The 34th Assembly of the Iowa Synod was held online on Friday, May 21, and Saturday, May 22, 2021, under the theme “Baptized and Set Free.” 270 Assembly voting members gathered via zoom and visitors were able to access a livestream. 53% of voting members we lay persons and 47% were rostered ministers.

The assembly convened on Friday, May 21st, this session included the adoption of the agenda an

d standing rules for the meeting. It also included and education sessions called Just Move by spoken word artist, Joe Davis, and musician David Scherer. Davis and Scherer used art, music, discussion, and video to teach about engaging in anti-racism and inclusion efforts in local ministry contexts.

The assembly reconvened Saturday, May 22. There were three educational sessions and report from the churchwide organization by ELCA churchwide representative, Rev. Carmelo Santos, Director for Theological Diversity and Ecumenical and Interreligious Engagement. Pastor Santos presented “a way of hearing, a way of seeing, and a way of teaching” through the lens of baptism.

The assembly also elected voting members to represent the synod at the 2022 Churchwide Assembly to be held in Columbus, Ohio. Click here for a list of voting members. The assembly also considered two resolutions, “Child Protection,” which encourages members of the synod to develop protection policies, read and study the Social Statement on Child Abuse and Child Protection. The other resolution, “Housing and Welcoming Refugee Children” resolves the ELCA’s commitment to welcoming refugees and encourages members of the synod to engage with state and faith organizations that welcome refugee children to Iowa.

The assembly concluded Saturday with a service of the word. Worship included a remembrance of baptism and the installation of Office of the Bishop staff, Pastor Dan Kuckuck, and Deacon Jodi Schuman. Pastor Dirk Stadtlander who serves FreeIndeed a congregation within the walls of the Anamosa State penitentiary was also installed. The Synod Assembly offering (give online) was designated for new ministries in the Southeastern Iowa Synod and FreeIndeed. Additionally, a courtesy resolution of thanksgiving for the assembly and ministries of the Southeastern Iowa Synod is available online.


Previous Assemblies