The West Virginia-Western Maryland Synod gathered in
assembly, June 2-3, under the theme...
Faith Comes from What Is Heard
Assembly of the West Virginia-Western Maryland Synod
convened in Vienna, WV, on Friday, June 2, 2017, under
the theme, “Faith Comes from What Is Heard,” First
Lutheran Church, Parkersburg, serving as the host
cruise on the Ohio River that featured a covered dish
dinner co-hosted by First Lutheran, Parkersburg, and
Christ Lutheran, Vienna.
beer sampling of home brew for clergy at Pr. Ian
morning Matins at Christ Lutheran Church, Vienna,
under the leadership of Pr. Theobald-Rowlands.
Synod Assembly Mass was held Friday night at First
Lutheran Church, Parkersburg. Luther’s 1526 Deutsche
Messe was employed for the liturgy (albeit in
English). The offering was designated for the Lutheran
seminary in Bezaha, Madagascar.
Rev. Paul Hoffman was featured speaker at the assembly.
Seventeen lay participants joined Pr. Hoffman for
training in catechumenal Bible study the morning before
the assembly convened. During the assembly, the assembly
participants split up into seventeen small groups, each
facilitated by one of the newly trained leaders. Pr.
Hoffman also spoke to the assembly several times about
the catechumenal model and faith formation. Super
Mr. Andrew Steele, Director of Global Church
Sponsorship, served as Churchwide representative.
order to accommodate a request by a presenter for a
minimum hour to cover the Women & Justice study, the
assembly adjourned at 1:45 PM until 3:30 PM so that
concurrently, during the adjournment, the following
could be held:
Pamela Pritt, a member of the Church Council of the
ELCA and member of the ELCA’s Women & Justice TF,
Sexism, Justice: Conversations toward a Social
Statement, leading an overflowing lecture room
through Module 2.
open hearing of the Resolutions Committee, chaired by
The Rev. Jerry Kliner, in which the committee and
interested attendees heard reports from the several
church-affiliated agencies and entities that usually
report to the assembly.
Paul Wangerin’s highlighted the “listening posts” being
conducted around the synod, reporting that they have
been well-received and that analysis is ongoing.
Joseph Solberg (the youngest treasurer, perhaps officer,
in the ELCA) gave a very sobering report on the fiscal
situation, highlighting that the reversal in mission
support decline was short lived. A 2018 budget was
adopted that draws $23K from unrestricted reserves.
pastor, Pr. Ian Reid, reported on our trip to Madagascar
and the companion synod relationship.
resolution from a member acknowledging the 55 years of
ordained service and impending retirement of The Rev.
Larry Cantu was adopted.
The Resolutions Committee presented three resolutions
(in addition to the concluding resolution). Two related
to flooding and one related to Madagascar.
Bishop's report, in addition to acknowledging pastoral
anniversaries, the centennial of one congregation, and the
demisemiseptcentennial of three others, began with a
comparison of the quadricentennial and present
quincentennial of the Reformation, moved to discussion of
the theological-catechetical charism of the Lutheran
Movement, and concluded by discussing the utility of
denominational institutions with respect to support of the
movement and the movement’s independence from those
denominational institutions. The report of the Committee
on the Bishop's Report provided several directives related
resolution related to the flooding of the church camp
while it was in session,
the dean of the camp and the staff for their work
related to the evacuation of the camp;
the Emmanuel Assembly of God, Cowen, WV, and the
people of the local community for providing shelter
and necessities to the evacuated camp; and
the Webster County emergency services community and
Camp Caesar for their efforts during the evacuation.
resolution commending Community Lutheran Partners for
its flood relief and recovery work and calling for the
members and the congregations of the synod to resupply
and refill CLP’s disaster cache and bank account with
attention to maintaining the general operating fund.
resolution authorizing Synod Council to explore
formalizing a companion synod relationship with the
Betroka Synod, Malagasy Lutheran Church, and
confecting the same should there by no obstacles.
minutes are not yet approved. Once that happens, we'll
post the proceedings of the assembly. Until then, you can
check our the Pre-Assembly Book of Reports, downloadable
here---warning, it is a large file.
Where did you find
that great assembly art?
Special thanks go to Pr. Jess Felici for creating an
original work on our assembly theme.