My Synod: Moving in Mission Together
By being “church together” we can make things happen that we could never do on our own - for our ministries here at home and throughout the world. As we contemplate the important projects proposed below, we celebrate what God has provided for us, and seek to boldly live into the future to which God is calling us.
God is working in each of us for a more faithful future. We discern what God is doing in our midst and join God through our actions. By the work of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit we extend the reach of the Gospel and the reconciling love of God through collaborative partnerships, congregational support, leadership development, service and outreach, and faithful witness.
Our Mission Projects
Completion of the Dining/Assembly Hall at Tumaini School, Tanzania
Tumaini Lutheran Seminary is a private, non-profit school, and a ministry of the Ulanga-Kilombero Diocese, our synod’s companion ministry. It was founded in 1996 in response to the call of the government to bring secondary education to every part of the country. The school serves just under 200 students, equally divided between boys and girls, and employs 13 teachers. The first four forms of secondary school are offered and the school trains evangelists to serve in churches throughout this very rural diocese.
The school has classrooms, dormitories and a small administration building, but lacks a central gathering place and a dining hall sheltered from the weather. Cooking is done under a crude shed open to dust and flies and is not sanitary. Students eat under trees and must delay meals when it rains. Our goal is to finish this building as the safe and hospitable center of the school.
SHARE Fund (Synod Help and Response Endowment)
The Synod’s Endowment for Mission (approximately $800,000 in 2016) was established in order to give the Synod the ability to support new congregational mission initiatives; support for pastoral sabbaticals ($3,000 - $5,000 each); emergency assistance when needed by a pastor or congregation. Approximately $300,000 has been distributed over 10 years.
Influential distributions from this fund include a $5,000 initial gift given to the Senior Housing Project at First Lutheran Church in Sandpoint, ID. This initial gift was leveraged into a $15M loan from the Mission Investment Fund to build 85 units of senior housing.
Fund For Leaders in Mission
This Synod Fund, invested in the national Fund for Leaders, has been used to give seminary scholarships for the last 10 years. Each year, approximately $15,000 (5% of the corpus) has been distributed to students from our Synod who need financial assistance in seminary.
National research by the ELCA has now confirmed that student debt over $30,000 will act as a destructive anchor on a pastor’s service, including an inability to accept calls to smaller congregations because of a salary that won’t allow the pastor to service seminary/college debt. The Fund for Leaders enables us to attract men and women of tremendous promise to become pastors and rostered lay leaders, and to study at an ELCA seminary. Rural and small town congregations benefit by calling new pastors with less debt to repay.
The Wells Endowment for Campus Ministry
This is proposed as a new endowment of the Synod to allow persons to invest for the long-term in faithful and challenging campus ministry programs in our Synod. Currently Campus Ministry is offered at three locations in the Synod: The University of Idaho, Moscow, ID; Washington State University, Pullman, WA; and Eastern Washington University, Cheney, WA.
Campus Ministry is leadership ministry for the church, as those who participate are much more likely to consider church service or seminary. Because we have always been a church of, and in, education, Campus Ministry continues to be a heart-felt center of the church’s mission.
Changes in funding patterns mean former partners are no longer able to support Campus Ministry programs at necessary levels. The Synod budget continues to include Campus Ministry as a primary, shared ministry across our synodical territory.
Lutheran Community Services Northwest
Lutheran Community Services Northwest is owned by the synods of Region 1 and uses government contracts to provide public social services otherwise difficult to find. Current work includes the Sexual Assault and Family Trauma Center; children with Problematic Sexual Behaviors; Foster Care and Adoption Programs; Crime Victim Service Center; and Human Trafficking Information and resources. LCS-NW is the most basic way the church offers public social ministry in the healing name of Jesus Christ.
A direct grant from the Synod through a capital campaign will make possible the leverage to authenticate a new ministry for larger granting agencies. Our expression in the concrete healing outreach of the church offers us the opportunity to make a fresh investment in the respected ministry work of Lutheran Community Services.
the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (National Campaign Support)
The ELCA’s national capital campaign, Always Being Made New, supports many ministries important to our congregations and synod. The Eastern Washington-Idaho Synod believes that a tithe amount from our Synod’s capital campaign should go to the national and international partners either through the national church’s campaign, or in a one-time extra gift to regular mission support. In addition, contributions to the Fund for Leaders, the SHARE Fund, and the Tumaini School will fulfill funding goals in the national Always Being Made New campaign.
We appreciate your support!
Mail Mission Campaign donations to:
Eastern Washington-Idaho Synod
245 E 13th Ave, #A
Spokane, WA 99202-1114