Greetings Siblings in Christ of the South-Central Synod,
I am so honored and humbled to be your bishop. My official start date was July 1st but if you were involved in the MYLE and Youth Gathering 2018 you know I was in place a week earlier. It was indeed a privilege to start my tenure with a focus on the youth of the South-Central Synod. Their exuberance and welcome was heartening and brought me great joy. Indeed, this did change everything!
On July 10th I was called into Bishop Formation, a time of learning and colleagueship with my class of incoming bishops and a group of mentors to guide us along the way. In these days I’ve often referred to drinking from a fire hose. Last week was another of those times. I’m still trying to synthesize it all. It was there that I learned, due to action from the churchwide, that there are some changes in the responsibilities of bishop. I’ll share those with the constituencies involved at another time.
Whatever changes come, be assured that I am the pastor to this synod. Though we don’t have a cathedral where I am in residence as some denominations do, I shall preach, teach and administer the sacraments in our congregations in accord with the Confessions of Faith of this church. And, for constitution geeks such as myself, a myriad of other duties as enumerated in the constitution of this synod, Chapter 8. Most important of all, I will pray for you, support you and walk alongside you as we do the mission of this church to faithfully care for, connect and equip our congregations to be the heart and hands of Jesus. I ask you to hold me in your prayers as I accompany you in this ministry.
I am looking forward to seeing you at the Installation Celebration on August 18th, 2pm at First Lutheran in Janesville. Our journey together continues as we walk together in the Spirit.
Remember, water is thicker than blood. We are church together!
Blessings and Peace,
Bishop Viviane Thomas-Breitfeld