MetroLines is a publication of the Metro D.C. Synod, ELCA, for our congregations, leaders and friends sharing what's happening in local ministry together.
Synod Focus

RAISING THE CAMP FLAG
I've been hearing lots of sweet camp memories from ministry colleagues lately - prompted by the declaration of February in the synod as "'I Love Camp' Month." Seems camp's been formative for lots of folks! Raise awareness of our great camps (that's Caroline Furnace in Fort Valley, Virginia and Mar-Lu-Ridge in Jefferson, Maryland) with weekly bulletin inserts, worship ideas and more at www.metrodcelca.org/2015/01/february-is-i-love-camp-month/.

GIVE YOUR LIFE A VALENTINE
Mariah, a 33-year survivor of Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS), will share her secrets of using the act of forgiveness as a powerful and transformative tool to create a dynamic and fulfilling life in a workshop on Sat. Feb. 14 from 1-4 p.m.  After hearing her, the Rev. Phil Hirsch was moved to encourage a workshop here, and Peace Lutheran Church in Alexandria will host the free event on the life-changing and sacred act. "The beneficial effects of forgiveness ripple out to our physical health and to all our relationships," she says. Information and registration info on "Extras" page at www.metrodcelca.org.
extras

STEWARDSHIP CAMPAIGN BEST PRACTICES
Our synod's Stewardship and Mission Support Table has planned along with The Stewardship Life Institute a free and useful workshop presenting practical advice on how to plan your congregation's next stewardship campaign. Stewardship committee members, pastors, council members and others are welcome. Pick the date and location for the workshop that works best for you: Mar. 7 at St. Mark's in Springfield, Virginia, or Mar. 21 at St. Luke's in Silver Spring, Maryland. Either day, the workshop runs from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Local Info

MDIVForward DEVELOPMENTS AT LTSG
Gettysburg Seminary has announced a curriculum revision. Two new paths have been shaped, called MDiv3 and MDivFlex. The MDivFlex creates even more flexibility for students who wish to maintain the possibility of more electives, devote up to a full semester to a project related to one's passion in ministry, participate more fully in special para-curricular opportunities, or get an early start on additional study. The MDiv3 pathway offers a selective option in which students are able to complete the full MDiv degree in three intensive, focused years, including internship. Learn more at www.ltsg.edu, including about "The Weekend" opportunities to explore in person. (LTSG Press Release. 2/2/15)

NLCS GRANTS AWARDS ANNOUNCED
St. Paul's Lutheran Church in D.C. and Lutheran Social Services - National Capital Area were among recipients of 15 grants awarded by the National Lutheran Communities & Services' (NLCS) Community Impact Council. The Community Impact Program was established to enhance NLCS' commitment to the greater community through working collaboratively with other organizations and continued efforts to enrich the lives of seniors. More at www.nationallutheran.org/communityimpact.

LOSS FOR THC IS GAIN FOR D.C.
Polly Donaldson, executive director of the Transitional Housing Corporation (THC) since 2004, has been chosen to fill a key position in D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser's administration, directing the Department of Housing and Community Development. In an announcement from THC, Mark Chambers, THC's Director of Development, said, "There is no one better than Polly at understanding the importance of systems change in addressing the issues of homelessness and then moving policy and policymakers toward those changes." THC has roots in the ministry of Christ Lutheran Church in D.C. Frank Demarais is serving as the organization's Interim Executive Director. (http://thcdc.org/farewellpolly/)
Resource Alert

PROPOSALS FOR WELCA GRANTS
Feb. 15 is the proposal deadline for grants from the Women of the ELCA. Women of the ELCA seeks proposals from not-for-profit organizations, both domestic and international, that support healing and wholeness for women of all ages through the affirmation and advancement of women's emotional, physical and spiritual health. More at www.womenoftheelca.org/grants--pages-54.php.

NEW JOYFUL NEWS POSTED
Our local Synodical Women's Organization has posted their most recent newsletter to the synod website. Find "Joyful News" under the publications tab at www.metrodcelca.org.

LUTHERAN CHURCH MUSIC PROFILES
If you're a worship and church music fan, video interviews conducted by Dr. Carl Schalk with ten leaders like Dr. Mark Bangert may be of interest. Check out "Profiles in American Lutheran Church Music" at Concordia University Chicago's website: www.cuchicago.edu/about-concordia/center-for-church-music/profiles-in-american-lutheran-church-music/.

PLACES ON PLACEMAT
Have a church meal coming up during Lent? The free ELCA Global Church Sponsorship map is perfect for dinner placemats, displays or coloring sheets. Pre-printed pads can be ordered from 800-638-3522, or single-copies can be downloaded from www.elca.org/globalmission-resources.
Announced Churchwide

PLANNING DAY OF SERVICE IN 2015

The positive momentum of holding a "'God's work. Our hands.' Sunday" (remember those yellow t-shirts, rubber gloves and wide smiles?) has prompted selection of Sunday, September 13, 2015 for the 3rd annual ELCA-wide Day of Service. ELCA members can make a communal impact by putting faith into action through service activities in their neighborhood and area on this uniform date. Promotional information can be found at www.elca.org/Resources/GWOH-Sunday.  

 

CARDS DELIVERED 

Did your congregation participate in the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service Hope for the Holidays card writing campaign? "We were amazed to receive 9,000 messages of hope" for families isolated in detention over the holidays. "Thank you for the incredible compassion," said the LIRS announcement. (LIRS Redefining Welcome blog, 12/15/14)

 

ELCA REPORT COVERS AVAILABLE 

Hard copy Annual Report Covers may be useful to your congregation during meetings in the months ahead. Packets of 50 can be shipped directly to your congregation through the ELCA distribution center, http://resources.elca.org/Products-Stewardship.html. See a sample and other items which may be of interest, such as Stories of Faith in Action, at www.elca.org/resources/stewardship.  

Blog Post Reprise

February is I LOVE CAMP month

You whet your appetite with the blurb in MetroLines, now delve into the details.

  Read more...
PAPER AIRPLANE

Tips for completing rostered leaders' reports

Buzz suggests filling out Rostered Leaders' reports can cause some frustration. Hope these tips come in handy. Read more...

Getting your hous-ing in order

It's January, and our treasurers' thoughts often turn to... finances. Congregations and clergy will likely find these five tips helpful when administering the housing allowance in compliance with IRS regulations.

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Baptism begins real New Year

"New Year's resolutions are symptoms of our underlying dis-ease. We sense that our lives are not entirely the way they should be," writes the ELCA Presiding Bishop's monthly column.

  Read more...

From the Bishop's Desk: Allegiance

God's reminding us God's claim on the world is based not on the power to coerce or to control us but on the power that shapes us with our consent into walking, talking images of God's love, for the sake of our neighbors and for the sake of the world - a Christmas message from Bishop Graham.

  Read more...

Cross true gift of Christmas

When we decorate our churches, we may be imprinting imaginations. Something she saw as a child predicates Presiding Bishop Eaton's 2015 Christmas message.

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prayer
Silent shout from Companion Synod

The bishop of the Lutheran church in El Salvador calls for unity in prayer in desperate times

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Prayer for peacemaking

Prayer petition for peacemaking, shared as our nation looks at itself in turbulent times

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Time & cost saving potential

Electronic giving has potential for helping our members and bookkeeping needs.

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Complicated and human

Why would any parent bid farewell to a child and send him/her off alone into the unknown? A congregation member who recently traveled to our Companion Synod in El Salvador wrote about her observations.

 Read more...

More than money - hitting 100%!

Great news is announced about our synod's participation in the ELCA Malaria Campaign. But if you haven't tried it, don't lose YOUR congregation's opportunity to help eradicate this serious problem.  Read more...
whew
Editor's note
More blog posts than usual this issue, hey?! Two reasons: 1) bonus posts during the Christmas season, and 2) it's been a while since ML was published.
REMEMBER: Read (or delete) at will a manageable number of posts directly from email by signing up in the box on the www.metrodcelca.org home page.
Share your news! Contact the Editor, Karen Krueger, at kkrueger@metrodcelca.org.