Bishop Jim Gonia

  • Missional Gathering Planning
  • Todd Hawkins-Installation
  • Colorado Council of Churches
  • Saron Lutheran, Strassburg, CO
  • First Gypsum CO
  • Staff Development Day
  • Dean's WebEx

Pastor Ron Roschke 

  • ELCA Worship Jubilee
  • Consultation with First, Gypsum CO
  • Staff Development Day

Pastor Sarah Moening 

  • Ascension-Ogden
  • Ascension-St Matthew, Price
  • Staff Development Day
  • Conference Coordinator WebEx


Pastor Stephanie Quick Espinoza

  • Mission congregation accompaniment and ministry reviews

Pastor Kent Mueller   

  • Lutheran Center & Call Process Administration
  • Staff Development Day

Erin Power, Diaconal Ministry

  • Theological Conference planning
  • Ministry Reviews

Ruth Hoffman - 

Lutheran Advocacy Ministry, NM  
  • Revenue Stabilization Committee
  • Mortgage Finance Authority Oversight Committee
Peter Severson - Lutheran Advocacy Ministry, CO
  • Coalition meetings
  • Together Colorado Metro Denver Caucus
  • Staff Development Day


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website calendar 





2015 Theological Conference

YMCA of the Rockies
Estes Park, Colorado


2015 Senior High Youth Gathering




APRIL 28-30 
2016 Synod Assembly 
Embassy Suites 
Loveland, CO

2016 Theological Conference 
Little America 
Cheyenne, WY




MAY 5-7
2017 Synod Assembly
Antlers Hilton Hotel
Colorado Springs, CO


2017 Theological Conference




MAY 3-5
2018 Synod Assembly
Westin Hotel
Westminster, CO


In This Issue

Pre-Retirement Seminar for ELCA leaders

is August 17 in Albuquerque


If you're 50+, it's a good idea to plan for retirement. A seminar won't be offered in Albuquerque for quite some time, so this is great opportunity to participate in that region! The deadline to RSVP is July 27, 2015.


Learn How to Minimize Debt, Optimize Assets, and Customize a Strategy for Retirement


Portico Benefit Services, in collaboration with Ernst & Young, invites you to join us for a day-long seminar on the fundamentals of personal finance. You'll get information from a certified Ernst & Young financial planner on these questions and more:

  • How can I reduce my debt?
  • How much money will I need for retirement?
  • How do I choose investment fund options in the ELCA Retirement Plan?
  • How much life insurance do I need for myself and my family?

Here is more information about a seminar:

Location: St. Luke Lutheran Church  9100 Menaul Blvd. NE Albuquerque, NM 87112

Date: Monday, August 17, 2015

Time: 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Register by July 27, 2015


Register now


Better Together Fund

Video: We are Church. Better together!


Paul & Lorraine Rumpeltes from Highlands Lutheran Church in Denver attended our Synod Assembly for the first time this past spring in Salt Lake. Hearing Bishop Eaton speak, seeing the mass of green shirts throughout Temple Square, and learning more about our wider expressions of Church were among the highlights. After experiencing how we are Better Together, Lorraine has responded with a gift of her time and gift for details, volunteering to be a part of the 2016 Assembly Elections team!  How will you be Better Together in the Rocky Mountain Synod? 

Consider a gift to the Better Together Fund

The Scriptures remind us that we are the Body of Christ, woven together for the sake of our witness to God's love and grace. As members of the ELCA we claim the power of being Christ's Church-Better Together.  

At our Rocky Mountain Synod Assembly in May the Synod Council announced the Better Together Fund, an opportunity for those passionate about our shared ministry as a synod and as a global church to set aside one dollar a day (or more) for the foundational work we do together.Learn more and give a gift online.


2015-16 RMS Events Poster: Many Voices. One Song.

Download and Print (11x17) this poster to display in your congregation. One color copy was mailed to each congregation in early July. 

Call or email for additional color copies. Download the Word version to copy/paste information into your congregation bulletins and newsletter! 


Download the .pdf version.

Great Fall and Winter Retreat
Dates Available At Rainbow Trail

As you begin planning another year of ministry consider the many benefits of taking time away to retreat with your groups at Rainbow Trail.  Amazing hospitality in a peaceful and beautiful mountain setting provides the space for growing in community, reflecting on life, and preparing for the future.  Dates are available from September - May.  Please contact Ben Larson,, for special deals in January and February.  More information available at

2015 Leadership Retreat / Theological Conference is September 21-24 at Estes Park, CO
Registration is open for the annual gathering for leaders in the Rocky Mountain Synod. The registration deadline is August 20.

Information about the event is posted online, including the registration link.

Those who have been participating in the Journey of Renewal program will gather one day early for the program closing retreat.

Christ the King mission congregation in South Jordan, Utah, to close August 23

The Rocky Mountain Synod Council has made the difficult decision to close the mission congregation currently served by Pastor Emily Ewing in South Jordan, Utah. For the past nine years, this unique "storefront" ministry has faithfully witnessed to the Good News of Christ in the unique Utah context, and we give thanks for Pastor Emily's ministry.

The Service of Holy Closure will take place on Sunday, August 23 at 5 p.m. at 10318 Redwood Rd #16, South Jordan, UT 84095. All are invited to join with Bishop Gonia in giving thanks for this ministry as it comes to a conclusion.
Prayer Cycle
JULY 2015



The Rev. Madelynn Johnston (ECUSA) was installed Sunday as the pastor/priest at St. Paul's/Peace Episcopal Lutheran Church in Las Vegas, NM. She is pictured, center, with Pastor Kent Mueller, RMS assistant to the bishop, on the left, and the Rt. Rev. Dr. Michael Vono of the Episcopal Diocese of the Rio Grande, on the right.



7/26 Powell

St. Paul's/Peace Las Vegas, NM
      Madelynn Johnston (ECUSA)
St. Timothy Albuquerque, NM 
       Rachel Powell
Trinity Farmingtong,NM
       Larry Davis
Valley Los Lunas, NM
       Ken Vogler





Pastor Todd Hawkins
Augustana Lutheran Church
5000 E Alameda Ave
Denver, CO
July 25 at 11:00 am

Pastor Christine Higuera Street
St. Matthew's Lutheran Church
2654 West Builders Drive (5200 S. and 2700 W.)
Taylorsville, UT 
August 2 at 4 p.m.
Prayer of the Day

Faithful God, most merciful judge, you care for your children with firmness and compassion. By your Spirit nurture us who live in your kingdom, that we may be rooted in the way of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. - 

Little Free Library is new community
outreach at Advent, Westminster, CO 

Advent Lutheran Church, Westminster CO, 

is installing a Little Free Library for the community.


Dedication and Blessing Celebration will immediately follow the 9:30 am service on July 26, 2015.

What is a Little Free Library? It's a "take a book, return a book" gathering place where neighbors share their favorite literature and stories. In its most basic form, a Little Free Library is a box full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book (or two) and bring back another book to share. 

A member of the congregation, Mike Anderson, did a beautiful job with the construction. 

For more information visit:



Congregations are stronger and
healthier through CDI training program


St. Makr's Aurora stained glass windowThe Church Development Institute (CDI) is a program for clergy and lay leaders focused on developing the spiritual community and organizational life of congregations to transform them by making them stronger, healthier, more deeply rooted in spirituality, more responsive to God, and more effective in their communities. CDI adpts research and experimentation of secular organizations to the Church's nature and mission through 110 hours of instruction delivered over eight weekends over the course of two years. CDI emphases the building of relationships in congregations and the wider church, demonstrating that we are "Better Together" especially since this is an opportunity provided to us through the Episcopal Church, USA.


Funding for scholarships is under consideration by the Rocky Mountain Synod Council. For more information, please contact Earline Bohling, Rocky Mountain Synod Vice President, at 


Church Development Institute Colorado


Church Development Institute Utah

"God's work. Our hands." Sunday
is an opportunity to celebrate who we are as the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America-one church, freed in Christ to serve and love our neighbor.


The date for the 2015 dedicated day of service is Sunday, September 13. Mark your congregation's calendar today! In speaking about his congregation's 2014 experience, a 10-year-old member from St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Whittier, Calif., puts it best: "It feels good to give." More information at this link.


Exciting changes for SHYG, November 20-22

sunrise-illustration.jpg We have big changes in store for the High School Synod Gathering this 
November 20-22! If you have been doing the gathering for years or this is your first time, this is going to be a great retreat. This year's theme is "The Pursuit." We will be focusing on our individual giftedness and how those gifts fit into and help to forms the greater community of faith.


There are a lot of new surprises this year! Here's what's in store.

  1. The gathering will be held at the Denver Marriot West. It is 2-3 hours closer to our southern and western congregations with no travel difference for those up north.
  2. Added service component. We will be heading out to Denver in congregational groups on Saturday for service in the community.
  3. Fun activities in the hotel and surrounding area!

Some of the tried and true things that we always do will still be the


  1. Small Groups
  2. Large Group
  3. Congregational time
  4. Saturday night Party!

Please mark your calendars and plan to join us November 20-22 in Denver! Cost has not yet been finalized, but budget for between $135-155.


Register for the 
2015 RMSWO Fall Gathering


The RMSWO 2015 Fall Gathering is Sept. 18-20, 2015, in Colorado Springs, CO at First Lutheran Church. The theme will be "Walking Side by Side-Part 2"-Mark 6:7.

Please use the Gathering Registration form above which includes the correct mailing address. Further information is included on the Walking Side by Side Registration Explanation sheet above, such as the early bird deadline of JULY 31 and recommended hotels. See you in Colorado Springs September 18-20, 2015!

Your sister in Christ,
Anna Thompson
President, RMSWO

Eleven fall gatherings throughout 
the RMS invite your participation

This year's Missional Gatherings in each conference will help us explore our theme for the year, "Many Voices, One Song." The church is made of many voices, and each voice is as distinctive as the person or the community that sings it. The wonder of the project is how the voices all come together to make one song. 

But really, the voices don't make the song; the song invites the voices to take up the project of making God's music. That is because the song is God's-God's love song for this world loved so deeply and always unfolding in Jesus' good news. We come together this fall to listen for the song and join our voices to the "Gospel music" God is making in the world. 


A registration link will be provided soon. 


Mountain WestSat 9/19Good Shepherd
Glenwood Springs
2-4 p.m.
Metro EastSun 9/20Augustana
1:30-3:30 p.m.
Metro WestSat 9/26Holy Cross
Wheat Ridge
10 a.m.-noon
North ColoradoSun 9/27TBD2-4 p.m.
WyomingSat 10/10Grace
Noon-3 p.m.
SE Colorado
Sun 10/25
Colorado Springs
2-4 p.m.
Sat 10/31Church of Hope
10 a.m.-noon
Metro South
Sun 11/1
Christ the King
1:30-3:30 p.m.
UtahSat 11/7Zion
Salt Lake City
10 a.m.-noon
Sat 11/14
St. Mark
10 a.m.-noon
N New MexicoSat 12/5TBD10 a.m.-noon



Rostered leader transitions and openings

Rostered leaders include pastors, diaconal ministers, associates in ministry, and deaconesses. View a list of congregations in transition at this link.
Eucharist is second Wednesday of each month

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!  
Non-rostered positions available

Congregations and agencies are seeking non-rostered positions, such as office administrators, musicians, faith formation staff, and more.  View positions at this link.



Director of Youth & Education Ministries 

Advent Lutheran Church Westminster, CO and St. Johnıs Lutheran Church ­ Thornton, CO

For questions or to submit resume: or


Urban Servant Corps, Denver, CO

Community Life Coordinator


Urban Servant Corps is hiring a part-time (20 hours/week) Community Life Coordinator! Please submit resume and cover letter to Executive Director, Krista Kilgus at: The position description can be found here:



Making Effective Decisions
in the Congregation

retro-blue-squares-banner.gifSaturday, August 8, 2015, 10 am-3pm
Community of Joy, Rio Rancho, NM

Tuesday, September 15, 3 to 8:00pm 
at the Lutheran Center, Denver, CO


Making effective decisions allows pastors, councils and congregations to work together to bring our many voices into the song of the Gospel. Understanding how we make decisions and how groups make decisions is a critical aspect of being church together-carrying out our Mission-and building God's kingdom. 

The workshop explores three key elements of effective decision-making:

  • Communications styles and how they affect understanding
  • The role of interests in individual and group decision-making
  • The importance of active listening in decision-making and problem-solving

Workshop leaders are Rev Sarah Moening, Assistant to the Bishop, RMSELCA, and Rich Nelson, a member of Community of Joy Lutheran Church in Rio Rancho, NM, with more than forty years experience in helping groups make effective decisions.The workshop is part of the Congregational Ministry Board's program in the Rocky Mountain Synod.


We are encouraging pastors, council presidents, church councils, and congregational leaders to attend. Please register with Rich Nelson:





 People need to call by August 1 if they plan on attending. Call Alena Lamarato at 307.684.7872




"Soulful Sunday"

Presented by the Colorado Council of Churches and Capitol Hill United Ministries 

Sunday, August 2, 12:00pm

Park Hill United Methodist Church

5209 Montview Blvd, Denver


Soulful Sunday will be a time of fellowship and worship that will give a diverse group of people of faith an opportunity to get to know one another. The day will begin with a potluck lunch, followed by a brief worship service and communion, and concluding with additional time for fellowship and relationship-building.

The goal is for predominantly black and predominantly white congregations to enter into fellowship and commit to building a relationship. Congregations can decide what form that relationship might take.

Clergy are invited to bring yourselves, your congregants, and enough potluck food & drink to feed the number of people you're expecting to bring.

RSVP at this link: Soulful Sunday. Questions can be directed to Adrian Miller,





So, What are You Doing with Your Life? And Why?

Sat., Aug 22, 2015, 9:00 am-3:00 pm

The Lutheran Center, Denver

Vocation is bigger than your job. It is your baptismal life in the world-the way you respond to God's call and grace. It is as big as your life in the world. Dr. Kurt Hendel, recently retired faculty member from Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, joins Pastors Zach Parris and Ron Roschke to explore how we engage in this baptismal vocation. The workshop will offer tools and practices for discerning your vocation. This retreat is part of El Camino Colorado, the vocational discernment program of Lutheran Campus Ministry-CU Boulder. For more information, including registration, please visit this link.