We belong to the Truth | Pertenecemos a la Verdad
In her July column for Living Lutheran, ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton asks: “How do we live as people of Truth in a time of spin?” In deep humility, profound gratitude, and real joy. Read her column in English: We belong to the Truth o lee su columna en español: Pertenecemos a la Verdad.
Dear Church Book Tour
THIS Tuesday, July 16, 7-10pm, Lenny is coming to Houston to do a reading of #DearChurch and Q&A with some music and adult beverages. Hosted by Kindred Montrose and the good folks at Gulf Coast Synod. Tickets are FREE and available here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/dear-church-houston-tickets-60425472214
Dear Church: A Love Letter from a Black Preacher to the Whitest Denomination in the U.S.
Lenny Duncan is the unlikeliest of pastors. Formerly incarcerated, he is now a black preacher in the whitest denomination in the United States: the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). Shifting demographics and shrinking congregations make all the headlines, but Duncan sees something else at work—drawing a direct line between the church’s lack of diversity and the church’s lack of vitality. The problems the ELCA faces are theological, not sociological. But so are the answers.
Part manifesto, part confession, and all love letter, Dear Church offers a bold new vision for the future of Duncan’s denomination and the broader mainline Christian community of faith. Dear Church rejects the narrative of church decline and calls everyone—leaders and laity alike—to the front lines of the church’s renewal through racial equality and justice.
It is time for the church to rise up, dust itself off, and take on forces of this world that act against God: whiteness, misogyny, nationalism, homophobia, and economic injustice. Duncan gives a blueprint for the way forward and urges us to follow in the revolutionary path of Jesus.
Dear Church also features a discussion guide at the back—perfect for church groups, book clubs, and other group discussion.
LWF Jerusalem 2018 Annual Report
Let me begin by thanking you for your support of the Lutheran World Federation’s Jerusalem Program as we work to promote human dignity, justice and peace in Palestine, following the example of Jesus Christ.
The linked 2018 Annual Report documents the ways we have sought to live out this work in the Holy Land. Inside you will find updates on our programs and you will get to know some of the people your support has helped as well as some of the people who do the work.
- The story of 4-year-old Karim and how our palliative care program has helped ease the toll his cancer treatment takes on him and his family
- The story of how our mobile mammography clinic saved the life of Souad, a mother of six from Hebron
- The work Augusta Victoria Hospital (AVH) is doing to prevent hospital acquired infections and the spread of antibiotic-resistant organisms across Palestine
- Meet AVH staff members and hear what the best part of their work is
- The story of Rasha Nimer, a mother of five who studied at our Vocational Training Program and became an executive secretary and receptionist
- The story of Ahmad Bilal, who is one of eight members of his family who studied auto mechanics through our Vocational Training Program
I hope this report brings you joy in knowing that you helped make this work possible. We ask you to continue to pray for our work here and to continue giving as you can. Your donations are important not only for the financial impact they have, but also because this support buoys our spirits and sustains through this difficult work.
Featured Resources for July
In a holistic, whole church commitment by the ELCA, as a church in the world, AMMPARO (Accompanying Migrant Minors with Protection, Advocacy, Representation and Opportunities) was envisioned to accompany children today and in the future who are forced to flee their communities because of complex and interrelated reasons, including chronic violence, poverty, environmental displacement and lack of opportunities.
The ELCA’s 1995 social statement, For Peace in God’s World, states:
Care for the Uprooted. Tens of millions are refugees in foreign lands. At least as many are internally displaced. In unprecedented numbers people have had to flee their homes because of persecution or general violence. We support compassionate survival assistance for refugees and vigorous international protection for them. The world community has a responsibility to aid nations that receive refugees and to help change the situations from which they have fled. In our own country, we support a generous policy of welcome for refugees and immigrants. We pledge to continue our church’s historic leadership in caring for refugees and immigrants.
Because we understand each person to be made in God’s image – without distinction based on race, ethnicity, gender, economic class or country of origin – and have heard God’s call to serve the needs of our neighbor wherever they may be, we recognize ourselves to be in mission and ministry together for the benefit of all God’s people. (See also Freed in Christ: Race, Ethnicity and Culture, 1993).
Save the Date
WELCA Annual Bible Study at St. John
Led by The Rev. Dr. Christopher Richmann
THIS Saturday, July 20
Coryell City / Gatesville, Texas
Recent Blog Posts
(https://www.ntnl.org/greeting-new-colleagues-in-the-conference-of-bishops/ – published Jul. 8)
(https://www.ntnl.org/dem-irma-banales-featured-in-elca-blog/ – published Jul. 11)
Where in the world is?
- Jul. 18-28: Continuing Education
- Jul. 15: Interim Pastors meeting
- Jul. 21: Covenant, Temple
- Jul. 15: NTNL Stewardship Retreat, Synod Office
- Jul. 18: Texas – Louisiana Directors for Evangelical Mission meeting, Seguin
- Jul. 14-18: Hymn Festivals, Dallas and Plano (TX)
- Jul. 20: WELCA Annual Bible Study, Coryell City / Gatesville, TX
- Aug. 5-10: ELCA Churchwide Assembly, Milwaukee, WI
- Aug. 8-11: Via de Cristo weekend, Argyle, TX
- Aug. 10: Public Witness Team monthly meeting, Arlington, TX
- Aug. 17: WELCA Annual Women’s/Girl’s Retreat, Grand Prairie, TX
- Aug. 17: TUNE UP Worship Band Gathering, Sugar Land, TX
- Aug. 31: ELCA Generosity Project workshop, Keller, TX
- Sep. 8: “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday
- Sep. 9: The Church of the Damascus Road Golf Outing, Fort Worth, TX
- Sep. 13: Briarwood Golf Outing, TBA
Access our full online Calendar here. Updates made regularly.
Do you have news or announcements to share? Please submit to Jason (firstname.lastname@example.org) for consideration for upcoming NT-NL News.