Hilton Austin Receives

Graetz Advocacy Award!!!

The ELCA Southeastern Synod is pleased to name Mr. Hilton M. Austin, Jr., as the recipient of the Robert S. and Jean E. Graetz Advocacy Award.   


Top News this Week!!!

Epiphany Service from the Conference of Bishops

Wednesday, January 6, 2021, 8pm Eastern / 7pm Central

Join us for this  online worship service led by the ELCA bishops elected in 2019.

This worship service will air via our synod Facebook page, YouTube channel, and website.

Legacy Giving Event - Jan 7

12Noon Eastern / 11am Central

There is a group of people out there who love your ministry and who just may be the key to a significant source of funding. They have been telling you for some time that they are ready to make that commitment. You just didn’t hear what they were saying. 
Join the ELCA Foundation for an interactive conversation about how legacy giving can impact your future ministry plans.


Synod Council Meets on Jan 9

Please keep in your prayers the Synod Council as they gather digitally to discern current and future ministries of this synod.


Martin Luther King Day - Bishop's Commemoration Worship Service

Bishop Strickland and the Synod Worship Team are recording a worship service and will present it on January 17, 2021, 4pm Eastern / 3pm Central, to commemorate the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  

The worship service will be available on the Southeastern Synod's YouTube page, Facebook page, and website.


Congregational Leader Zoom

Monday, January 25, 2021
7pm Eastern / 6pm Central

JOIN US as Bishop Strickland, the synod staff, and congregational leaders from across the synod will gather to discuss several updates and initiatives for the Southeastern Synod.



Lenten Lectionary Study

Sunday, February 8, 2021
9am-Noon Eastern / 8-11am Central

Join Dr. Karoline Lewis for a wonderful morning full of rich text study as we dive deep into the lectionary for the 2021 Lenten season.   Register today!



2021 Mission Support Intent

If your congregation has not made a 2021 Mission Support Intent, please do so here by the end of January. It's fast. It's easy. It's incredibly important!

60 congregations have already made an intent for 2021, but our goal is 118 congregations, or 75%. We're well on the way, but need your help! Make your intent today!?


2021 Synod Assembly goes DIGITAL

Saturday, June 5, 2021

Official notice has been given that our 2021 Synod Assembly will be digital in format.    

Read official notice here.   More to come soon!


Weekly Sermons from Your Synod Staff

The Bishop and Assistants are filming sermons for Sunday's surrounding the pandemic of COVID-19; we will post them here and host on our synod YouTube channel.

Each Sunday’s sermon will be archived on the Sermons page on our synod website.  If you wish a dial-in option, you can find that information on the sermons page, as well.


Stewardship Symposium with Rev. Mike Ward

Friday, January 29, 2021, 10am-3pm Eastern / 9am-2pm Central

Join Rev. Mike Ward, Certified Fund-Raising Executive (CFRE) and author of "Abundance: Creating a Culture of Generosity" for a practical, deep dive into how to develop and live into a culture of abundance in your congregation.


Synod Ministry Resources

Pastoral Letter from Bishop Strickland Addressing Civic Unrest

A pastoral letter from Bishop Kevin Strickland addressing the civil unrest at our nation's capital on Wednesday, January 6, 2021.




60 of our congregations have made a Mission Support Intent for 2021 and 29 of these are new intents! We give thanks for all these congregations. If your congregation still needs to make a 2021 intent, the link is here.
In addition, as you have read in our vice president's update, our synod giving was behind in 2020, but we have great confidence that God is abundant. Our Abundance Appeal has resulted in over $105K in intents and our synod is well on our way towards making up the $225K shortfall. Again, God is good. God is abundant. Thanks be to God!


IGNITE - 2021 Evangelism Initiative

When I hear the word ignite - my mind goes to fire!  Especially this time of the year, a nice warm fire that chases the chill away.  Our stories about Jesus’ presence in our lives is like a fire, it chases the chill of the world away and replaces it with the knowledge that we have a God who is infinitely loving, grace-filled, patient and always leading us out into the highways and byways of the world.

Watch a video explaining "IGNITE!" from Pr. Patti Axel, Assistant to the Bishop and Director for Evangelical Mission.


Diversity & Justice Team

This summer Bishop Strickland prayed into being the new Diversity and Justice Task Force of the Southeastern Synod. We are charged with lifting up issues around race, gender, disability, and sexual orientation and gender identity.  Read more about our vision and hopes for this synod.


Bishop Strickland Welcomes Rev. Ana Lugo, ELCA Foundation partner

Bishop Strickland writes:  "We are thrilled to announce our new partnership with the ELCA Foundation, yet another way in which our synod will equip, empower, and engage God’s people to love and serve. (Ephesians 4:12).

"Regional gift planner and member of our synod staff, Rev. Ana Lugo, will assist our synod in developing and stewarding individual and congregation planned gifts for our ministries and supporting our ministries through charitable gift instruments."


Holding a Digital Meeting?  Here is a Helpful FAQ

Many congregation leaders ask how they can take advantage of technology to hold necessary meetings to conduct the business of the congregation. Even in the current pandemic crisis, state law, as well as your constitution, bylaws, and continuing resolutions, must still be respected. Attached is the most recent guidance from the ELCA.

(This FAQ comes from the Office of the Secretary of the ELCA.)


2020 Rostered Ministers Report to the Bishop

All rostered ministers are asked to complete an annual report to the bishop in order to allow Bishop Strickland and the synod staff to know more about the joys and concerns from the rostered ministers and to help us support one another in our ministries.

Check your email inbox (or spam folder) for the invitation to fill out your 2020 Report to Bishop Kevin Strickland.  If you do not have yours, please email Pr. Michael Jannett ( to make sure you have your individualized link to this report.  (Note:  please do not share the link, as each link is unique to each rostered minister.)


Blog: Courage, Hope, Compassion, Love! (on Covid Vaccinations...)

"As this article goes to print, we will have once again experienced the joy of Christmas Day with the knowledge that Jesus came to save us. We welcome 2021 with much anticipation for a vaccination that can help to relieve us of our anxieties of the past ten months, help us get back to normal life - whatever that is - and potentially save our lives from a destructive virus..."


Stories of Inspiration

Heart to Art

“How will the children color pictures without crayons?” That is the question bemoaned by Ms. Jessica Davis, the newly appointed art teacher at Clay Elementary School, Clay, Alabama.  After years of applications to have this position funded, approval finally was received from the Community of Clay, effective Fall 2019.  The school hustled to arrange a spacious room for the new teacher and eagerly envisioned a flourishing art program for students.  Alas! There is always a 'fly in the ointment.'  The establishment of the position funded a salary but neglected to include any budgeted monies to support the art program itself!..."


How Atonement, Atlanta, Thrives in the Midst of this Pandemic

Listen to one member's take on how their congregation is thriving in the midst of this pandemic.


Share YOUR Story of Inspiration!

Did you know that you can share YOUR story of inspiration TODAY?!?!  You can!

Check out the main synod web page and SCROLL DOWN TOTHE BOTOM OF THE PAGE and look for the yellow box.  Upload photos, share your stories, and provide contact information to allow others to learn more about your story.


Faith Formation for All Ages

All GA Lutheran Youth Gathering - Feb 27

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Participants will register by congregation, which will open on January 16!!!


Synod Prayer Team

Monday, January 25
9am Eastern / 8am Central

Join us for our monthly synod prayer session.  All are welcome to be a part of the Synod Prayer Team.  Sign up today!


Spring 2021 Programs at Lutheranch

Lutheranch is offering two spring programs in 2021:  The "Prayer Labyrinth and Meditation Retreat" on Jan 22-24, 2021, & "Women of the Range" on March 5-7, 2021.  We intentionally selected these programs because they are limited in size and either have a majority of the activities outside (Women of Range) or are inherently individual and introspective in nature (Labyrinth).

The Annual Lutheranch Quilting Retreat has been rescheduled from February to September.

Visit to register TODAY!


Hunger & Disaster Response

Rock of Ages (Stone Mountain, GA) Shares a Word of Thanks for Covid Food Insecurity Grant

In June 2020, Rock of Ages Lutheran Church in Stone Mountain, Georgia received a COVID Food Insecurity Grant from the Southeastern Synod to fund the purchase of food for our hunger ministry.  A number of Synod congregations with food ministries received these grants which were made possible through a joint project funded by Lutheran Disaster Response and the Southeastern Synod Disaster Ministry Committee.  On behalf of Pastor Randy Palm and Rock of Ages, I would like to express our gratitude for this grant and share the story of how our congregation was able to support those at risk of food insecurity along the Memorial Drive corridor.


Hurricane Disaster Relief for ILAG, Guatemala

The Southeastern Synod has set up a Hurricane Relief Fund to raise a minimum of $44,000 to provide our siblings in Christ with emergency food and supplies. Your gift will bring compassion and relief to our rural ILAG families.   (Click link to read and to DONATE!)



Disaster Relief for Rostered Ministers

These past months have been personally difficult for two of our Rostered Ministers. One pastor’s home was significantly damaged by wind, and another pastor’s home was greatly damaged by fire.  

The Southeastern Synod Disaster Committee has set up a fund to assist them in their recovery.  Please consider making a donation through our giving page, or by mailing a check to the synod office.



ELCA World Hunger to Hold Digital Gathering

The ELCA has an annual gathering that was slated to be held in Nashville, in early 2021, but has been changed to a virtual gathering instead.
The annual gathering is to be held on January 20-23, 2021.  Here is a link for more information and to register:


Prayers and Concerns
  • Continued Prayers for Mr. Hilton Austin, former Director for Advocacy for the Southeastern Synod.
  • Prayers for Rev. Dennis and Doris Mims (Hampton, GA).
  • Prayers for Rev. Barbara Gibson (Newnan, GA).


Rostered Ministers Transitions

Leaving Call:

  • CORRECTION:  Rev. Leslie Wilder, Left Call on December 31; had previously retired January 1, 2018
  • Rev. Jack Wilder, Leaving Call in January 2021


  • Rev. Justin Eller, Assistant to the Bishop for Latino Ministry Strategy and Amazing Grace, Lawrenceville, GA - February 7
  • Rev. Mike Millum, Pastor, Amazing Grace, Lawrenceville, GA - February 7 (transitioning from term-call to Pastor)


  • Rev. Jim Nipper, retiring in February 2021



Upcoming Events



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St. John's Lutheran Church
Physical Address:
1410 N Ponce de Leon Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30307


Mailing Address:
P. O. Box 400
Decatur, GA 30031


As always, please feel free to visit our website for more information:




For questions or concerns regarding our regular or special enews, please contact: Rev. Michael Jannett - Assistant to the Bishop for Formation and Communication


The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Southeastern Synod,
c/o St. John's Lutheran Church, 1410 Ponce de Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30307