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Synod of Lakes and Prairies’ Synod School

Restorative Actions explains to Synod School the work it’s undertaken

Born in the Synod of Lakes and Prairies, Restorative Actions describes itself as “a grassroots voluntary initiative for churches, individuals, mid councils and agencies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), as well as ecumenical partners and interested organizations, to take a leadership stance in opposed to racism and racial privilege” by allowing “U.S. Americans who benefit from institutional racism to provide a credible witness for justice by surrendering ill-gotten gains toward the establishment of just relationships with Afro-Americans and Indigenous communities.”

The PC(USA)’s advocacy director likens Synod School to a celebrated Marvel Comics nation

Before the Rev. Jimmie Hawkins took to the stage at Schaller Memorial Chapel to deliver the final convocation for Synod School this year, the Rev. Dr. Matt Sauer of Manitowoc (Wisconsin) Cooperative Ministry, as he’d done all week, donned a red zip-up cardigan just like another Presbyterian, Fred Rogers, used to. It was Sauer’s duty to remind those attending the 69th annual gathering that not all the world is like the Synod of Lakes and Prairies’ Synod School, which concluded on the campus of Buena Vista University.

Synod School closing worship explores the church’s role as co-creator

Concluding her weeklong journey through biblical accounts starting with the letter “c” — Creation, crisis, covenant and Christ came before — the Rev. DeEtte Decker, the preacher during Synod School and the communications director for the Presbyterian Mission Agency, concluded worship on the with more alliteration: the church as co-creator.

Speaking the truth in love

One good way to live out its embodiment is for the church to speak the truth in love. The Rev. Samuel Son, the Presbyterian Mission Agency’s Manager of Diversity and Reconciliation, told Synod School attendees that speaking the truth in love can dispel myths, “which you and I are addicted to.”

A plaintive cry: Won’t you be my neighbor?

“Only as an adult,” the Rev. Dr. Jill Duffield told the Synod of Lakes and Prairies’ Synod School recently, displaying a picture of a familiar Presbyterian pastor and children’s television pioneer dressed in a red zip-up sweater, “did I realize how much my theology was shaped by Mister Rogers.”

What the church is called out to do

The favorite and persistent question of children everywhere may exasperate parents, grandparents and caregivers, but it’s an important question, the Rev. Samuel Son told the 450 participants during worship at the Synod of Lakes and Prairies’ Synod School.