Category: Congregations

September 10, 2019

Help With Hurricane Dorian Recovery

God, you still the storms and are a very present help in trouble. We pray for all those suffering the effects of Hurricane Dorian. Bring comfort to the afflicted and strength to those who come to their aid. Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.   “About 17% of all Bahamians are suddenly homeless after...

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August 26, 2019

Our Global Connection With Tanzania

There’s an African tradition that when someone is physically present, it’s not just their “face” that is present, but life itself. Bishop Davenport, Pastor Bradley Burke, and Ms. Yvonne Curtis visited our companion North Eastern Diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania this summer, sharing not only the life of our Synod but your prayers and gifts. In the previous year,...

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September 4, 2019

Crafting a Strategic Stewardship Campaign

Generosity logo SEPA Stewardship expert Catherine Malotky shares the success story of a church that approached groups of members who had different giving histories with different invitations to give and enjoyed a 30 percent increase in annual giving.  I don’t know if this would work for you, but sometimes different approaches that borrow ideas from successful fundraisers can...

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September 3, 2019

Camp Noah Helps Children Traumatized by Disaster

Painting, singing, dancing, and more! Children at Camp Noah whose lives have been impacted by disaster and/or trauma enjoyed a week full of hope and fun. Thanks to incredible volunteers and partnerships from local churches and numerous organizations, these children have courage and resilience for their future. With Hurricane Dorian already making its impact, programs like Camp...

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August 28, 2019

Collaboration Sparks Creative VBS

Vacation Bible School looks a little different, maybe, than it has in years past, especially at Trinity Lutheran Church in Fort Washington, which was close to closing its doors five years ago when The Rev. Kristie Chandler first arrived. She and the congregation chose to use the God’s abundant gifts to move forward with their...

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August 19, 2019

Quarterly Anti-Racism Training Events

“Having Helpful Conversations about Race in the Church” — Anti-Racism Training for Rostered and Lay Leaders” (Part 1 – Context). The first of a series of anti-racism training events for lay and rostered leaders will be held Saturday, September 21, 2019, from 9am to 5pm, at St. Luke Lutheran Church, 203 N Valley Forge Rd, Devon, PA 19333 Register by...

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July 17, 2019

Pickleball Inspires Fellowship in West Chester

What could be more fun than a game of tennis or badminton or ping pong with friends? How about a game of pickleball—a combination of all of the above? The two West Chester, Pa., congregations of Advent and Calvary Lutheran churches decided to apply for a Forward Together in Faith grant to allow them to...

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July 17, 2019

Servants at Work in South Dakota

A cadre of youth, young adults and leaders from SEPA Synod are in South Dakota for our famous Servant Trip. Here’s a peek into some of what they’ve been up to: For today’s service project in South Dakota a group of us converted an old church basement into a beautiful space that will be used...

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July 2, 2019

Volunteers, Sponsors Needed for Camp Noah

Camp Noah Is Quickly Approaching! Planning is underway for Camp Noah at New Creation Lutheran in North Philadelphia Aug. 19-23, 2019! This is one of a series of camps around the U.S. for children who have been affected and/or displaced by disasters. There are tons of fun activities are being planned for the kids, many...

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June 18, 2019

Forward Together in Faith Grant Applications Open

Our Synod is offering $25,000 in grants to congregations and leaders in 2020 for new initiatives and ministries that support the emphases of the Forward Together in Faith Campaign. These grants, drawn from interest earned by the principal of the campaign, will support new projects that help network congregations, leaders and community partners, innovate new...

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June 4, 2019

Save the Date for ‘Extravagant Generosity’

Save the dates — January 10-11, 2020 — for a can’t miss learning event. “Extravagant Generosity: A Stewardship Extravaganza” features keynotes by Clif Christopher, author of It’s Not Your Father’s Offering Plate, Whose Offering Plate Is It? and The Church Money Manual, and Aimee Laramore, author of Pathways to Generosity: Year-round Giving and Gratitude. Workshop leaders include: Scott Schantzenbach, Rob...

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June 2, 2019

Holy Closure: St. Petri-Hope

Remembering in prayer the saints at St. Petri-Hope Evangelical Lutheran Church.  St. Petri-Hope Lutheran Church, a congregation in the NE/W Philadelphia Conference, held its final worship service on Sunday, June 2 at 3 pm with Bishop Davenport presiding. The service was attended by 152 saints. An offering of $880 was received to benefit the Feast of Justice feeding...

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April 8, 2019

How to Be an Effective Small Church

Generosity logo SEPA Some years ago, David Ray traveled across the United States, west to east and north to south, and back north, visiting twenty-one smaller faith communities that were noted for the quality and faithfulness of their life together. He asked probing questions and listened carefully, looking for the common denominators, the faithful and exceptional qualities that...

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March 27, 2019

KenCrest Honors Support from Five SEPA Congregations

Christ’s Lutheran Church in Oreland, PA and Reformation Lutheran Church in Media, PA were two of the eleven recipients of the 2019 KenCrest Community Champions.  Gloria Dei Shining Star Committee, St. James Lutheran Church, Limerick and St. Peter’s Thrift Shop were Honorable Mention recipients. Every year KenCrest takes a moment to celebrate leaders in the community who go...

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March 8, 2019

Prayers for the Saints: St. John’s, Ambler

St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church – Ambler, a congregation in the Lower Montgomery Conference, will hold their final worship service on Sunday, March 31, 2019 at 3 pm with Bishop Davenport presiding.  Rostered leaders and members of the SEPA Synod are welcome to attend the final service at St John’s – Ambler celebrating the life, witness and service of this congregation...

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March 4, 2019

Leadership in Uncharted Territory

“Leadership is disappointing your own people at a rate they can absorb.” Tod Bolsinger, PhD, used this quote from adaptive leadership guru Ronald Heifetz to summarize the balancing act of leading in uncharted territory for more than 200 clergy and lay leaders gathered for a learning day with the author of “Canoeing the Mountains.” As...

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February 19, 2019

New Online Giving Option for Congregations

CHICAGO (Feb. 19, 2019) – The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) has formed a preferred vendor agreement with Vanco, an eGiving software developer and payment processor serving more than 20,000 churches across the country. The agreement offers Vanco’s GivePlus suite of eGiving solutions to ELCA congregations. The ELCA churchwide organization has sought new working...

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February 7, 2019

Hospitality: The Warm Heart of Generosity

Generosity logo SEPA ELCA staff member Steve Oelschlager writes in the most recent issue of Stewardnet, “How might our life together regularly teach and encourage people to want to be part of something bigger than themselves, sacrificing self for the benefit of others?” I think the answer has everything to do with creating remarkable cultures in which hospitality...

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January 29, 2019

Box City Registration is Open

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER BY FEBRUARY 24TH We are excited to join with St. James Limerick for their 10th Annual Box City Event from March 23rd – 24th, 2019.  The purpose of this event is to raise awareness about homelessness in Montgomery County and to raise funds to Main St. Homeless Shelter in Pottstown.  During...

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January 16, 2019

Forward Together in Faith Grants Awarded

The Synod has awarded $26,000 in grants funded by the Forward Together in Faith Campaign to 11 projects designed to network congregations and communities, start innovative ministries, enhance their communications, or equip leaders for ministry in the 21st Century. “We had many creative proposals and a limited amount of grant funds,” said Bishop Patricia A....

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