The Rev. Amy Thompson Sevimli, Assistant to the Bishop, gave her report by video because she was unable to be present at the assembly.
She gave highlights of what she is working on:
• Bethany Lutheran has sold its building, and 80 percent of the funds from the sale went to planting new congregations.
• Cristus Victor Lutheran has received funds from the sale of Bethany. It is restarting as River of Grace Lutheran.
She provided young adult ministry updates:
• Project Connect – An initiative of three seminaries to help 18- to 30-year-olds determine their roles in the church, particularly if they are interested in rostered ministry.
• Based on meeting him during the start of her work with the synod, Pr. Sevimli said the words of the keynote speaker are worth paying attention to, and he talks about things that we can put to use in the synod.
There are three congregations in the synod that have grown their ministries with young adults. These congregations have the following characteristics in common:
• They have the support of the senior pastor.
• There is dedicated staff time to this ministry.
• One-on-one meetings are happening.
She indicated that she is available to help congregations as they seek to connect with young adults. She invited congregations to be in touch with her to request her help.
The Rev. Connie Thomson, the new mission developer for River of Grace Lutheran in Manassas, Virg., was introduced and spoke about starting a congregation over again. She thanked those present for their support of the congregation and said that one way to help her is to serve in their own communities. “When your congregations grow, ours will grow,” she said.