhile, as part of the AMMPARO strategy, 128 welcoming and sanctuary congregations in 35 synods of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America have committed to offering accompaniment to migrants in their communities.

This year’s Migrant and Refugee Sunday, which can be observed on any Sunday, comes at a critical moment in our nation’s history for welcoming the stranger. We are shutting our doors to refugees during the worst global migration crisis in recorded history. And we are jailing and separating mothers and children who are fleeing horrible situations in their home countries, seeking refuge at our borders. Each of these people, we know, is a beloved child of God; each of them is the stranger in whom we see the face of Jesus. And in each of them we are reminded of our calling to be bearers of welcome and hope as we receive the stranger among us.

During this critical and unsettling time for migrants and refugees, we must live boldly into our Lutheran faith tradition and our legacy of courageous and compassionate welcome for those who seek refuge in our communities. Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America invite you to visit www.lirs.org/migrant-refugee-sunday and www.elca.org/ammparo for resources to support your congregation’s ministry of welcome. There you will find materials for preaching, prayers, bulletin inserts, study guides, and ideas for community gatherings and advocacy actions. These materials are seasonal, based on the Revised Common Lectionary, and are updated throughout the church year. We encourage you to explore these materials to determine how they can best support your congregation’s response to Christ’s call to welcome the stranger.

As you proclaim God’s care for the most vulnerable, pray for those whose lives are uprooted, and interact with migrants and refugees in your communities, we pray that you experience grace and hope in welcoming the stranger, in welcoming Christ our Lord.

Together in Welcome,

Krish O’Mara Vignarajah, President & CEO of LIRS
Elizabeth A. Eaton, Presiding Bishop of the ELCA

eConnection Spotlight:
RMS in the Neighborhood
Lutheran and Episcopal ministries in Albuquerque and Denver were present at Pride to proclaim God's unconditional love, offer radical welcome, and share free hugs! 
Thanks for being present: Lutheran Campus Ministry UNM, All Saints Lutheran Albuquerque, St. Paul Lutheran Albuquerque, Lutheran Campus Ministry in Ft Collins, Mt Calvary Lutheran Boulder, St Paul Community of Faith Denver, Trinity Episcopal Greeley, Christ the Servant Lutheran Louisville, Holy Trinity Lutheran Littleton, Centennial Lutheran Englewood, St Timothys Episcopal , Auraria Campus Ministry, St Pauls Episcopal Lakewood, Atonement Lutheran Lakewood, Bethany Lutheran Cherry Hills Village, St Andrews Episcopal Denver, Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp, Highlands Lutheran Denver, Epiphany Lutheran Denver, Holy Comforter Episcopal Broomfield, St John’s Cathedral Denver, and staff at the Episcopal Church in Colorado and the Rocky Mountain Synod. 

Christ's Church, Better Together!
RMS-ELCA News and Events
Church Together Ambassador Check-in!
Wondering how to use the toolkit?  Have questions or need some ideas? Have a great idea you want to share?

Join Deacon Erin for one of two Zoom conversations to share best practices or ask you questions!

Monday, July 1, 5:00pm
Join Zoom Meeting
Or join by phone:
    +1 669 900 6833
Meeting ID: 669 065 204

Friday July 12, 1:00pm
Join Zoom Meeting
Or join by phone:
    +1 669 900 6833
Meeting ID: 128 489 081

If you can't make it for either conversation, you are welcome to reply to this email with questions/comments, or call Deacon Erin at 303-777-6700 to chat!
Celebrating our commitment to ministry!
As of March 31, our total raised is $235 million, including $185 million in cash and multi-year commitments and $50 million in planned gifts for campaign ministries. From Senegal to Cambodia, South Sudan to North Dakota, the generosity and support of ELCA members and congregations is making a difference in the lives of people around the world. Thanks be to God!
We hope to do even more together before the campaign’s conclusion on June 30. We need your help in driving toward the successful completion of this effort as we continue to grow and transform these ministries for years to come. 
Here are a few ways you can help in this last month of the campaign:

  • Consider making an initial or additional gift to one or more campaign ministries. Key priority areas that have momentum and are near their financial goals include: 
  • ELCA World Hunger: As of March 31, we are at 96.5% of our $115-million goal for ELCA World Hunger. This is the largest component of the campaign, making up nearly 60% of our total fundraising goal.
  • International Women Leaders: launched as a new initiative of the campaign, International Women Leaders is at 83% of its $4-million goal. 
  • Young Adults in Global Mission: with more than $5.5 million in cash and commitments, less than $500,000 is needed to reach this program’s five-year goal.
  • Share the campaign with your congregation, friends and family. Use the campaign video to spread the word.
  • Continue to pray for the ministries and work of this campaign.

We are Christ's Church, Better Together for the sake of the world!
Excellence in Leadership is focusing on five schools of thought/thinkers to engage our imaginations for effective and meaningful leadership in the church and in our lives. Last week we introduced one, Emotional Intelligence. Here is a short synopsis of another, Family Systems Theory :

  • We are all part of numerous systems – jobs, churches, families. They cannot be avoided because this is the way the world is ordered. In these systems, there are numerous complex emotional interactions that happen and many roles in which we function within each system. Any time there is a change in the way that one unit in the system functions, it impacts everyone else and causes some sort of unrest. This is a natural process.

  • When we understand and can name the interactions, reactions, and connections within our systems, we can also have a more informed interaction and reaction to it ourselves. Excellence in Leadership seeks to help the participants become more aware of their systems so that they may not only become more self-aware, but also may be able to lead and guide those within their systems through difficult times.

Throughout this two-year program we will focus on the four quadrants of emotional intelligence – self-awareness, self-control, community awareness, and community management. In this time we will be spend time in prayer, discussion, engagement, and exercises in order to increase our intelligence in all four of these areas. These will be the markers on our map of our own personal transformation in order that we may make a difference in the world as emotionally intelligent people and leaders. 

Visit the EIL website here and to register go here .
For more information contact Dana Anderson at danderson@rmselca.org .
RMS Digital Book Discussion Series
Across our Rocky Mountain Synod we gather in many ways. Our changing church, growing technological capacity, and creative questions are leading us to consider how we gather as the Church Together, what matters, and what new opportunities we might explore:
  • How do we gather and why does it matter?
  • What does it mean to create community in a digital world?
  • What makes a gathering meaningful, impactful, and transformational?
  • How do we create gatherings that are transformational, both as a synod and in our local ministries?
  • What makes a gathering meaningful, impactful, and transformational?
  • What might we need to be doing differently? What are the essential elements in being the Church Together? 
Four will books to guide our conversation:
How will we gather for conversation?
  • An on-going conversation via a digital discussion board on Basecamp
  • Live conversations via ZOOM
  • In-person conversations at the fall Theological Conference
  • Invite Deacon Erin Power to an adult forum, Bible Study, or small group in your congregation or ministry!

Visit the website for more information and to sign-up! Join for 1, 2, or all of the books!
World Refugee Day: An Invitation to Follow - Lutheran...

Nearly 69 million people have been forcibly displaced from their homes by violence, poverty, war, discrimination and marginalization, natural disasters and the effects of climate change. This year, for World Refugee Day - the international...

Read more
Office of the Bishop Summer Hours
The Office of the Bishop will be open Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. On Friday the hours are 9:00 a.m. to noon.
For Your Bulletin

Rev. Wade Brinkopf
Bethlehem, Brush, CO
2:00 p.m., Sunday, June 30
Color of the day: Green
RMS Prayer Cycle

JUNE 2019

- Week of June 23 -

King of Kings - Pueblo, CO
Phil Kettering (Interim)

Mount Calvary - Colorado Springs, CO
Kevin Cho

Prince of Peace - Colorado Springs, CO
Dave Cruson

Shepherd of the Hills - Cañon City, CO
Randy Mundt (Interim)

St. Paul - Calhan, CO
Harvey Johnson (Interim)

Join us in daily prayer:
Download  ELCA Prayer Ventures  for daily guides to prayer for the global, social and outreach ministries of the ELCA, as well as for the needs and circumstances of our neighbors, communities and world. 
Sunday, June 23
Second Sunday after Pentecost
Prayer of the Day

O Lord God, we bring before you the cries of a sorrowing world. In your mercy set us free from the chains that bind us, and defend us from everything that is evil, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

In God's Hands: Ecumenical Prayer Cycle from the World Council of Churches

23 - 29 June Kenya, Tanzania - Intercessions and Prayers
Around the Synod
Ken Caryl Concerts presents "An All-American Evening"
Wednesday, June 26, 7:00 p.m.
Join us at St. Philip for an evening of folk, classical, patriotic and rock songs celebrating America and American composers performed by Kristen Celusniak (voice) , Bryan Chuan (piano), Karen Donaho (flute), Don Williams (trumpet), the Ken Caryl Concerts Children's Choir and special guest the Tivoli Brass Band.

This is a free concert and family friendly. Apple pie and ice cream will be served following the performance. Donations benefit future concerts and Piano Pathways of Colorado .
For more information visit: http://www.stphilip-co.org/concerts/
Fine Arts Academy for grades 5 and up
Monday, July 8, 2019 through Thursday, July 11, 2019 each day
July 8-11, 2019 from 12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
5th Grade and Older

Come explore your creativity! Each student will participate in Music and Bible Theme classes, as well as two electives. Electives include Creation Art, Handbells, Quilting, Watercolor, and Woodworking. Each class is led by qualified adults who are passionate about sharing their artistic gifts with others. Students share their creations at an evening program on Thursday, July 11.
Cost is $40 per participant, $30 per each additional participant. Visit website here, register to attend or volunteer here!

For additional information contact Johanna Buchholz at jbuchholz@stphilip-co.org.
Our Life Together
Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains welcomes new CEO, James Horan!
This month will be the last for outgoing president and CEO Jim Barclay at Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains . Jim has served this ministry faithfully since 2001, and we will miss his leadership while knowing that he'll continue to be a part of the throng of supporters that makes LFS' work possible. We look forward to welcoming incoming CEO James Horan!

LFS is a leading provider of critical social services in Colorado, New Mexico and beyond, including adoption, foster care, respite care, older adult services, refugee resettlement, and more. Jim Barclay was recognized publicly for his service at the Rocky Mountain Synod Assembly in Albuquerque last month, and LFS was honored for its emergency relief work for asylum seekers along with border congregations in New Mexico and El Paso, Texas.
Urban Servant Corps: Emeritus
We eagerly announce this opportunity to apply to Urban Servant Corps: Emeritus

This program is intended to "match the joy of freedom with the need for purpose" in your emeritus, golden, encore, retirement years!
We are now accepting applications for folks interested in a part-time (16 hours per week) volunteer position who will serve at a Denver non-profit organization that matches the gifts and interests of each individual. Participants will also engage with a community cohort for faithful reflection and conversations around social justice issues during this year-long commitment of service AND will overlap with the current young adult USC program for some inter-generational connection! See more information at here!
Resource Corner
check back each week for a new or featured resource for your congregation
Stewardship Toolkit for Congregations - July 2019
Here's the July 2019 "Stewardship Toolkit" brought to you by Rev. Rob Blezard, Assistant to the Bishop Lower Susquehanna Synod.

In recognition of Independence Day, July's theme is "Stewardship of our civic freedoms." It contains an original newsletter article and RCL-based "stewardship snippets" that congregations can cut and paste into their publications. It also has web resources to help you further explore the theme.

Click  here to download your toolkit  !
RMS Part-Time Ministry Guidelines are now available
The Rocky Mountain Synod has provided Part-Time Ministry Guidelines, prepared by the RMS Congregational Ministries Board and the Part-Time Ministry Steering Team, and adopted by the Synod Council on May 2, 2019, as a guide and resource. Because each ministry context is different, and the ministry needs of each congregation will vary, we hope it will encourage comprehensive, thoughtful discussion among all parties involved towards the goal of establishing and sustaining effective part-time ministry.
Employment Opportunities
New Listings 
Executive Administrator
Rocky Mountain Synod, Office of the Bishop - Denver, CO
The Rocky Mountain Synod Office of the Bishop is seeking applicants for the position of Executive Administrator. The Executive Administrator serves alongside ten other members of synod staff. Primary duties include offering support for synod Bishop and supporting staff in the areas of Congregation Transition, Candidacy, Event Support, and Roster Maintenance. Additional duties include general office management and hospitality. A Provisional Job Description, subject to change, is available here. This is a full-time position with benefits.

Resume’s and a cover letter should be submitted to Rev. Kent Mueller, kmueller@rmselca.org, by July 20. The approximate start date is October 1.
Faith Community Nurse (Parish Nurse)
Augustana Lutheran Church - Denver, CO
Augustana Lutheran Church in Denver is seeking a spiritually mature, experienced registered nurse to fill a continuing part-time (60%–75%) Faith Community Nurse (formerly Parish Nurse) position. The person works closely with the pastoral and program staff in a shared ministry relationship. Minimum qualifications include RN license, baccalaureate degree in nursing (master’s preferred), and five years of professional experience. Educational preparation and experience in parish nursing highly desirable. A full position description is available here, or online here
All Non-Rostered Listings 
Executive Administrator
Rocky Mountain Synod, Office of the Bishop - Denver, CO

Faith Community Nurse (Parish Nurse)
Augustana Lutheran Church - Denver, CO

Communication Specialist (part-time)
Well of Hope Worshipping Community - Castle Rock, CO

Youth Ministry Coordinator (part-time)
Well of Hope Worshipping Community - Castle Rock, CO

Children, Youth, Family & Outreach Minister
Evergreen Lutheran Church - Evergreen, CO

Community Relations and Special Events Coordinator
Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains - Denver, CO

Peace in Christ Episcopal Lutheran Ministry - Elizabeth, CO

Preschool Teachers & Aides
Let Me Shine Christian Preschool - Salt Lake City, UT

Choir Director (part-time)
Zion Lutheran Church - Salt Lake City, UT

Faith Formation Coordinator for Children & Families
Atonement Lutheran Church - Boulder, CO
Office of the Bishop This Week
  Bishop Jim Gonia
  • Sabbatical until August 5

Pastor Matt Barnhouse
  • Region 2 Mobility Conference,Glendale, CA
  • HKBP Denver, CO
  • Vacation June 24-27

Ruth Hoffman
  • Invest in Kids Now
  • NM Assoc of Food Banks

Peter Severson
  • Colorado Social Legislation Committee
  • Shepherd of the Valley, Grand Junction, CO

Tina Kvitek
  • Christ the King, Denver, CO
  • 1-1 Appointments
Pastor Sarah Moening
  • Region 2 Mobility Conference, Glendale, CA
  • St. Stephen, Northglenn, CO
  • Continuing Ed, June 24-27

Pastor Kent Mueller (1/2 time)
  • Vacation June 13-23
  • Conference Deans Meeting
  • Part-time ministry Team

Deacon Erin Power
  • RMS Communications
  • Theological Conference Planning
  • Conference Deans Meeting

Pastor Leslie Welton
  • Safe Haven Training, Casper, WY
  • King of Glory, Arvada, CO
  • Conference Deans Meeting
Quick Links
Share the News
Erin Power ,   Assistant to the Bishop
Feel free to contact Andrew Nakatan i , Communications Assistant, with your questions, comments, or concerns about eConnection or our website!

Rocky Mountain Synod  
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
800-525-0462 / 303-777-6700 / fax 303-339-4744

Submissions are due noon Monday each week and will run for about two weeks.
Past issues of eConnection may be found here .