Learning Ministries Day 2021 will be held at Atonement Lutheran Church
Learning Ministries Day 2021
LEARNING MINISTRY DAY 2022 – SESSION DESCRIPTIONS
- Aromatherapy (BOTH SESSIONS)
Life is busy and stressful, taking time to pamper ourselves is a must and good for both our mental and physical health. We will be making aroma therapy bath salts, scrubs and lotions.
Presenter: Tina Johns is an active member of the NEPS Faith Formation team. I am currently a member of Prince of Peace, Johnsonville. I am part of our Worship and Music committee, decorating committee, choir member, Sunday school special events coordinator, lay assistant minister, power point operator, and participate in many events that is in need of assistance. I love to read, crochet and spend time with my family and friends. I am the mother of a grown daughter, learning to empty nest with my husband.
- Relax and Play with Watercolor Paints (BOTH SESSIONS)
For some people art can be a chore and for others a great way to relax and express themselves.
We are going to experiment and play with watercolors, making bookmarks and/or backgrounds
for biblical quotes. The goal is to have fun and create without pressure.
Presenter: Deacon Joy Gerhart, a member of the Faith Formation Resource Ministry Team, has always loved crafts and art (and has done acrylic and oil painting but has only played with watercolors so she will not be offering a “teaching” workshop). She currently serves as Director of Youth and Family Ministry at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Douglassville. You may have seen her teach about “How Lutherans Interpret the Bible” in our Faith Formation Saturday class
- Labyrinth as Spiritual Tool (BOTH SESSIONS)
Around the world can be found labyrinths and mazes. What is a labyrinth? How is it different from a maze? How do you use a labyrinth as a tool for discernment? What materials can be used to make a labyrinth? Where are some labyrinths in Northeastern PA Synod?
Presenters: Deacon Marlane Druckenmiller is retired from serving 7 congregations over 45 years in the areas of Christian Education, Youth Ministry, and volunteer coordination. In her travels she has discovered labyrinths in several countries and states. At one time she built a labyrinth in her backyard. At St Paul’s, Douglassville she led a group of women to labyrinths in NE and SE PA and Delaware.
1. Social Justice and Environmental Ethics (MORNING ONLY)
:In today’s world one aspect of “social well being” is paying attention to social justice and environmental ethics. We will explore several perspectives on social justice and environmental ethics and then discuss how they apply to some current examples of environmental issues that raise questions of justice and ethics.
Presenters: The Rev. Dr. Roger E. Timm is a retired ELCA pastor. In 1970 he received an M.Div. degree from Concordia Seminary and an M.A. in philosophy from Washington University, both in St. Louis. Timm completed his Ph.D. in religious studies in a joint program with Union Theological Seminary and Columbia University in New York in 1975. Ordained in April 1971, he has served in both parishes and campus ministry settings. During the 1980’s Timm was assistant chaplain and assistant professor of religion at Muhlenberg College. After his retirement in 2011 he and his wife, Marilyn, moved to Emmaus in 2013. Since then he has served on the Faith Formation Resources Ministry Team and has led several Learning Ministry Day workshops. Timm has also taught several courses for the Institute for Learning in Retirement, located at Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pennsylvania, dealing with faith and science as well as ethics, justice, and technology.
Cheryl Statham is the convenor of the synod’s Faith Formation Resource Ministry Team, and a member of Trinity, Bangor. She has retired after many years of work at Quiet Valley Living Historical Farm, and is enjoying having more time to work in her garden and catch up on unfinished craft projects. She also is an avid birdwatcher and lover of wildflowers, and believes that everyone needs to care more about the natural world around us.
- Nature Deprivation (AFTERNOON ONLY)
Today’s children spend the least amount of time outside than at any other time in history. The average child spends less than 20 minutes outside, but more than 6 hours in front of a screen. What is this extended screen time doing to our children, and how can we help reverse those figures? Attend this workshop to learn about Nature Deprivation (a recognized syndrome by American pediatricians) and learn some techniques to bring the children in your life outside into the light.
Presenter: Cheryl Statham is the convenor of the synod’s Faith Formation Resource Ministry Team, and a member of Trinity, Bangor. She has retired after many years of work at Quiet Valley Living Historical Farm, and is enjoying having more time to work in her garden and catch up on unfinished craft projects. She also is an avid birdwatcher and lover of wildflowers, and believes that everyone needs to care more about the natural world around us.
- Wholesome Attitudes Toward Other Religions (AFTERNOON ONLY)
Is it possible to confess our Christian faith and also affirm the value of other faith traditions? We will explore ways to have positive, “wholesome,” attitudes toward other religious traditions even as we remain faithful to our Christian faith. We will pay special attention to Christian attitudes toward Judaism, including looking at New Testament materials that have been used to support anti-Jewish attitudes and considering different ways of interpreting those passages in Scripture.
Presenter: The Rev. Dr. Roger E. Timm is a retired ELCA pastor. In 1970 he received an M.Div. degree from Concordia Seminary and an M.A. in philosophy from Washington University, both in St. Louis. Timm completed his Ph.D. in religious studies in a joint program with Union Theological Seminary and Columbia University in New York in 1975. Ordained in April 1971, he has served in both parishes and campus ministry settings. During the 1980’s Timm was assistant chaplain and assistant professor of religion at Muhlenberg College. After his retirement in 2011 he and his wife, Marilyn, moved to Emmaus in 2013. Since then he has served on the Faith Formation Resources Ministry Team and has led several Learning Ministry Day workshops. Timm has also taught several courses for the Institute for Learning in Retirement, located at Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pennsylvania, dealing with faith and science as well as ethics, justice, and technology.
- G. Speaking about God: Beyond Inclusive Language (MORNING ONLY)
Our world expands, but God is eternal. We believe God works through the Holy Spirit inviting us to discover, use, and celebrate new ways to speak about God particularly in personal prayer. The purpose of this workshop is to discern transitions to more expansive images for God so that prayer can become open to God’s presence in new ways and vibrancy helps us in faithful living .
Presenter: Pastor Scott Paradise is a Minister of Word and Sacrament on the roster of the Lower Susquehanna Synod (i.e., south central Pennsylvania). He is currently the pastor of Millcreek Lutheran Church in rural Newmanstown, Lebanon County but has served congregations in urban, suburban, and small-town contexts over twenty-two years of ministry. He enjoys learning and teaching all ages as a way of inviting the faithful to “Live as children of light.” (Ephesians 5:8b).
- Stay curious, stay learning (MORNING ONLY)
As we transverse day to day life, searching for balance, we need to continually explore ways to feed our Christ centered soul. How do we nurture and care for our body, mind and heart through the ups and down of an ever changing world.
Presenter: Kelly Brooks is an ordained Deacon in the ELCA. She has worked as a chaplain at the Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network for fourteen years. Kelly has worked with a variety of patients, residents, staff and families on the integration of the mind body spirit connection in the wellness and healing process. She has expertise in meditation and mindfulness.
- Budgeting for What Matters Most (BOTH SESSIONS)
A solid budget can be key to a successful financial future. You’ll learn how to manage your money as you work toward your goals and get the tools you need to track your spending. You will also learn how to create smart financial goals that can set you up for success.
Presenters: John Lauer, a Financial Associate with Thrivent (CLTC®, FIC) is in his 10th year as a Thrivent associate, and 30th year as a Thrivent benefit member. He specializes in Life Insurance, Long-Term Care Coverage, Retirement Accumulation & Income Distribution, both mutual funds & annuities. Call him at (610) 286-5986 or email John.Lauer@Thrivent.com
Mark Dobroskey As a Financial Advisor with Thrivent, I partner with people to help them achieve financial clarity in order to live lives of meaning, contentment and gratitude. In my practice, I specialize in investments and insurances, retirement accumulation and income planning, as well as estate strategies and solutions for businesses. I can be contacted at (484) 855-0219 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Let’s Move It: Interplay (MORNING ONLY)
InterPlay is an active, creative way to unlock the wisdom of the body. This 75 minute workshop teaches the language & ethic of play in a deep and powerful way. Interplay “forms” provide the framework for easy interaction, creativity and fertile introspection. Our time will be filled with stories, stillness, movement & music that cultivate easy focus and profound community connection.
Presenter: Sarah Carlson is a Certified InterPlay Leader with 10 years of experience leading workshops for spiritual directors at Moravian Seminary. She is also the Director of Dance at Cedar Crest College and the founder/director of DanceLink, a project based company that seeks to bridge people, ideas and understanding through the power of movement.
- Stamina for Your Soul: Cultivating Spiritual Practices that Foster Good Health (MORNING ONLY)
In the midst of busy, overfilled lives, too often we don’t listen to what our bodies really need. Join Barbara Debski, Portico Regional Representative, for a look at what we can learn from the Wholeness Wheel and the story of the Feeding of the 5,000 about how to be healthy. We’ll also identify activities and attitudes that can help us navigate our daily responsibilities while still finding time for self-care.
Presenter: Barbara Debski is a Regional Representative for Portico Benefit Services, serving primarily in the East coast regions for over fourteen years. Through the Regional Representative role, she provides information, education, and support to sponsors and members serving in the ELCA and other faith-based organizations. Barbara encourages rostered and lay leaders to cultivate our individual God-given strengths and develop healthy practices that will give the stamina, confidence, and inner peace needed to be a resilient leader.
- Come to the Table (AFTERNOON ONLY)
It’s great to donate food, but do we donate the right food? This workshop will present issues of food insecurity on the territory of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod. Educating participants in this crucial area includes suggestions of how congregations might respond in concrete ways.
Presenters: Samantha (Sammi) Johns is an active member of the Faith Formation Ministry Team. She has lead workshops for the last 8 LM Days. In 2020, she received her Bachelors in Educational Advocacy with minors in Education and Public Health from Moravian College. She is currently serving children in the Lehigh Valley as a Community School Coordinator. Sammi also has a passion for serving the Lord. She has fulfilled many roles on many committees including, Worship and Music, Christian Ed, Call Committees, Library Committee, Social Media Committee, Youth Ministries, & Special Needs Ministry. Over the summers of 2018 and 2019 she was Bear Creek Camp Daycamp Leader.
Pastor Scott Paradise is a Minister of Word and Sacrament on the roster of the Lower Susquehanna Synod (i.e., south central Pennsylvania). He is currently the pastor of Millcreek Lutheran Church in rural Newmanstown, Lebanon County but has served congregations in urban, suburban, and small-town contexts over twenty-two years of ministry. He enjoys learning and teaching all ages as a way of inviting the faithful to “Live as children of light.” (Ephesians 5:8b).
- Lutheran Advocacy Ministry in Pennsylvania (MORNING ONLY)
We are created by God to be social beings, living in community and instructed to help and love each other. We maintain social well-being in many ways, including accompaniment and advocacy in the public square. Join Lutheran Advocacy Ministry in Pennsylvania (LAMPa) to explore what this means for our discipleship and learn how LAMPa equips us to live into our baptismal call to strive for justice and peace in all the earth.
Presenter: Tracey DePasquale, who became LAMPa’s director in May, 2016, after serving three years as associate director. Tracey brings experience in journalism, education, community development, and ministry to her post. She is a member of St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church, York. Tracey previously was a member and served as director of program ministries at Christ Lutheran, York. Prior to that, she taught American history, politics and economics at West York Area High School and worked as a reporter and editor at newspapers in Bloomsburg and York. Tracey holds a master’s degree in government administration from the University of Pennsylvania Fels Center of Government and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where she was active at the Lutheran Campus Center. She has attended Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg, and earned her teaching certificate in secondary education through Wilson College in Chambersburg. Tracey grew up on a dairy farm near Mercersburg, Franklin County. She is the mother of two college students, Ben and Sarah.
- Let’s Move It: Exercise (AFTERNOON ONLY)
Experience the joy of exercise in this workshop. Please come prepared to discuss and move. You will learn and experience all the vital components of a quality exercise program. You will learn the joint by joint approach to fitness which will help you continue to be active for a long time. We will also work on moving our focus from training muscles to training movement. You will also discover that exercise can be fun and that it will impact your physical, spiritual, emotional, and social well-being and can improve your quality of life.
Presenter: Tammy L. Strunk is a Fitness Coordinator at Luther Crest Senior Living Community, Allentown. She has been in the wellness/fitness industry for over 30 years and holds a
B.S. in Exercise Science from Temple University. She is an Certified Group Exercise Instructor for Athletics and Fitness Association of America, as well as a certified First Aid/CPR/AED Instructor for the American Red Cross.
- Bible & Book Study: Baptismal Wellsprings and Watersheds
Join us on a journey to the biblical headwaters of Holy Baptism. We will explore the scriptural sources, and see how far they run, flowing from our past through our present into our future – including reviews and readings from the latest writings by pastors, deacons, scholars and teachers. Bring your own wonderings, wanderings and meandering streams of thought and experience to share.
Presenter: Bishop Christopher deForest is the Bishop of the Northeastern Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
- Pilgrimage as a Spiritual Practice for Transformation
Pilgrimage is a powerful ancient spiritual practice that is experiencing a revival among both religious and secular groups. One may feel a call to pilgrimage out of a desire for healing, forgiveness, blessing, feeling closer to God, or simply the achievement of walking the path. Going on pilgrimage changes each pilgrim. What changes them is the journey not the destination. Separating from one’s everyday routine (briefly or for a months long pilgrimage like the Camino) nurtures a pilgrim mentality that greets with curiosity each new thing experienced as a learning experience. Pilgrimage can be life-changing. This workshop will provide tools for participants to plan a brief one day pilgrimage in their local area.
Presenter: The Rev. Dr. Jane Williams is an Episcopal priest and psychologist with 30+ years of clinical and ministry experience. Dr. Williams has a keen interest in integrating spirituality, spiritual practices, and mental health. Since retirement as professor emerita of counseling/pastoral care at Moravian Theological Seminary in the fall of 2018, she has offered experiential workshops, retreats, and spiritual direction in her private practice.
Dr. Williams is a trained Labyrinth facilitator and was a facilitator with the Rev. Lauren Artress at two labyrinth workshops in Chartres Cathedral, France. In labyrinth workshops she uses the labyrinth to explore themes of forgiveness, relationships, grief, and coping with illness..
Having been widowed twice prior to age 35, Dr. Williams has researched the processes of chronic illness, loss, and recovery from grief and often works with grieving persons and persons experiencing chronic or terminal illnesses.
Dr. Williams writes periodic reflections on what is a life lived meaningfully in her blog: https://wordpress.com/view/pilgrimagepaths.blog.
- Sabbath Rest (MORNING ONLY)
This session will lead us in exploring the meaning and practice of sabbath time, beginning with the biblical description of sabbath and jubilee. We will discuss and practice ways to observe sabbath time in our daily lives with opportunity to share our own sabbath practices.
Presenter: Pastor Tom Lichner has served as a parish pastor for 35 years, as a spiritual guidance counselor since 1989, and as the founding director of the Center for Spiritual Awakening at Christ Lutheran Church in Allentown, PA.