What’s said in Leipzig, stays in … people’s memories for decades

By Bishop Ann Svennungsen

I have a new resolution: “Each year, take at least one of group of synodical leaders on a week-long mission trip.”

Just last Thursday, 16 of our synod’s rostered leaders returned from a ten-day visit to our companion synod in Leipzig, German. It was the week of Germany’s premiere celebration of the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation.

Our Leipzig partners hosted us in their homes and took us to worship, concerts, festivals, Luther museums, and the May 28 capstone gathering in Wittenberg. We shared in rich conversations – with our partner pastors and leaders about immigration and church/state relations; with our 16-member travel group about theology, highs, lows, and tensions; and with our host families about life … sometimes late into the night.

Very few people have the privilege of being alive for this 500th anniversary – much less spending it in “Luther Land” with companions from our partner church in Leipzig.

Very few people have the privilege of being alive for this 500th anniversary – much less spending it in “Luther Land” with companions from our partner church in Leipzig.

Still, throughout the trip, I had the sense I could lead this group on a trip to Big Sandy, Montana, and we would still have an awesome experience. (I can make fun of Big Sandy because my family is from there.)

 

THE ROSTERED LEADERS of the Minneapolis Area Synod are incredible. The ELCA prepares its pastors and deacons well. As importantly, there is a spiritual and emotional health in our synod’s leaders who have sensed God’s call to ministry and responded to that call.

At the same time, the need for leaders to “be together” in meaningful relationships is as important as it is difficult to incorporate into busy lives. From John Hulden’s peer group cheers to the fast growing communicators gatherings, our synod staff puts highest priority on building relationships – with God, in peer groups, in communities of faith.

Thank you for the privilege of journeying to Germany. And, for the gift of being in relationship with incredible leaders across our synod.

2017-07-18T20:01:50+00:00June 6th, 2017|Categories: From the Bishop|Tags: , |