LEAD Presentation by Rev. Dr. Stephen Bouman

Dr. Bouman’s keynote from LEAD is posted to the synod’s website.  For Dr. Bouman’s presentation, advance the video to the 13 minute mark where Bishop Thomas-Breitfeld introduces him.  https://scsw-elca.org/event/lead2019/

New Speaker on the Synod Speaker’s Bureau – Rev. Dr. Stephen Bouman! 

Rev. Dr. Stephen Bouman!  Yes…you heard correctly!  Dr. Bouman was our keynote speaker for LEAD this year and as ever, received an overwhelmingly positive response by our attendees.  So we are extremely excited to introduce him as one of our newest speakers to the synod’s Speaker’s Bureau.

As he is now retired from his call to the ELCA churchwide office as Executive Director of the Domestic Mission of the ELCA, he has started his own consulting business, 3 Roads Consulting.

He is available to work with your congregation in the areas of congregational renewal, community ministries and leadership training.  As ever, you work directly with our speakers to make arrangements and negotiate details.  See the synod’s website for his contact information.


 Link to Speaker’s Bureau page:  https://scsw-elca.org/resources/speakers-bureau/

Hands on Ministries Took Place at Synod Assembly

Your generosity is needed for two important ministries!


Thank you!  We reached our goal of $500 for transport fees for the GHM kits!  Thank you beloved community of the South-Central Synod of WI!  


At assembly, our attendees were  invited to help pack the sacks with food that we purchased from the Blessing in A Backpack organization.  We reached our goal of packing 1,000 meals for children in need in our synod! These meals will be distributed to congregations that are already engaged in this ministry and ready to distribute to the schools in their community.

To pay for the food, we need to raise $2,900 to fill 1,000 backpacks.  Still needed is: $777.00.

Donations should be made payable to SCSW, with Blessings in A Backpack in the memo.  Mail to South-Central Synod of Wisconsin, 6401 Odana Road, Suite 20, Madison, WI  53719.  As the synod does not have a budget line item for this, we will continue asking until this cost is covered.  Thank you kindly for your donations.


Sign Up Now!

If you are interested in teaching, contact Diakonia Coordinator, Barb Zimmerman at 608-535-0264 or email her at:  scswdiakonia@gmail.com.

If you are interested in taking classes, more information, along with registration form, can be obtained from the web site www.scsw-elca.org click on Ministries and Partners, Diakonia.  Financial Assistance may be available from your congregation and/or synod scholarships are available for those who would appreciate tuition assistance.

You can also contact Linda Wulff at 920-210-2675 or by e-mail at scswdiakonia@gmail.com. We look forward to hearing from prospective students and instructors!

St. John’s (Madison) Has Office Space to Lease

St. John’s Lutheran Church is located 2 blocks off the capitol square in Madison.  They have 1,900 square feet on the 2nd floor of their ADA elevator equipped building.  Well planned and recently refurbished offices with conference room/s.  Ideas space for firms or non-profits needing easy access to state, count/municipal offices and court house. All amenities of our vibrant downtown at your doorstep.  Contact Rev. Peter Beeson at peterb@stjohnsmadison.org or 608/256-2337.

Synod Conference Events


Baraboo Conference – April 27 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Prairie du Sac, Speaker is Kathy Roberg, RN on Haiti Medical Mission of Wisconsin, ministry in Thiotte, Haiti.  Registration starts at 8:30 am.  More information and RSVP to tnmdegi@gmail.com or 608-643-4514

Barneveld Conference – April 27 at Evangelical Lutheran Church in Mount Horeb, Speaker is Bev Burns of “Passages”, a women’s shelter, and Darlene Masters of Family Advocates at 9:30 am. Registration starts at 8:30 am.  Lunch.   More information and RSVP to elc@mhtc.net or 608-437-5012

Beloit Conference – April 27 at First Lutheran Church in Janesville, Speaker is Dr. John Haeberlin, Mission of Miracles, Registration starts at 8:30 am.  More information and RSVP by April 12 to 608-754-2071 or mail to First Lutheran, 612 N Randall Ave, Janesville, WI 53545.  Luncheon will feature uniquely decorated tables.

Elkhorn Conference – April 27 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Fort Atkinson, Speaker is Dawn Heath on Anti-Human Trafficking at 9 am.  Registration starts at 8:00 am.  More information and RSVP by April 20 to 01sphillipson@gmail.com or 262-337-1368.  Lunch.

Monroe Conference – April 13 at Primrose Lutheran in Belleville, Speaker is Nikki Matley, FCI Financial Professional, Thrivent Financial.  Registration starts at 9:30 am.  More information and RSVP to 608-325-9565.  Lunch.

Southlake Conference – May attend any nearby Gathering.


Kids Receive Peer Support at Time for Us Camp

Time for Us is an annual camp for youth, ages 10 – 18, who have a family member living with cognitive, neurological or trauma-related challenges such as Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, PTSD, or Parkinson’s.

The nature-based Keepers of Memories activities help campers find paths toward understanding changes, developing coping skills, learning good nutrition, and creating connections between cognitive health and the health of our environment.

June 16 – 21, 2019

Bethel Horizons Camp, Dodgeville

Summer 2019 registrations are being accepted now.

Time for Us is sponsored by ADAW, Bethel Horizons, and forMemory, a network of persons affected by early-stage memory loss. Questions?

Contact Christine at (920) 734-9638 or Mary Kay Baum at   (608) 935-5834.  www.formemory.org

SCSW Children, Youth & Family Ministry Network Meetings

Please join us for the next Children, Youth and Family Network Meeting,
Thursday April 25th  10:30am-12pm. We meet to support, dream and vision together.

Location:  Upperhouse  365 E Campus Mall #200, Madison, WI 53715

(There is a parking garage directly under the building)

Typically our meetings are the 4th Thursday of each month at Upperhouse in Madison. We also use Zoom for those that cannot join us in person. We would love to see you there!  Contact us if you want to Zoom into the meeting!

Future Meeting Date:
May 23 – at Upperhouse 10:30am -12 noon

Jay Kiel
Director of Youth Ministry
St. Luke’s Lutheran Church
Middleton, WI   Edgerton, WI


Heather Greenley
Youth Coordinator
Central Lutheran Church

Share Your Gifts With Your Synod by Leading Worship! 

Pastors, Deacons, Interns and Diakonia Graduates and Collaborative Learning Students!  We Are Needing Worship Leaders for the month of May

Sign up here:  http://signup.com/go/NQMwNNG

First, thank you to all our siblings in Christ who have led worship on Thursdays at the synod office.  You have been a gift to so many in our synod!  For those who have not yet volunteered, we would love it if you would be willing to lead worship on a Thursday at noon in the synod office.  Our service is very informal and you could make the 30 minute service look however you would like. Also feel free to invite members of you congregations or friends to join us. Everyone is invited to bring a lunch and join us for fellowship at 12:30.   It is so fun to be together!

It is very easy to sign up at the link: http://signup.com/go/NQMwNNG. If you would prefer you can simply contact Robyn Zimmerman at robynz@scsw-elca.org and she can do the sign up for you.

We are always looking for volunteers for General Office Volunteer Work – http://signup.com/go/urPBwwv

If you have questions please call Robyn Zimmerman at the synod office, 608-270-0201. 

MISSION MOMENT: Our Work With Human Trafficking Is Making a Difference!

Thank you for your weekly offerings that get sent on to your synod and a portion to our larger church through your mission support, for without it, we would not be able to be a healing presence in a world that desperately needs Jesus.  Here’s our story:

By Deacon Vicki Hanrahan, Assistant to the Bishop for Synodical Life

On March 27, 12 Wisconsin state representatives and approximately 50 concerned citizens gathered at the State capitol for the Assembly Committee on Children and Families public hearing on Assembly Bill 41. Under this bill, a person who is under the age of 18 may not be prosecuted for committing an act of prostitution. Many compelling arguments were made in favor of this bill and the fact that 25 states have already passed it, strengthened the arguments.

As one of 50+ concerned citizens, I wanted to share some powerful moments where I saw God’s presence at this public hearing where law and gospel informed our common goal of protecting the rights of victims and safe harboring them through the social services process instead of the criminal justice system.

I got off the elevator on the 4th floor with several of the people speaking in favor of the bill and they were excited to see that a line was forming to get into the room.  I was happy for them because sometimes just showing up as a member of the beloved community is all it takes to affirm to each other that what we are about to do is important and matters.

As we entered the hearing room, we filled out a voting registration form where we could indicate our position on the bill and whether we were there to speak to it.  Several from our synod spoke eloquently in favor of the bill: Shown here at the microphone are the Rev. Cindy Crane, Director of Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin and LOPPW Hunger Fellow, Kelsey Johnson, and LOPPW volunteer, Margaret Staniforth.  Later, at the microphone were Women of the ELCA including Helen Sheahan, President of the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin WELCA group & Margo Holman from Dekorra Lutheran’s women’s group, Shirley Paulson, East Central Synod of Wisconsin WELCA and Lori Wells, President of the NW Synod of Wisconsin’s WELCA group.  The chairperson commended their testimonies.  Also present were representatives from League of Women Voters, State Public Defenders Office, the Department of Children and Family Services, Human Trafficking Task Force of Greater Milwaukee, and the National Council of Juvenile Justice to name a few.

After nearly 4 hours of testimonies, the session adjourned.  Before closing, Chairman Snyder read out loud the names of people voting and speaking for Assembly Bill 41 and one could hear the echo of “ELCA” behind each of our names.  One of the authors of the bill, Representative Jill Billings who is an ELCA member of the    La Crosse Area Synod, could be seen smiling at ELCA members present.  Billings, other legislators, LOPPW, and friends have shared passion and years of walking together to try to care for God’s children.  This was one of many spirit-filled moments.

This is a mission moment that filled me with awe and gratitude for the opportunity to be a voice for the survivors of human trafficking.  For all of us in that hearing that day, I can speak with bold and daring confidence that our presence and voices spoke very loudly that we are Lutheran, we are Church, we are Church Together and we are Church for the Sake of the World.   What a beautiful witness to our faith!

Why is this so important?  Here are some sobering statistics:

  • There are an estimated 36 million people in modern-day slavery in the world today.
  • Human trafficking (both sex and labor trafficking) is the fastest growing organized crime and is the second largest criminal enterprise in the world.
  • Human trafficking generates $32 billion per year in profits.
  • 98% of sexually trafficked victims are women and girls.
  • In the United States there are an estimated 100,000 – 300,000 children prostituted each year.
  • 33% of children that run away are lured into prostitution within 48 hours of leaving home.
  • Mortality rate for prostitutes can be 100 times greater than the general public.
  • The average age for being sex-trafficked is 13.
  • Sex trafficking has been found in every county of our state.
  • 46% of prostitutes attempt suicide.

Wisconsin Sex Trafficking of Minors

It is difficult to determine how many youths are being sex trafficked in Wisconsin because even though it is pervasive, it is very covert. To date (2017) cases have been reported across the state in every county, and as awareness of sex trafficking increases professionals are recognizing more youth who are victims of trafficking. Jan Miyazaki, the director of Madison’s Project Respect, said that in her work with local women in the sex trade, she encounters between 50-75 cases a year involving force, fraud or coercion. A community educator who works with Milwaukee minors in the sex trade said she has come into contact with more than 100 young people in the past year that she believes fit the definition of human trafficking victims. Milwaukee was referred to as “The Harvard of Pimp School,” in the November 2, 2015 article in The Guardian. However, many of the traffickers have moved into suburban and rural areas. The Internet as well as public places are used for recruiting. It is common for traffickers to spend significant time tracking potential girls and boys for prey and they often work in team.

As Human Trafficking is one of the priorities of Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin, Rev. Cindy Crane, Director of LOPPW, shares “The passage of this bill would place Wisconsin law in alignment with federal law, and would enable trafficked youth to receive human services rather than be re-victimized by being treated as criminals.  We have supported this bill for three legislative sessions, each time it has come closer to passing.”

Would you like your congregation to be more informed? Invite LOPPW to speak by calling Rev. Cindy Crane at 608-270-0201 and by checking out other speakers such as Dawn Heath on the synod’s Speaker’s Bureau to invite people who have made Human Trafficking their life’s work.  https://scsw-elca.org/resources/speakers-bureau/

More on the Assembly Bill 41 – https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/2019/related/proposals/ab41

More on the Talking Points –https://www.loppw.org/wp-content/blogs.dir/45/files/2019/03/Talking-Points-and-Info.pdf