Companion Synod Team
Our Companion Synods give us the opportunity to engage with Companion Christians who live out their faith in different parts of the world. As we come together with our CoSyn Lutheran Christians in Papua New Guinea, Russia and other parts of the world, we both bless them and receive their blessings. We both teach and learn. We both encourage and are encouraged.
Every congregation in the Central States Synod is encouraged to celebrate the World-wide church we are a part of and to find ways to walk more closely together with our partners in Papua New Guinea, Russia, and around the globe.
For a more detailed explanation of the Companion Synod Ministry, read:
Season of Global Awareness Materials for Congregations
The Central States Synod has designated the Epiphany Season as a "Season of Global Awareness." In a resolution passed at the 2019 Central States Synod Assembly, the voting members of the Central States Synod said,
Be it resolved that the Epiphany Season be designated as a “Season of Global Awareness” for all congregations within the Central States Synod and that congregations intentionally lift up the church around the world through prayer, song, publicity and in any way appropriate to the context of the congregation.
Be it also resolved that the congregations of the Central States Synod designate at least one Sunday during the Epiphany Season as a “Sunday of Celebration for the Global Church.” This Sunday would focus not only on our Companion Synods in Papua New Guinea and Russia, but also the Global Ministry we share in through the Global Mission Arm of the ELCA such as Missionary Sponsorship, Young Adults in Global Mission, and our support of Projects that promote the witness of the Gospel, works of compassion and justice ministry around the world.
Be it also resolved that Sunday, October 6th, 2019 shall be designated as a Sunday of solidarity with and prayer for our Companion Synod in Russia, the “Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Urals, Siberia and Far East” (ELCUSFE) with a special focus on the Far Eastern Deanery. This date was chosen because the first Sunday in October is widely observed by the churches in Russia as a harvest Sunday when they give thanks and celebrate the completion of the fall harvest. (Bulletin Insert)
Be it also resolved that Sunday, April 26th, 2020 be designated as a Sunday of solidarity with, and prayer for our Companion District, the Kotte District of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Papua New Guinea (ELCPNG). This date is chosen because it is Easter 3 when the story of the Walk to Emmaus is often read, a story often used to illustrate the Accompaniment Model of Global Mission. Another lesson often read is the story of Jesus having breakfast with Peter and the Disciples on the shore of Lake Tiberias and calling on Peter to “Feed my sheep.” This is also a lesson that reminds us of our vocation to feed God’s sheep throughout the world.
The Central States Synod Companion Synod Team will provide resources for mission education and worship for the Epiphany Season, and additionally, prayer requests, recent news and communications from our Companion Churches prior to the two Companion Synod Sundays to help us to “accompany one another” in our journey as followers, servants, and witnesses to Jesus Christ in our respective parts of God’s world.
The Companion Synod team would prepare and share an Epiphany PowerPoint presentation with voiceover commentary for congregations to download and use it as a temple talk for Companion Synod Sundays.
To equip our congregations we have prepared a Companion Synod Epiphany Packet with useful information for the Epiphany Season, including:
Suggestions for congregations for celebration in Epiphany
Resources on Global Ministry Partners of the ELCA and the Central States Synod
An introduction to the Far Eastern Region of the Lutheran Church in Asian Russia and the Congregations we are working within our Companion Synod
An introduction to the Kotte District of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Papua New Guinea
Worship songs used in Papua New Guinea in Melanesian Pidgin language
Recipes from our CoSyn Christians in Russia and Papua New Guinea
A historical timeline of our Companion Synod visits
A list of members of the Companion Synod Team and their contact information
"Accompaniment" – An explanation of the ELCA model for global mission relationships
The Companion Synod Team also created an Epiphany bulletin insert for our congregations.