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General Assembly Info

 Updated June 1, 2023

  • ASSEMBLY LOCATION: 1 Carter St, Chattanooga, TN 37402 - Google Maps LINK here
  • Convention Center MAP
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  • Things to do in
  • Breakfast options:
    • The Marriott will be offering a breakfast buffet on the second floor in the Table South Restaurant from 6:30 am – 10:30 am, and
    • Breakfast items will also be available in the Marketplace (next to the registration desk) starting at 6:30 am.
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    • (If on your phone, CLICK HERE; a text message will generate; send this message)
    • Text SESYNOD ASSEMBLY to 404-737-9022, or scan the qr code below:



PRE-ASSEMBLY Workshops - Friday, June 2 - 9-11am

  • Meeting Room 12 - Living a Baptized Life - Caring for People on the Margins 
    • This conversation would explore the connection between our baptism and our call to care for people on the margins. We will talk about the promises made at baptism and how they are reminders from God to challenge, encourage and convict us when we aren’t certain we want to care for others. We will also explore the lifelong path from baptism at any age to growing in our understanding of Christian discipleship and how we might set intentions to remember our baptism as a guide for life.   Led by the Rev. Kimberly A. Vaughn, ELCA Senior Director for Christian Community & Leadership Mission
  • Meeting Room 9 - Care and Wellness for Rostered Ministers
    • Want to know how to care for your Pastor or Deacon or what resources are available to care for yourself as a Pastor or Deacon? Join Pr. Justin Eller and Deacon Intern D'Etta Broam to learn about way to support and be supported. Topics will include: Respite & Renewal Grants, Gift of Time, self-care, yoga, among other things.  Led by the Rev. Justin Eller, Assistant to the Bishop for Care and Community, Mrs. D'Etta Broam, Deacon Intern


Prayer Room / Labyrinth - Friday, June 2, 9am - Saturday, June 3, 6:30pm

  • Meeting Room H 

The room will remain open to those who need a space for spiritual contemplation and prayer from Friday morning until Saturday night whenever the agenda is active. In addition, Assembly Chaplains are welcome to use the room to meet people for prayer. The spacious room has chairs for praying, an altar with a bowl for prayer requests, a Labyrinth with a basket for socks, and assorted battery-operated candles around the room. 

YOGA -Friday, June 2, 7:30-8:00 AM, Saturday, June 3, 7:30-8:00 AM, 

  • Meeting Room H 

    Need a quality start to your Assembly Day? Try Yoga Stretch and Pray! We will breathe and balance, s-t-r-e-t-c-h and strengthen as we anchor our hope in the love and light of God. Yoga and prayer are spiritual practices benefiting your mind, body and spirit. What have you got to lose except maybe a bit of stress? (Please bring your own towel or mat.)

Workshop Session 1 - Friday, June 2 - 4:45-6:00pm

  • Meeting Room 3  - Journeying with the Spirit 

    Spiritual Direction is for EVERYONE! This is an interactive workshop; our focus will be to introduce you to the practices of Spiritual Direction and how that can enhance your Faith Journey at any age.

    Led by the Rev. Patti Axel, ELCA Coach, Southeastern Synod, Certified Spiritual Director; and Ms. Sue Tyler, Executive Assistant to the Bishop, Certified Spiritual Director

  • Meeting Room 2 - Suicide Prevention 101

    Come learn about the warning signs of suicide and how you can help save lives!

    Led by Mr. Adam Renner, APC, member St. John’s Lutheran Church, Atlanta, Georgia

  • Meeting Room 9 - Accompaniment is Formation: Glocal Discipleship

    Journeying alongside our neighbors, especially those in need, is a key piece of our discipleship and the Jesus movement. Join Pastor Justin Eller, former ELCA missionary, to explore how you too can live out the ELCA Accompaniment Model in your glocal (local + global) context, from congregation to community.

    Led by the Rev. Justin Eller, Assistant to the Bishop for Care and Community

  • Meeting Room 10  -What to do 101

    This workshop will discuss the dos and don'ts of entering into legal agreements to protect the congregation. In addition, we will examine congregational responsibilities regarding benefit packages and Portico resources to support the administration of the congregation. Come also to learn how the ELCA Foundation can support your financial stewardship strategy through immediate gifts and planned/legacy gifts to ensure your ability to support your ministries in your community long into the future.  Last, we will review the importance of updating your constitution and why that is also a way to protect and support your ministry. 

    Led by the Rev. Jill Henning, Assistant to the Bishop for Leadership and Administration; the Rev. Cathy Schibler, Regional Representative, Portico Services; and the Rev. Ana Lugo, Regional Gift Planner, ELCA Foundation 

  • Meeting Room 12  -SESLYO - What is AGAPE?

    Through various hands-on activities, the Southeastern Synod Lutheran Youth Organization will explore the question, "What is AGAPE (love)?" Come and join them for a youthful perspective on this age-old faith formation question.

    Led by Southeastern Synod Lutheran Youth Organization (SESLYO)

  • Meeting Room 11  -Telling and Living the Story 

    An interactive workshop for equipping participants with practical tools and strategies for sharing their faith with others. The workshop will engage the biblical basis for evangelism and discipleship. The key theme of the workshop is the exploration of the challenges and opportunities of evangelism and Christian formation in a diverse and rapidly changing world. Overall, the workshop aims to empower participants to share the gospel confidently and effectively with others and grow in their own faith. 

    Led by the Rev. Linda Manson, Assistant to the Bishop/Director for Evangelical Mission

Workshop Session 2 - Saturday, June 3 - 11:00am-12:15pm

  • Meeting Room 3 - “Devotions, Meeting Starters with Stories – Oh My”

    Learn how to use stories to start discussions, open meetings/gatherings, stories to ponder, and stories for devotions. This will be an interactive workshop.

    Led by Ms. Charlotte Hickam, member of the Kentucky Storytelling Group

  • Meeting Room 2 - The Intersection of Faith and Mental Health

    More Americans experience anxiety, depression, and substance use disorders than any other mental health condition, and often in combination. People in our pews are suffering, but often in silence. How do we move out of our denial and respond with grace and love? When it comes to mental health, there are signs religion can do some good under the right circumstances, but it can also have unintended consequences. This presentation reviews high-level conceptual understandings of the three most common mental health conditions, negative and positive effects of religion, and suggestions for providing support. 

    Led by Mr. Adam Renner, APC, member St. John’s Lutheran Church, Atlanta, Georgia

  • Meeting Room 9 - Neurodiversity, Hospitality, and Widening Our Welcome

    During our time together, we’ll explore seven ways that churches can meet the needs of neurodiverse kids, youth, and families through listening, making adjustments, and welcoming their gifts. 

         Led by Rev. Dr. Dawn Rundman, PhD. Director of Development for Faith Formation Resources at Augsburg Fortress and Sparkhous

  • Meeting Room 10  -Youth and Young Adults - FORMATION from THEIR Perspective

    Two core commitments of a thriving youth and young adult ministry are "empathy" and "centering young voices." How can we best express these commitments? By holding a listening post! We have youth and young adults willing and ready to THEIR perspective on FAITH FORMATION questions asked by our moderator, Pr. Michael Jannett. We listen to understand while our youth and young adults do the talking. (This workshop is based on research and activities shared by the Fuller Youth Institute as a part of their Growing Young resources -

    Led by the Rev. Michael Jannett, Assistant to the Bishop for Formation and Communication

  • Meeting Room 12 - Growing and Connecting Latiné-Hispanic Ministry 

    Join practioners of Latiné-Hispanic Ministry in the Southeastern Synod to learn about ways to engage your Spanish-speaking neighbors, how to create an inviting, welcoming and safe space for new relationships to be built. Bring your questions, ideas, and dreams! 

    Led by the Rev. Rev. Julie Crosby, Mission Developer, Iglesia Luterana de Cristo, Oakwood, Georgia and Iglesia Luterana Amazing Grace, Lawrenceville, Georgia; and the Rev. Marie Kane, pastor, St. James Lutheran Church, Brunswick, Georgia. 

  • Meeting Room 11 - Stories of Faith Formation in Times of Disaster

    Hear how experiences in the midst of disaster have faith-forming impacts.

    Led by Mr. John Boettner, past Chair, Disaster Ministry Committee; the Rev. Dr. Stacey Parvin, pastor of Bethel Lutheran in Louisville, MS; the Rev. Dr. Morgan Gordy, Assistant to the Bishop for Disaster Ministry; the Rev. Ingrid Schalk; the Rev. Lynne O’Shea, pastor, Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, Savannah, Georgia; and the Rev. Rick Roberts, pastor, St. John’s Lutheran Church, Nashville, Tennessee

  Lunch & Learn, Saturday, June 4 - 12:30-1:15pm

Grab your lunch and join one of our two Lunch & Learn opportunities below.

  • Meeting Room 12 -Ministry with Our Unhoused Neighbors 

    An interactive discussion about ministry with people experiencing homelessness. The discussion will touch on the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively engage with and serve the population that is experiencing homelessness in their community. The time may cover a range of topics, including: Understanding homelessness, building relationships, meeting basic needs, providing support and resources, advocacy, and community engagement.

    Led by the Rev. Linda Manson, Assistant to the Bishop/Director for Evangelical Mission

  • Meeting Room 3  -From Surviving to Thriving – Making a Difference One Life at a Time 

    Inspiritus, formerly Lutheran Services of Georgia and Lutheran Services in Tennessee, partners with the ELCA Southeastern Synod to extend the reach of the church to vulnerable people, places and communities in need of particular life-giving services and supports. Together, we accompany those whose lives have been disrupted as they move from surviving to thriving. Join Inspiritus staff to hear about all of the ways that Inspiritus is providing transformational programming in communities across Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee and beyond, and how you can join us in this holy work of accompaniment. Grab your lunch and gather with us for this informal get-to-know-one-another conversation. We look forward to connecting with you!

    Led by Deacon Michelle Angalet, Chief Operating Officer, Inspiritus; the Rev. Mary Armstrong-Reiner, Hunger Walk Coordinator, Inspiritus; Ms. Janet Arning, Executive Director of Empowerment Services, Inspiritus; Ms. Sarah Burke, Refugee & Immigrant Services Community Engagement Manager, Inspiritus