Category: Communications

June 5, 2020

Church must combat racism at the grassroots

The riots and protests in the United States, following the killing of a black man by a police officer, are an opportunity for people of faith to “live what we profess, to stand behind our statements and to walk according to the teachings of Jesus Christ.” Many pastors and deacons are “on the front line”...

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June 29, 2020

Today Marks 50 Years!

From Presiding Bishop Eaton: Fifty years ago, on June 29, 1970, the Lutheran Church in America voted to change the word “man” to “person” in its bylaws and opened the door for the ordination of women. The church was led by the Spirit to change. Fifty years later we celebrate the anniversary as a whole...

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June 16, 2020

Emergency Grants for PA Families Open Through July 12

Did you lose a job or work hours during the coronavirus crisis? You might be eligible for emergency cash assistance from Pennsylvania. The Emergency Cash Assistance Program will provide one-time cash grants to families who qualify. This could be helpful while you are waiting for your Unemployment Compensation to start. This program will end July...

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June 4, 2020

Yellow Phase Faith in Philadelphia

Last week, the City of Philadelphia unveiled Safer at Home, a plan and executive order outlining the strategy for how Philadelphia will begin to reopen for business when the current Stay-at-Home Order is lifted, which is expected to occur later this week.  The plan specifically outlines guidance for religious communities. Highlights include: Gatherings of over...

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June 3, 2020

Prayers For PRIDE Month

Prayers for your use during PRIDE month in June. God of LOVE, we thank you for the Spirits who were trailblazers, moving and shaking people’s hearts and minds. Stir up in us that same energy of those who helped pave the way for where our LGBTQIA+ siblings are today. May we never stop expanding the...

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May 30, 2020

ELCA Reaffirms Commitment to Combat Racism and White Supremacy

May 29, 2020 What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8).   The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) reaffirms its commitment to combating racism and white supremacy following the recent murders of Black Americans. Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor,...

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May 19, 2020

Updated List of Coronavirus-related Messages

Since the implications of the coronavirus outbreak became clear in early March – before there were any cases identified in Pennsylvania – Synod Communications has been keeping you inspired by messages from the Bishop and staff and informed about the disease, closings and stay-at-home orders, online/digital worship, and financial and legal resources. This page collects...

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April 16, 2020

Grieving Through COVID-19

A Professional Grief Counselor Shares Her Insights and How to Find Support Through times of loss, it is human connection that brings us comfort and hope. Amidst these unprecedented times of COVID-19, humans around the world are attempting to cope with a unique kind of loss. For many, this comes in the form of losing...

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April 13, 2020

LSH Steps Up for Seniors, Families, and Victims of Abuse

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Lutheran Settlement House is defined as a life-sustaining organization. It is the reason we remain open, the reason we have quickly adapted to offer our services to more people as the needs in our community have grown. In times of crisis, too often the most vulnerable in our community are left...

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April 13, 2020

CARES Act, Unemployment Updates

New Cares Act FAQ from Churchwide We have new resources available addressing Paycheck Protection Program loans for churches. An FAQ document and a video to explain the process are available at www.elca.org/publichealth. Download the FAQ Watch the Video Download the video Update on Benefits for Churches, Employees An update from Treasurer Janet H. Neff, CPA:...

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April 6, 2020

Considerations for Remote Council and Congregation Meetings During the COVID-19 Pandemic

During this time of social distancing because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many congregation leaders are asking how they can take advantage of technology to continue to hold necessary meetings to conduct the business of the congregation. Please bear in mind that some matters may best be postponed until the restrictions on gatherings have been lifted....

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April 5, 2020

More Info on CARES Act Programs

Important Info From The ELCA Here are answers to some frequently asked questions: Are churches eligible? Yes. There is some misinformation out there and some lenders are confused, but churches are eligible. What is the application period for the Paycheck Protection Plan loans/grants? It opened April 3. There is no close date we are aware of, but because the...

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April 3, 2020

Bishop Eaton: We Remain United

As we approach Holy Week, Bishop Eaton invites the church to join a diverse group of Christians in witness to our common faith in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

April 2, 2020

Recommendation: Discontinue Gathering To Live Stream

April 2, 2020 Colleagues, With increasing concern about aerosol spread of the COVID-19 virus and news such as this and this, and reports that the government will recommend wearing masks in public, we strongly recommend that you discontinue gathering a group of worship leaders together to record/live stream your worship service. We make this recommendation...

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March 31, 2020

Options For Churches Under Federal CARES Act

Congress has passed three acts recently in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The latter two, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), provide significant assistance that is available to churches, religious organizations and their employees. The FFCRA requires employers to provide paid sick leave...

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March 29, 2020

Churches and Coronavirus Relief

Rostered ministers, Bishop Davenport shares information on potential financial assistance for ministers and churches via the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or the CARES Act. ELCA General Counsel Tom Cunniff has advised bishops that the recently passed stimulus act has several provisions that are available to churches and church employees during the coronavirus...

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March 28, 2020

Daily Bread, Hunger Grant Information

Dear partners and friends of ELCA World Hunger, Since we announced the opening of the 2021 Domestic Hunger Grant application on March 10, the reality of how we address hunger in this country and around the world has shifted drastically due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of you have already begun the hard work of...

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March 18, 2020

Bishop: Churches Should Comply With Governor’s Order

Beloved, I’m sure you aware that Governor Wolf ordered that all non-essential business in Pennsylvania need to close, effective March 17, for two weeks. This is part of the ongoing mitigation efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus. My colleague, Bishop Michael Rhyne of Allegheny Synod, shares that their synod’s attorney informed them that...

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March 13, 2020

Pastoral Message: Prepare, Take Care, and Pray

Care for our neighbors means we should not make the virus spread worse. March 13, 2020 Dear Beloved, Do not be afraid! The public health situation with coronavirus and COVID-19 in Southeastern Pennsylvania is serious, but not a cause for panic. We are bombarded with anxiety from schools closing, new cases reported, financial worry, and concern...

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February 19, 2020

Local Youth Joins ELCA Leadership Team

Congratulations to Kendyll Ward who is one of six high school youth across the country to be selected for the ELCA Youth Leadership Team. She is a member of Trinity, Havertown and starts her duties March 5-8 with a team meeting in Chicago. Her service is a two-year commitment. “I am so proud of her...

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