Our hope and expectation, O Jesus, now appear;
arise, O Sun so longed for, o’er this benighted sphere.
With hearts and hands uplifted, we plead, O Lord, to see
the day of earth’s redemption that sets your people free! – ELW 244
Dear Friends –
If you’re feeling weary right now, well, you’re not alone. Around the world, people are pandemic-weary. Across this synod, many of our rostered and lay leaders are weary from a year that has been filled with change and uncertainty as worship adapts; meetings and faith formation moved online; visits happen over the a phone; parent-pastors juggle home-schooling; and health care workers, teachers, and essential workers need extra encouragement and thanks.
Change at the scale and scope of a pandemic creates remarkable strains on our congregations and leaders. Thank you for your faithfulness and perseverance!
This also means that the hope in Christ which your ministries bring has never been more important. Your ministries are vital to the life of our people – to our congregations and our communities. Through you, God is changing not only individual lives, but the world. That’s why your synod staff and leadership have adapted to be here for you in new ways, bringing you hope for this changing and often wearying time.
- regular check-ins with rostered leaders and congregation presidents, including the latest wisdom for safely navigating the pandemic
- call processes as congregations and rostered leaders move through transitions, moves, self-studies, and new calls
- meetings to foster healthy communication in times of high anxiety or conflict
- trainings and events to equip leaders
- gatherings to equip leaders for renewal, ministry basics, and racial justice
- pastoral care for leaders who are ill
- sustaining your Lutheran Youth Organization and campus ministries
In short, your synod staff and leadership have been accomplishing all that we used to accomplish,
but doing more, and doing it all in new ways – just like you.
Thank you for the many ways we are walking together and living out the hope of Christ’s reign.
As we enter into the season of Advent, this letter comes to invite financial partnership that will allow us to end the year strong. We are grateful for the Mission Support gifts that congregations have been able to share over this year. Yet for many, the economic stresses of 2020 have led to decreased congregational giving, and therefore reduced Mission Support. For others, the complications of daily life in the church may have diverted attention away from Mission Support, and this is one area that simply has been forgotten. How we understand!
Our Advent Appeal comes to you this year inviting you to share an over-and-above gift to sustain and further the ministries of the Southwestern Minnesota Synod.
You can share a gift by:
Sending financial support in the form of a check with the enclosed card.
Make your check payable to SW MN Synod with Advent Gift in the memo line and mail it to:
SW MN Synod
PO Box 499
Redwood Falls, MN 56283
Giving online by making a one time gift or by setting up a recurring gift (ACH debit).
Go to www.swmnelca.org, the Give Online link is located under Quick Links towards the middle of the
homepage. You can give by checking, savings, credit card, or a direct ACH debit.
We are praying that you are sustained by the hope that does not disappoint us, as we look to Jesus, the Light of the world.
“But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,
his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” – Lamentations 3:21-24, NRSV.
Mr. Ferman Woodberry
Vice President of the SW MN Synod
Rev. Dee Pederson
Director for Evangelical Mission