Synod Happenings
Events Happening in and around the Western Iowa Synod, biweekly publication

Please share this information with your congregational secretaries, leaders and congregational members via your bulletin, facebook page, email, etc, and invite/encourage them to attend the events/ opportunities to Open Doors to others!

These events can also be found on the WIS Website by clicking here!!

Please Note:
If you would like an event added to this list, please email it to Lynn at least two weeks in Advance to go in this bi-weekly
Synod Happenings e-news. 
Synod Sponsored Events
Youth Leader Network Meeting
The next meeting is listed below; please note this is an evening meeting specially scheduled for those who have other jobs and cannot attend the day meetings. We will mainly be focusing on the ELCA Youth Gathering but may have time to talk about other Mission trip ideas. Many leaders will just have returned from Houston and will have a lot of information to share. 

February 1st -6:00 - 8:00 pm - Western Iowa Synod Office, Storm Lake - Youth Gathering/Mission Trip
Men's Retreat
"Come and Share - Build Relationships"
The Western Iowa Synod Lutheran Men in Mission will be hosting their annual retreat...
When: Friday, Feb. 2nd - Sat., Feb 3rd
Where: Lutheran Lakeside Camp in Spirit Lake
Cost: $50 (includes room and meals) 

The theme is "Come and Share - Build Relationships." The retreat will begin Friday, February 2nd with registration at 6:30 PM in the Upper Shalom House. The retreat will conclude Saturday the 3rd at 3 PM with a service of Holy Communion. Friday night will be filled with fun, fellowship, and laughter as men play the card game, "Man Talk."

The keynote speaker for the retreat will be Pastor Alvin Erickson. Saturday, Pastor Erickson will discuss human trafficking of children, and provide instruction on how men in the church can bring awareness of and prevent this from happening to youth and children. Pastor Erickson will discuss the importance of the role dads, husbands, and grandfathers have in congregations. Registration available here!
Register Here

Lutheran Day on the Hill - February 8th
Lutheran Services in Iowa's Lutheran Day on the Hill is a day of advocacy for Iowa's most vulnerable populations. This year's event is on Thursday, February 8. Join us in Des Moines at Capitol Hill Lutheran Church and learn about the social issues affecting Iowa and talk to your legislators about keeping the social safety net secure for all Iowans. 
Register Here
Western Iowa Synod Leadership Academy 2018
"Leading Change in the Heartland"

When: Saturday, February 10th; 9:30 am - 3:00 pm, registration begins at 9:00 am
Snowdate: February 17th
Where: St John Lutheran, Carroll
Cost: $20/person if registered by January 25th, 2018; $30/person thereafter

Registration and flier available below!!

All leaders in the Western Iowa Synod are encouraged to join in this day of Interculturality. Anyone who affects another person's life is a LEADER!! Leading this event will be Rev. Sunitha Mortha, Director for Mission Formation in the Global Mission Unit of the ELCA and Glocal Musicians.

Register Here
Flier Here

Attention congregation treasurers and bookkeepers!

Join us for a gathering of treasurers and bookkeepers throughout the Synod.

When? Thursday, February 15th, 2018 from 6-8 PM
     Light dinner available at 5:30

Where? 318 East 5th St., Storm Lake (Synod mission center)

1. To network with other treasures from congregations in the Synod and to meet with the Synod treasurer, Michael Jacobson;
2. To discuss best financial practices for congregations
3. The “how-tos” of filling out congregation mission intent forms, remittance forms, giving statements, and other forms;
4. Learn about narrative budgets;
5. Invite questions and conversation from the group.

Please RSVP to jeff.ungs.rev@wisynod.org by noon on Friday  Feb. 9th!!!

In the event you are unable to attend in person, attending virtually via video or phone conference will be available. For more information about this event, please contact Pastor Jeff Ungs at e-mail above.
Western Iowa Synod Clergy Spirituality Retreat
April 8th-10th
Creighton Retreat Center 16493 Contrail Ave,  Griswold

Feeling tired from the busyness of Lent, Holy Week and Easter then come and join us for a time away with colleagues for prayer, rest, food, fellowship and holy conversation on our faith journey.Feeling tired from the busyness of Lent, Holy Week and Easter then come and join us for a time away with colleagues for prayer, rest, food, fellowship and holy conversation on our faith journey.
Spirituality Retreat Flyer
Register Here

Faith Formation Summit

When: April 27-28, 2018

Where: Carol Joy Holing Camp, Ashland, NE

We invite you to join with other faith formation leaders and the Vibrant Faith team as we spend two days living into the how-to’s of generating and sustaining a vibrant faith in Jesus Christ for today’s world. We believe effective, transformational ministry will happen by focusing on these two key areas :
  • Transforming Relationships
  • Digital Engagement

Sponsored by the Western Iowa, Nebraska and Central States Synods!

Poster and Registration available below!!

Summit Poster
Register Here
Western Iowa Synod Assembly 2018
When: June 8-10, 2018
Where: Sioux City Convention Center, Sioux City
  • Wonderful Worship
  • GloCal Musicians
  • Meet new people
  • 5K Walk/Run
  • Ministries happening around the synod
  • Three expressions of the Wider church
  • Election of leaders
  • Forum Opportunities
  • Establish Western Iowa Synod policy
Assembly Poster
Travel Opportunity for 2018

Tanzania, Southern Diocese - July 15th - August 15th (approx. dates)

More information and applications can be found here!!
Save the date!
“God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday 
....will be Sunday, September 9, 2018. This day 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. Resources Here!!
Other Events
Glacial Golf and Family Fun

We are joining in with the Winter Games Festivities with Glacial Golf and Family Fun! Glacial golf will give you a chance to try out your mini golf skills on the frozen lake with s'mores and hot chocolate by the campfire to keep you warm. Also try out your broom ball skills on our broom ball court. If you are in the area, we hope you'll stop by and say hello! Event will take place at Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camp on January 27th from 2-5pm. Go to www.okoboji.org/events for more information or call us at 1-800-OKOBOJI.
Marriage Retreat

Join us for our Marriage Retreat coming up on February 9-11 at Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camp. Whether you’ve been married many years or just one year, life happens.Things change. We change. Join us and take time to laugh, remember, and re-vision your marriage together. Enjoy a wonderful weekend with a banquet dinner, breakfast in bed, evening entertainment, and great sessions led by speakers Greg and Amanda Jorgensen. Register today at http://www.okoboji.org/marriage-retreat or call at 1-800-OKOBOJI. Brochure here!
PEER Ministry Conference
The 2018 Peer Ministry Leadership Conference (PMLC) is a great opportunity for you or your group to grow as Christian leaders. The PMLC is a casual, group learning environment focused on participants gaining the knowledge, skills, and experience needed to not just be Peer Ministers, but also to teach the curriculum to others. We are blessed to have Lyle Griner, the author of Peer Ministry with us to lead us for the weekend.

The PMLC runs from 8:30-6:00 on February 17th and 12:30-5:30 on February 18th.
The PMLC is held at Grand View University in partnership with Luther Memorial Church.
We will provide light refreshments during the conference to keep your brains moving but participants will be responsible for finding their own meals. There are several dining options available on and near campus.

Thanks to a wonderful donor the conference is only $40 for the first person from your congregation and $20 for each additional person. This enables you to bring a whole team of staff, leaders, and youth! The PMLC is open to anyone high school age and older. Register Here!!
If you have any additional questions, please contact Angie Larson (alarson@luthermemorialdsm.org), the Director of Peer Ministry at Luther Memorial Church and Grand View University.
Nurturing Hope in Bethlehem and the West Bank
Where: Bethesda Lutheran Church 1517 Northwestern Ave., Ames
When: Friday, February 23, 2018 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
A Day With The Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb And Bright Stars of Bethlehem
Mark your calendar and make plans to attend!!  Flier here!!
37th annual Rural Ministry Conference- March 4-6
This ecumenical conference is designed for pastors and lay leaders in rural and small town congregations.  The topic for this year is Co-operating Congregations in Mission.  We will explore a variety of newer ministry models for smaller congregations.  Our keynote speaker, Pastor Marcia Kifer, is a dynamic speaker with many years of experience in a variety of ministry models.  Our breakouts include worship for smaller congregations, and evangelism in rural areas. Flier here!!
Exploring Transitions
Especially designed for rostered leaders, but also anyone in the midst of a life transition

Exploring Transitions provides a time away to explore one’s personal life’s callings, passions, meaning, and purpose.  Times of transition offer unique opportunities for reflection and action.  Participants may be discerning a new call, facing a major life decision, loss of loved one or health, or thinking about retirement. Transitions are often made easier when time is spent listening, letting go, and trusting God’s guidance.  These retreats will incorporate liturgy (scripture, poetry, and music from a variety of sources), discussion, guided listening, Sabbath and walking together. 

Exploring Transitions was created and is co-facilitated by Tammy Devine and Michael Larson.  There are 4 Exploring Transition retreats: Exploring Transitions: Crossing Over, Exploring Transitions: True to Myself, Exploring Transitions: Life’s Detours and Roadblocks and Exploring Transitions: Living Well, each retreat is a stand-alone opportunity or participants have attended all four.   Attached please find information about two April offerings (the schedule for each retreat follows the same format).  These retreats are a safe space for individuals to go deeper, to reflect and walk with others in the midst of a life transition who are seeking to embrace a healthier transition.
Life's Detours & Road Blocks - April 3-5
Retreat Agenda
True to Myself - April 18-20

Congregational Treasurers and Bookkeepers Workshop 2018

This workshop is to help with accounting questions that arise in congregations; and help build collaboration and support among financial and administrative staff and volunteers.

April 28, 2018 
8:30 am – 2:00 pm
Memorial Lutheran Church
701 11th Street, Nevada, IA 50201
Guest Speakers:
Thomas Hammar, CPA
Molly Hammar-Shattuck, Staff Accountant
And by Web Cam, Richard Hammar, Attorney, CPA, & Author of the Church and Clergy Tax Guide
Sponsored by the SE IA Synod

Pre-Retirement Seminar

If you're over age 50 and within 15 years of retirement, our pre-retirement seminars and webinars are a great way to get planning off to a strong start or keep the momentum going. The seminar answers the important questions you may have about retirement, including:

• How much money will I need when I retire?

• What health care options will I have in retirement?

• As I approach retirement, how can I manage my investment risks?

• How can money be distributed from my ELCA retirement account to create a steady stream of income in retirement?

Date:  Tuesday, July 10, 2018 (additional dates and locations listed here)

Location:  Bethesda Lutheran Church,  1517 Northwestern Ave,  Ames, IA

Time:  9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Cost:  $35/person or $70/couple. Breakfast and lunch are included.

Register online here! 

Western Iowa Synod
318 E Fifth St.
Storm Lake, IA 
712.732. 4968