April 1, 2015

Transforming a Container into a Clinic

A large, red shipping container sits in the parking lot of the Lutheran Church of God’s Love in Newtown waiting for Saturday mornings. That’s when team members open it up and continue work on its transformation into a medical clinic that will serve a community on the outskirts of Kisumu, Kenya, Africa. The idea first...

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February 19, 2015

Thank You! For Mission Support

ELCA Thanks to the generosity of many of our congregations, there was an increase in 2014 in Mission Support for Synod and Churchwide ministry after years of declining or flat support. Mission Support from congregations totaled $2,148,000 — $48,000 over budget and $10,000 more than 2013, but still well below the $2.7 million received in 2006....

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February 3, 2015

Ministry Partner: Communicators’ Network

Together as SEPA Synod we confidently declare it’s “God’s Work – Our Hands”.  Those of us who work in SEPA’s Communicator Network declare further that it’s “God’s Message – Our Channels” Who is a “communicator”?  It’s anyone in our congregations who is working in: Print communications Email Web and social media Video Multimedia for worship...

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November 21, 2014

We’re Stronger Together…Forming Candidates

Steinly Do you know how we, together, identify and form tomorrow’s church professionals? “We’re blessed that the Synod’s Candidacy process is evaluative, supportive and formative,” says senior Seminarian Kat Steinly. “SEPA really tries to bring candidates together to build relationships,” says Kat, who grew up at Trinity, Perkasie. The Synod is very supportive of the contributions...

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July 17, 2014

Nurturing Vibrant Congregations

ELCA Growing the vibrancy of a congregation is not something that can be imparted by a new pastor or a consultant, but is the result of congregations taking ownership of the need for change, understanding any gaps between where they are and where they want to be, and experimenting with ways to make faith useful to...

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May 27, 2014

Highlights of 2014 Assembly

Capture the spirit of our Synod’s 2014 Assembly in summary report, which is suitable for sharing with members of your congregation by printing it or linking it to your email, website or social media. A formal summary of legislative actions and elections is also available, as are preliminary minutes of the Assembly. Full coverage of...

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May 13, 2014

Assembly OKs Mission Advancement Campaign

The Assembly voted unanimously to continue work with Kairos and Associates on the development of a Mission Advancement Campaign to develop resources to reshape the Synod for the work of equipping leaders and congregations to engage their communities and deepen discipleship of their members. Prior to presenting the resolution from Synod Council, Vice President Tracey...

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May 8, 2014

Join the Conspiracy

“I want to invite you all to join a new Christian conspiracy,” Bishop Claire Burkat challenged the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod in her address to the 2014 Assembly. “What does it mean to in the 21st Century to conspire with Christ and one another to heal and bless the world in whatever ways God is leading...

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April 2, 2014

Share Your Mission Story

Share Your Congregation’s Story in Video! God’s work. Our hands. SEPA congregations live into this vision of the ELCA week after week, year after year. “God’s work. Our hands.” is the theme of this year’s Synod Assembly. We’d like to feature some of your stories of bringing this vision to life through community service, faith formation,...

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January 29, 2014

Consider Your Congregation’s Mission Support

  Gifts through Mission Support are a primary way that congregations live into their interdependence with the Synod and the ELCA. Congregations are encouraged to prayerfully consider their Mission Support response and to use the form posted online to indicate their 2014 intent to the Synod Office as soon as possible.   The following letter...

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January 17, 2014

Share the Right Address

With all the digital tools available to help us navigate, it’s important that you identify your church in ways that allow people to use GPS or web mapping services to find you, while respecting local knowledge and traditions. Always use a full address in your publicity, including zip code, to make it easy for people...

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January 17, 2014

Welcome Threads: Sharing Wisdom and Talent from the Streets

The Welcome Church, a church without walls ministering with people experiencing homelessness in Philadelphia, has started a social enterprise known as Welcome Threads that builds community, teaches job skills and provides participants with some income. “The main thing people want is a purpose,” said Pastor Violet Little, lead pastor of Welcome Church. “They want to...

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December 18, 2013

Sacred Space in the Midst of Loss

The Christmas season is celebrated as a season of light, but for some people this time of year is anything but. “There are factors in people’s lives which make the holiday season difficult:  loss of job, divorce, depression, loss of a loved one, and or trauma around the season,” says the Rev. Andrena Ingram, pastor...

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November 11, 2013

Little Receives 2013 Purpose Prize

Welcome Church Pastor Violet Little honored with prize for people over 60 solving tough social problems.   The Rev. Violet Little, pastor of Philadelphia’s Welcome Church ministering to people experiencing homelessness, is one of seven winners of the 2013 Purpose Prize, which honors people over 60 who are using their “second acts” to make a...

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October 31, 2013

Making a Difference, One Life at a Time

In late June, 111 Lutherans traveled halfway across the country to be of service to descendants of an ancient culture. Eager to make a difference in whatever ways they could, these youth and adults arrived east of Rapid City, South Dakota at Rosebud Reservation, home to the Lakota tribe. The group—representing 19 churches of the...

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October 16, 2013

How Is Your Congregation Website?

Are you satisfied with your congregation website? At last Sunday’s Communicators’ Network Gathering, Bob Fisher shared tips for congregations looking to evaluate their existing website or develop a new site. Websites are a key portal that visitors use to find and evaluate congregations, Fisher says. Many adults use web searches instead of telephone books or...

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May 23, 2013

Post-Modern Church Videos Online

People at the 2013 Synod Assembly were inspired by Jay Gamelin’s two presentations on “The Gospel in a Post-Modern Era.” Now you can watch Jay’s presentations online in the MinistryLink Video Library. The first presentation covers how emerging generations are wired, and what that means for the Church. In the second, Jay shares his faith...

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May 8, 2013

Gamelin: Go With Boldness

Jay Gamelin, pastor and discipler at Pilgrim Lutheran Church, Lexington SC, illustrated how one can show Jesus by sharing his faith story during his keynote to the 2013 Assembly of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod. He began by sharing his thoughts about Jesus’ disciple, Thomas, whom he prefers to call “Curious Thomas” or “Honest Thomas” because...

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May 3, 2013

‘We Are Being Watched’

“I went to seminary for four years to do this,” said Jay Gamelin (@JayGamelin), pastor of Pilgrim Lutheran Church, Lexington, SC, as he raised his arms. The second time he did it some people in the assembly stood, recognizing a common pastoral signal in worship. He said he felt uncomfortable for a long time because...

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May 2, 2013

Youth Lend Helping Hands

More than 360 youth from SEPA and New Jersey Synods helped clean up beaches and homes affected by Hurricane Sandy on April 27. Get a glimpse of their work in a video published by Liberty Lutheran Services and a photo slideshow, after the jump.