1. ELCIC National Office Partners with CLWR and LCC to Sponsor a Syrian Refugee Family
National office staff from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
(ELCIC), Canadian Lutheran World Relief (CLWR) and Lutheran Church-Canada
(LCC) are coming together for the
first time to bring a Syrian refugee family to Canada.
The initiative will pool donations from individual staff members to raise the money needed to support a family for a year.
To view the full ELCIC news release, please click on this link: ELCIC National Office Partners With CLWR and LCC to Sponsor a Syrian Refugee Family
2. Updates from Canadian Council of Churches
In a letter from Canadian Council of Churches (CCC) president, Canon Alyson Barnett-Cowan reminds us that, "As Christians, we are called to put our faith and hope into action and to meet the needs of the oppressed and vulnerable by reflecting our own experience of God's love for us. God's Word directs us into paths of hospitality and invites us to welcome the stranger. In God's Word we find the source of our strength and a model for every action we undertake in God's name."
ELCIC National Bishop Susan Johnson encourages members of the church to read and share the letter widely. Together may we all welcome the stranger.
Read the full text of the CCC letter here.
Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2016
The Canadian Council of Churches has released resources for the January 18-25, 2016, Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. The focus is on the text from 1 Peter 2:9 “Called to proclaim the mighty acts of God!” The core material is a joint effort of the World Council of Churches and the Vatican. The Canadian resources are produced by an ecumenical writing team chaired by ELCIC pastor Susan Climo. National Bishop Susan Johnson has written a letter encouraging all ELCIC individuals and congregations to get involved in the 2016 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. To view this letter, please click here.
3. Prayer for Congregations and People Formerly of the ELCIC
At the 2015 ELCIC National Convention in July, delegates passed a motion, "that the ELCIC acknowledges with sadness that several of our family congregations and family members have chosen to leave this church. We would like to be clear that our thoughts and prayers remain with them as they carry on Christ's ministry. We will include these congregations and former members in our weekly prayers as we do member congregations of this church. We will continue to look for opportunities to alleviate suffering in, and to care for, the communities we serve together. CARRIED"
The following prayer is being shared for use across the church. It has been included in prayers during recent meetings of the National Office, the recent National Church Council meeting and at other times of prayer.
God of all, as Jesus prayed for unity among his followers, we acknowledge with sadness the people and congregations formerly of the ELCIC, and we pray for their well-being and our continuing partnership in ministries to alleviate suffering and to care for the communities and world we serve together. Amen.
4. ELCIC Reformation 2017
Reformation 2017 - Global Themes
The ELCIC has marked out 2015-2017 to commemorate the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation (2017). We have adopted The Lutheran World Federation (LWF)'s
themes and goals. The overall commemorative theme is Liberated by God's Grace with three sub-themes: (1) Salvation - Not for sale!; (2) Human Beings - Not for sale!; and (3) Creation - Not for sale! The goals are: (1) to strengthen communion among member churches; (2)
to explore our Lutheran identity; (3) to strengthen ecumenical
commitment; and (4) to reaffirm our commitment to justice and peace. These themes and goals are becoming prominent in the ELCIC's ministry and are captured in our 2016 joint Anglican-Lutheran national youth and worship gatherings. Additional worship and study resources will appear in 2016.
Please click on the following links for some helpful resources:
Reformation 2017 Flyer
Not for Sale! CLAY Gathering
Formation & Reformation - National Worship Conference
Reformation Theme Reflections
Theological reflections for study groups on the Reformation 2017 themes are contained in four booklets.The
booklets are the work of authors and scholars from across our global Communion of Churches. Topics include the migration of peoples (including refugees), climate change, land expropriation, the "prosperity gospel" and sustainable human existence. These are excellent resources for ministerial study groups and ecumenical conversations. Many other resources are becoming available. To view these resources, please click here.
Take the Reformation Challenge!
ELCIC members are encouraged to lift up the commemoration of the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation through participation in the ELCIC Reformation Challenge. Our goals are to:
- Sponsor 500 refugees to Canada
- Provide 500 scholarships for ELCJHL schools
- Plant 500,000 trees
- Give $500,000 to the LWF Endowment Fund
Let us know your commitment by telling us what you, your congregation, your family and your community pledge to do. Please click here to get more information on how to get started!
Reformation Challenge: http://www.elcic.ca/ReformationChallenge/default.cfm
Register your commitment: http://www.surveymonkey.com/r/JHG2R8W
Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land: http://www.elcjhl.org/
Luther Reading Challenge
Many of Martin Luther's
writings are being presented online for reflection. The texts range
from Luther's personal letters and hymns to his doctrinal and social
commentary; his catechisms and his will. Individual readers and reading
groups can participate in online discussions. Simply register and have
the opportunity to look at our roots!
Lutheran-Roman Catholic Dialogue
In December, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) and Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) are beginning joint work on From Conflict to Communion which encourages Lutherans and Catholics to celebrate together the
common witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Dialogue will produce
a Study Guide wherein the lens of baptism will be used to look at the
five imperatives at the end of From Conflict to Communion: common
point of beginning, encounter, unity, gospel and joint witness. Bishop
Susan Johnson will co-chair the Dialogue. We invite our ELCIC
community to include this important work in the prayers of the faithful
and to begin thinking about the major themes in From Conflict to Communion.
Information on Canadian Events
We are gathering news of 2017
Reformation events. These include lecture series in Calgary; an
ecumenical worship and lecture series in Edmonton; a scholarly
symposium in Waterloo; and more. Is your congregation, community or
institution planning something special for 2017? We would like to hear
from you! Give us the who, what, when, where and why of what's
happening. If you have any information available online, give us the
link! We would like to help remind people of possibilities and assist in
getting the word out. Send an email to Assistant to the Bishop, Rev. Andre Lavergne at email@example.com.
5. Appeal Issued to Assist with Syrian Refugee Relief
Photo provided by CLWR
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) and Canadian
Lutheran World Relief (CLWR) have issued an appeal to support Syrian
refugees suffering and displaced by brutal violence in their country.
"We are asking all ELCIC members to keep Syrian refugees in their
prayers," says ELCIC National Bishop Susan C. Johnson. "We pray for
their safety and access to shelter and basic necessities. I urge our
members to assist with financial contributions to the appeal and help
support our sisters and brothers."
CLWR, through the support of on-the-ground partners such as The Lutheran
World Federation, is working with Syrian refugees who have settled in
communities in Jordan and Iraq. Funds received for this appeal will go
where most needed to provide basic aid such as clothing, personal
hygiene supplies and food vouchers to people most in need of support.
Funds will also assist with helping refugee children returning to school
by supporting school and classroom rehabilitation and school supplies.
Youth and young adults affected by trauma will be supported through
psychosocial support programs. Donations made between September 12, 2015 and December 31, 2015 will be
matched dollar-for-dollar by the Canadian government through their Syria
Emergency Relief Fund.
You may make a donation in one of the following ways:
- Donate online: clwr.donorshops.com/product/685132A/syrianrefugeerelief.php
- Make a designated offering (Syrian Refugee Relief) donation through any ELCIC congregation.
- Call CLWR at 1.800.661.2597 (locally at 204.694.5602) to donate by credit card.
- Send a cheque made payable to CLWR and mailed to CLWR, 600-177
Lombard Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3B 0W5. Please indicate that you wish to
contribute to Syrian Refugee Relief.
You can also get more information on refugee sponsorship and resources by clicking here.
6. Canada Lutheran Wants Your Ideas and More
Get Connected Through Canada Lutheran
From progressive ministries to practical spiritual guidance, Canada Lutheran introduces
readers to people and ideas that will provide discussion and connect
them to their home congregations, the National Church, and our global
ministries - helping our members live their lives In Mission for Others.
A Congregational Subscription Plan (CSP) to Canada Lutheran is your best way to stay connected. For your congregational subscription, please contact your respective Canada Lutheran representative.
To get your church started on a congregational subscription and for
individual subscriptions, please contact Barb Wiebe at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wanted - Articles for Practising Our Faith
Do you have a story or idea about how you or the people around you handle life’s challenges and opportunities through faith? Begin to inform and inspire others by sharing your story. Each article should be around 650 words and Canada Lutheran will pay for it once it gets accepted. Successful articles are subject to editing to conform to ELCIC style. If you are interested in submitting your article, send it to email@example.com with “practicing our faith” on the subject line.
7. Compassionate Justice Updates
DUIM - An Interactive and Engaging Program for Ministry Leaders
The Canadian Churches' Forum is offering Deepening Understanding for Intercultural Ministry (DUIM), a 6-day interactive and engaging program with practical ideas for implementation in your own context. DUIM is for Christian ministry leaders nurturing cultural relevance, understanding and awareness in their communities. The next DUIM program will be in Saskatoon, SK from January 25 to 29. For more information and for a full listing of their 2016 schedule, please click here.
Orange the World - End Violence Against Women and Girls
From November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to December 10, Human Rights Day, the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign, is a time to galvanize action to end violence against women and girls around the world. To find our more, please click here.
Welcoming the Stranger
Have you affirmed the core faith values for Welcoming the Stranger? The ELCIC National Convention endorsed this initiative in July, 2015. For more information, please click here.
Winds of Change Campaign
This year, the Winds of Change campaign will focus on TRC Call to Action #62 which calls for the history of residential schools and treaties to be a mandatory part of the school curriculum in each province and territory. A petition for each province and territory is available here.
Prayers for Paris
During the UN Climate Conference (COP21) in Paris from November 30 to December 11, 2015, Bishop Susan Johnson invites you to pray for climate justice and for world leaders who are working to forge a new international climate agreement. To view this document, please click here.
8. Spirited Discipleship Updates
The next Canadian Lutheran Anglican Youth (CLAY) Gathering takes place in August 17-21, 2016 in Charlottetown, PEI. Registration information is now online.
Please share with your home teams and youth groups. Find out more
about: Specialist Home Teams, deadlines, fees, accommodations and more
at claygathering.ca .
Call to Spiritual Renewal
with others across the ELCIC striving for a deeper discipleship as we
live out our baptismal covenants. The call to spiritual renewal
includes: Pray, Read, Worship, Study, Serve, Give and Tell. A new
resource: Call to Spiritual Renewal - Ideas for Individuals,
Congregations and Communities was distributed at convention this summer
and is now available online. For more
information, please visit our website.
9. Healthy Church Updates
What is your plan for continuing education in 2016? The ELCIC Continuing Education Plan (CEP) provides support to encourage on-going education by ELCIC leaders. The member’s personal account is available for a wide variety of short term study opportunities. Plan members are eligible to apply for a Long Term Study Grant toward an advanced degree. CEP Expense Reimbursement Forms and Long Term Study Leave Forms can be found here at the ELCIC Group Services website.
2016 Companion of the Worship Arts
The Companion of the Worship Arts is an honor bestowed on individuals in recognition of significant contributions made to the worship life of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) and the Anglican Church of Canada (ACC).
Conferred in the ELCIC since 1996, the honour recognizes ongoing
inspiration and encouragement to others, and service to God, through
worship, spirituality and the arts. The honour is presented at the
National Worship Conference, which takes place every two years.
In 2016, the 20th anniversary of the ELCIC Companion of the Worship Arts will be
conferred at the joint ACC - ELCIC National Worship Conference, Formation & Reformation, to be held in Waterloo, Ontario on July 24
- 27, 2016. Look for nomination information on the Companion of the
Worship Arts webpage.
10. Effective Partnerships Updates
Waterloo Ministries Directory - Last Call
The Fall 2015 edition of the Waterloo Ministries Directory is available on the ELCIC website. The Directory lists ministries where Anglicans and Lutherans are working together, and takes its name from the “Waterloo Declaration” which saw Canadian Anglicans and Lutherans enter our full-communion relationship. Please direct additions/revisions to Assistant to the Bishop Andre Lavergne at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Young Lutherans Get Living Reformation Projects Off the Ground
The Global Young Reformer Network of The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) has launched a series of reformation projects led by young adults from across the LWF communion. Learn more about the projects by clicking here.
One-Stop Christmas Shopping That Changes Lives
Canadian Lutheran World Relief's Gifts from the Heart catalogue features gifts that represent the ways you work with us to provide food and water, humanitarian and health, education and more to people around the world. Please choose to honour friends and family with a gift today, because your support changes lives. Please click here to find out more. Thank you for your support.
A bulletin blurb, PowerPoint slide and videos are available to share at church services to spread the word about Gifts from the Heart. If your congregation hasn't received any paper catalogue and would like some, please contact CLWR at 1.800.661.2597. Gifts can be ordered online any time by clicking here.
CLWR Advent Calendar
Canadian Lutheran World Relief (CLWR) invites you to see and celebrate your Gifts from the Heart at work in many of our Advent calendar stories and reflections and it's available online now. Please feel free to make use of it with your congregation this Advent season.
The calendar also features weekly prayers that we encourage our supporters to use in personal and corporate worship. We're grateful to Rev. Dr. Deborah Ann Taylor for contributin our prayers this month.
11. Tell Your Story
Do you have a story to share about the work of your congregation In Mission for Others that you would like to see in a future issue of E-Communique? Send your brief story and a picture to email@example.com and be featured in an upcoming issue!
12. Share These Resources
Is there someone you
know of that you feel would benefit from receiving these resources?
Consider forwarding them a copy of this email. Subscribing to
E-Communique is easy - just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the word Subscribe in the subject.