As you may know, the Florida-Bahamas Synod Council meets 4 times a year to discuss and vote on various matters relating to our lives together. Most often, those meetings are held at the Synod Office in Tampa or at Luther Springs.
It has become the practice in the past several years for your Synod Council, comprised of people elected by the Synod Assembly and coming from all parts of the state, to hold one meeting each year in a different part of the state. As we take the “Synod Council on the Road”, we invite all congregations in the area—including pastors, congregational councils and officers, and interested lay members—to a conversation and worship. Last year, we met in Melbourne. This year, we are heading to the First Coast Conference! Anyone from the Jacksonville area is invited to worship on Friday evening, September 15, 2017 at St John Lutheran Church, 1950 Silver St., Jacksonville, from 6:45 pm to 9:00 pm.
The flow of a regular Council meeting is a Friday afternoon of devotion and business matters, a break for dinner as a council, and then a more “informal” discussion on a selected topic, followed by worship. For this Friday night discussion time, we are interested in hearing from and talking with lay members and rostered ministers in an informal, question and answer/discussion format. We imagine conversation might be about the highs and lows of your congregation’s mission in your community; ideas about how we might be better connected to each other; the challenges and joys of your lay leadership; what you need to be a more effective leader; what does the Synod Council do anyway?! We will have conversation starters, but hope that our time together will evolve as the Spirit moves among us. We will end the evening with worship and Holy Communion.
We give thanks to St. John Lutheran Church for agreeing to host our worship and this time together. All are invited and welcome. If you have questions, feel free to contact Michele Hilton, Assistant to the Bishop for Administration at email@example.com. We also give thanks to Trinity Lutheran Church who is hosting our actual Synod Council business meeting on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning.
More than four years ago at Synod Assembly the FB Synod voted to become R.I.C. This action does not commit congregations to become R.I.C. though it certainly does declare the Gospel concept of inclusivity…that we are all children if God.
In the same way, should a congregation vote to become Reconciling, individuals within that congregation may be encouraged to be intentionally welcoming but are not forced to do so.
Below this article is the symbol and designation “We are a reconciling in Christ Synod”. Whatever happened to bound conscience? It seems a decision was made at some level to put us all on a path, not all of us are morally comfortable with (some would describe it as the ‘highway to hell’). It seems the ELCA has decided to move full speed toward the political left, and are inviting all those who are not in agreement to debark the sinking ship at their first opportunity. Would this be a fair characterization?