strategic plan


United in Christ, we dare to invite, connect, and act.


  • Centered in Christ
  • Rooted in Community
  • Formed by Resiliency
  • Committed to Relationships
  • Called to Service


  • Investing in robust, diverse, and well-equipped leadership for each ministry
  • Radically connecting the people of God
  • Living with extravagant grace as the body of Christ
  • Flourishing as a vital church into the future


  • Investing in robust, diverse, and well-equipped leadership for each ministry
  • Provide intentional support for congregation leaders without a rostered minister
  • Support and sustain rostered ministers
  • Implement an intentional strategy to raise up new leaders
  • Implement strategies to address financial barriers for leaders
  • Provide opportunities for lay leadership development

  • Radically connecting the people of God
  • Expand opportunities for people of the synod to connect
  • Assess and reduce barriers to accessing technology in congregations
  • Deepen understanding of “the why” for radical connection
  • Increase congregational participation in the life of the synod
  • Develop and implement a strategy for synod-wide communications
  • •Engage a synod-wide process to consider remapping conferences

  • Living with extravagant grace as the body of Christ
  • Provide opportunities to expand perspectives in global realities
  • Increase capacity for hard conversation & living in community
  • Launch a synod-wide team to cultivate welcome, inclusion, and understanding
  • Equip congregations for advocacy & community resiliency

  • Flourishing as a vital church into the future
  • Develop and implement strategies to foster and support thriving rural ministry
  • Develop and Implement tools for congregational vitality
  • Equip for invitation and faith sharing
  • Launch and grow five new endowments
  • Equip and resource congregations for “first third of life” ministry
  • Explore possibilities for new and renewing ministries

Download the 2024 Strategic Plan Brochure.

strategic planning process

The Eastern North Dakota Synod Council entered into the strategic planning process in 2023 with the appointment of a strategic planning team. The process involved gathering information from congregation members and leaders from around the synod through a mixture of surveys, listening sessions, and small group conversations. The strategic planning team then integrated their learnings by clarifying the mission, vision, and values of this synod. They created a strategic plan for the synod, seeking feedback from various stakeholders.

The process was guided by GSB Fundraising, a consulting firm specializing in churches and other non-profits. GSB has partnered with several ELCA congregations, ministries, and synods to help clarify their mission, vision, and values in order to create a strategic plan for the future. Learn more about GSB here.


  • Pam Gullefson - Member of Nordland Lutheran in Rutland
  • Ryu Kroshus - Synod Council, Member of St. Mark's Lutheran in Fargo
  • Pastor Tawanda Murinda - Associate Pastor at Sharon Lutheran in Grand Forks
  • Stella Papachek - Member of St. Olaf Lutheran in Devils Lake
  • Pastor Sharayah Robinson - Pastor of Kathryn - Nome - Fingal Parish
  • Pastor Randy Schlecht - Retired, Former Synod Staff
  • Bishop Tessa Moon Leiseth, Bishop of the Eastern ND Synod


  • June 29, 2023:  First Meeting for the Strategic Planning Team
  • July 11, 2023: Strategic Planning Team Meeting
  • August 1-18, 2023: Strategic Planning Input Survey Open (Everyone's input is needed and valuable!)
  • August 2023: Listening Days
  • Late August 2023:  Strategic Planning Team Meeting
  • September 2023: Small Group Conversations
  • October 2023: Strategic Planning Team Meeting
  • November 2023: Strategic Planning Team Meeting
  • Identify Ministry Result Areas
  • Integrate Learnings into current or new Mission, Vision, and Core Values
  • Test draft materials with leaders
  • Finalize results and identify next steps
  • Develop Action plans to achieve Ministry Result Areas
  • Share and Utilize Strategic Plan