Western Iowa Synod Weekly eSpirit
The eSpirit is a weekly electronic newsletter for church secretaries and congregational leaders. It contains synodical news and events along with stories or articles on how we live out "We Are Church Together!" This information is intended to be dispersed to members of the congregations on a regular basis, via bulletins, facebook, newsletters and announcements. Thank you!!
Let us join together in prayer.....

Congregation: St John, Pomeroy, Pastor Tom Hagen
  • Wanda Norris, wife of Pastor Arlyn Norris, recurring cancer
  • Congregations in transition
  • Rev. Duane Olsen, on hospice
  • Family of Rev. Don Wahlgren as they mourn his passing
  • ​Rev. Filemon Diaz and family
  • Julie Cook's daughter Jessica, health issues and approaching surgery
  • Pastor Jeff Swanson's daughter, prayers of thanks for healing
We Need Your Congregation's Mission Intent Letter!!
If you have not done so already, please fill out the mission intent letter that was sent to you and return to Kay as soon as possible. You can access one below for your convenience. We still need 63 congregations to send theirs in!! This is important for budget and audit purposes. Intent form here!!
  • Become a host parent
  • 2nd annual international peace walk
  • Nigerian birthing project...more info here!
How Can We Support Refugees?
As people of faith, we are called to love our neighbors and to welcome the refugee, the foreigner, and the stranger. Jesus himself was a refugee, and taught us that when we welcome a stranger, we welcome him. Please join us as we stand with the "least of these" and advocate for more compassionate, hospitable, and just policies for refugees and migrants. 

There are two ways that you can take action:
  1. Participate in National Call-in Day for refugees today! We have included call-in information and a script for you to use when you call your Senators and Representative.
  2. Send a postcard urging President Obama and Congress to take the necessary steps to protect and assist the millions of people fleeing war and persecution worldwide.
Thrive with Engaging Adults
Hi Friends!, Vibrant Faith is pleased to announce the adult faith formation called Engaging Adults is coming to your area!
Wednesday, October 5
St. John’s Lutheran Church, Council Bluffs, IA
$69 / person. $59 / person for teams of three or more.

You’ll come away with . . . 
  • A renewed vision for empowering adults in their journey of faith
  • A host of methods and strategies that you can customize and integrate into your congregation
  • A practical planning and implementation process that you can take home and utilize right away
  • An introduction to a plethora of resources already tested and proven to enhance adult faith
  • A positive experience of adult learning and growth for yourself

For more info and to register, click here!!
For the Health of It
In Baptism, a New Creation in Christ
At the center of the wheel, we are a new creation through the waters of baptism. Christ lives in us and through us, and calls us out to love and serve one another. What does it mean to be a new creation? We have received the gift of grace through Christ, who came that we might have abundant life. Abundant life is living as a new creation, being grounded and centered in Christ and loving our neighbor as ourselves. It is when we are living well in Christ that we are best equipped to pass on our faith.
We Are Church Together!
Introducing Pastor Filemon Diaz
Please welcome Pastor Filemon Diaz and his family to the Western Iowa Synod! Pastor Diaz was ordained to Word and Sacrament ministry in the Roman Catholic Church in April of 1997 and officially completed his transition to the ELCA roster through the approval of the candidacy committee of the Rocky Mountain Synod in December of 2015. Pastor Diaz is the Mission developer of Señor de la Misericordia (Lord of Mercy) ministry in Denison, Iowa. This new ministry is a partnership with Trinity Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Diocese of Iowa. You can read this full story in the November issue of Living Lutheran.
God's Work our Hands! 
Free food & music!

Trinity Lutheran in Sioux City offered a free food and music Sunday. They had 93 people participate in their outdoor worship at 11:00 am which included their Praise Band, a message and communion. This was followed by a free lunch with around 120 eating. God's work. Our hands! We are church together!
Bethlehem, Inwood Participates in "God's Work.Our Hand's" Sunday
Bethlehem's Elementary and Jr High Sunday Schoolers filled 27 backpacks with school supplies and then enjoyed a congregational potluck.  Following the potluck meal, youth, clergy and interested adults went to the home of a parish member and cleaned gutters, trimmed bushes and trees, cleaned up her gardens, scraped the garage, and washed mold from the siding. This was Bethlehem's first year to participate in ELCA's Churchwide project. Pictured above (L to R) filling the backpacks, kids helping to trim trees, and adults cleaning gutters. What a great way to be the church together!!
Checkout Facebook to see what other congregations did for their service projects!!
ConFest Events - Fall 2016 & Spring 2017
  • October 5th - St Paul, Atlantic
  • October 12th - Estherville Lutheran, Estherville
  • More info here!
Synod Thankfulness Events (more info here)
Four Dates & Locations:
Tuesday, October 18th - Washington Lutheran, Duncombe - 5:30 - 8:00 pm
Thursday, October 20th - Immanuel Lutheran, Sioux City - 5:30 - 8:00 pm
Sunday, October 23rd - Trinity, Estherville - 3:00 - 5:30 pm
Thursday, October 27th - Exira Lutheran, Exira - 5:30 - 8:00 pm
Mark Your Calendars
  • Synod Council Meeting/Network Meeting          September 17th
  • Assembly Business & Counsel                                September 17th
  • Rostered Leader Fall Convo                                  September 18-20
  • ConFest                                                                    October 5th, St Paul, Atlantic
  • ConFest                                                                    October 12th, Estherville, Estherville
  • WIS Assembly 2017                                                  June 9 - 11, 2017, Sioux City, IA
Events in and around the Synod
Leadership Development
Cupcakes & Conversations @ Camp
Join us at Lutheran Lakeside for 4 leadership development days packed full of conversation sharing, workshop learning, camp exploring and cupcake eating!! Each session is from 10:00 am - 2:00 pm; Only $15 per session/person; includes lunch and materials. More info here!
​Conference on Racism
Please read carefully the attached premise for the event and the logistics.  The Western Iowa Synod is willing to provide several synod sponsored event registration fees on a first come basis via confirmed intent to attend to Cindy Wells.We do ask that you provide your own transportation.   Please take a moment to look at the detailed information and topics covered below!

A Day for Sharpening: Iron Sharpens Iron, and One Person Sharpens the Wits of Another
Friday, October 21, 2016 from 10:00am to 4:00pm Iowa Conference of the United Church of Christ 
Topics include: Dear Christians White . . .Now What?, So What's Racial Identity God to Do With It?  And, Now Back to History (The Internal is Shaped by External!), Digging In and Getting Concrete: Next Steps     More information here!                 Register Here!
Region 5 Global Mission/World Hunger Gathering
October 27-29 at Lutherdale Bible Camp in Elkhorn, Wisconsin.  We can receive your registrations until October 15th.  In addition to this mailing, we will send invitations to past participants.  
This event is for individuals, congregational ministry teams, and synod leaders-any and all interested in receiving training, forming collaborative networks, and sharing/learning about ministry in the areas of:
·       ELCA Companion Synod Ministry
·       ELCA Global Mission, missionaries and mission personnel
·       ELCA World Hunger and local congregationally based hunger and poverty ministries
·       ELCA Young Adults in Global Mission alumni and any potentially interested young adults
We will begin at 5pm Thursday, October 27th with supper and conclude on Saturday at 11:30am.  
To register please click here! Please email region5elca@gmail.com with any questions.
Engaging Lutheran Worship Event
In this 10th anniversary year of the publication of Evangelical Lutheran Worship you are invited to attend an event focusing on Lutheran worship in our current context. Whether you have extensive experience with ELW, are exploring it for the first time, or use other materials for your community’s worship, you will find a place at these gatherings. More here!
  • October 14-15, 2016 Zumbro Lutheran Church, Rochester, Minnesota
Outreach Nights for 6th-12th graders
Where: Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camp                                              
When: 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
How Much: $3 per person for food
Dates: October 9, Novermber 6, December 4, January 8
RSVP to Dan: dan@okoboji.org or 712-337-3306 ext. 119
Other upcoming events at Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camp
Oct. 21-23 - 4-6th Grade
Oct. 28-30 - 6-9th Grade
November 4-6: 6th-9th grade
November 11-13: 6th-9th grade - Also WIS Middle School Retreat
November 18-20: 9th -12th grade
Spiritual Care Day Event
October 27, 2016
Holiday Inn, 701 Gordon Drive, Sioux City, Iowa
8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Musician Richard Bruxvoort Colligan leads us in:The Psalms:  Prayer Book of Despair, Disappointment, Healing and Hope. A time of teaching, singing, story-sharing and small groups. More here!
ELCA - "Seeds Monthly" e-Newsletter
Check out what's going on in and around the wider church. 
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If you have a story or event you would like published in the eSpirit,
please email to Lynn by Tuesday at noon!  
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www.wisynod.org  •  P: 712.732.4968  •  Lynn.egesdal@wisynod.org