Rocky Mountain Synod logo for the newsletter

weekly email of the
Rocky Mountain Synod

May 29, 2012     

Madelyn Busse retires this week:

"Gracious servant, articulate theologian, gifted minister"


As Madelyn Busse, Diaconal Minister and Assistant to the Bishop, enters full time retirement this week, Bishop Allan Bjornberg said, "Madelyn has been at the forefront of this church's articulation of diaconal ministry, in her writing, her teaching, her spiritual direction, and in living her own diaconal call. She is a gracious servant, an articulate theologian, and a gifted minister."

Madelyn Busse served as assisting minister at the assembly closing eucharist.


Madelyn began her service as a rostered leader 30 years ago as a Lutheran Church in America (LCA) Lay Professional Leader serving two congregations in Tacoma, WA. In 1988, she accepted a position with the then ELCA Division for Ministry as Director for Candidacy and Rostered Lay Ministries. 


During those years, the ELCA Study for Ministry was in process and she was asked to provide leadership in supporting the newly named roster of "Associates in Ministry" and in developing the new roster of "Diaconal Ministers" which was created when the 1995 Churchwide Assembly approved this new ministry. During those Chicago years she also completed her own seminary degree and candidacy process to become a Consecrated Diaconal Minister.


In 1997, Madelyn and her husband, Dennis, relocated to Colorado for his employment. Bishop Bjornberg just happened to be seeking new staff with the departure of Dick and Kathy Magnus (who moved to Chicago). Initially, her position was Assistant to the Bishop for Church in Society and Communications, including assembly planning.


She recalls, "As e-mail became prevalent e-Connection was born and we began to dream of a website. And I'll never forget staying in the dorm at CSU my first assembly and not sleeping a wink!"


The Church in Society portfolio included anti-racism team, multi-cultural committee, global missions committee, companion synod work, World Hunger task force, the Board for Church in Society which branched into a variety of functions, and Campus Ministry Committee.  She particularly recalls inviting one Jim Gonia to come and be our "missionary in residence."


As staffing responsibilities were reassigned, she set aside the communications work and took on Candidacy--work she says she always loved and for which she has great passion.


"I have always served on a team or staff, and I have to say the team at RMS was the best ever," Madelyn said.  "Serving 15 of my 30 years in rostered ministry in the Rocky Mountain Synod has been the greatest joy and privilege I could ever imagine."


We give thanks for Madelyn's work and ministry as she enters full retirement on June 1, having served the past several years in a very-part-time position as director of candidacy. She and Dennis now reside in Friday Harbor, Washington. 


"Like so many, I have been the beneficiary of Madelyn's witness, her integrity, and her joie de vivre," said Bishop Bjornberg. "I am profoundly grateful to have been her partner in ministry." 


Soli Deo Gloria! 

The Holy Trinity  
God of  heaven and earth, before the foundation of the universe and the beginning of time you are the triune God: Author of creation, eternal Word of salvation. life-giving Spirit of Wisdom. Guide to us to all truth by your Spirit, that we may proclaim all that Christ has revealed and rejoice in the glory he shares with us. Glory and praise to you Father, Son and Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.
Prayer from Sundays and Seasons Year B 2012


Synod Prayer Cycle: Southeast Colorado Conference 
You are encouraged to include the listed leaders in your Sunday prayers of the people. The prayer lists for June and July are available.

to remember in prayers on 6/3:          


Ascension Colorado Springs, CO

     Dan Holt, Wini Klein

Christ the King Colorado Springs, CO

     Julie Britsch

First Colorado Springs, Co

     Paul Peel, Mark Patzke, Carrie Baylis

First Burlington, CO

     Jeffrey Hanson 

Grace Colorado Springs, CO

     Michael Tassler


Mission 25 logo

Congratulations to Iglesia Luterana Cristo Rey 


MISSIONS 25 GIFTS will be given to Iglesia Luterana Cristo Rey at their celebration of organization as a congregation of the Rocky Mountain Synod and Evangelical Lutheran Church in America on June 17, 2012.  


Gifts of $25 or more may be sent to the synod office: 455 Sherman, Suite 160, and Denver, CO 80203.   Checks should be made out to the Rocky Mountain Synod and noted for Missions 25.   


Worship at Cristo Rey begins at 11:30 a.m. on June 17 and everyone is invited and welcome to attend the "fiesta." Cristo Rey is located at 501 Raleigh Street in Denver (80204).    

Installation of Bishop Elect Gonia is Sunday, September 23 at Bethany


Mark your calendar for the Installation of Bishop-elect James Gonia on Sunday, September 23, 2012, at 7 p.m. at Bethany Lutheran Church in Cherry Hills Village, CO. 


On September 24 and 25, a Fall Theological Conference / Bishops' Convocation will continue at the Embassy Suites just down the road from Bethany with Bishop Mark Hanson, Bishop-Elect James Gonia, and guest-presenter Rev. Ron Richardson, a noted author on matters of healthy congregations and leaders. 
Assembly summary and resources

A "Landscape" newsletter summary of assembly highlights, hundreds of photos, and videos of key portions of the assembly are posted for viewing online. The videos may be downloaded onto your computer (click on the "vimeo" logo then scroll down to "download") to use in places where you might not have an Internet connection. Additionally, DVD's are available of some of the assembly presentations and worship if you are need to share the videos from a DVD.  View all assembly resources.     
Service and Learning project for youth and family ministry
Service and Learning


Prep for Summer Service Projects and Mission Trips 


Do you want your congregation's summer service projects, mission trip or journey to the  ELCA Youth Gathering to be faith forming and transformational?  


Then watch this informative and in-depth interview with Eugene Roehlkepartain, Search Institute, on his 25 years of research on Service and Learning. It is free and includes a Study Guide.  


The entire 6 session Service and Learning course may be ordered, downloaded or streamed.   

Kohlmeyer mision trip image
Don't just plan a mission trip ...

build an experience


Maria Sykes is experienced at hosting the volunteers who often descend on her rural, isolated community of Green River, Utah. Volunteers tend to drop in, work hard and leave, requiring considerable management from Sykes and her Green River Community Center colleagues during their stay.

But Sykes also works with Colorado Lutherans who come for a "three-day explosion of energy and positive attitude." "That gives us inspiration throughout the year," said Sykes, co-founder of Epicenter, a nonprofit agency that relates to the center.


It's more than 'doing'

Linda Staats, an assistant to the bishop of the Rocky Mountain Synod and co-creator of a new online resource called "Service and Learning," underscored the importance of relationship formation as a key element of any service experience.

"When it's only about the doing, then it's not about an equalization of power and it's about what we do to or for the other. You can't separate out the doing from the accompaniment," she said.
  Read more. 

photo is courtesy of Pastor Chad Kohlmeyer
of Atonement Lutheran Church, Boulder, CO


Faster Pastors logo

12 Pastors to run 188 mile relay-night and day-for Malaria!

Twelve pastors from the Rocky Mountain Synod will be running the Colorado Relay from Breckenridge to Aspen, September 7 and 8, 2012, to raise funds for the awareness, prevention, and treatment of malaria for the ELCA Malaria Campaign.


Read the ELCA blog posted today for the whole story and to be inspired to give generously! In the blog post, Leta Behrens, associate pastor, Our Saviour's, Fort Collins, CO, said she is confident that the Faster Pastors-and the ELCA Malaria Campaign-will make a difference.  "Even though the Colorado Relay is a little crazy and might be a huge feat for me, outrunning malaria is possible," she declares. "I think it's a great way to make some noise, share the story, and run for justice in the name of Christ."


The Rocky Mountain Synod has a new PayPal account to receive credit card donations! You may conveniently give to the Malaria Campaign using the button below. Please note: you need not have a Paypal account to use this link. Click on "Don't have a Paypal account" when asked how to proceed.


Make a Donation 




 Peace Not Walls logo

Peace Not Walls Presents: Discover Islam DVD Series and Study Guide
The office of ELCA Ecumenical and Inter-Religious Relations, in cooperation with the ELCA Global Mission, and our nationwide Lutheran Ecumenical and Inter-Religious Representatives Network recently received a generous gift from Discover Islam - USA: complimentary copies of a six-disc DVD series titled Discover Islam. This series is endorsed by the Islamic Society of North America.


You may use the series for study within your congregation. The Rocky Mountains Synod has a limited number of copies that may be borrowed by contacting the synod office at 303-777-6700 or sending an email to Willie


You can read more information and preview the series at the Discover Islam website. Study guides are available at the ELCA Inter-Religious Relations website.


Urban Servant Corps Logo

USC Kicks off Summer in Grand Style 


25th Anniversary at
City Park Jazz


Sunday, June 24, 2012 from 5:00 - 8:00 p.m.


Denver City Park Jazz logoLook for the Urban Servant Corps banner and all of your dearest USC alumni. A gathering will take place on the southwest side of the band shell at City Park. Bring some snacks and beverages to share! Chances are there will be an ultimate Frisbee game, in addition to the great music, food, and festivities! Families and friends are more than welcome!


Accepting Applications for 2012-2013

If you know stellar individuals who are committed to engaging in service, exploring simplicity and spirituality, and living in intentional community, please send them our way! The USC application can be found online under the "Become a Volunteer" tab!  

 barbeque grill image

Closing BBQ at USC 

Monday, July 30, 2012 

835 32nd St. from 5:30-7:00 p.m.


As the year winds down, please consider congratulating this year's USC volunteers by joining us for a celebration BBQ! Main dish will be provided, but please bring a side dish to share. Per the norm, you will get a glimpse of the current volunteers experience in community life and in the world of service. All are welcome!

Sky Ranch Logo
Youth Leadership Opportunities


Lift up and equip youth in your congregations with the skills they need to be leaders on your church council, in your youth ministry or as you travel for service and mission. Check out these opportunities at Sky Ranch.


Youth Go! June 10-22

Youth Go!is a two-week leadership training program for high school youth. Campers return to their congregations empowered to lead and serve from this experience that includes: community building, in-depth Bible study and worship planning, a two night backpack trip, service projects at Harvest Farm (run by the Denver Rescue Mission helping men with addiction), and a 24-hour silent retreat. Once you complete Youth Go!, you are eligible for the Staff in Training program.


Youth Leadership Retreat June 22 - 24

The Youth Leadership Retreat is an Invitation to all 8th - 12th grade youth who want to explore the gifts that God has given them and learn how to use those gifts to serve the Church and the world. The weekend will be full of team building, leadership training, spiritual gift exploration, and peer ministry moments. The cost is $55.  


Rainbow Trail Confirmation Retreat 2011
"Into the Wild" Camping Experience at RTLC  

 July 8-14, 2012


Compus Point image from Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp

Let Rainbow Trail help prepare your graduating Seniors prepare for an awesome college experience!  RTLC's experienced college guides will lead a week long Compass Points backpacking trip that takes you literally into the wild and back again as you explore the joys and challenges that are ahead of you in college.  Check out the Rainbow Trail website for more information on this amazing opportunity. 

Global Links logo
The Lutheran Church Around the World


Wan-Rupulga image

Papua New Guinea: seminary principal shares his dreams

Dr. Michael Wan-Rupulga, head of the Martin Luther Seminary in Papua New Guinea, describes his vision to educate pastors with high qualifications and deep spirituality, to create more opportunities for female scholars and to provide more education in English to meet the growing demand for English worship services. Check out the website for more info.



ELCA 100 Wells Challenge

Will your youth group take on the 100 Wells Challenge?

Join ELCA youth from across the nation in raising $250,000 to support critically important water projects in other countries. Just think, $250,000 could mean 100 wells - each one with the potential of bringing clean water to 500 families at a time. Find fundraising ideas, resources and more information at the 100 Wells Challenge website.


Syria map and area

Syria: ELCA responds to the violence and humanitarian crisis

Many Syrians have left their homes, choosing to escape the violence by relocating to more stable areas of Syria or neighboring countries. We are operating through our local partners to help meet their needs with food, hygiene kits, nutritional support for mothers and more. Get details.

2012 Holy Land Pilgrimage
Pilgrimage to the Holy Land, Greece and Turkey 


October 1-17, 2012


There are still some spaces on this October trip to the Holy Land - if you are interested, please contact Pastor Paul Rowold by May 30, 2012.  


Experience this journey of faith and relationships as you take in the geography of the Holy Land and meet the people living there today! Tour guide Pastor Paul Rowold has traveled to the Holy Land 30 times, since the summer of 1978, when he and his wife Donna worked as archeologist volunteers.


The tour is: 17-day Holy Land/Turkey/Greece at $4450, from Denver. Details can be found at the website or you may contact tour leader, Pastor Paul Rowold by email or phone: 406-883-5864. Reservation deadline is May 30, 2012.


For your information and more about peacemaking in Israel and Palestine, check out the blog by Jan Miller.



Lutheran Church of Hope banner 




Choir Robes Available for FREE 


Do you have a need for choir robes for your Chancel Choir?  


Lutheran Church of Hope in Broomfield, CO has just the robes for you. Through its reorganizing process for spring, the Music Ministry of Lutheran Church of Hope is making 40 to 50 robes available for FREE.  


If you are interested in some or all of the robes, please email Kim Hohensee, Music Coordinator at: for more information or to see pictures. You are welcome to come pick them up or make arrangements to pick up the robes. They can be yours that easily!




Augustana Early Learning Center Opening


Augustana Early Learning Center is seeking a qualified, experienced individual for the position of full-time Early Learning Center Director. The position includes a competitive salary and generous benefits. Please submit by email a resume, cover letter, and three professional references on or before May 31, 2012 to: Search Committee.   


You can find a full job description as well as apply online at

These and other open positions can be found on the Rocky Mountain Synod's website

Every Person, Every Congregation, Every Ministry, Boldly Serving God's Mission in Christ



Bishop Allan Bjornberg

Colorado Council of Churches Breakfast, Denver, CO; Visiting and Celebrating with the congregation of Cross of Hope Lutheran Church, Albuquerque, NM.   

Pastor Dan Bollman    

Generosity Project Task Force Retreat, synod office, Denver, CO; Visiting with the congregation of Christ the Servant Lutheran Church, Louisville, CO.    


Madelyn Busse, DM

Available by email  
or phone appointment.  

Pastor Jim Hytjan

Generosity Project Task Force Retreat, synod office, Denver, CO; Pre-organizational meeting for Cristo Rey, Denver, CO; CSM Interviews, Denver, CO.

Linda Staats

Generosity Project Task Force Retreat, synod office, Denver, CO
Available by email 
 or phone appointment.


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website calendar

JULY 16-18 


New Orleans, LA

JULY 18-22

ELCA Youth Gathering
New Orleans, LA



Installation of Rocky Mountain Synod Bishop

 Cherry Hills Village, CO.



Fall Theological Conference/ Bishop's Convocation

 Denver, CO.



RMS Senior High Youth Gathering

YMCA of the Rockies
Estes Park, CO 




JANUARY 18 -20 

RMS Middle School Youth Gathering
Crowne Plaza Hotel,
Colorado Springs, CO

MAY 2-4 

2013 RMS Assembly

Loveland, Colorado


Theological Conference 

Estes Park, Colorado





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Cross of Hope Lutheran Church Albuquerque banner

Cross of Hope Albuquerque Retirement-Farewell Service


On June 2 at 5:30 p.m. and June 3 at 8:30 a.m. and 10:45 a.m.Cross of Hope Church and Schools will conduct a retirement/farewell service for Pastor Dale G. Bauer who retires on that day.  Bishop Bjornberg will preside for the service.  A reception will take place after each service. Guests are welcome to attend any of the three services and receptions. Cards and letters are being collected for Pastor Bauer and may be sent via email to the church office at or by mail to 6104 Taylor Ranch Road NW, Albuquerque, NM 87120. Pastor Bauer has served at Cross of Hope Church and Schools since May 21, 1989 and his visionary leadership will be truly missed.  

Peace El Paso stained glass image

Peace Lutheran Wishes Farewell and
Godspeed to Pastor Wayne Kendrick 



June 10, 2012, is the final Sunday of Pastor Wayne's Ministry at Peace Lutheran Church in El Paso.  Special activities that day include Worship Service which will be at 10:30 a.m., followed by a potluck lunch at noon. Then at 1:00 p.m., there will be a Celebration and Roasting of the 14 Years of Peace's and Pastor Wayne's Ministry.


Please place this special date on your calendar and plan to attend all or part of the celebration. Email invitations will be sent later. Please call 915-584-1383 if you have questions.


Please Note: A pictorial video for Pastor Wayne's retirement celebration is being made and we are looking for photos. If you have any photos that you would like to share, please email them or drop pictures off to the church office as soon as possible.



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Saint Peter GW logo5K Run/Walk Event to Benefit Selian Lutheran Hospital in Tanzania  


On Saturday, June 9, 2012, from 8:15 a.m. until noon, Saint Peter Lutheran Church will sponsor a 5K Run/Walk Event which will benefit the programs of Selian Lutheran Hospital and the Arusha Lutheran Medical Center (ALMC), completed in 2009 in Arusha, Tanzania.


TSelian Lutheran Hospital logohe Selian 5K Run Event will include a jump castle and face painting for the kids, Jamba Juice, Juice Plus, Free blood pressure readings, live musical entertainment, craft and food concessions, swag bags, t-shirts, awards and door prizes. Contact Carol for more Information about the 5K Run/Walk event but for  about Selian, please visit the Selian Hospital website: or the Saint Peter website:


Saint Peter Lutheran Church, located at 9300 E. Belleview Avenue in Greenwood Village (80111).



4th Annual Sky Ranch BBQ and   

Bluegrass Fundraiser



Spirit of Joy Lutheran Church in Fort Collins (corner of Harmony and Lemay) is pleased to host the 4th Annual Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp BBQ and Bluegrass Fundraiser which will take place on Saturday, June 9, 2012, beginning at 5:30 p.m. Everyone will be gathering out under the trees. Spirit of Joy has some benches available, but for your comfort please bring a camp chair or blanket.


Spirit of Joy Lutheran Church imageThe event will feature wonderful barbeque, along with slaw, chips and dessert. There will even be vegetarian and gluten-free choices available. Tickets can be purchased at the event: Under 2: free / 2-12 years: $5 / over 12 years: $9 / family: $25  


For your musical enjoyment, Spirit of Joy's own Bluegrass band, "Jerusalem Road," will perform. The Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp staff will also be there assisting and participating in the program, so it's a great opportunity to meet these wonderful young people from around the country.



Annual Mount of the Holy Cross Pilgrimage Dates Set


Each year since 1976, Mount of the Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Vail, CO, has sponsored a pilgrimage hike up Notch Mountain to view Mt. of the Holy Cross. Again this year Mount of the Holy Cross will sponsor pilgrimages climbing Notch Mountain in order to view the Mount of the Holy Cross.     


Mount of the Holy Cross mountain

There is a brief service of worship near the summit before descending.  It's a wonderful experience for those who participate and this year the community of Mount of the Holy Cross wanted to offer the opportunity to a wider audience. Due to Forest Service regulations the groups are limited in number so reservations are required.


The dates are Friday, July 20 and Saturday, July 21, 2012.  The event will be from approximately 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day.  This is a fairly strenuous hike and requires good hiking boots and waterproof weather protection. 


There is no cost to participate but pre-registration is required.  Please email the church or call 970- 476-6610 to receive a registration form or for more details.   


photo provided by Pastor Scott Beebe 

Mount of the Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Vail 





Communications Staff
Rocky Mountain Synod
800-525-0462 / 303-777-6700

Announcements for eConnection are due before noon on Monday for the issue the following day. Event announcements are included for two weeks. Please submit your announcement at the time it should appear.