Synod News
Candidacy Retreat

Each year in October, the Candidacy Committee sponsors a retreat for candidates from this synod. This year the retreat was October 20-21 at Bethany Lutheran Church, West Branch. On Friday evening, there is a meal and time with Bishop Burk, followed by Holden Evening Prayer. At the hotel, there is time for refreshments and conversation among the candidates and members of the candidacy committee. Following morning prayer on Saturday, there is a program by a guest presenter addressing a specific area of ministry. This year Pastor Erika Uthe led a morning workshop on evangelism. 

There are currently nineteen persons at various stages in the candidacy process in the Southeastern Iowa Synod.  Eleven of these were in attendance at the event. Internships and a scheduled intensive class prevented others from attending.

We express our gratitude to Bethany Lutheran Church in West Branch for their gracious hospitality in hosting this event for a number of years.The ministry of candidacy is made possible by mission support from congregations.

 LEAD reflection
Mary, Christ the King Luther Church, Iowa City

We at Christ the King Lutheran Church in Iowa City are still early in the LEAD process. LEAD stands for Living Every Day as Disciples, and is a three phase process. Phase I begins with the LEAD team growing in trust and faith, then bringing this process to the congregation in Phase 2, and ending in Phase 3 with connecting to our neighborhood.  We started in February of 2016, and still have another year on this road...

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FreeIndeed Update

John Strand, FreeIndeed Outside Council

FreeIndeed, the ministry at Anamosa State Penitentiary (ASP), is no longer just a vision. In July of 2017 Pastor Jerry Collell began this new ministry of the SEIA Synod as pastor serving FreeIndeed, a church within the walls of ASP.  To quote Pastor Jerry, “It’s become clear to me that I am definitely where God wants and has called me to be – I love it, I’m well received, and fruit is already forming.”  To date Pastor Jerry has been busy building relationships with prison staff, other prison ministries, and inmates. He actively participated in a Prison Congregations of America (PCA) retreat and a Tri-Synod Fall Conference. Since early-September Pastor Jerry has participated in the Anamosa Corrections Academy training and will be completing this program October 18th.  He has assisted in the presentation of a 13 week ALPHA study in ASP. God is most certainly at work in ASP!

Upcoming this fall, church services are planned with the D Living Unit (the unit which houses minors and individuals in protective custody) and with the general population.  An outside council has been formed consisting of Pr. Lisa Parker (chair), Pr. Erika Uthe (synod representative), John Allen, Pr. Marcus Engelhardt, Pr. Travis Fisher, Pr. Kathryn Franzenburg, Pr. Dan Kuckuck, Lori Nietert, and John Strand.

A deep and humble thanks is extended to all the churches and individuals who have supported FreeIndeed through prayers, financial gifts, and material gifts.  Thanks to you, the ministry of FreeIndeed, a ministry to the “least of these”, has begun. Hebrews 13:3 (a) Remember those who are in prison, as though you were in prison with them  Now we ask that you do all that you able to make this ministry sustainable.  Please consider making FreeIndeed a line item in your annual budget, and please continue to keep FreeIndeed in your prayers.  Pastor Jerry is seeking opportunities to share the story of FreeIndeed with you. Please contact him at 360-480-4997 or
Upcoming Events
Children and Youth Ministry Network Event
The Southeastern Iowa Synod Children/Youth Network is made up of adults who have a passion to walk with young people in Christ's mission for the sake of the world! The purpose of the network is to make connections with people in children/youth ministries and to share ideas and resources to enhance various ministries in congregations and throughout the synod. Whether you are full-time, part-time, a rostered leader, staff, or volunteer, you are welcome.
Join us for a networking, fun, and a presentation by Rev. Nathan C.P. Frambach, Professor of Pastoral Theology, Wartburg Theological Seminary on “Being Church, Now & Then: What the church of the future might look like…perhaps?” The presentation (and conversation) will be (hopefully) a musing, imaginative, forward-looking thought experiment about what “being church” and living God’s mission might look in the future (and the future may be now).

Thu, November 2, 2017
9:30 AM – 2:00 PM
Southeastern Iowa Synod Center for Ministry 
Iowa City
Register online
Lent 2018 - A resource for congregations
Planning for Lent is in full swing for some, but not yet on the radar for others. Here in the Office of the Bishop we are preparing a resource for Lent that will connect directly to the theme of the 2018 synod assembly. 

Earlier this year, many congregations and individuals participated in 'Pigs with a Purpose,’ raising awareness and financial support for the hunger ministries of the ELCA and of the Southeastern Iowa Synod. We are planning a similar effort that will bolster ELCA Water Projects and related ministries. At our next assembly, presentations and activities will link the need for clean water to our proclamation of the good news of Jesus Christ. 

In preparation for the coming assembly emphasis and the gathering of gifts, we will provide related resources for worship and faith formation to be used in the season of Lent. As yet another sign that we are #inthisTogether, these resources and more information will be available by December 1, 2017. If you have questions, please contact Pastor Erika Uthe, Assistant to the Bishop,
Emily Martin Ordination 
Emily Martin will be ordained into the Ministry of Word and Sacrament on Friday, November 10, 2017, at 5:00 PM, at St. Mark Evangelical Lutheran Church, 2363 W. Third Street, Davenport, IA.  All rostered ministers are invited to process.  The color of the day is red. 

Emily was a candidate from this synod and will be serving a congregation in the Minneapolis Area Synod.
You're Invited

In a time when many immigrants face uncertain futures, how can faith communities be sources of compassion, support, and action?

A half-day teach-in for people of faith to learn about current issues related to immigration, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), temporary protected status, and sanctuary. The lectures and panel discussion (10-11:30am) will be webcast live and available on demand after the event.

October 28, 10am-1pm 
Sponsored by Trinity Church (Broadway at Wall Street in Manhattan)

Free and open to all.

Learn more
Augustana College-Rock Island

Plan to attend also a Four-part book discussion on Radical Lutherans, Lutheran Radicals, ed. Jason Mahn  (Cascade Books, Eugene, Oregon, 2017).

Mondays – Nov. 13, 20, 27 and Dec. 4,  4:30 – 5:30 p.m. in the Wilson Faculty Center  

Free food and drinks will be served

Each week the group will discuss a chapter of the book, so reading in advance is suggested. Discussions will be led by the book’s author, Dr. Mahn. Books can be purchased on Amazon or in The Augustana College Bookstore. Reservations are also requested for this second book discussion, again by emailing

Support the mission and ministry of the Southeastern Iowa Synod by making a donation using our secure online donation page.
View the Synod Calendar Online

Children/Youth Ministry Network: November 2, Synod Center for Ministry, Iowa City
The truth and light of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, has set us free from sin and all that holds us back from living as children of God. Rejoice and praise God for giving us the gift of forgiveness and new life and gathering us together in the body of Christ!
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Announcements that appear in this newsletter may be copied and reproduced by congregations of the Southeastern Iowa Synod in whole or in part without permission. Please credit authors if they are credited within this newsletter.