Don't miss out on the many great stories, opportunities and events in and around the synod that are listed below!

Please share this information with your congregational members, invite and encourage them to attend the events!! 
In This Issue:
Important Links:


Synod of the week: LaCrosse Area Synod, Bishop Jim Arends
Congregation of the week: St. John Lutheran, Essex and Ann Albert

  • Congregations in transition
  • Rostered leaders in transition
  • Pastor Tess Panamarrow
  • Pastor Paul Johnston, undergoing surgery on the 31st
  • Pastor Lorene Glant
  • Pastor Chris Lang
  • Rev. John & Elsie Planz, son died in house fire, house a total loss
  • The family of Rev. Jack Kahle, who passed away just after Christmas
  • Rev. Erik Jelinek SCSW DEM cancer recurring. Starting new alternative drug test
  • Brian Campbell and family as they mourn the death of his mother
  • Wanda Norris
  • IELCH--trying times with council, church is “paralyzed”; reunification issues
  • USA in transition...family marchers in attendance
  • Joy and Thanksgiving - Bethany Rutten-Kempees Ordination Saturday
  • Julia Thoel, knee replacement next Tuesday
  • Judy Leng, fall
  • Kim & Tracy Gayer attending the Youth Gathering Coordinator event in Louisville, Kentucky
  • For all upcoming events, that the Spirit will move people to come, learn and share
Week of Prayer for Christian Unity January 18-25, 2017
On Wednesday evening, January 18th, the Western Iowa Synod Mission Team joined with approximately 65 others from many different denominations at Drake University in Des Moines for a time of prayer and discussion for Christian Unity!
Another opportunity to come together with others to pray and worship is this Sunday!!

When: Sunday, January 22 @ 2:00 p.m.
Where: Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, 3012 Jackson Street, Sioux City
Leading the time of worship and prayer is Bishop R. Walker Nickless, of the Sioux City Roman Catholic Diocese, and Bishop Rodger Prois. 
Please invite others and come join us this Sunday afternoon!!
Installation of Pastor Cole McCormick, Trinity Estherville - January 8th

First Row (Left to Right) Rev. David Bergstrom First Lutheran Algona, Rev. Chris Lang Wallingford Lutheran and Bethel Lutheran Church Graettinger , Rev. Cole McCormick Trinity Estherville, Rev. Jeanette McCormick First Lutheran Worthington Minnesota, Rev. Paul Wiegman Retired

Second Row (Left to Right) Rev. Rev. Dr. Martin Lucin Grace Lutheran Spirit Lake, Rev. Jennifer Henry Bethany Lutheran Spencer, Brian Campbell Western Iowa Synod Vice President, Lynn Egesdal Associate in Ministry Western Iowa Synod, Rev. Jeff Ungs Western Iowa Synod

Third Row (Left to Right) Tim Johnson Estherville Lutheran, Rev. Doug Burton First Christian Church Estherville

Please help us welcome Rev. Cole McCormick to the Western Iowa Synod!!

Travel Opportunities for 2017

Adult Group Travel to Tanzania 2017
Anticipated dates: July 21— August 12, 2017 

Accompaniment Trip to Chile
Approximate Dates: Nov. 17-Dec 4, 2017
Two great opportunities to travel to our companion synods in Chile and Tanzania!! 
Peace Not Walls:
      the Holy Land Kaleidoscope
Join us for a day of learning and growth of perspectives as we accompany our brothers and sisters in Christ seeking security, peace and justice for all people in the region! The region encompassing the very life and ministry of Jesus Christ our Lord!

When: Saturday, January 21st; 9 am - 3 pm
Where: Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 300 E Bow Dr, Cherokee
Cost: Depends on number of people attending from your congregation
(ranges from FREE to $25/person)   More info here...
Attention All Men!!
What? Annual Men in Mission retreat
Where? Lutheran Lakeside Camp - Shalom house
When? February 3rd-4th Registration begins at 6:30 PM. Event ends Saturday at 2:30 with Worship and service of Holy Communion.
Cost? A minimum suggested donation of $40.00 will cover costs. Any additional donations will be given to Lutheran Lakeside Camp. Registration includes Saturday breakfast, evening popcorn snack, and Noon meal. Please bring your own bedding, pillow and towel or there will be bedding available for an additional charge. More information and registration can be found here!
Register Online Here
Coming soon: Lutheran Day on the Hill 2017
Join LSI and the three Iowa synods of the ELCA for Lutheran Day on the Hill in Des Moines on February 21st! This day is essential for giving voice to those who are not heard, for seeking social justice and for empowering people to exercise their right and responsibility to be part of the legislative process. More information and registration here! Questions - contact Pastor Ungs at jeff.ungs.rev@wisynod.org.
Winter/Early Spring ConFest Events:
Theme - "You Belong"

ConFest is an event for confirmation age students to attend with their leaders. It's an evening of worship, singing, games, learning, meeting the Bishop and learning more about the wider church. The theme this year is "you belong" - we have have activities that will help us get to know one another better as the body of Christ and we will also have a short session about bullying, focusing on how we are all children of God and should care for one another. Each of us are special and belong to God!
Wednesday, February 15th @ Trinity, Moville
Wednesday, February 22nd @ Zion, Gowrie
Events begin at 5:45 pm with a light supper, programing starts at 6:30 pm
Registration is open!! Register Here!!
Questions? Please email Lynn, Lynn.egesdal@wisynod.org
"Serving the Church Together"
2017 Western Iowa Synod Leadership Academy

When: Saturday, February 18th              
Snowdate: Saturday, February 25th
Time: 9:30 am - 3:30 or 4 pm
Where: St Olaf Lutheran Church, Fort Dodge
Cost: $25/person; or $75/carload (4-5 ppl)
For all congregational members!!
The church is constantly changing and how are we dealing with that as leaders, as members? How can we move from a time of lamenting the changes to a time of Holy Dreaming, being in conversation together about where is God calling us, as individuals, as a congregation? Come and find out!!!  More info here...
Bulletin Insert
Leadership Academy Registration
2017 Marriage Retreat
February 10th-12th
Marriage has never been easy, and it may be more challenging now than ever. Why is that? What can be done to help? How can learning new tools for a marriage relationship impact EVERY relationship in a family? That’s what we’ll explore over our weekend together.
Join us on Feb. 10-12th at Ingham Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camps for our 2017 Marriage Retreat! The speakers for this year's marriage retreat will be Scott and Wendy Rains, who will be talking about the New Rules of Marriage. For more information contact us at 1-800-OKOBOJI or go to our website at http://www.okoboji.org/marriage-retreat. We hope to see you there!
“This is the best Valentine’s gift anyone could give to their spouse, a wonderful weekend with time to learn and grow together.” -2014 Marriage Celebration Retreat participant
Retreat Flier
The Fort Dodge Forum Spring 2017 Schedule
The Forum meets at Grace Lutheran Church, Fort  Dodge. 
Forums begin at 9:30 am with coffee and fellowship.  The program runs from 10 until noon.  A catered meal (about $8) is available to conclude the event at noon.The Forum costs $40 per session, payable at the time of the forum. Join us for another year of learning together as we strive to lead our congregations into God's future.

February 9     "Called Forward Together in Christ 
                       for the sake of the world."
                       A Consultation Paper on Future
                       Directions of the ELCA
                       Pr. Dan Garrietts

March 9          Worship: Daring to "Play" with the
                       Pr. Del Olivier

April 21*         Speaking Public Theology 
(FRIDAY)        in a Fractured World 
                       Dr. Nate Frambach

May 11          Suffering Servant and Jesus 
                      Dr. Arland Hultgren 
*NOTE: different week AND day of the week due to Holy Week and class schedule
2017 Foundations of Faith Community Nursing
Dept. of Continuing Education Augustana University

Faith Community Nursing is a registered nurse who facilitates the wholistic health of a congregation or faith community. The nurse will focus on the spiritual, emotional, physical and social dimensions of persons as they strive to achieve wellness and wholeness.

If you are interested in taking the Faith Community Nurse Foundations course, dates for 2017 are On-Site: Feb 4th and April 27-28th On-Line: Feb 6– March 27th
Cost is $550
Please contact: Paula Lubeck for registration information
605-322-3384 or paula.lubeck@avera.org
Simpson Youth Academy - Summer 2017
You might be right for SYA if you would like to:
EXPLORE QUESTIONS LIKE: • Can faith and politics mix? • Why is there suffering in the world? • Why are there so many different religions? • Are science and the Bible compatible? • Why do religions seem to cause so much violence in the world? • How can I live a life of faithfulness and integrity? More info here!                                  Flier here!
2017 finds Lutherans giving thanks for their Reformation heritage. Our ALCM biennial conference, “Rise, Remember Well the Future,” July 10-13, will simultaneously celebrate the treasures of the last 500 years and look to the future and God’s covenant of faithfulness in all that is yet to be. Opening worship will be held at Saint Olaf College, site of the constituting ALCM convention in 1986. In plenaries led by Chad Fothergill, Daniel Schwandt, and Mary Louise Bringle, we will reflect on the changing role of the cantor—the leader of the church’s song—as we move confidently into a future blessed by our heritage and full of many changes in the church and its music. More info and registration here...
Quick Links
Western Iowa Synod
318 E Fifth St.
Storm Lake, IA 
712.732. 4968