A Reconciling in Christ synod
Presiding Bishop Eaton asks, "Whose Work Is It?"

"At the end of the sixth chapter of the Gospel according to John, many disciples who had been following Jesus left him. Looking at the 12, Jesus asked, “Will you also go away?” Simon Peter answered, “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:66-68). It was a kind of crisis at the beginning of the Jesus movement."

In her February column for Living Lutheran, Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton lifts up the need for well-trained pastors and deacons. Where do we find these potential leaders? She says it’s the “work of the entire church.” Read her column in English or in Spanish, or download it here.  

 Rocky Mountain Synod Council Meeting February 3-4
The Rocky Mountain Synod Council met February 3-4 at the Office of the Bishop for conversation and decision-making on behalf of the Rocky Mountain Synod. The Synod Council meets monthly by webex, in addition to 3 in-person meetings each year. 

This meeting the council was joined by Victoria Flood and Darren Walloch from our ELCA Churchwide expression for conversation and consultation around Mission Support.

Agenda Items/Action Items included:
RMS-ELCA News and Events
Claiming our Gifts Video Series
One of the focus areas of the recently adopted RMS Strategic Plan is Claiming our Gifts.  Bishop Gonia will be offering a 5 part video series on Claiming our Gifts which will be available for Lent. These videos will be around 15 minutes with discussion prompts, making these a great resource for adult forum or Bible study. 

Claiming our gifts will also be the focus of the synod assembly, making these videos a great assembly follow-up!

View Part 1 here!
2017 Synod Assembly
Information is now available online for the 2017 Synod Assembly:

Assembly Deadlines

Registration deadline is Friday, March 24

Hotel Information
In addition to registering for the Assembly, you will need to make a room reservation if you wish to stay at the hotel. Rooms are reserved under a block for us. You can make your reservation for the  The Antlers, A Wyndham Hotel, 4 Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs, CO  at their site  to receive the Rocky Mountain Synod's group rate, which you will see posted under the "Rate Applied" tab as 050417ROC.  To guarantee our group rate, you need to make your hotel reservation by April 4.  

Single:  $115 (includes breakfast)
Double:  $125 (includes breakfast)

Nomination deadline is Friday, March 24
The only election this year will be for Synod Council Vice President. The nomination form and information is posted on the assembly webpage. 

Ministry Booklet Pages and Display Requests are due Friday, March 24
The on-line request form for exhibitors and ministry booklet pages is posted. The deadline for submitting requests will be March 24. Exhibitors must ALSO register for the assembly in addition to submitting a exhibitor request.

Portico Seminars and Webinars:
Pre-Retirement and Retirement Planning Made Simple

Portico is offering Pre-Retirement seminars (various dates) and a webinar series (Feb. 9, 16, 23). If you're over age 50 and within 15 years of retirement, these are a great way to get planning off to a strong start or keep the momentum going. You can find information, schedules, and links to registration here.
On February 21, there will be a webinar called, “ Retirement Planning Made Simple,” which is designed for members and employers to learn more about Portico’s new, simpler approach to retirement planning. It features the new financial planning tool, planning team, wellness program, upcoming education opportunities, and Portico’s renewed focus on financial education. This is a great event for bishops and synod staff members who are interested in a deeper look at the “what,” as well as the “why” of retirement planning. Register here. There will be a webinar recording available for viewing after the live event. 
For Your Bulletin
Bulletin Blurbs
Bishop's Trip to Madagascar February 13-24
The bishop's from the 4 ELCA synods that are companions with the Lutheran Church in Madagascar (FLM) will be making a joint trip to visit church leadership and ministries in our companion synods.  Joining Bishop Gonia from the Rocky Mountain Synod is Assistant to the Bishop Deacon Erin Power, Synod Council Vice-President Earline Bohling, and Pastor Brad Doty, chair of the RMS Companion Synod Committee.

During their trip the delegation will meet with newly elected FLM President David, as well as with the synod presidents from our four companion synods, at Betela Seminary. The RMS delegation will be visiting all four synods during their visit. We invite your prayers for all ELCA members going on this trip, for their conversations with our companions, and for the strengthening of our relationship as Church Together. 
Rocky Mountain Synod Strategic Plan Overview and 2017 Goals
The Rocky Mountain Synod's quarterly insert for the February issue of Living Lutheran is an overview of our 2017 Strategic Plan and goals. You can download it here, either as a print version or for web viewing
RMS Prayer Cycle

February 2017
Border  Conference

Week of February 19

St. Mark  Roswell, NM
Lavone Johnson- Holt

St. Peter  Carlsbad, NM
Martha Singletary (UMC)

The Ten Commandments
Prayer of the Day: Sunday, February 19
Pray to have the boldness and courage of faith and compassion taught by Jesus, that we may live and act far beyond the constraints and expectations for justice, love and mercy taught by society.

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

Around the Synod
Shepherd of the Hills, Canon City, Celebrates Global Sunday
On February 12, 2017 Shepherd of the Hills welcomed Ryana Holt to speak about her year in Mexico as a Young Adult in Global Mission. She gave an inspirational talk about her work in Mexico City and human rights issues there.

Concordia Choir (Moorhead, MN) In Concert in Colorado!

Hear one of the nation’s finest college choirs perform Sunday, February 26 at 7:30 p.m. at Augustana Lutheran Church. As part of their 2017 Southwestern 14-city tour, this will be the first of three appearances in Colorado (Denver, Cherry Hills, Colorado Springs), followed by two in New Mexico (Santa Fe, Las Cruces).

Full tour list is here.

Tickets available online, by calling 800-838-3006, or at the door. René Clausen conducts the 72-voice a cappella choir in several spirituals and hymns plus a folk-inspired section titled How Can I Keep From Singing? Visit TheConcordiaChoir.org today for complete concert information!

Black History Month Film "Traces of the Trade" at Atonement Denver
Atonement Lutheran in Denver will show the documentary "Traces of the Trade." From the website“In Traces of the Trade, Producer/Director Katrina Browne tells the story of her forefathers, the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. The film follows Browne and nine fellow family members on a remarkable journey which brings them face-to-face with the history and legacy of New England’s hidden enterprise.”

All are welcome, please join us as we grapple with this account of America’s original sin and one family’s journey to atone. We will share a meal, watch the film and discuss the legacy of the “trade” that impacts so much of life today. Atonement is located at 6281 W. Yale Ave.

NMCC Issues Statement in Response to Executive Order
Click here to read the New Mexico Conference of Churches (NMCC) letter to the NM Congressional Delegation in response to the Executive Order signed on Friday, January 27, 2017: Protecting The Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States.

Concordia Choir (Moorhead, Minn) In Concert in New Mexico!

Hear one of the nation’s finest college choirs perform in Santa Fe and Las Cruces. Their first concert will be in Santa Fe on Wednesday, March 1 at 6:30 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church. Tickets available online, by calling 800-838-3006, or at the door.

Visit TheConcordiaChoir.org today for complete concert information!

Our Life Together
International Women's Day -  Wednesday, March 8, 2017

International Women's Day is an opportunity for ministries of the Rocky Mountain Synod to join millions around the world to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. We celebrate this day knowing the work toward gender equality still remains. For worship and education resources visit the ELCA website, where you'll find the International Women’s Day booklet, which provides fundraising ideas, including a step-by-step virtual book drive, ideas for planning an International Women’s Day worship service, and much more to help you get started, and a new bulletin insert is also available. 

More information is also available at the IWD2017 website

Lutheran Campus Ministry Winter Retreat
February 17-19 at Rainbow Trail

The Lutheran Campus Ministry at CSU, CU, and UNC are hosting a winter retreat together! They would like to invite college students from other colleges and universities! A lot of universities do not have a Lutheran Campus Ministry, so if you or anyone you know might be interested, please spread the word!

The retreat will be at Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp, and it is free for students who register before February 10.

The schedule for the weekend includes worships, workshops, free time for homework, rest, hiking etc. The three workshops will focus the following themes: Vulnerability, Reflection, and Happiness. Go to their Facebook Event to register!

Iglesia Luterana Cristo Rey, El Paso TX
Border Immersion Week
Saturday April 29 to Friday, May 5

Iglesia Luterana Cristo Rey is having a 6-day border immersion experience from Saturday, April 29 in the afternoon through the afternoon of Friday, May 5. It is open to individuals and small groups interested in participating in mission alongside the Cristo Rey community and experiencing immigration and the border through a human-centered, faith-based approach.

Cost is $420 for the week, which includes 6 meals and all transportation after arrival in El Paso. Come look past the headlines and join us in community and relationship. 

For more information, email borderimmersion@gmail.com or visit their website

One Year to Live Men's Retreat
April 21-23, 2017
YMCA Camp Santa Maria, Grant, Colorado
Men of all ages yearn for real friendships and a
closer relationship with Christ.
Be prepared for a spiritual boot camp.
This 45-hour experience is not for the faint of heart!

Brochure is here. For more information contact Peter Ewers 303-902-9009, or Bill Ernstrom 303-746-6312, or email: peter@ewersarchitecture.com.
Host a Reformation 500 Bookstore!
Get over 15 free books on the Reformation for your church!

Host a Reformation 500 Bookstore at your church this spring. Introduce your congregation to engaging and affordable resources about the Reformation while growing your church library! Educate your church on the history of the Reformation, Martin Luther’s writings, and their impact on Christianity today.

Sign your church up to host a Reformation 500 Bookstore—
it’s simple, educational, and FREE!

Hurry, SIGN UP NOW, the deadline is TODAY, February 15!
"Reforming Congregations Through Engaging in Our Community" Workshops
Friday, March 10
1:00-4:30 p.m. and 6:00-9:00 p.m. 

Saturday March 11
9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Led by: Rocky Mountain Synod (Bishop Jim Gonia), ELCA Domestic Mission Unit (Rev. Susan Engh), Together Colorado, and FRESC (Front Range Economic Strategy Center)

Workshop for Congregations to learn the value of Community Organizing and how it can contribute to the renewal of your congregation. This workshop will be focused on teams from Congregations and empowering them to begin to do this work of community engagement. 

Topics for the Workshop include:
  • Charity vs. Justice
  • Relational Organizing
  • Structural Change

    Download the flyer for more information and to register!
Resource Corner
check back each week for a new or featured resource for your congregation
Bishop’s Blog: A Call to Prophetic Love
Bishop Jim Gonia presented a reflection on January 31, 2017 at the New Mexico Bishop's Legislative Luncheon. 

He said, "As people of faith and specifically as those who understand the call to advocacy as a profound dimension of how our faith is lived out in this world, I’d like to suggest that in this new reality in which we are living, we as people of God are called to a posture of prophetic love. Prophetic love."

Read the entire message at the Bishop's Blog
LIRS Invites Your Congregation to Celebrate Refugee Sunday!
Today, for the first time since World War II, there are more than 60 million people around the world who have been forced to flee their homes due to war, violence, and persecution.

Yet Lutherans are not discouraged.

We continue to meet refugees and those displaced by violence with God's love.

Whether your congregation is new to assisting refugees, has a history of newcomer ministry, or you are newcomers yourselves, you can observe Refugee Sunday and create a meaningful experience with LIRS’s Refugee Sunday worship materials and  Stand for Welcome newsletter.

Prayers for Refugees bulletin insert is available here for use at anytime to help share awareness of LIRS and create interest in Refugee Sunday. 
"The Jesus Way" 2016 VBS Bundle - FREE for ELCA Congregations!
New Outdoor Ministry Curriculum Also Available

Lutheran Outdoor Ministries (LOM) produces new curriculum each year used in camp and retreat settings, Vacation Bible Schools, and Day Camps. Special for this year only, the 2016 VBS Bundle of “The Jesus Way” is FREE for all ELCA congregations—yes, free! This bundle includes Bible study activities, crafts, and games for preschool children, and upper and lower elementary aged youth. Also included are planning documents, including Biblical and theme background information. 

LOM has also released a 2017 program entitled " The Water of Life."  Three Christian education basics—God’s creation, Christian community, and faith formation—come together in “The Water of Life.”  Participants will dive into five Bible stories and daily themes that shower them with new awareness of how water and life are gifts from God and to help them reflect on baptism, the sacrament that overflows with meaning about being cleansed, invited into a faith community, and led to do God’s mission in the world. "The Water of Life" is also available in other small bundles designed for Youth Ministry and VBS settings.

For an overview of , to order, and download, click here.
Lutheran Outdoor Ministries is an association of outdoor ministry organizations dedicated to encouraging, equipping, educating, and empowering bold and faithful outdoor ministry leaders for service in the Church and in the world. 
Free to any Church Operating Allen Organ and Speaker
What we have is a beautiful Allen Organ. It belonged to my father and step-mother. In their final will they asked that the organ be donated to a church in need. It is in operating condition and comes from a pet, smoke and kid free home. This is a beautiful instrument and they wished for it to go to a congregation that could use and enjoy this wonderful piece. 

The good: It is in beautiful condition as described above.
The bad: You have to arrange to have it moved to your location.
lease Call 303-377-1121 for additional information,  ask for Judy or send and email
Employment Opportunities
Non-Rostered Positions Available

Office Administrator
Atonement Lutheran Church - Boulder, CO

Organist/Pianist, part-time
St. Philip Lutheran Church - Littleton, CO

ELCA Regional Gift Planner
Rocky Mountain Synod

Executive Office Manager (temporary)
Saint Paul Community of Faith - Denver, CO

Director of Faith Formation
Christ the Servant Lutheran Church - Louisville, CO

Parish Nurse
Faith Lutheran Church - Golden, CO

Trinity Lutheran Church - Boulder, CO 

Youth Leader
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church - Littleton, CO

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

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

Office of the Bishop This Week
Bishop Gonia

  • Madagascar Companion Synod Trip: 2/13-2/25
Pastor Kent Mueller
  • Assistants to the Bishop Gathering, Charleston, SC
  • Mount Calvary, Boulder, CO

Ruth Hoffman, Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-NM

  • Legislative session
  • St. Bede's Episcopal Church

Peter Severson, Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-CO

  • Women and Family Wednesdays
  • Death Penalty Bill Hearing
  • Legislative Session
  • Shepherd of the Valley, La Salle, CO
Pastor Judith VanOsdol

  • Lutheran Church of the Master
  • Aurora Area Strategy Ministry
  • Our Savior's, Denver, CO
  • Mission Developer's Training, Chicago, IL

Deacon Erin Power

  • Madagascar Companion Synod Trip: 2/13-2/25

    Pastor Sarah Moening

    • First Call Theological Education, Phoenix, AZ

    Andy Sprain

    • Faith Formation Conference Coordinators
    • ELCA Gathering Vision Team
    • Campus Ministry Retreat, Rainbow Trail
    • Western Lutheran Campus Ministry Staff Retreat
    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.