Synod Assembly 2018

Walking Wet: Water Life!
The annual synod assembly was held May 5 & 6 at the Kalahari in Wisconsin Dells.

Here are some fast facts:
Our Theme Was: “Walking Wet: Waterlife” Celebrating our baptismal promise and challenge.

Keynote Speaker: Bishop Felipe Lozada-Montañez of our partner synod, the Caribbean Synod of the ELCA, gave an update of the challenges still facing the people and congregations of Puerto Rico and what we can do to continue to walk with them through their recovery efforts.  Bishop Felipe, and his wife, Ana,  accepted the offering from our congregations and extended their deep appreciation for our synod’s generosity and partnership.

Special  Music Throughout: Composer and musicians, Ben Johnston-Urey, Rev. Nancy Raabe, Ondra Williams, a worship ensemble, and the Synod Assembly Choir comprised of members from  various congregations in our synod, led is in song and praise during worship services on both Saturday night and Sunday.  Saturday was the sending  service of Bishop Mary Froiland.

Offering: Designated for hurricane relief efforts for our brothers and sisters of our partner synod, the Caribbean Synod of the ELCA – $20,023.45

Million Dollar Mission Jar Challenge
Our one year challenge to raise money for the Campaign for the ELCA culminated at our synod assembly.  In total, our congregations raised – $10,083.03

Heart & Hands Award
Three congregations received this year’s Heart and Hands award for opening their doors and extending hospitality to congregations in our synod for equipping events.

  • First Lutheran Church (Janesville) – LEAD
  • St. Matthew’s New Life (Madison) – Racial Equity Events & More
  • Trinity Lutheran (Madison) – Weekly Diakonia Classes


Rev. Viviane Thomas-Breitfeld

Vice President
Jane Cahill Wolfgram, Christ Lutheran, De Forest

Rev. Brad Pohlman, Luther Memorial, Madison

Synod Council
Gary Engelke, First English, Platteville
Rev. Tim Hansen, Our Saviors, Sun Prairie
Rev. Lisa Nelson, Faith Lutheran, Columbus
Debi Peters , Our Saviors, Sun Prairie
Cindy Wuttke, Christ Evangelical, Sharon

Consultation Committee
Rev. Mae Jean Zelle, First, Janesville; Interim

Discipline Committee
Carl Anderson, Luther Memorial, Madison
Rev. Don Glanzer, St Peter’s, Loganville
Deacon Bonnie Vize, West Middleton, Verona

Churchwide Assembly
Sadie Cord, Bethel, Madison
Tyler Gold, Good Shepherd-Madison & Verona
Deacon Vicki Hanrahan-Our Saviors, Sun Prairie
Jessie Hodgson, First English, Platteville
Deacon Lisa Huber, Bethel, Madison
Rev. Erik Jelinek, Central, Edgerton
Ben Johnston-Urey, First, Janesville
Jen Kooistra, St. John’s, Oregon
Theo Kooistra, St. John’s Oregon
Emily Larson, Good Shepherd-Madison & Verona
Rev. Felix Malpica, Faith, Janesville
Rev. Matthew Poock, St Johns, Evansville
Jason Xiong, Bethel, Madison
Rev. Susan Schneider, Trinity, Madison
Kathryn Small, Lake Edge, Madison
Rev. Gordon Straw, Grace, Evanston, IL
Trevor Thom, Immanuel Evangelical, Watertown
Rev. Mae Jean Zelle, First, Janesville; Interim
Rev. Viviane Thomas-Breitfeld


Documents & Resources

Assembly Reports & Book

2018 Assembly Book Complete as Revised

this revised version includes the revised agenda & assembly committees – everything else is the same.  You can download just those items below:

Revisions to Assembly Book
Agenda (Revised)
Assembly Committees (Revised)

2018 Assembly Book Complete

The complete book is currently available for download & printing in one large file. It is bookmarked for Windows PC only.  Note: the complete book does NOT contain Addendum – 2019 Compensation Guidelines.  Please download that separately.

Addendum – 2019 Compensation Guidelines

If you have difficulty downloading the whole file, it can be downloaded in smaller sections. This will work for printing, but the pdf page numbers will not match the printed page numbers like they do in the complete file.
2018 Assembly Book Part 1
2018 Assembly Book Part 2
2018 Assembly Book Part 3

See bottom of page for excerpts from the assembly book.


Youth & Young Adult Luncheon at Synod Assembly

Registered Attendees 30 and under are Invited! 12:00 PM - Kalahari - Saturday, May 5
April 23, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Synod Assembly Summary 2018

Available on the Synod Assembly page  or as a bulletin insert…
May 9, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Bishop Lozada Keynote Presentation available for download

Bishop Felipe Lozada-Montañez of our partner synod, the Caribbean Synod of the ELCA, gave an update of the challenges still facing the people and congregations of Puerto Rico and what we can do to continue to walk with them through their recovery efforts.
May 9, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Synod Assembly Offering $20,023.45

Synod Assembly Offering Will Provide Help And Hope for Those Recovering from Hurricane Disaster in Caribbean
May 15, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

2018 Synod Assembly Bulletin Insert Summary

A bulletin insert summarizing the results of voting matters and highlights of the Assembly was emailed May 9 to all pastors and deacons, and is provided here as well.
May 15, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Viviane Thomas-Breitfeld elected bishop of South-Central Synod of Wisconsin

The Rev. Viviane Thomas-Breitfeld, Beloit, Wis., was elected May 6 to serve a six-year term as bishop of the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). Thomas-Breitfeld is the second African American woman to be a bishop in the ELCA.
May 9, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Offering Bulletin Insert

 Use this BULLETIN INSERT to take an offering for synod assembly this weekend in your congregations!
April 23, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Farewell & Gratitude Reception for Bishop Mary Froiland

Saturday May 5, 2018
April 23, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Bishop Video Message Available for Synod Assembly Weekend

April 23, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Synod Choir at Synod Assembly

You are invited to sing with the Synod Assembly Choir for Saturday evening worship at 5:00 p.m. and Sunday morning worship at 8:15 a.m. 
April 23, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Profiles & Videos of Pre-Identified Persons NOW AVAILABLE!

Now that the pre-identification process is complete, we move…
April 23, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Reminder: Million Dollar Challenge

Don't forget to turn in your Million Dollar Challenge. 
April 7, 2018/by jenntzeng

SCSW Synod Assembly Streaming Live

View now on youtube
May 6, 2018/by Robin Cherwinka

Nominations for open positions

Nominations needed for open positions: synod council, synod vice president, synod secretary, 2019 churchwide voting members, discipline & consultation committees
April 7, 2018/by jenntzeng


Due to the large number of elections at the assembly this year as well as the bishop election, we are encouraging members to wait until next year to submit resolutions. 
April 7, 2018/by jenntzeng

Bishop Election

There will be a bishop election at the 2018 Synod Assembly. Information…
December 15, 2017/by jenntzeng

Important Dates about Assembly

Reminder about important deadlines and dates related to Synod Assembly 2018
April 7, 2018/by jenntzeng

Excerpts of Documents from Assembly Book

All these documents are included in the assembly book above. They are available here for for quick review.

Synod Assembly Details

Date: Saturday and Sunday, May 5-6, 2018 

Location: Kalahari Resort & Convention Center, Wisconsin Dells

Registration site

Add to Calendar