March 11, 2015

Ceremony of Celebration

The Rocky Mountain Synod is gifting a property long-used by the Four Winds American Indian Council to the organization on March 28

Saturday, March 28 at 1 p.m., the site of First Bethany Lutheran Church (which closed in 1973) will be returned to an American Indian organization called Four Winds, which has used the site as a community center for decades. All are invited to this Ceremony of Celebration at 5th and Bannock Street, south of Downtown Denver.

Representatives of the Synod Council, Office of the Bishop staff, and Bishop Gonia will be present for the culmination of years of dialogue. Read more in a recent Denver Post article.



Read and reprint the April issue of the Landscape newsletter

Download the April Landscape. Designed to use either flat or folded, the April 2015 issue of Landscape is ready for you to include in your church newsletter, your Sunday bulletin, or your email newsletter with a link.


Assembly nominations still open!

View the list of needed positions in your conference and download the nomination form. 


Every Day in Lent:  Be Still


We continue the Lenten challenge to "Be Still" for 5-10 minutes each day to center your soul, breathe deeply, and spend time in prayerful gratitude, while lighting a candle. More ideas about how to Be Still from Portico.

"Be Still" during Lent as a meaningful spiritual practice. Those with Portico health insurance can log this 6-week wellness activity when completed.





Our Life Together in Pictures:

send photos by April 3

As part of our assembly celebration, we are creating a visual representation of "Our Life Together." Please send in 2-3 pictures of your congregation in action! Pictures should be in jpeg form and emailed to Gloria Wurst  Deadline for picture submission is April 3.




Our Life Together

2015 Synod Assembly

May 1-3
Sheraton Hotel

Salt Lake City, UT 

Registration and hotel deadline is March 27

Start the registration process here.


Nominations still accepted

View the list of needed positions in your conference and download the nomination form.  


Important Pre-Assembly Information 

Please download the Pre-Assembly Packet and share with your leadership. 

Celebration of Ministry Requests
If your organization would like to request a display table or a page in our Ministry Booklet, fill out the online request form. Email Jan Philpy with any questions.
YouTube Video Challenge
Bishop Gonia has extended a "YouTube Challenge" to everyone in the Rocky Mountain Synod.  Create a 2 minute video using this script, upload it to YouTube, and share the link with Kent Mueller.  Winning videos will be featured during the assembly.  Prizes for the fan favorites!  Click HERE to see a sample entry!

T-Shirt Contest!
1)  Create a design that symbolizes "We are Church:  Better Together" and represents the Rocky Mountain Synod
2)   Make sure it fits in 8.5x11 inch area turned in either direction
3)  Submit as crisp black on white sent in as a hard copy on paper or a high resolution graphic
4)  Turn in to Kent Mueller by MARCH 15!
5)  Win a free T-shirt just for entering the contest
6)  Win 20 shirts for your congregation if your design is chosen!



We need just 18 more to reach our 158 Health Assessment goal!


ELCA PORTICO INSURANCE MEMBERS are asked to complete the health assessment by March 31! The total benefit to the Rocky Mountain Synod is in excess of $40,000! And those who take it get $150 towards medical costs for ten minutes of your time!



2. Submit that you took it on this log page.


The list of those who have logged that they took the health assessment already is at this link. If you took it, but your spouse has not (if applicable), please ask that they do so also.



Sky Ranch Annual Meeting is March 28


Sky Ranch will host it's Annual meeting on Saturday March 28 from 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm at Breaker's Bar and Grill in Longmont.  Join us for an opportunity to reflect on the blessings of 2014 and look forward to the adventure of 2015!


Breaker's Bar and Grill

380 Main Street

Longmont, CO 80501

For questions about the annual meeting please contact the Sky Ranch office at 970-493-5258 or through e-mail at




Sky Ranch leadership training opportunities for High School youth


Youth Go!

Youth Go! is a two-week leadership training program for High School youth. Campers return to their congregations empowered to lead and serve from their week that includes: community building through high and low ropes, a two night backpack trip providing time for prayer and reflection, in depth Bible study and worship planning, visiting some of the program specialists, service projects at Harvest Farm (run by the Denver Rescue Mission helping men with addiction), helping to lead worship and a 24-hour silent retreat.

2015 Dates: June 7-19


Staff In Training

It's not a job. It is an attitude! For those who wonder what it would be like to work at Sky Ranch, this newly restructured program is designed to give you the knowledge and skills needed to be on summer staff. Everyone interested in being a staff in training will participate in a week of training on June 14-19. Everyone who completes this week of training is then eligible to volunteer up to three additional weeks throughout the summer, shadowing and working beside resource staff and counselors, as needed based upon the programs being offered.

Dates: June 14-19

Register for Youth Go! or Staff In Training by visiting our website  For questions please contact our Program Director, Kathryn Seyfarth, at




Eat Pizza and Support Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp on Monday, March 16, 2015

 The California Pizza Kitchen Fundraiser for Rainbow Trail was such a fun time last year that they are doing it again.



To have a great meal and support a great cause!take your family or friends out for a great dinner and CPK will donate 20% of your check to Rainbow Trail.Locations along the front range and in Albuquerque will be participating. RTLC staff will be at the Colorado Springs store around 6:00pm

 To find specific locations and download your coupon today. Click here

 You must have a coupon with you to get the donation for RTLC. We hope that you can make it, and help us make this a huge success. 






The Summit: Youth Ministry Retreat is April 13-15 at Rainbow Trail 


Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp would like to invite everyone working professionally in ministry with youth, young adults, children, and families to The Summit: Youth Ministry Retreat, April 13-15, 2015. Designed as a time of personal renewal, professional development, continuing education, and networking, this year's Summit will be led by Rozella White, ELCA Program Director for Young Adult Ministry. This event is FREE for those in the RMS ELCA. Info at





3/15 Grace Lutheran Boulder, CO 

Janice Kibler

Lutheran Church of Hope Broomfield, CO 

Scott McAnnally


Second Sunday in Lent

Prayer of the Day


O God, by the passion of your blessed Son you made an instrument of shameful death to be for us the means of life. Grant us so to glory in the cross of Christ that we may gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.



Sharing and Learning with Robin Brown

The Core Team of the Hunger Network invites pastors and lay hunger/outreach leaders to meet with Pastor Robin Brown, Associate Director of the ELCA World Hunger and Disaster Appeal, at 1:30 pm on Thursday, March 5, at the Office of the Bishop (7375 Samuel Drive, Denver).


The agenda is simple:  What drives your personal and congregational generosity around issues of hunger and poverty and the work of ELCA World Hunger in particular?  How can Robin and other staff help you?


If you are unable to join the face-to-face meeting, you can participate via WebEx. Email Kent Mueller if you are unfamiliar with exactly how to do this.   The web address for joining the conference is

Please RSVP to Carol McDivitt (970.669.4090 or




Office of the Bishop Eucharist 

is Second Wednesday

The Director for Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-CO, Peter Severson, will be leading our monthly Eucharist this week

We invite you to join us the second Wednesday of each month for a staff/community Eucharist Service at 11:30am at the Office of the Bishop. Email Erin Power if you are interested in leading worship!  Our next worship will be April 8.


Read about recent JOB POSTS in the Rocky Mountain Synod: More information 


Organist (part time)
Grace Lutheran Church, Boulder, CO 

Grace is in the search process for an organist, to begin summer 2015.  The organist plays on Sunday morning, and accompanies the choir on Wednesday and Sunday during the school year. This position is less than 10 hours per week and pays in accordance with AGO guidelines.  Please see the complete job description: and learn more about our church and instruments:  Please submit an application letter and resume to:





Interim Training to take place in Denver


The Rocky Mountain Synod is sponsoring a Region 2 Interim Training series, consisting of three phases. Phase One takes place June 1-5, 2015, followed by Phase Two which is case study experiences. Phase Three will be January 18-22, 2016. Phase One and Three will take place at Bethany Lutheran Church, Cherry Hills Village, CO. This training is specifically for those who will be serving an Intentional Interim during the Transition Time in a congregation, but the skills and insights are also valuable for every congregation leader. View the flyer and register online.




Bishop Jim Gonia

  • Conference of Bishops
  • Ascension, Cheyenne WY

Pastor Ron Roschke 

  • Faith Formation Network
  • Environmental Stewards Team
  • Companion Synod Projects
  • Candidacy Projects

Pastor Sarah Moening    

  • Interim pastors
  • Faith Formation Network

Pastor Stephanie Quick Espinoza

  • Ministry Reviews
  • St John's in Riverton, WY
  • Web Ex Synodical

Pastor Kent Mueller   

  • Lutheran Center Administration

Erin Power

  • Assembly Planning
  • Ministry Review: Lutheran Church of the Master, Lakewood, CO
  • El Camino/CU Boulder

Ruth Hoffman - 

Lutheran Advocacy Ministry, NM   
  • Legislative Session 
Peter Severson - Lutheran Advocacy Ministry, CO
  • Together Colorado Statewide Faith Leader Gathering 


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Get your Global PlaceMaps for annual meetings and Lenten meals!

Inspire your members with a PlaceMap which shows where God is working through ELCA Missionaries, Young Adults in Global Mission, scholarships for International Leaders, and Global Ministries outreach and education. This FREE resource is perfect for dinner place mats, displays or coloring sheets. Download an 11x17 copy at







website calendar




MAY 1-3

2015 Synod Assembly

Sheraton Hotel
Salt Lake City, Utah


2015 Theological Conference

YMCA of the Rockies
Estes Park, Colorado


2015 Senior High Youth Gathering


Mount Tabor sings at the Tabernacle on Temple Square


The Mount Tabor Choir will sing Sunday March 22 at 6 pm as part of the annual Interfaith Musical Tribute. They will be performing Psalm 141 from Holden Evening Prayer representing our Lutheran spirituality and faith tradition. The event is free but tickets are required.  Please call 801-328-0521 or email for your ticket.





Elim Lutheran Church


Troop 54 of Elim Lutheran Church in Ogden, Utah, receives a plaque for volunteering to maintain a section of the Ogden River at the Egyptian theater on Friday March 6th.

 Left to Right: Scouts Cody, Blake, and Luke, Assistant Scoutmaster Mike Morgan, Scout Conner, and Troop Committee Chair Rick Widner.




Wyoming Middle School Youth Gathering  

is March 20-22 in Casper


The Wyoming Conference Middle School Youth Gathering is March 20-22 at Grace Lutheran in Casper. All Wyoming congregations are invited to attend the Wyoming MSYG, where we will explore 'Here We Go--A Journey Through Acts.' We will have time for Bible study, mission, fun, and worship.  If you are interested in more information, contact Pastor Brenda at Grace Lutheran at 307-235-6329.









why we need each other

Do our generational differences matter? Does coming from the Silent Generation, the Baby Boomers, the GenXers or the Millennials really affect everything, including the way we experience spirituality?

Generational expert Elisabeth Nesbit will lead a workshop to help understand how generational differences affect our spirituality, as well how we can grow together spiritually. Join us. 

April 23, 8:45 a.m. to noon. Cost is $30. Email or call to reserve your space by April 15. Takes place at the Loretto Spirituality Center, 4000 S. 
Wadsworth, Littleton, CO. Email is and phone is 303-986-1541.


Fourth Annual Hunger, Faith & Food Conference: 

Call to Action Faith Institutions and Community Partners Commit to Ending Local Hunger

March 19, 2015, 12:30­5 pm

Hosted by Abrahamic Initiative & Saint Johnıs Cathedral

The conference will directly address the realities of food insecurity and malnutrition. Grow connections and collaborate with movement activists and local nonprofits working to address hunger. Expand your reach by connecting those in need with those longing to serve.

more information

To reserve your place at the table, RSVP to


Chili Supper with Robin Brown!

The World Hunger Team of King of Glory in Loveland will host a Chili Supper with Robin at 6:30 pm on Saturday, March 7, for all congregations close enough to drive to 2919 North Wilson Avenue. All pastors and hunger/mission teams are welcome! 
Please RSVP to Carol McDivitt (970.669.4090 or or call the church office at 970.669.5983.


The Twenty First Annual 

Gallery of 

Living Art


First Lutheran Church

1515 N. Cascade

Colorado Springs, CO 80907

Friday, March 20 at 7:30 pm,

Saturday, March 21 at 2:00 pm and 5:00 pm

and Sunday, March 22 at 3:00 pm

As the audience sits in the sanctuary, the story of Christ's Passion and Resurrection unfolds through live reproductions of fourteen sacred works of art staged by a 60 member cast, narrative scripture and music sung by First Lutheran choir.

Three new scenes will be presented this year - two are paintings: "The Last Supper" by Philippe de Champaigne and "The Triumphal Entry" by Ernst Deger. The third new scene is found in the nave of San Giovanni in Laterano in Rome and is a relief of Jesus with the Cross. Admission is free and childcare is provided. 


Bethany Concert on March 29: St. John Passion



The Lutheran Chorale presents a new St John Passion by Bob Chilcott for its American Premier!

Chilcott's mighty setting of words from the Gospel of St John is a dramatic yet uplifting retelling of the Passion story. 

This St John Passion is a masterwork of dramatic storytelling. Performances will be Saturday, March 21 at 7:30 pm at Bethany Lutheran Church, 4500 Hampden Ave., Cherry Hills Village, CO and Sunday, March 29 at 3 pm at St. Paul Lutheran Church, 1600 Grant Street, Denver, CO. A free will offering (and nonperishable food donations) will be collected at both concerts to benefit local food banks. For more information visit our website at, or email us at


Augustana Arts Concert: March 20 and 21



Kent Mueller - Assistant to the Bishop
Maria Sutton - Communications Assistant 
Rocky Mountain Synod
800-525-0462 / 303-777-6700 / fax 303-339-4744

Announcements for eConnection are due before noon on Thursday for the issue the following Tuesday. Event announcements are included for about two weeks. Please submit your announcement at the time it should appear, ready to copy and paste into the newsletter, with a link to your website for more information.