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Synod News 2/1/2017

By South Dakota Synod | Posted 2/1/17 at 3:16pm |
Category: Synod News

Today is the first day of the new fiscal year for 2017. We know many congregations have been holding annual meetings during the month of January. If your congregation has held its annual meeting, there’s important information that needs to be completed for the Synod. See information below.

Complete Your Annual Reporting

The following information needs to be completed by congregations in the South Dakota Synod as soon as possible.

File Your Annual Congregational Report by Feb 15 

All congregations should have received the 2016 congregational report forms (Forms A&C), along with instructions on how to complete the form, at the end of December.  Online filing is now open and needs to be completed by February 15, 2017

Click here to complete your annual congregational report.

Congregational Remittance Forms for 2017

All congregations should have received their remittance forms for 2017 and a letter on how to send in contributions to the Synod office. Please refer to this letter with instructions for contributions. Payments for registrations should be sent on a separate check. Questions? Contact Lois Borchardt, Business Manager at or call 605-274-4025.

Annual Rostered Minister Reports to the Bishop

Reports for all Rostered Ministers can be filed online this year.
Click here to file your annual report to Bishop Zellmer that pertains to your particular call. If you haven’t completed your Rostered Minister Annual Report, please complete by February 15.

Ministers of Word and Service Update

As of January 1, the official roster change is now in effect for Ministers of Word and Service. This action was voted on at the Churchwide Assembly in August. Click here to read more about this update.

Appeal Update

THANK YOU to all the congregations, individuals and volunteers who helped with the “Listen God Is Calling Appeal” in 2016; your investment of time and dollars is most appreciated.  The total of the appeal gifts from all sources through December 31, 2016 is: $3,288,762.53. Thank you for your generous support. Click here for the complete appeal update.

Seminary Debt Restructuring Program

Rostered Ministers in a congregational call who are interested in setting up appointments for the Seminary Debt Restructuring Program can contact Jessie Hall or Sara Ramirez at LSS. For more details, click here. LSS looks forward to working with pastors in the South Dakota Synod.

Lutheran Planned Giving Update


The South Dakota Synod, ELCA and Lutheran Planned Giving announces today that Kurt Osborne has resigned from his position as Assistant Director of Lutheran Planned Giving effective April 15, 2017.

In his statement, Osborne explained that working with Lutheran Planned Giving, the South Dakota Synod, the ELCA Foundation, along with partners in ministry and the many exceptional donors and supporters, has been a privilege and honor to serve during his career with LPG.

“Stepping away from this work of the church will not be easy, however a private business opportunity has presented itself for me”, noted Osborne.

Osborne is currently in his eleventh year of service, and in that time has gone above and beyond the call to serve this church and its ministries.

The South Dakota Synod is actively pursuing to fill the need for Lutheran Planned Giving. Updates on transition and timeline will be released as they are received.

Companion Synod Updates

Call for Missionary Support

On behalf of the Companion Synod Committee I am asking for you help us with our appeal to support for Sergio, our missionary in the Iglesia Lutherana Fe y Esperanza in Nicaragua. Sergio stands ready to welcome and support visitors to Nicaragua who get a first hand look at the outreach and ministry of our sister church.

We have put aside money to support Sergio through April of 2017. We hope to bring him to our Synod Assembly so that he can travel through South Dakota and you can meet him this June. Please make your contributions to Companion Synod Committee with Sergio Support in the memo line of the check.

Thank you, Rev. Charlie Bunk
Companion Synod Coordinator

Call for Reformation Day in Nicaragua

This is a call to all Rostered Ministers in South Dakota. We have a standing invitation to send one of our own leaders to celebrate Reformation Festival with the Lutheran Church of Faith and Hope in Nicaragua. We are looking for a leader to volunteer to preach at the Reformation Sunday Celebration in Managua on Sunday, October 29

, then lead a Bible Study with leaders on Monday and Tuesday October 30 and 31. You could travel back to be present at the big celebration of the 500th Anniversary in Sioux Falls on November 1. Sergio is willing to interpret your Sermon and your Bible Study in Spanish should you wish. Please talk to Pastor Charlie Bunk if you are willing to say: “Here am I, send me!”

Looking Ahead

Chrism Mass Services in February

The South Dakota Synod would like to extend an invitation to all rostered ministers and congregational leaders to attend one of the following Chrism Mass services in February:
  • February 26 – Atonement Lutheran, Rapid City – 5 PM
  • February 27 – Zion Lutheran, Aberdeen – 6:30 PM
  • February 28 – St. John American Lutheran, Sioux Falls – 6:30 PM

A Chrism Mass is for the blessing of Baptismal Oils and for the renewal of our commissioning, consecration, and ordination vows.

We will also be offering a blessing to newly elected council presidents as they serve this church. Please be sure to extend this invitation to them as well.

Conference Assemblies

The following conferences have scheduled their Conference Assemblies in March:

  • Southeastern: March 5, 2 PM at Scandia Lutheran in Centerville
  • Prairie Coteau: March 5, 3 PM at NeSoDak
  • Bear Butte: March 12, 3 PM at Piedmont Valley Lutheran Church
  • Medary: March 12, 3 PM at Trinity, Arlington
  • Northern Plains: March 19, 4 PM at St Paul Lutheran in Bowdle
  • Prairie Rivers: March 19, 2 PM at First Lutheran, Mitchell
  • Crossroads: March 26, 2 PM at Our Savior’s, Sioux Falls

Resolutions Deadline

The deadline to submit resolutions is March 31st. Please submit resolutions in an email with the resolution attached to Crystal McCormick in the Synod Office at

Spring Theological Conference – April 18-20

Please join us on April 18 – April 20, 2017 for our Spring Theological Conference to be held in downtown Sioux Falls. All Worship and Academic Sessions held at First Lutheran Church. Click here for more details.

Crossroads Men in Mission Prayer Breakfast

This year’s Men in Mission Prayer Breakfast will be on Saturday, April 22 at Brandon Lutheran.

Registration begins at 8:30 AM with breakfast starting at 9 AM.

Program this year is Rebel Hurd, Mission Developer of Church on the Street in Sioux Falls.

RSVP by April 18 to Brandon Lutheran by calling 605-582-3401 or email

Synod Assembly

Save the date for Synod Assembly, June 2-3, at Gloria Dei Lutheran in Sioux Falls.

Congregational News

Charis Ministry Partners Job Opening

Charis Ministry Partners, a partnership of area ELCA churches in the Sioux Falls area are seeking a person who will serve as the Coordinator of the Mobile Food Pantry Ministry to the end that it runs well and serves both the guest families in need and the volunteers as they serve and learn about this caring ministry. The position will require 20-22 hours per week, including one Thursday evening distribution weekly, and availability for phone calls and emails throughout the week. The Food to You Coordinator shall be an ex officio member of the Charis Ministry Partners Board, and shall work with the board and the Director of Charis Ministry Partners.

Food to You Mobile Food Pantry Coordinator

Salary / benefits:

  • 20 – 25 hours per week
  • $20,000 annual salary
  • Opportunity to participate in ELCA health insurance program
  • W2 issued by Peace Lutheran
  • $30 / month cell phone reimbursement  $360 annually
  • Mileage reimbursement for personal vehicle use of $.50 per mile
  • 3 weeks vacation which include a substitute for the Thursday distribution

Nicholas Welder – Director of Charis Ministry Partners
Office: 605-336-3597

First Friday Movies at First Lutheran

First Lutheran in Sioux Falls is hosting another First Friday movie this Friday at 6:30. All are invited for the showing of the classic E.T. Whether you are young, or young at heart, this is a FREE family-friendly event. Snacks and drinks are provided free of charge as well.


The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), has issued a pastoral message addressing President Trump’s executive order to restrict entry by refugees and visitors into the United States from seven predominately Muslim countries. Click here to read the message that was issued on Monday.

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