A Reconciling in Christ synod
A Christmas Message from Bishop Eaton:  Home for Christmas
RMS-ELCA News and Events
Annual Report Resources
The 2016 Annual Report Cover Page and other resources are now available at the ELCA website:
  • Annual Report Cover (Folder version)
  • Annual Report Cover (Single page version)
  • Where your offering goes (Poster)
  • Where your offering goes (8.5x11)

The Annual Report Cover also includes a message from Bishop Eaton and an opening litany.

The Rocky Mountain Synod insert will be available in early January.

Important Updates for Rostered Ministers!

The 2017 Annual Report to the Bishop forms for Rostered Ministers are now available:

We've already received several rostered minister reports, and they all came back  BLANK. Please pay attention to these instructions:

  1. Go to this webpage to get the form.
  2. Right-click or control-click (on a Mac) on the file you want to use and select "save file" so it gets saved on your computer in a place you can find.
  3. Close the webpage! Don't type your answers in the webpage version! 
  4. Find the file on your computer, and open it in Acrobat or Preview or another .pdf reader.
  5. Fill out a couple lines of the form.  Save it. Close the file. Reopen it to see that the data is being saved correctly.
  6. Finish completing the file and save it.
  7. Find the file on your computer and attach it to an email sent to jladd-horkey@rmselca.org.

New Churchwide Position: Candidacy and Leadership Manager for Regions 1 & 2  
The Candidacy and Leadership Manager is a member of the Domestic Mission Candidacy Team working collaboratively with bishops to mentor, resource and train synod candidacy committees. Their work will be in collaboration with other leadership team members, and may include leadership formation, Assignments, mobility, vocations and recruitment, relate to the Lifelong learning and campus pastor networks to identify and resource the formation processes for people responding to their call to rostered ministry.  This full-time position will be based in the Region 1 or 2 area.
United Lutheran Seminary Launches Presidential Search 

United Lutheran Seminary (ULS), a new graduate and professional school in theological education with deep historical roots, has launched its search for a president. A seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), ULS is a single school with two campuses, consolidating seminaries from Philadelphia and Gettysburg. It will open July 1, 2017. The Board of Trustees seeks a president who will serve as chief executive officer. The successful candidate must possess the exceptional vocational identity, fundraising skills, experience and vision to lead ULS from its inception as it prepares public leaders to serve the church’s ongoing and increasingly challenging mission, and to intentionally foster a diverse institution of faith and learning with strong relationships between ULS and its constituencies and partners. For a position description and full information, visit the United Lutheran Seminary website.

Nominations and letters of application can be sent via secure e-mail until Monday, January 23, 2017. 

Holiday Gifts with Lasting Impact
 ELCA Good Gifts
Still looking for that last minute gift?  ELCA Good Gifts are a creative, meaningful way to support the ministries of the ELCA that mean the most to you and your loved ones. The items in the catalog lift up examples of work being done in different projects and programs supported by funds from the ELCA: the ELCA Fund for Leaders, ELCA Global Church Sponsorship, ELCA New Congregations, ELCA Vision for Mission, ELCA World Hunger and Lutheran Disaster Response. Each of these programs is a long-term, partnership-based ministry that focus on the needs identified by local congregations and global companion churches and their communities.
For Your Bulletin
Bulletin Blurb
Office of the Bishop - Holiday Closing

The Office of the Bishop will be closed from December 23 through January 2.

There will be NO eConnection on December 28.

Harriman Lake Park, Littleton CO
Photo credit:  Bishop Gonia
RMS Prayer Cycle

December 2016
Utah Conference

St. Matthew’s   Salt Lake City, UT
Christine Higuerra-Street

Zion  Salt Lake City, UT
Steve Klemz

The birth of Jesus with shepherds . 
Prayer of the Day: Sunday, December 25
Alleluia! We give thanks and praise to God for the good news of great joy given to all people in the birth of Jesus Christ, the son of God-our light and salvation.

Join us in daily prayer:
Download ELCA Prayer Ventures for daily prayer petitions and resources for Sunday prayers.

Around the Synod
Registration for Colorado Faith Advocacy Day 2017 is now open!
Join advocates and people of faith from across Colorado for this year's event, "Luther at 500: Reclaiming Protest for Today's Public Church." 
Click here for more information. Register your group today!

The Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-Colorado Policy Committee has adopted its 2017 Advocacy Agenda. Our priorities include combating hunger, reducing poverty, supporting access to healthcare and housing, and caring for our environment.
Click here to learn more about our advocacy priorities for the coming year!
Join the Brain Wave to Advocate for Mental Wellness
From Andrew Romanoff, President and CEO of Mental Health Colorado:

Mental Health Colorado is building a statewide network of advocates; we call it the Brain Wave. It’s a team of volunteers, trained not just to debate problems but to solve them. Join the Wave, and you’ll learn what your elected officials are doing to improve or impede access to mental health care, how to shape their decisions, and how to engage the public and the press. In return, we’ll ask you to tell us what’s working — and what’s not — in your own community.

If we’re going to make Colorado a national leader in the prevention and treatment of mental illness, we’ll need more champions. That’s where you come in. Whether you’ve experienced a mental health or substance use disorder or cared for someone who has, you have a stake in this debate. Join the Wave, and together we can bring high-quality mental health care within reach of every Coloradan.

Questions? Send an email to the Rocky Mountain Synod Mental Wellness Team
Longest Night: A Service of Healing and Hope
Augustana Lutheran Church
Wednesday, December 21
Noon or 6:30 p.m. 

You are invited to gather for a worship opportunity at Augustana Lutheran Church in Christ Chapel. During this season that is filled with celebrations and parties, many people have a longing for a quieter time of reflection. During this worship we’ll hear God’s promises in scripture, sing familiar hymns, and have the opportunity for prayers of healing. All are welcome; please invite your friends or neighbors to experience this meaningful service.  
HFASS TO hold Holden Evening Prayer 
House for All Sinners and Saints 
ill sing Holden Evening Prayer
On the 16th Street Mall during Wednesdays  at 6:30 p.m.during Advent, Nov 30; Dec 7, 14, 21 

We will gather at 6:30 p.m. in front of the Hard Rock Cafe at the corner of 16th Street and Glenarm Place. We will then walk to the public piano on the mall between Glenarm and Tremont. All are welcome. Bundle up!

For additional information email Reagan Humber.
"Rebuilding When Your Relationship Ends" Seminar
Mondays, January 9 through March 13, 2017
6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

The 10-week Rebuilding Seminar offers education and support for individuals experiencing a divorce or the loss of a love relationship. Beginning on January 9, 2017, the seminar meets every Monday from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at St. Andrew United Methodist Church, 9203 S University Blvd., Highlands Ranch, CO.

Complimentary child care provided with registration. For more information please contact Beth Walker at 720-352-9915 or send her an email
Catholic-Lutheran Prayer Service at St. Luke Lutheran Church
St. Luke Lutheran Church
9100 Menaul Blvd. NE
Albuquerque, NM 
Sunday, January 29 at 3:00 p.m.

Rocky Mountain Synod Bishop Jim Gonia and Archbishop John Wester of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe will jointly preside at a service of Common Prayer to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation which occurs in 2017. The liturgy will highlight the agreements that have been reached through fifty years of dialogue between Catholics and Lutherans on topics such as the Church, Ministry and the Eucharist.  Members of local Lutheran and Catholic parishes also will share in leading the January 29 service. People of all faith traditions are welcome!

This will be the first of seven joint prayer services around the Rocky Mountain Synod in 2017.
2017 Bishop's Annual Legislative Luncheon & Issues Briefing
Santa Fe, NM
January 31, 2017
You are invited: The morning Issues Briefing will be at the United Church of Santa Fe at 1804 Arroyo Chamiso, near Christ Lutheran Church.  

Registration and refreshments will begin at 9:00 a.m. The Bishop's Legislative Luncheon will be at 12:30 p.m. in La Terraza at La Fonda Hotel (100 East San Francisco).

The cost of the luncheon is $35 per person. The cost is reduced to $30 when 4 or more people attend from your congregation or group. If you are only able to attend the morning Issues Briefing, the cost is $10.

Deadline for reservations is January 27. Please make reservations by calling the Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-NM office at 505.984.8005 or sending an email
For additional information, visit the Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-NM website

Our Life Together
Germany: In the Footsteps of Martin Luther
April 19-28, 2017
One-and-all, including your family and friends, are invited on this post-Easter pilgrimage through Germany and Luther's world, a journey inspiring the traveler to live courageously by faith in this 500th Year of the Reformation. On Saturday evening, the group will attend English worship service at City Church where Martin Luther preached, was married, and baptized his six children. 

Registration is due by December 23, 2016. Check out the trip itinerary, cost, and registration online: Trip number 17043 at www.myfaithjourneys.com. Cost is inclusive from airfare to gratuities, excepting travel insurance which is recommended. 

Contact Julie at Augustana Lutheran Church for more information: via email or 303-388-4678.
Prepare/Enrich Facilitator Training offered at Bethany Lutheran Church, Cherry Hills Village, CO
Friday, February 3, 2017
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 

Prepare/Enrich is the leading relationship inventory and skill building program used by clergy and counselors nationally and internationally. It is used in premarital counseling and marriage enrichment or marriage counseling. This training teaches proficiency in the Prepare/Enrich program and certifies Facilitators to administer the assessment, interpret reports, and give feedback using skill building exercises.

To register or for more information please contact Beth Walker at 720-352-9915, or email, or visit the Prepare/Enrich website.

Rocky Mountain Synodical Women's Organization
Views from the Rockies - December 2016
The December 2016 issue of Views from the Rockies is now available for viewing and download on the Rocky Mountain Synod website. Click on Ministries and then Women. Enjoy the articles and the pictures from the Fall Convention. Mark your calendar for the future events listed in the newsletter. If you would like to receive the newsletter in your personal email, please send your email address to President Anna Thompson. Have a Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year!
Join the Cool Congregations Challenge
Across the country, people of faith are making changes in their homes and places of worship to prevent global warming through the Interfaith Power and Light Cool Congregations program. This unique stewardship program helps congregations engage their members in Creation-care by reducing individual greenhouse gas emissions and helps save hundreds of dollars in the process.

The Cool Congregations program is designed to support faith communities as they “walk the talk” by reducing their own carbon footprint, thus helping to cool the planet. A side benefit of the program is the ‘multiplier effect,’ as congregants are encouraged to model the same energy saving behavior at home that they see at their congregation. Learn more at the Cool Congregations website

Interfaith Power & Light offers both certification and a prize money challenge to exemplary Cool Congregations. IPL’s annual Cool Congregation Challenge is a fun and easy way for congregations to compete for recognition and prize money. Certification is a higher bar, and at present is being offered by invitation only. You can nominate your congregation to receive an invitation for certification by sending an email to programs@interfaithpowerandlight.org.    
Resource Corner
check back each week for a new or featured resource for your congregation
Reconciling Christ Sunday
Many RIC communities celebrate RIC Sunday on the last Sunday in January, while others may celebrate on a date that is meaningful within their own community. Reconciling Works is happy to offer resources to help you celebrate:
  • Worship (Scripture readings, sermon crafting ideas, children's sermon ideas, children's activity, hymn suggestions, prayers of the people, and liturgical options)
  • Children's Bulletin
Sign up for these free resources, and start making your plans to celebrate!

NEW! Rocky Mountain Synod Resource Page
The Rocky Mountain Synod Resource Page on the RMS website hopes to be a one stop shop for resources and ideas to support your ministry:
  • Sample job descriptions
  • Evaluation forms
  • Worship resources
  • Financial planning
  • ...and more!

This page is always growing, please share your go-to resources with Erin Power.

Employment Opportunities
Non-rostered positions available

Office Administrator
Holy Cross Lutheran Church - Albuquerque, NM

Trinity Lutheran Church - Boulder, CO 

Chancel Choir Director
King of Kings Lutheran Church - Pueblo, CO

Church Organist/Accompanist 
King of Kings Lutheran Church - Pueblo, CO

Youth Leader
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church - Littleton, CO

Faith Community Parish Nurse

Augustana Lutheran Church - Denver, CO

Office Assistant 
Trinity Lutheran Church - Boulder, CO

Secretary/Editorial Assistant
St. Philip Lutheran Church - Littleton, CO

Children Youth and Family Ministry Director 
All Saints Lutheran Church - Albuquerque, NM

Office of the Bishop This Week
Bishop Gonia
  • Vacation until 1/4
Pastor Kent Mueller
  • Vacation until 1/3

Ruth Hoffman, Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-NM

  • Vacation until 1/3

Peter Severson, Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-CO

  • Vacation until 1/4
Pastor Judith VanOsdol
  • Vacation until 1/5

Erin Power, Diaconal Minister

  • Vacation until 1/3

    Pastor Sarah Moening

    • Vacation until 1/9

    Andy Sprain

    • Vacation until 1/3
    Quick Links
    Share the News
    Erin Power   Assistant to the Bishop
    Rocky Mountain Synod
    800-525-0462 / 303-777-6700 / fax 303-339-4744

    Announcements for eConnection are due before noon on Monday for the issue the following Wednesday. Event announcements are included for about two weeks and should be submitted via the eConnection Submission link above.