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Congregation news and updates

Let us pray: God, we pray today for patience—the kind that sits with a friend, waits for a spouse to come around, listens to a child’s concerns. Teach us to hold space for others—and ourselves. Let our stillness be a declaration. We believe in you and trust in your care for the people and circumstances in our lives. Thank you for being our rock and stronghold in days of uncertainty. Amen.



Please publicize the link to the Go Tell It IN The Mountains interest survey with your congregation and with community partners. We are excited to announce that Pastor John Kratz will join us as the Director of the initiative in September. In the meantime, we are forming committees and task forces to get the initiative underway in our three-Synod territory. Join us in preparing lay people and clergy to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ. Survey link: Go Tell It IN the Mountains survey (



Praxi (, is a FREE mental health directory that not only helps pastors and other professionals locate therapists currently accepting new clients but also facilitates networking opportunities to foster trusting and collaborative relationships. Praxi can address a critical gap in supporting pastors and youth directors who are increasingly feeling overwhelmed by the growing mental health needs of both youth and adults. This YouTube video that gives a brief overview of the directory. For more information, contact Dr. Katie Holter at or 320-309-1724



Seafarer’s House International Christmas At Sea program for those who serve on the sea has information about its program here: Christmas-at-Sea | SIHNYC. This could be the start of a God’s work. Our hands. project or a Christmas project.



Partners for Sacred Places Event

In the past 30 years, and especially post-pandemic, many congregations find themselves with fewer members, fewer resources of money and volunteers, and buildings in need of repair. Many of those properties are currently not being fully utilized to serve their communities or generate income. In this seminar, Partners’ staff will explore several issues around church property in the current climate of religious life. During the seminar, the group will visit local churches to illustrate how to put some of the learnings into practice. September 26th – 28th on the Gettysburg Campus. Both rostered and lay leaders encouraged to register here!


Aging Grace-Fully: an Author Series for Aging Adults and Those Who Care for Them 

Aging Grace-Fully examines how to age with grace and live, fully, with the physical, mental and social changes that are often difficult to accept when growing older. Join us to seek understanding and acceptance of these challenges in our eight-part series featuring leading authors who share their knowledge and experiences about aging including suffering, love and loss. All presentations will be on the Gettysburg campus of ULS and available online. Group rates are available. Register here. Aging Grace-Fully is made possible by a generous grant from the Lutheran Foundation for Long Term Living.


Author Schedule:Rabbi Steve Leder, author of The Beauty of What Remains Oct. 22, 2024Sloane Crosley, author of Grief Is for People Nov. 12, 2024Margaret Renkl, author of Late Migrations Feb. 25, 2025Rebecca Chopp, author of Still Me March 27, 2025Missy Buchanan, author of From Dry Bones to Living Hope April 22, 2025Frank Bruni, author of The Beauty of Dusk May 22, 2025Kate Bowler, author of Have A Beautiful, Terrible Day! July 15, 2025Anne Lamott, author of Somehow Thursday, Sept. 11, 2025


New Collaborative Event with ELCA Churchwide. Review of ELCA Social Statements (six online webinars). As our faith informs our day-to-day lives, Lutherans recognize that “faith is active in love [and] love calls for justice in relationships and structures of society” (ELCA, Social Statement on Church in Society, 1991). We also know the church is called to be a community that prays, deliberates, and acts together when it comes to complex social issues. In this election year, how might our Lutheran faith shape our thinking, acting, and voting on major issues? Join us to learn and ponder timely social teachings of the ELCA and to learn tips for leading discussions in your own community. Our first event in the series is June 25th! Click here for more details. Register here. 


Fall Training Events for Rostered Leaders. In collaboration with the Lower Susquehanna Synod, we offer training for those rostered leaders who wish to learn more about racial justice, professional boundaries, and cultural competency. Register here for both in-person and online opportunities.


Wine, Cheese, and Chocolate (and Morning Conversations with David Hayward, aka NakedPastor: July 28-August 2. It’s been a year. Wars. Politics. Covid (again). The leaking toilet in the parish hall. You name it. Deacons and Pastors (and spouses): you deserve a break—some time away at a place apart. Welcome to the Gettysburg campus of ULS for a week of relaxation and meaningful moments. This year, you are welcome to bring your spouse and family members (each additional family member is only $100). On Thursday evening, we will have the Second Annual Bestowing of the Blessed Gourd Award given to the church leader with the most bizarre ministry story from the past year. Hope you can join us. BONUS: Lower Susquehanna Rostered Leaders can attend for free thanks to a generous grant from the synod! Click here to register.

Summer Ministry Institute: Relevant Worship in a Strange New World with Rev. Jonathan Rundman and Revs. Sarah and Erik Teichmann, August 11 – 16. Over the course of five days, spend time with song leader and composer Rev. Jonathan Rundman with Rev. Sarah and Erik Teichmann in an interactive discussion about worship and congregational participation. We’ll examine our personal histories as people-in-the-pews, explore our own creativity, focus on lots of practical application (technology, psychology, theology, repertoire), and crowdsource best practices for worship/music planning in our congregations. Fun! Joy! Harmony! Contemplation! Wondering! Friends! For more information on our presenters, click here. Click here to register.

In the Footsteps of St. Paul. Journey to Greece with Revs. Drs. Angela and Martin Otto-Zimmann, October 24 – November 5th. More information here. 


Fall Convocation on the Philadelphia Campus will take place on September 18th featuring Pastor Chris and Jamie Breusehoff, author of Raising Kids Beyond the Binary: Celebrating God’s Transgender and Gender-Diverse Children. Both in-person and online. Register here.



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