Women of the ELCA (WELCA)
WELCA (Women of the ELCA) is a ministry of the ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) that operates on the congregation level, the synod level, and the churchwide level. There are more than 4,500 WELCA groups across the US and the Caribbean that gather for service, study, advocacy, and fellowship.
WELCA, as a nationwide ministry, seeks to be a community of women that provide services in their congregations, their communities and in the sider world. Their mission is to mobilize women to act boldly on their faith in Jesus Christ.
The purpose of WELCA: As a community of women created in the image of God, called to discipleship in Jesus Christ, and empowered by the Holy Spirit, we commit ourselves to grow in faith, affirm our gifts, support one another in our callings, engage in ministry and action, and promote healing and wholeness in the church, the society, and the world.
For more information on WELCA, see their webpage: www.womenoftheelca.org
Our WELCA ministry meets in two circles - The Rebekah/Ruth Circle and the Lydia Circle. The circles come together several times per year for a joint program, devotions, fellowship, and food.
The circles work together to support the Casserole Caravan - a ministry that delivers piping hot meals to our home-bound members.
Rebekah/ Ruth Circle
Rebekah/Ruth circle is our morning circle. Meetings are usually held on 10am on the first Tuesday of the month. Meetings include a bible study and a short business meeting.
At the beginning of the year (usually for the months of January, February, and March), the women meet weekly to work on sewing and knitting/ crocheting projects. They make quilts for Lutheran World Relief, prayer shawls for those who need them, lap blankets for local nursing homes, and baby blankets for HOPE Pregnancy House.
Lydia Circle meets the second Tuesday of each month. Each meeting includes a devotion and discussion, followed by a short business meeting.
This group participates in a variety of service activities in the local community. The Lydia Circle's ministry includes service projects with the Virginia Synod Women's Organization - the 2019/2020 service project was making decorated pillowcases for children undergoing cancer treatments - and projects in the community and around the state, such as sponsoring a family for Christmas through the Christian Appalachian Project.
Lydia Circle also hosts fellowship events and trips, such as movie nights at Movie Tavern and trips to see shows at Sight and Sound Theaters in Lancaster, PA.