Interfaith Movement for Immigrant Justice
Creator members work toward justice for our immigrant brothers and sisters in our community and throughout the region through IMIrJ. Working toward understanding and equal justice for those newly come to this country, the members of Creator work to accompany our brothers and sisters throughout the community as they need help and protection navigating the system.
Creator and the World
Creator partners with Lutheran World Relief to provide aid for global efforts. Lutheran World Relief Disaster Relief teams are on the ground where disasters strike in the U.S. and worldwide.
Creator Local Efforts and Resources
Click here for Local Learning and Resources
Creator and Central's Second Joint Emanuel 9 Commemoration - 2021
In 2019 the ELCA Churchwide Assembly, adopted a resolution designating June 17 as a commemoration of the martyrdom of the Emanuel 9—the nine people shot and killed on June 17, 2015, during a Bible study at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C
We gathered for this second commemoration to remember the Bible Study participants at Mother Emanuel AME church on June 17, 2015. We remembered how this predominantly black church offered hospitality and welcome to a white man who studied with them. We remembered how as they bowed their heads in prayer Dylan Roof, a baptized and confirmed member of an ELCA congregation, brutally opened gunfire and killed nine people. We remembered how systemic racism and white supremacy have devastated the lives of too many people.
Participants included Sabina Spicer, SE Youth Collective Leader, Damian Ntawumpora, Sonnet Mungyeh, Evelyn Nguti, Valentine Mungyeh, Rev. Dr. Ronald Wells, Union Congregational Church in Harlem, NY, Gary Schulstad, Shirley Peterson, Pastor Amanda Zentz-Alo, Deacon Bonnie Beadles-Bohling and Pastor Janell Monk.
The 66th Synod Fund
This fund is devoted to equitably help elderly Black ministers supplement their retirement plans after years of serving congregations without the wherewithal to have adequately paid their pastors over their careers of service.
African-American Lutherans have been in America for more than 350 years, longer than many European immigrants whom we generally think of as being Lutheran. In 1832 an African-American Lutheran preacher named Jehu Jones formed St. Paul’s Colored Lutheran Church in Philadelphia which lasted until 1849. With no support from the Pennsylvania ministerium. St Paul's ministry ultimately failed. Jehu Jones was never paid for his work.
After the Civil War, most of the African-American Lutherans in the South left the white congregations, where they had generally been second-class citizens. In response, various Southern Lutheran synods began sporadic efforts to evangelize the newly-freed African Americans, and to establish separate Lutheran congregations. Starting in 1868, the Lutheran synods in Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia began to license African-American preachers to preach the gospel and gather in congregations.
These efforts were poorly funded at best, and in 1889 (out of desperation) African-American preachers in the North Carolina Synod formed the Alpha Synod, the first African-American Lutheran church organization. This little synod, and the other African-American Lutheran congregations in the South, struggled for survival through the end of the 19th century.
Today the ELCA Lutheran church has 65 synods. The 66th Synod Fund is named in memory of the Alpha Synod and Jehu Jones and this endowment is led by a Board of Black women in the ELCA.
For Black History Month Reconciling in Christ is selling, for a few days, a Lutherans for Black Lives Tee Shirt. All proceeds go to the 66th Synod Fund. Follow this link for more info.
Click on the following link to make a contribution through Immanuel Lutheran Church in Seattle to the 66th Synod fund.
Synod Reparations Team - Wrapping up Reckoning with Racism
Several Creator members on the Oregon Synod Reparations Team recently completed a deeply meaningful 9-month journey with EMO’s Reckoning with Racism Cohort to learn alongside numerous faith communities a process for uncovering our churches’ historical harm to Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) siblings, especially through looking at our land stories. After learning from and listening to BIPOC voices, we began visioning steps toward repairing the harm of historical racism.
We like to remind our Creator friends that Oregon Lutherans are called to consider the resolution passed at our 2020 Synod Assembly, part of which reads - Be it further RESOLVED that the people of the Oregon Synod during the interim time between now and the Synod Assembly in 2022 continue to engage in the various learning and organizing opportunities on the journey towards reparations…
We encourage all Creator members into this learning process. During out April Transition Town Hall, we acknowledged that the Clackamas and Kalapuya Tribes lived on this land for up to 14,000 years prior to white settlers arriving. We learned how the newly formed U.S. designed a system for acquiring Oregon land with a Donation Land Act offering free land to white settlers, while pushing off Native peoples and prohibiting Blacks, Natives or other People of Color from owning land. We learned that in the mid 1800’s a man named James Howe was given 2 tracts of land under the Donation Land Act from which he and his family could begin acquiring wealth. Let’s continue our learning!
We invite everyone to mark their calendars for these ongoing learning events:
July 18th - Stories from Juneteenth
Aug 15th - Youth stories from an accidental trip to Tulsa’s Black Wall street tragedy
Sept 19th - Stories from black siblings