5 Year Journey for the South Dakota Synod, ELCA

In 2019, we listened to you and learned from you in order for us to care for you as the body of Christ in South Dakota. As we live into the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic, many things that were said in 2019 are ever more present. Here’s what we found out:


What gives you joy?

  • Music

  • Multi-generational ministry opportunities

  • Purposeful gatherings

  • Purposeful volunteering

  • The Gospel

What keeps you up at night?

  • Economic hardships

  • Polarization in our society

  • Mental Health

  • Fear for the future of “the Church.”

How do you envision your relationship with the synod staff?

  • Resources

  • Relationships

  • Programs

  • Communication

  • Faith Formation


Why even be “synod?”

  • We are synod, because we are called to journey together in Christ. - Luke 24:13-35


How will we journey together in Christ?

  • Relating with intentionality

  • Networking across the church

  • Equipping leaders for ministry

  • Sharing Leadership

  • With confidence in Christ’s Love for All


“Fitting who we are into pews made for who we were.”

       - Participant from 2019 Listen, Learn and Care Event


What we plan to do:

  • Intentionality in our presence (site visits, accompaniment, West River presence, Disaster response through grants and presence)

  • Community building opportunities (peer ministry, coaching, zoom groups, task forces, Synod Day)

  • Resources (Red River Leadership partnership, Canvas platform faith formation curriculum, network of intentional interim pastors, Justice Table, worship resources, task forces, synod staff sermons, constitutional resources)

  • Educational Opportunities (Region 3 Lay School, Psychological First Aid, Mental Health First Aid, Facebook Live Dwelling in the Word, Boundary workshops)

We are no longer the people we were when we left our buildings in March 2020, nor is the world around us -- and it won’t ever be. New life and possibilities have emerged. Let’s embrace our current situation and reimagine it as a classroom. How would that reshape our experience today?


Come on the road with us. The journey awaits.


Let’s journey together in Christ.