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NIS News

Synod-wide Spring Ordination Service March 28

Everyone from the synod is invited to come to a special synod-wide ordination service on Sunday, March 28 at 2:00 pm at Shepherd of the Hill, 925 E. 9th Street, Lockport. Tom Redig will be ordained to the ministry of word and sacrament. He has been called to serve at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Peru. Please ... read more.

NIS Women of the ELCA 2020 Spring Retreat

Faith Along the Winding Road “There will be trouble in this life.  But take heart:  I have overcome the world” –John 16:33  LOMC, 1834 S. IL Rt. 2, Oregon, IL 61061Saturday, April 18, 2020 • 9:00 am – 2:00 pmRegistration and coffee:  8:30-9:00 am Registration is $30. Use the registration form linked below. Scholarships are ... read more.

Safeguarding God’s Children workshop 4/14/2020 at Shepherd of the Hills, McHenry

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Part of our commission from Jesus ... read more.

2020 Congregational Resourcing Event

The 2020 CRE will be Saturday, March 14 at Kishwaukee Community College in Malta. Keynote speaker: ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton In addition to workshops from the keynote speaker and NIS Bishop Jeffrey Clements, other workshops feature topics including: Congregational Leadership, Evangelism/Outreach/Hospitality, Faith Formation & Growth, Social Justice, Spirituality/Wellness, Stewardship, Worship, and Youth/Family/Children. Bring everyone from your congregation ... read more.

Rostered Ministers Annual Report to the Bishop

If you are a rostered minister under call to a congregation, agency, or institution in the NIS, please use the Under Call form.  If you are retired or on leave from call, please use the Not Under Call form. If you are a synodically authorized minister, please use the SAMs form. For questions please contact Julie Lewis at 815-964-9934. read more.

New Year 2020 message from Bishop Clements

Do you remember ringing in a new year with Guy Lombardo and the Royal Canadians? When my brother and I were young, my parents would go out to celebrate and leave us home with Grandma. She loved Guy Lombardo. We came to believe the calendar would only turn if the ball dropped in New York ... read more.

Crucial Conversations with Pr. Edie Lenz and Pr. Scott Stephan

February 20, 2020 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. As ministers, we dwell in crucial conversations that have the potential to shape people’s lives daily.  We are honored to share space with people in their deepest highs and lows; in times of peace and extreme stress.  Have you ever found yourself reacting out of anxiety or ... read more.

Tools for Tending to Our Own Grief with the Rev. Dr. Kadi Billman and Affirmation of Vocation Worship for Rostered Ministers

Followed by a conversation with Bishop Clements and Affirmation of Vocation Worship for Rostered Ministers Tuesday, March 31, 2020 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Faith, Rochelle (14206 E Flagg Rd., Rochelle) More details to come… Following the conversation with Bishop Clements and before the Affirmation of Vocation worship, three group photos will be taken: Female-identifying ... read more.

2020 Boundaries Workshops

Register today for one of two Boundaries Workshops being held in Huntley and Geneseo in April. Thursday, April 23, 2020Shepherd of the Prairie, Huntley9 a.m. – 3 p.mCost $50 (includes lunch and a participant workbook) Tuesday, April 28, 2020First, Geneseo9 a.m. – 3 p.mCost $50 (includes lunch and a participant workbook) Assistant to the Bishop, ... read more.

Calling all youth leaders!

The theme of the 2021 ELCA Youth Gathering in Minneapolis will be boundless: God beyond measure. Who in your congregation should receive communications about preparations for the gathering? Please fill out the form below or ask them to fill out the form as soon as possible so we can start getting them the information they ... read more.

Ignite 2020

Mark your calendars now and plan to spark a fire in the hearts of your High School youth with Ignite – June 12-14 at LOMC! The NIS Light high school youth leadership team is excited to invite your high school youth groups to its first Ignite Synod Youth Retreat, June 12-14, 2020, at Lutheran Outdoor ... read more.


Read more NIS News

Congregational Events
and Bulletin Board

UNITE Service Camp

UNITE Service Camp, for 7th-12th graders, June 23-26 in Sterling, IL. Throughout this three-day service camp, youth will paint homes for people in need!  UNITE 2020 is for current 7th-12th grade youth. Cost: $50 per youth, $25 per adult. Allison Eide ( will be speaking and leading music throughout the week!   For full info and ... more...

Part-time Church Secretary Sought

St. Paul Lutheran Church, Beloit, WI is seeking a part-time Church Secretary. Position is 25 hours/week; $11-13/hour, commensurate with experience and skills. The job provides administrative support to the ministry of the pastor, staff and congregation and includes general office reception and administration duties, creating publications (weekly bulletins, monthly newsletter, etc.), managing church calendar and member information. ... more...

Augustana Seeks a New Chaplain and Director of Spiritual Life

Augustana College welcomes applications and nominations for the position of Campus Chaplain and Director of Spiritual Life. For full consideration for this position, materials should be received by March 6, 2020. Augustana’s next Campus Chaplain will be called to lead the campus community in creative and faithful worship of God; to strategically promote spiritual health, ... more...

VBS Curriculum from LOM Now Available

Lutheran Outdoor Ministries (LOM) produces the curriculum each year that is used in camp and retreat settings and for Vacation Bible Schools and day camps.  LOM has released its 2020 curriculum entitled From Generation to Generation. More Information more...

Ministry in Divisive Times – 2020 Rural Ministry Conference

Wartburg Theological SeminaryMarch 1-3, 2020Best Western Plus Hotel & Conference Center3100 Dodge Street, Dubuque, IA Keynote speaker The Rev. Dr. Leah D. Schade, Assistant Professor of Preaching and Worship at Lexington Theological Seminary and author of Preaching in the Purple Zone: Ministry in the Red-Blue Divide Breakout Sessions Planning and Implementing the Sermon-Dialogue-Sermon Method in ... more...

Progressive day of prayer in Rockford on World Day of Prayer – March 6

“Do you want to be made well?” Jesus asks in John 5:6.  Of course, the lame man whom Jesus encountered at Bethesda wanted to be made well; otherwise, he would have not been at the pool. What stopped him from being well before meeting Jesus?  What stops us from being well?  World Day of Prayer 2020 ... more...

Planning for Retirement with Portico – two locations: Davenport or Chicago

Retirement takes planning. Whether it feels light years away or just around the corner, Portico’s Plan for Retirement Seminar can help you prepare. And it’s coming to St. Paul Lutheran Church in Davenport, Iowa on Tuesday, July 28, 2020.  Or you can choose to attend at the ELCA Lutheran Center in Chicago on Thursday, May 7.  In the morning, learn how ... more...

Gap Year – Lutheran-related opportunities for service-minded young adults

Young Adults in Global Mission The ELCA Young Adults in Global Mission program invites ELCA young adults ages 21-29 into a transformative, year-long journey in international service. As they offer themselves in service, ELCA young adults are shaped by the witness of our global neighbors. They share in the journeys of companion churches and organizations ... more...

Healthy Congregations Workshop offered at St Matthews, Princeton

St. Matthews Lutheran Church, Princeton, is offering a Healthy Congregations workshop on March 6-7. Pastors, leaders, and members of area congregations are invited to participate. The workshop begins on Friday, March 6 (7:00 pm to 9:30 pm) and concludes on Saturday, March 7 (9:00 am to 4:30 pm.) St. Matthews has secured a premier presenter ... more...

Jenny Lind's 200th Anniversary to be remembered April 26

The 200th anniversary of Jenny Lind will be celebrated at the annual Founders Day Service on Sunday, April 26, 4 pm, at the Jenny Lind Chapel in Andover. The Chapel, constructed in the early 1850’s, is named for this celebrated Swedish singer, who gave a generous donation to Pastor Lars Paul Esbjörn, leader of the ... more...

LOMC Seeks Young Adults for Summer Work Positions

Lutheran Outdoor Ministries Center ( in Oregon, IL is currently accepting positions for summer work. Young adults 18 and older are especially invited to apply for positions ranging from counselors, lifeguards and a media position to maintenance and housekeeping. LOMC is a unique place to serve God and grow in faith in an extraordinary community. ... more...

Spring Seminary Sampler at LSTC

February 22-24, 2020 Thinking about serving this world in need through Public Ministry? Come get a taste for life at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. Sit in on classes, tour campus, meet current students, faculty, and staff, and experience what life is like as a seminarian at LSTC. Explore how God is calling ... more...

Bring Your Children and Youth This Summer to TEAM CAMP at LOMC!

Now is the perfect time to map out your church’s summer opportunities including an outdoor ministry opportunity for 3-5th graders and/or 6-8th graders.   Get All The Details…   TEAM CAMP – Relationships When you gather your preteens or early teens together for a week of camp you build a strong community of faith. Rural, urban, suburban. ... more...

Free organ needs a home

FREE to Individual, church, or organization: Lowrey GX225 organ in Freeport 2 full keyboards and full pedalboard. Instruction books and bench included. Just bring a truck and four men to transfer. Contact Richard Brinkmeier for more information at 815-599-9005 more...

Celebrating Dreams at Zion, Rockford

Zion Lutheran Church, Rockford, and Patriots Gateway Center are sponsoring Zion’s 19th Annual event called “Celebrating Dreams,” a gospel celebration that honors the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. The Celebrating Dreams event is Sunday, January 19, 2020, at 2 pm at Patriots Gateway Center on 615 South Fifth Street, across from Zion Lutheran Church. ... more...

Soup for the Soul, Learning Together in the Midst of Grief

 St. Barnabas Lutheran Church, Cary and Bethany Lutheran Church, Crystal Lake, in partnership with Advocate Health Care and Aurora Health Care Congregational Outreach invite you to a free four-part series on grief. There is no cost to those who attend. Each workshop will cover all kinds of grief: death of a loved one, becoming an empty nester, ... more...


Visit the Bulletin Board


  •  Northeast Conference Meeting Tuesday, February 18, 2020 - 9:30 am
  • Interim Pastors Meeting Tuesday, February 18, 2020 - 12:00 pm
  • RMCE Crucial Conversations with Pr. Edie Lenz and Pr. Scott Stephan Thursday, February 20, 2020 - 9:00 am
  • West Conference meeting Thursday, February 20, 2020 - 9:30 am
  • First Call Theological Education Tuesday, February 25, 2020 - 10:00 am
  • East Conference Meeting Thursday, February 27, 2020 - 9:00 am
  • Central Conference Meeting Wednesday, March 11, 2020 - 9:00 am
  • Northwest Conference Meeting Wednesday, March 11, 2020 - 9:30 am
  • All Staff Meeting Thursday, March 12, 2020 - 10:00 am
  • Congregational Resourcing Event Saturday, March 14, 2020
Synod Calendar
Upcoming Events

Churchwide News

ELCA Mission Investment Fund 

Here’s what your money could earn:Here’s what your money could do: When you invest with the Mission Investment Fund, you’re investing with a financial ministry of the ELCA. So, apart from building your savings, you’re funding loans to ELCA congregations and ministries, loans that transform church facilities and breathe new life into entire communities.EXPLORE INVESTMENTS* APY = Annual ... more...

Living Lutheran Stories – 2/11/2020 

ELCA presiding bishop issues statement on new travel ban ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton has issued a statement in response to the Trump administration’s extension of the travel ban to the United States from seven majority Muslim countries to 13. … continue My take: The ethics of a digital world I was convinced that new digital tools ... more...

ELCA presiding bishop issues statement on new travel ban 

February 5, 2020 “When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.” ... more...

ELCA expands efforts to increase inclusivity of outdoor ministry programs 

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) has announced a new initiative entitled Total Inclusion!: Widening the Welcome at ELCA Outdoor Ministries. The new program is designed to equip and empower outdoor ministry organizations as they move toward more intentional welcome of people who historically have been marginalized in the church — especially people of color, ... more...

Seeds Monthly – January 2020 

“Unpacking White Privilege: The Important Work of Making the Church Less Harmful” For years, the ELCA has been working to educate and inspire Lutherans to promote fairness and racial equity in our churches, communities and country. At the 2019 Churchwide Assembly, the Strategy Toward Authentic Diversity was adopted. This strategy includes a commitment to digging ... more...

Made Free 

by: Kelly Sherman-Conroy, MYLE Team Leader In October of 2019, the Multicultural Youth Leadership Event leadership team, including youth, young adults and adults, gathered at Luther Seminary to discern a theme for MYLE 2021. Before we began our conversations as a group, we took the time to learn about and understand the history of the ... more...

ELCA Worship News – January 2020 

Greetings, Free to go in peace as you have promised. As this greeting is being prepared, the church has concluded its Christmas celebration. Lights that adorned homes, businesses and churches are being boxed up and put away for another year. Yet the church announces that Jesus’ coming is never hidden away. We’ll hear this month ... more...

Herbert Chilstrom, first ELCA presiding bishop, dies at 88 

Herbert W. Chilstrom, 88, the first presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), died Jan. 19, 2020, at his home in Green Valley, Ariz. He was born in Litchfield, Minn., on Oct. 18, 1931. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Corinne (Hansen), also a Lutheran pastor; a daughter, Mary ... more...

2020 Rostered Ministers Gathering Registration opens February 20! 

Mark your calendars! Registration opens Feb. 20 for the 2020 Rostered Ministers Gathering, July 20-23 in Phoenix!   Gathering highlights: 100 workshops offered over four workshop blocks 85,000-square-foot interaction center with over 30 exhibits Beer and hymns Banquet celebrating women’s ordination   Featured guests and speakers, including: The Rev. Michael Curry, presiding bishop of The ... more...

New from Portico 

New in 2020 for the ELCA-Primary Health Plan if you have ELCA-Primary health benefits, a suite of new online offerings provides convenient access to care at your fingertips, whether on the go, in your office, or and in the privacy of your own home. Find support to strengthen your emotional resilience, learn new skills, and ... more...


AN E-NEWSLETTER FROM THE ELCA FOUNDATION Welcome to the first edition of Insights, a quarterly newsletter from the ELCA Foundation. In this newsletter you’ll find tips, tools and information to achieve your charitable-giving goals while supporting the people, ministries and causes you love. Know someone else who should receive this e-newsletter? Invite them to subscribe. CHARITABLE ... more...

Young Adults in Global Mission Applications Open 

Applications for the ELCA’s Young Adults in Global Mission (YAGM) program are now open, and you can invite young adults on this yearlong journey abroad. If you know young adults age 21 to 29, this is the time to reach out. Encourage them to apply for YAGM by the priority deadline of Jan. 15, 2020. Talk to them personally ... more...

ELCA Fund for Leaders Scholarships 

If you are feeling a call to ministry, or if you have any questions about candidacy, please contact Deacon Cheryl Erdmann in the synod office. Greetings from the ELCA Fund for Leaders! The ELCA Fund for Leaders is a ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) that provides scholarships for future ELCA pastors ... more...

Portico Benefits 2020 changes 

Portico’s Board of Trustees has approved health plan and benefit changes for 2020, featuring new ways for ELCA-Primary members to save on out-of-pocket costs and strengthen their emotional well-being. In August, Custom Comparison Reports were made available to congregations, who will make their selections in October. Members will complete benefits enrollment in November. You can ... more...


Read more Churchwide News

NIS Prayers

…for Deacon Marti Bein at the death of her mother 

…for Pr. Zach Baer and Living Waters, Crystal Lake as he is installed there 3/1 

…for Deacon Carla Vanatta at the death of her sister, Bonnie 

… for family and friends of Vicar Mike Reibel who died 2/5/2020 

…for Pr. Frank Langholf and Emmanuel, Rockford as he is installed there 2/8 

…for family and friends of Pr. David Rasmussen who died January 3 

…for Pr. Amy Nyman battling cancer 

….for Pr. Jane McChesney, First, Rockford, battling cancer 

…for NIS candidates for rostered ministry 

NIS candidates for rostered ministry

Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton, NIS Bishop Jeffrey Clements, and their staffs and families.

Congregations going through vacancies and rostered leaders in transition.

ELCA Prayer Ventures

ELCA missionaries and Young Adults in Global Mission (read this month's ELCA Global Links newsletter).

Those not named here who are hospitalized or otherwise need our prayers.

Send prayer requests to
The purpose of this e-newsletter is to convey information from synod staff, churchwide, committees, auxiliaries, and congregations. We reserve the right to edit all submissions. 
Send submissions to Deacon Karin Graddy, Assistant to the Bishop for Communication
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