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View the latest issue of Bold Connections, the monthly e-newsletter that features the latest news and information about our programs and activities. Bold Connections is delivered via e-mail toward the end of the month.

 

 

October 2014
Published November 6, 2014

WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE?

Can you believe that just four months ago, more than 2,400 women and men gathered for the triennial gathering? Now, its already time to make plans for the next one. If it feels like your schedule has ramped up, it has. By now stores have turned their Halloween aisle into the Christmas display! Well, blessings to you as you keep up the pace this month. Remember to take care of yourself!

BOARD MEETS, DELIBERATES
 
The newly formed churchwide executive board met for orientation and business in October, examining referrals from the Ninth Triennial Convention, making a commitment to racial justice education, and hearing reports from the triennial convention and gathering, among other things. Get the full story.

NEED SOME INSPIRATION FOR YOUR THANKOFFERING SERVICE?
 
Sue Connors, president of Pacifica SWO, recently offered a Thankoffering challenge to the units in her SWO. In Sue's column in the September issue of their newsletter, she writes: "Thank you to the churchwide staff of the Women of the ELCA, the churchwide board, and all that planned, worked and participated in the Triennial Gathering in Charlotte. .... How can we show our gratitude for a job well done? With every unit taking a Thankoffering. ... There are as many ways as there are units to collect this special offering."

Take up Sue's challenge. The 2014-2015 Thankoffering service is now available, with songs, prayers, and litanies from the opening worship service, held July 24, 2014, at the Ninth Triennial Gathering. See how one congregational unit breathed new life into Thankofferings.

For more about offerings and stewardship, download the 2014-2015 stewardship guide.

MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR WOMEN AND GIRLS, BEFORE DECEMBER 15

Will the churchwide organization plant a seed in your congregation, allowing you to engage women and girls in your church and communities in making and fostering emotionally, spiritually and physically healthy choices?
 
The 2014-2015 cycle for seed grants in our health initiative, Raising Up Healthy Women and Girls, opened October 15. Application materials will be available at womenoftheelca.org. All applications must be postmarked or emailed by December 15, 2014 and be submitted by active units of Women of the ELCA who are familiar with the Raising Up Healthy Women and Girls initiative and the criteria of this program.

PRE-REGISTRATION SAVINGS ENDS DECEMBER 31, 2014
 
More than 500 women have already preregistered for the Tenth Triennial Gathering to be held July 13-16, 2017, in Minneapolis, Minn. Join the crowd and preregister before the end of this year and you get a discounted registration fee of just $280. Don't miss out!




September 2014
Published September 30, 2014

WHAT'S YOUR STORY?
Yet this fall 16 of our synodical women's organizations are meeting in conventions, and the newly-elected churchwide executive board will gather for its first meeting. It's easy to get caught up in business (or choose to ignore business) and lose sight of our mission and purpose. Pause a few times this fall to talk with other women and ask about their faith stories. You'll be inspired to live out our mission and purpose in new and exciting ways!

APPLICATION PERIOD FOR SEED GRANTS OPENS OCTOBER 15

Will the churchwide organization plant a seed in your congregation, allowing to engage women and girls in your church and communities in making and fostering emotionally, spiritually and physically healthy choices?
 
The 2014 - 2015 cycle for seed grants in our health initiative, Raising Up Healthy Women and Girls, opens October 15. Application materials will be available at womenoftheelca.org. All applications must be postmarked or emailed by December 15, 2014 and be submitted by active units of Women of the ELCA who are familiar with the Raising Up Healthy Women and Girls initiative and the criteria of this program.  

NEED SOME INSPIRATION FOR YOUR THANKOFFERING SERVICE?
 
Sue Connors, president of Pacifica SWO, recently offered a Thankoffering challenge to the units in her SWO. In Sue's column in the September issue of their newsletter, she writes: "Thank you to the churchwide staff of the Women of the ELCA, the churchwide board, and all that planned, worked and participated in the Triennial Gathering in Charlotte. .... How can we show our gratitude for a job well done? With every unit taking a Thankoffering. ... There are as many ways as there are units to collect this special offering."

Take up Sue's challenge. The 2014-2015 Thankoffering service is now available, with songs, prayers, and litanies from the opening worship service, held July 24, 2014, at the Ninth Triennial Gathering. See how one congregational unit breathed new life into Thankofferings.


For more about offerings and stewardship, download the 2014-2015 stewardship guide.

CALLED TO EXAMINE GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. What better way to observe the month than by reviewing a draft social message on gender-based violence?


The ELCA Church Council has authorized a social message on gender-based violence. Messages are adopted by the Church Council as a means to encourage learning and moral discourse. The tentative timeline calls for a message, or messages, to be considered by the Church Council in April of 2015.

Download the draft social message. Get a group together to study that draft, providing everyone with copies. Then complete a response form, either individually or as a group. Check out these FAQs. The comment period runs through November 26.


REACHING BEYOND WITH COMMUNICATION

Do you use the micro-blogging site Twitter to invite new audiences to participate in your women's group? Approximately 19% of women are using this social media outlet to share about events they attend, their thoughts and even their ministry. Considering the largest group of Twitter users are between the ages of 18-49, if you would like to invite women in this age range, you need to use Twitter. There are a lot of helpful links to get you started. Also, you can ask any person at church, in your family and among your friends to teach you how to tweet. Check out how we used our hashtag #welcatg, to share about our triennial gathering this past July.
 
While Twitter can help you get information out about your ministry, your own personal, authentic invitation is really more important than any social media tool. What tools are you using to invite more women?

JOIN OVER 500 SMART WOMEN

Over 500 women have already preregistered for the Tenth Triennial Gathering to be held July 13-16, 2017, in Minneapolis, Minn. Join the crowd and preregister before the end of this year and you get a discounted registration fee of just $280. Now who's smart

DONATE TODAY 
Want to make a difference in women's lives, here and around the globe? Make a gift today to Women of the ELCA. 

 



August 2014
Published August 28, 2014

ARE YOU READY?

It's time to gear up for another program year. We've got a new Bible study and Thankoffering service. Our triennial convention delegates set before us new social justice issues that require our response. Luckily there were over 2,300 women fired up in Charlotte last month, so find someone in your community who attended the Ninth Triennial Gathering and have her help shape your plans. It's going to be a great year!

BISHOP EATON'S ADDRESS NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE

Earlier this week we announced on Facebook that Bishop Elizabeth Eaton's address to the Ninth Triennial Gathering is available online. Darlene Smith, of Erie, Pa., wrote, "It was even better the second time!!"

We led our status update with "you've been waiting for this." Many agreed. "Thank you, thank you," wrote Liz Loring-Brennan Burgess, president of the New England Synodical Women's Organization. "Yes, we have been waiting. Our CU is going to invite women to view together and 'spread the word.' Thank you for this timely resource."  

Lecia White, of Columbus, Ohio, offered this great response. "Wow. Gives me hope for the future of our church and of our world!"

HOW WILL YOU RESPOND?

Delegates to the Ninth Triennial Convention took action last month on several social justice issues, including human trafficking, bullying, creating safe places and the current immigration crisis involving children. These actions call into action every expression of Women of the ELCA--congregational units, synodical women's organizations and the churchwide women's organization. Read and study the actions taken and determine how you will respond.

WHAT IF $1 MILLION IS JUST THE BEGINNING?
 
In December 2012, Women of the ELCA set a historic goal to grow its endowment, Katie's Fund, to $1 million by the start of the Ninth Triennial Gathering, which was held July 24-27 in Charlotte, N.C. In fact, participants learned that Katie's Fund had exceeded the goal, reaching $1,051,112.

Katie's Fund was established in 1997 as an endowment for the churchwide women's organization. Each year, the interest we earn is available to support ministries of leadership development, global connections and living theology.

NEW STEWARDSHIP GUIDE, THANKOFFERING SERVICE ONLINE

 
Is it time to plan your next Thankoffering event? The 2014-2015 Thankoffering service is now available, with songs, prayers, and litanies from the opening worship service, held July 24, 2014, at the Ninth Triennial Gathering. For more about offerings and stewardship, download the 2014-2015 stewardship guide.


WE VOTED. NOW WHAT?

At the Ninth Triennial Convention, Syd Brinkman voted "no" to reducing the size of the executive board.
This led her to vote "yes" to increasing the budget. In today's blog post, Syd reflects on what these votes mean for her financial giving and yours. "This isn't a flashy blog post," she begins, "but it calls us to great responsibility."

RELIVE THE GATHERING WITH PHOTOS, SOCIAL MEDIA
Experience the triennial gathering again through social media. This blog post tells you how!

DONATE TODAY 
Want to make a difference in women's lives, here and around the globe? Make a gift today to Women of the ELCA.