July 24, 2019
A Reconciling in Christ synod
In two weeks, voting members will convene Aug. 5-10 for the  2019 ELCA Churchwide Assembly  at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee. This will be the 15th gathering of the assembly, the primary decision-making body of the ELCA. This year’s theme is “We are church,” and voting members will spend the week participating in plenaries, discussions, Bible studies and worship while deliberating the work of the church.

This year, voting members will:

  • Elect the presiding bishop and secretary. Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton, elected in 2013, is seeking re-election to a six-year term. Secretary Chris Boerger, elected in 2013, is retiring after this term. The secretary is elected to a six-year term.
  • Act on “Faith, Sexism and Justice: A Lutheran Call to Action.” The proposed social statement covers a range of issues in which the ELCA is called to action, including gender-based violence, workplace discrimination, economic inequality and more.
  • Act on “A Declaration of Interreligious Commitment: A policy statement of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.” The proposed document underscores the ELCA’s long-standing commitment to interreligious relations and provides a framework for common application and theological reflection across the varied contexts of this church.
  • Vote on proposed budgets for the 2020, 2021 and 2022 fiscal years.
  • Review proposed amendments to the “Constitution, Bylaws and Continuing Resolutions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.”
  • Consider a proposal that the entrance rite for ministers of Word and Service be ordination and to no longer count deacons as laypeople for the representational principles.
  • Act on responses to memorials from synod assemblies.

Also taking place during the assembly will be a celebration for “Always Being Made New: The Campaign for the ELCA,” a program to honor the 50th anniversary of women’s ordination, and an observance of the church’s focus on gun violence awareness.

Watch the livestream of the 15th Churchwide Assembly , Aug. 5 through 10.

More information and updates can be found on the Churchwide Assembly website .
eConnection Spotlight:
RMS in the Neighborhood
Deepening Community Partnerships in El Paso!
We celebrate with the congregation of New Hope, El Paso, TX as they commit to a deeper partnership with a local food pantry:

We the congregation of New Hope Lutheran Church direct our Church Council to negotiate and enter into a long-term lease with our ministry, Katie’s Pantry, for use of the western 27,569.35 sq ft of the property to provide for this ministry. This will include building a building, at no cost to New Hope, and sharing of other space. We also direct that the Council and Katie’s to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding for our mutual ministry.  

Over $250,000 has already been raised in support of the new building for Katie's Pantry!
RMS-ELCA News and Events
Office of the Bishop Eucharist, Wednesday, August 14
Our monthly Eucharist will be held at the Lutheran Center on Wednesday, August 14 at 11:30 a.m.

All are invited to join in this 30 minute worship.
Mediation Skills Training Institute for Church Leaders
August 26 - 30, 2019
Lutheran Center, Glendale, CA
The Bishop's Office of the Southwest California Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) will be hosting the Lombard Mennonite Peace Center's (LMPC) Mediation Skills Training Institute for Church Leaders. 

Conflict is normal and inevitable whether in the home, school, community, church or workplace. Leaders in all walks of life often have a responsibility to help others work through their conflicts. 

The Mediation Skills Training Institute presented by the Lombard Mennonite Peace Center is designed to equip church leaders with the skills necessary to deal effectively with interpersonal, congregational, and other forms of group conflict. The five-day institute also includes a component on congregational mediation and consultation, placed within the context of family systems theory. 

Although focused primarily on the church setting, the skills learned are directly transferable to other settings. Thus managers in business, attorneys, experienced mediators and others in leadership will be enriched by the training as well.

The Mediation Skills Training Institute will be held at the Lutheran Center at 1300 East Colorado Street in Glendale, CA ( map ) from August 26 - 30, 2019. Those registering by July 26 will receive an early bird tuition rate of $695 ($895 for those registering after that date). 

Candidacy Discernment Retreat Day
August 21, 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Are you or someone you know discerning a call to rostered ministry as a deacon or pastor in the ELCA? The Office of the Bishop will be hosting a discernment day for conversation, information, and worship to help answer questions and explain the candidacy journey. 

Cost is $20 and includes lunch. Please RSVP to 303-777-6700 by Aug 5 if you plan to attend. For more information contact Leslie Welton at lwelton@rmselca.org.
Excellence in Leadership - Introducing Theory U
Much has been written about leadership in multiple realms of our society. 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. In past weeks we have introduced Emotional Intelligence, Family Systems Theory, Adaptive Leadership, and Vulnerability. Here is a short synopsis of another of those areas:

Theory U

Change is a fact of life. It is also something that we are often reluctant to do and that is challenging to do smoothly. Dr. C. Otto Scharmer has constructed a framework to help individuals and institutions through this process – for change is more often than not a process and not a sudden occurrence. 

His “Theory U” is grounded in something called Presencing, which is to say being present with the process of what change entails through every step. We must be acutely aware of what is going on within us and within the environment around us in order to effectively move into the future change we are attempting to bring about.

In the program that Excellence in Leadership provides, you will be encouraged to use this process observe your own context and to enact a plan for how you all may meet the future with boldness and integrity.

Visit our website here and sign up today for the Excellence in Leadership program to begin this journey of healthy leadership. Sign up today for Excellence in Leadership. The classes will be starting before you know it!
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
RMS Prayer Cycle

JULY 2019

- Week of July 28 -

Companion Synods in Madagascar
Offering Connections
(to include in your offering portion of worship)
August 4:  Your generosity has been life-changing in the Rocky Mountain Synod. You have supported  all  matching dollar requirements to expend Lilly grant dollars. Your continued generosity means that the blessings of 3E can extend for another 3 years starting in 2020.

August 11:  Your mission support means that 60% of Rocky Mountain Synod congregations will participate in Stewardship for All Seasons, helping change the root culture of stewardship to radical generosity in our giving.

August 18:  Educate, Equip, Enact helps part-time pastors and deacons live out their vocational integrity and find suitable sources of additional income. Because of your support for 3E, we received an additional small grant to design a program assisting part-time rostered ministers and smaller congregations.

August 25: Your financial support for Educate, Equip, Enact has helped send 25 rostered ministers to California Lutheran University’s Executive Skills for Church Leaders course, helping pastors and deacons learn MBA level church management skills.

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, July 28
Seventh Sunday after Pentecost
Prayer of the Day

Almighty and ever-living God, you are always more ready to hear than we are to pray, and you gladly give more than we desire or deserve. Pour upon us your abundant mercy. Forgive us those things that weigh on our conscience, and give us those good things that come only through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

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

28 July - 03 August Republic of Congo, Gabon, Sao Tome and Principe - Intercessions and Prayers
Around the Synod
Friday, July 26 at 5:30 p.m., Saturday, July 27 at 11:00 a.m., and Sunday, July 28 at 12 noon
Featuring Stratus Chamber Orchestra performing music to highlight the "Colors of Summer"

Sit within an orchestra. Sit next to a musician! Come to a FREE Family Summer Concert Event featuring Denver’s very own Stratus Chamber Orchestra July 26, 27 and 28. Splash into Arts at any of the three concert events in Douglas, Adams, and Denver Counties. (no water is involved unless it rains!) The event doesn’t stop with music. Musical Crafts, Life Art Dance Ensemble, Hawkquest (Sat. only), and more will also be there to make the day EXTRAORDINARY! 

This Immersive Concert Event is FREE for EVERYONE and no tickets are required. Bring your Entire Family & Splash into Arts this summer! This concert event is made possible through a grant of the National Endowment for the Arts and Scientific & Cultural Facilities District.
Visit www.AugustanaArts.org for more information.

Friday, July 26, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
19600 Mainstreet
Parker, CO 80138 ( map)
Crafts begin at 5:30 p.m.; Concert at 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. followed by more crafts. 

Saturday, July 27, 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
The Lutheran Center 
7375 Samuel Dr
Denver, CO 80221 ( map)
Crafts begin at 11:00 a.m. Concert at 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. followed by more crafts. 

Sunday, July 28, 12 noon - 2:00 p.m.
Augustana Lutheran Church
5000 E. Alameda Ave.
Denver, CO 80246 ( map)
Crafts begin at 12 noon; Concert at 12:30 p.m. -1:30 p.m. followed by more crafts. 
Impacted by Addiction: Loss and Recovery
Thursday, August 8 at 7:00 p.m.
Have you been impacted by addiction? Someone in your family, extended family, friend, neighbor or yourself? This program will bring three experienced presenters to engage us with about how they have come to know about addiction as well as respond to questions that you bring. Personal testimony, professional insight, both the loss of a loved one from an overdose and a story of recovery from addiction. Jenn is a mom in recovery, Karen is a psychiatrist who focuses on substance use disorder, and Marsha is a mom and author who tells her journey from her son's heroin overdose to her own grieving which leads to hope. 

Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church, 3485 Stanford Court, Boulder ( map )

No cost and resource people and tables with resources present. Presented by the Interfaith Network on Mental Illness (INMI). More info at www.inmi.us.  
Bicycles, Bluegrass, Beer and BBQ a fundraiser for Matthew Weber
Saturday, August 10 at 10:30 a.m.
Join us at Holy Love on August 10 at 10:30 a.m.

Please join us for a bike ride followed by some bluegrass, barbecue and a beer from dry Dock brewery. Together we will celebrate our good friend Matthew and try to raise some money to help cover his medical expenses...

Read more
Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains invites you to...
Lutheran Family Services invites you to their 26th annual golf tournament to raise funds for Adoption Services, Foster Care, Refugee & Asylee Services, Older Adult and Caregiver Services and Prevention Services.

When: August 15th, 2019 at 8:00 a.m. (Shotgun Start) 
Where: Hiwan Golf Club, 30671 Clubhouse Lane, Evergreen, CO 80439 ( map)

We are a human service agency helping children and families during their most challenging times. LFS offers help and hope to all people from the newborn infant to the most elderly person. We strive to accomplish this mission through our programs that assist more than 30,000 individuals annually. Approximately 80% of the people we serve are children.

With your Sponsorship, Foursome or In-Kind donation, we will be able to help more people than ever in 2019. Our golf tournament will include prizes awarded for winning teams, individual contests, Church Cup Competition and $40 Bonus Tickets which includes entry into all contests, two mulligans, prizes and more!

Registration Fees are only $185 per individual and includes green fees, golf cart, polo shirt, breakfast, lunch and more! Put your own team of 4 together or register individually to be placed on a team and make some new friends. Register at HERE . It's sure the be an event you won't "FOREget"!

Contact Jessica Yoss (Community Relations & Special Events Coordinator) at Jessica.Yoss@lfsrm.org with any questions. 
Rick Steves Headlines Bright Stars of Bethlehem Event
Saturday, September 14, 6:30 p.m.
Come celebrate 15 years of raising creative leaders and growing hope in Palestine! at Bethany Lutheran Church, 4500 E Hampden, Cherry Hills Village ( map ).

Funds raised will directly support the work of Bright Stars of Bethlehem and its initiatives through Dar al-Kalima University of Arts and Culture, promoting peace and justice in Palestine through education in the arts and culture.

Rick Steves, travel writer, author, activist and television personality will give a travel show with slides. Travel as a Political Act, the title of Rick Steves’ latest book, will also be the theme of his presentation.

Tickets: $40 in advance; $50 at the door. More information here.
Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Albuquerque presents -
Vacation Bible School for Adults!
August 8-10, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. each day
Holy Cross Lutheran Church, 6901 Wyoming Blvd. NE Albuquerque, NM ( map ), will conduct a Vacation Bible School for Adults August 8-10.

The half-day TED talk type presentations will include tai chi, lectures on sacred music, being Muslim in America, what Jews believe, daily life on the Laguna Pueblo, Lutheran monks, the old testament book of Ecclesiates, and Freedom of Religion and the Supreme Court. All are invited.
Questions? Contact Alexander Wold, J.D. at wold.alexander@gmail.com .
Our Life Together
The Enchanting Rhine 2020 with Guest Speakers Kirsi Stjerna & Brooks Schramm
You are invited to join Lutheran scholars Kirsi Stjerna and Brooks Schramm on The Enchanting Rhine River Cruise in the Fall of 2020, 10/25-11/2/2020.

Our itinerary takes us to Germany, France, and Netherlands. Our program includes exploration and fellowship, learning and enjoyment in a most beautiful setting.

Lectures and discussions pertaining to the regions visited and the topics of religion, reformation, and the bible will be offered. Come solo, come with a friend - or come with a group of your own! Special arrangements and benefits are available for group leaders. Also, Educational Opportunities offers special deals for international airfare, regardless of the departure city.

Interested, questions? Email kstjerna@plts.edu or bschramm79@hotmail.com.
'Greening' initiatives in the summer edition of Covalence

In this combined July/August 2019 issue, Theological Editor George Murphy walks us through the concept of "saintly scientists." Do we recognize such saints? Murphy outlines the criteria and the scientists over the centuries deserving of...

Read more
Resource Corner
check back each week for a new or featured resource for your congregation
Frequently asked questions...
Have you ever wondered?

If you would like additional information or do not find the question you need answered, we invite you to contact the worship staff at  worship@elca.org .

Your Stewardship Toolkit for Congregations - August 2019
Here's the August 2019 "Stewardship Toolkit" brought to you by Rev. Rob Blezard, Assistant to the Bishop Lower Susquehanna Synod.

This month's theme is Deceived by 'the lie of more, looking at how our culture pressures us to seek happiness by endlessly accumulating 'more" … more stuff, more money, more experiences. The result? Instead of finding peace, too many of God's people are miserable and drowning in debt.
Get your Stewardship Toolkit here!
From the July 2019 issue of Administration Matters
Data security — protecting your congregants’ information
Data security is the critical process of protecting your congregation’s confidential information against unauthorized use. Data such as Personal Identifiable Information (PII), Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, banking information and more lie at the heart of the organization. Keeping this data protected demonstrates responsibility and increases donor confidence.

Employment Opportunities
New Listings 
Director of Communications
Bethany Lutheran Church - Cherry Hills Village, CO
Bethany Lutheran Church in Cherry Hills Village, CO is seeking a creative person to manage print and digital communications. Primary responsibilities include weekly worship bulletins and email blasts, seasonal print newsletters, and regular social media and website management. Experience with Office Suite and WordPress are required. This position is 30 hours per week with benefits and a flexible schedule. The ideal candidate enjoys opportunities to be creative in helping us grow our communications network!

For questions, or to submit resume, contact Pastor Gary Sandberg at  gary@bethany-denver.org .
Choir Director (part-time)
Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church - Cañon City, CO
SOTH  has an opening for a choir director, a part-time paid position. Worship is primary to our congregational life, and music is fundamental part of our worship.
The choir director shall select all choral anthems to be sung by the choir. Music should be appropriate for use in the liturgical service and, if possible, follow the theme or the lessons appointed for the day. Musical selections shall be made in consultation with the Pastor whenever possible and given to the organist/accompanist well in advance of their rehearsal and performance dates. Musical selections and practice schedules should be given to the office secretary in advance of the bulletin and newsletter information deadlines. Choral conducting experience is required for this position along with good skills working with choir members.
The start date is flexible, but hopefully in September. This paid position requires 4-6 hours a week. For questions contact Bob Erickson, at   boberick835@gmail.com . Please send resume and cover letter to  sothoffices@gmail.com .
High School Program Director
Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp - Fort Collins, CO
Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp  is hiring a new full-time High School Program Director. The High School Program Director is responsible for coordinating and overseeing all of our high school programming including our High Wilderness backpacking program, our off-site Four Winds service learning programs, and our on-site Rendezvous program. A part of this coordination includes working with the different congregations and groups that will participate in these programs, as well as marketing and outreach for these programs. Job description is available  here . If interested, please send a cover letter and resume to Brad Abbott, Executive Director, at  brad@skyranchcolorado.org .
All Non-Rostered Listings 
Director of Communications
Bethany Lutheran Church - Cherry Hills Village, CO

Choir Director (part-time)
Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church - Cañon City, CO

High School Program Director
Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp - Fort Collins, CO

Executive Director
Spirit in the Desert Retreat Center - Carefree, AZ

Part-Time Music Minister
Holy Cross Lutheran Church - Albuquerque, NM

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
Office of the Bishop This Week
  Bishop Jim Gonia
  • Sabbatical until August 5

Pastor Matt Barnhouse
  • In-office appointments
  • Well of Hope, Castle Rock, CO

Ruth Hoffman
  • Legislative Health & Human Services Committee
  • Organizational appointments

Peter Severson
  • In-office Appointments
  • First, Colorado Springs, CO

Tina Kvitek
  • In-office appointments
  • Vacation
Pastor Sarah Moening
  • Excellence in Leadership Planning
  • Excellence in Leadership Training Event

Pastor Kent Mueller (1/2 time)
  • Lutheran Center Administration
  • Finance Team

Deacon Erin Power
  • Theological Conference Planning
  • Highlands, Denver, CO
  • Assembly Site Visit, El Paso, TX

Pastor Leslie Welton
  • Vacation July 16-29
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 .