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Nov 26-27 
Synod Center for Ministry Closed
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Remember in Prayer

As we feast and celebrate, we remember in our prayers those who are not at our tables and who suffer from hunger, poverty and loneliness. We pray that we will be generous and welcoming and reach out in love to our neighbors in need in the manner and spirit of Jesus. ​More prayers...  
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Synod News

Portico enrollment period ends Nov. 30
Nov. 2 – 30: Members make decisions about your ELCA benefits. Once you know your employer-provided health benefit option, you’ll decide whether to enroll in that option, buy up to a different option, or waive ELCA health benefits by providing proof of other valid health coverage. You’ll also make choices about tax-advantaged accounts, your ELCA retirement account, and life insurance.You can reach Portico by phone, email, or online chat. To better serve you during Annual Enrollment, we’ve added special Saturday service hours Saturdays from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. (Central). or 800.352.2876. 
Lutheran Services in Iowa reaches campaign goal
Written by Lutheran Services in Iowa

Lutheran Services in Iowa gives thanks for your generosity!
When the Lutheran founders of Lutheran Services in Iowa (LSI) began caring for orphans of the Civil War in 1864, little did they know they were building a foundation of service that would continue 151 years into the future.

You are shaping the future, too.

LSI has news of great joy to share with you. As you may know, LSI began its "Celebrating Tradition. Building Futures." endowment campaign in 2010 with the goal of securing $12 million in gifts and commitments by 2015. Thanks to a recent generous planned gift commitment, we officially exceeded our campaign goal this fall! Our total for the campaign has reached $13,576,659. Combined with current LSI endowment assets and gift commitments, this means LSI has secured more than $20 million in endowment assets and commitments that will make an incredible impact for Iowa children, families and adults for years to come. Read the rest...
Fillable Mission Support plan available
These forms are to help guide your congregation as you begin planning for 2016. As you discuss your mission support commitment for the coming year, please consider what portion of your congregation’s weekly offerings will be shared with the synod and churchwide ministries beyond your congregation. Click here to download the PDF
Churchwide News
Bishop Eaton encourages the support of refugee resettlement
In response to the terrorism around the world and people displaced from their homes and seeking refuge, the Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, issued a statement Nov. 18 to the 3.7 million member church. The full text of her statement follows:

"We are shocked and dismayed by the terrorist attacks in Paris, Beirut, Egypt and elsewhere in the Middle East, but also in Nigeria, Kenya, Bangladesh and the Philippines. Senseless acts of terror will maim and forever have an impact on innocent victims and their families. Our hearts and prayers go out to all whose lives have been shattered and are grieving the loss of loved ones. We know all too well the frightening memories of terrorist attacks in the U.S. and the uncertainties of possible future attacks.

"Yet, we Christians and all others of good will cannot let fear rule the day. Fear paralyzes, divides people, fosters distrust and clouds judgments.  We also stand shoulder to shoulder with people of faith who are firmly opposed to vengeful reprisals and prejudice. In particular, we are concerned for and committed to standing with our Muslim neighbors who are facing threats and acts of discrimination and hate by those who conflate Islam with terrorism. Read more...
Conversation on racism continues with second webcast
As racism remains an enduring crisis in the United States, the Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, is continuing her call to the 3.7 million member church to address the complexity and implications of the issue in "Confronting Racism: A Holy Yearning" – a live webcast Jan. 14 at 8 p.m. (CST). This is Eaton's second live webcast on the topic of racism.

Among other topics, the January webcast will raise the question of the racial disparity in the U.S. criminal justice system, emphasizing the ELCA's commitment to pray for the incarcerated, their families and communities, and those wrongly convicted, as well as to pray for law enforcers and those who work in the system. The webcast will also underscore the denomination's declaration to name racism as a sin and highlight the ELCA's ongoing work to eliminate racial, ethnic discrimination in the church and society.

"Racism still exits. One webcast or one call for a conversation about race in our church and society will not address this reality. We must continue our work as a church even when some other issue has grabbed the headlines. The Jan. 14, 2016 live webcast keeps the conversation going and provides an opportunity for members and congregations to go deeper in our listening and in building relationships," said Eaton. Read more...
You're Invited
Concert Fundraiser for Le'Arche Community of Clinton
The HighPatheticals, “Lutheranism’s greatest Rock N Roll party band since Luther nailed it,” will be performing in their “One City World Tour Reunion Concert” at St. Paul Lutheran Church, Clinton. The concert is a fundraiser for Le’Arche of Clinton. Le’Arche Communities from Kansas City, St. Louis, and Chicago will join us, January 16, 2016 at 7:00PM. The concert is open to the public.

The HighPatheticals were founded at Wartburg Seminary in the mid -2000s. The original members of Paul Amlin, Paul Baglyos, Scott Stolberg, and Duane Larson are reuniting as their original quartet and have expanded their play list for a strong two hour plus concert/dance.

The fab four version of The HPs will perform classic Rock n' Roll and Blues tunes from the 60s forward. Food and drink, T-Shirts and more will also be available to support the cause. Suggested donation of $10 at the door, opens at 6; concert at 7. Come listen and dance! Enjoy fun for a most worthy non-profit ministry!         
Contact info: St. Paul Lutheran Church is at 715 S. 3rd. St., Clinton; 563-242-4102.;
Christmas Concert at New Life Lutheran Church in Norwalk 
Central Standard Time is an acoustic duo from Iowa City that has been playing together in since 1996. 

Central Standard Time will be playing a freewill offering "Christmastime" concert of acoustical arrangements of traditional hymns and carols on Saturday December 12 at 7:00PM at New Life Lutheran Church, 4380 Wakonda Dr., Norwalk. For more information call 515-285-5965 or visit 
Pre-Retirement Seminar – January 25, 2016 at LSTC
Get Answers to Retirement Planning Questions.  This Pre-retirement seminar is hosted by Portico and a certified Ernst & Young planner, who answers your questions about retirement planning, such as:
•How much money will I really need in retirement?
•How can I avoid common retirement traps?
•How can I protect my assets to ensure the money is there when I need it?
•How can I create lifetime income?
•What steps can I take to ensure a smooth transition into retirement?
The seminar is most relevant to people age 50-plus or who are within 15 years of retirement. It's designed to show retirement in a whole new light.
Time: All seminars are day-long events that run from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Cost: $35 per person, $70 per couple, which includes breakfast, lunch, and snacks
Date:  Monday, January 25, 2016
Location:  Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
Christmas at Augustana
Christmas at Augustana has become one of the most treasured traditions at Augustana College during the holiday season. Another treasured tradition is our special invitation for ELCA pastors and rostered leaders, with one guest, to join us. 

This year, Christmas at Augustana will have just two performance times: Saturday, December 5 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. As special guests, you will receive free tickets to attend the 2 p.m. performance in Centennial Hall, followed by a dessert reception in the Wilson Center that’s sure to be full of laughter, socializing and the holiday spirit. 

Should you wish to bring additional guests, the cost of the performance is $20 for the general public, $16 for senior citizens (60+) and $10 for children and students. 

Please RSVP by November 30 by emailing Connie Huntley or by mailing the completed form to Augustana College–Campus Ministries, 639 38th Street, Rock Island, IL 61201. 
Click here to download registration form.
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