On Sunday, July 22, the church commemorated Mary Magdalene, Apostle. All four gospels record that Mary was a disciple of Jesus and present at the tomb on the day of Christ’s resurrection. The early church deemed her “the Apostle to the Apostles.” It was not until the 6th century that Pope Gregory declared that she was the woman caught in adultery, leading to the misrepresentation of Mary as a prostitute, despite any biblical evidence to support that. The Bible tells us that Mary was a disciple, resurrection witness, and an apostle. May Mary’s story make us ever mindful of the ways that we often misrepresent and falsely condemn others
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New District Center in Bialla
We join in celebrating the preparation of the groundbreaking ceremony of the new district office here at New Guinea Islands District, Bialla Circuit, of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Papua New Guinea, the VA Synod’s Companion Synod. The new District Center will serve as offices for the District President (who serves much like a synod bishop) and as a gathering space for the people of the New Guinea Islands District.
From St. Stephen, Williamsburg, and the Peninsula Conference of the VA Synod
- People who are seeking asylum at our borders today are primarily coming from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. They are fleeing persecution (primarily related to gang violence and domestic violence).
- One may only seek asylum if one has a credible fear of persecution upon return to his/her home country and must go through a strict federal procedure to be granted asylum. Asylum is not amnesty (i.e. not a blanket pardon for everyone who has entered unlawfully regardless of their reason) and it is not based on economic need.
- An asylum case usually takes 2-4 years for a final determination from an asylum officer or an immigration judge (the only two authorities who may make a decision).