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Spring Convocation

Gettysburg Campus

May 1, 2019

About This Event

Toward Racial Justice: A Congregational Approach

A principle of faith-based community organizing is “the first revolution is internal.” Luther said, “When our Lord and master Jesus Christ said “Repent” he willed the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.” (95 theses). Racism, called America’s original sin, demands repentance from the Christian community. To move from passive racism to active anti-racism takes honesty and courage. Self-reflection in the context of a repenting community can lead congregations to take action toward racial justice.

Predominantly white, majority congregations have a vital and necessary role to play in the struggle for racial justice. But where do we begin? The ELCA is the most white denomination in the United States, by percentage of membership. It is easy for white Lutherans to live in white spaces and neglect the systemic racial injustice that persists in our communities, local institutions, and churches.

We will examine the ongoing realities of racism including the identity-shaping power racism has on People of Color and White people. We’ll help you struggle with the tough questions and begin to equip you with the skills to dismantle racism and transform your ministry context.

Pastor Matthew Lenahan and members of the Toward Racial Justice team will share a congregational approach toward racial justice. The Reverend Matthew Lenahan was ordained in 2001 and has served at Zion Lutheran Church, Akron, PA since 2005. Pastor Matt is a mission-focused leader, inviting and challenging God’s people to participate in God’s redemptive work in and for the world. His gifts are in evangelism, worship leadership, and teaching. He has passion for advocacy, social/economic justice, and food. He has been trained as a trainer for Dismantling Racism by the ELCA and works with congregations to begin this work. He believes the church is called to serve all people following the example of Jesus Christ. Pastor Lenahan serves on the board of hunger Free Lancaster County. He also project manages the Wittel Farm Growing Project. He serves as a mentor with Lancaster Reentry Management Organization.


April 30, 2019

  • 12:30 Lunch at Dobbin House

May 1, 2019

  • 8:30 Registration
  • 9:00 Welcome & Introductions
  • 9:15 Keynote Address
  • 11:15 Break
  • 11:45 Eucharist
  • 12:45 Lunch
  • 1:30 Workshop 1 (TBA)
  • 2:30 Workshop 2 (TBA)
  • 3:30 Workshop 3 (TBA)
  • 4:30 Alumni Happy Hour (no charge, please register)
  • 6:00 Banquet
  • 7:30 Distinguished Alumni Awards and Association Meeting


April 30 Lunch at Dobbin House: Pay for what you eat (but please register for planning purposes)
May 1 Convocation Fee: $50
May 1 Lunch: $10
May 1 Alumni Happy Hour: Free (but please register for planning purposes)
May 1 Distinguished Alumni Awards Banquet: $35


Register Now

Event Contact

Chelle Huth
Director of Lifelong Learning, Field Formation, Certificate Studies & Adjunct Faculty
ULS Gettysburg Google Maps

Gettysburg Campus

61 Seminary Ridge
Gettysburg, PA 17325