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August 2023 2nd Mile Giving Partner

Updated: Aug 25, 2023

In August, we lift up and celebrate our Synod as our ministry partner for the Second Mile Giving program. Our synod is formally known as the Sierra Pacific Synod, which is part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).

First, a little background about the ELCA. In the 1980s, 3 Lutheran Church bodies decided to share common interests and missions, and become one new big Lutheran church body. This occurred in 1988, when the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America was formed. The ELCA now has 3.3 million members, and 8,900 congregations.

When the ELCA began, in order to carry out its mission of sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ and to proclaim that all people are reconciled to God by God’s forgiving mercy, the ELCA divided itself into 65 geographical areas (synods) for effective mission outreach. In addition to this mission, a Synod unites the work of congregations within its area; serves as regional support; guides pastors, pastoral and other staff candidates.

When our Synod first began in 1988, it was known as the Northern California - Northern Nevada Synod, then changed to the Sierra Pacific Synod. Today our Synod has 179 congregations and 40,000 members.

We currently have an interim Bishop, Rev. Claire Burkat. Our Synod is convening an assembly on September 15, in Burlingame, to elect a standing bishop (six year term, repeatable with another term), and to continue with its administrative and ecclesiastical business.

Please join us in lifting up our Synod and its work. Our Second Mile offering in August will be dedicated to the Synod for its ongoing work.

If you would like to learn more about the upcoming election of the new Bishop and other ongoing business and activities of the Synod, go to their website ( The Synod has an excellent electronic weekly newsletter. You can sign up for the newsletter at the website (go the homepage of the Synod website -> “About” -> “Contact” -> “Subscribe to our emails”. The button for “Subscribe to our emails” is at the very bottom righthand corner of the “Contact” page.)

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