June 2017 Message for Congregations and Lay and Rostered Leaders

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ –

The month of June holds two of my favorite synodical gatherings.

They aren’t the Ponder Anew planned giving events happening throughout the Synod – although I am looking forward to these gatherings.  The Bishop’s Self-Care and Renewal Team will be meeting and, though very important for me personally, this isn’t what I’m thinking about.  Then there is the June meeting of our Synod’s Committee for Theological Education and Leadership.  Yes, important – but again, not what I’m thinking about.  Oh, and I can’t forget the June 10 gathering of all National Convention delegates – important, but not it.

Tuesday, June 13 the Diaconal Ministers will gather at the Synod office.  This the 3rd time that such a gathering has been hosted by our Synod.  It is a time for learning, relationship-building, worship, fellowship, prayer and feasting.  This year the learning component will be offered by Julien Hammond, Ecumenical and Interfaith Officer of the Catholic Diocese of Edmonton.  Many of you will remember Julien’s presentation at each of our fall area gatherings in 2016 – Reformation 500: A Roman Catholic Perspective.

And the 5th Annual gathering of our retired rostered ministers and spouses will take place at Camp Kuriakos, Sylvan Lake, Wednesday, June 14, with The Rev. Dr. Kayko Driedger Hesslein sharing of Reformation 500.  I look forward to a wonderful day of conversation, food (prepared by Cathy Kochendorfer) and worship.

The gathering of Synod Diaconal Ministers and retired rostered ministers and spouses.  Two of my favorite synodical gatherings.  Why?  It’s all about relationships.  I am encouraged as the diaconal ministers affirm and pray for one another.  I am strengthened in faith as our retired leaders and spouses greet one another with deep affection, appreciation and love…and as the stories are shared.

I give thanks to God for each…and for all.

In Christ Jesus –
+Bishop Larry Kochendorfer