Synod Assembly

32nd Annual Synod Assembly
Lodi Grape Festival Grounds
Lodi, CA
Saturday May 11, 2019
10 AM – 4:30 PM


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2019 Assembly Recap
A Message from Your Assembly Co-Chairs

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Two Lay Voting Members per each called minister of Word and Sacrament serving a congregation shall be elected by each congregation related to this synod, normally one of whom shall be male and one of whom shall be female, to be voting members.


If you do not know what Conference your congregation is a part of, check out the Conference Listings here!

Registration questions… contact

Synod Assembly Attendees…

  • There will be NO WIFI available at the venue. Please download the materials from the Documents tab or through the Guidebook app before you come.
  • We encourage attendees to bring a jacket (in case it’s cool in our Assembly space)
  • Bring refillable water bottles and coffee mugs
  • Bring something to add a little padding to chairs (they will be metal and wood folding-type chairs)
  • Bring a few healthy fruits and/or snacks for yourselves and to share with Assembly attendees (with plans to retrieve leftovers at the end of the day)
  • Registration costs increase after April 10.

Parking Instructions

The City of Lodi has instituted a street closure on Lockeford Street, which will require taking alternate routes to get to the Lodi Grape Festival Pavilion grounds. Click here download and print the following directions for use in traveling to our Assembly. We also advise allowing for a few extra minutes driving time to ensure a timely arrival.

See maps below the instructions.

If you wish to navigate by GPS, you may use the following addresses, depending on which parking lot you need to use.
These addresses are approximate locations of the parking lot entrances:

For general parking – East Field: 503 N. Cherokee Ln.

For handicap or limited-mobility parking: 490 Calaveras St.

From I-5 North or South:

1. Use Turner Rd exit and go east to Cherokee Lane (approx. 6 miles)

2. Turn South on Cherokee Lane

For General Parking – East Field 

3. Go straight on Cherokee South

4. Gate to East Field will be on your right-hand side right before Lockeford St.


For Handicap or limited-mobility Parking (paved parking lot):

3. From Cherokee, Turn Right on Murray St.

4. Turn a slight left onto Calaveras and the gate will be on your left-hand side.

From 99 South (from Sacramento)

1.Take exit 266 onto Turner rd exit. (Festival Grounds is on sign)

2.Go straight on Cherokee Ln.

For General Parking – East Field: 

3. Go straight on Cherokee Ln.

4. Gate to East Field will be on your right-hand side right before Lockeford St.


For Handicap or limited-mobility Parking (paved parking lot):

3. Turn right onto Murray St.

4. Left onto Calaveras and gate is on your left-hand side.

From 99 North (from Fresno)

1. Take exit 266 Hwy 12/central Lodi

2. Take an immediate left from exit.

3. That will bring you to a stop sign at Victor Rd. Take a left on Victor rd.

4. At the following stop light make a right onto Cherokee Lane.

For General Parking – East Field: 

5. Go straight on North Cherokee

6. Make a U-Turn by El Rancho Hotel and proceed going south on Cherokee Lane

7. Gate to East Field will be on your right-


For Handicap or limited-mobility Parking (paved parking lot):

5. Cherokee lane to Murray St. and take a left turn onto Murray Street.

6. Left on Calaveras St. and the gate will be on your left-hand side.

Lunch Options

  1. Pulled Pork Sandwich
    With side of potato salad
    Catered by Salisbury Deli and Grill
  2. Taco Plate
    Street tacos, with choice of meat
    and side of beans & rice (Gluten Free)
    Catered by La Frontera
  3. House Paella
    Chicken, shrimp, sausage (Gluten Free)
    with salad and roll
    Catered by Addy’s Paella
  4. Vegetarian Paella
    Vegetarian Paella
    (Vegetarian, Gluten Free, Vegan)
    with salad and bread
    Catered by Addy’s Paella

Join us at St. Paul, Lodi on Friday evening, May 10th for these two special events

Friday, May 10th – 7:00-8:30pm

Documentary “Without Papers” and Dessert Social

The short documentary portrays the struggles and issues facing the migrant workers in California’s Central Valley. It also shows the work of Luis Magaña (a member of St. Paul’s) and his organization for Migrant Workers (Organización de Trabajadores Migrantes). This organization provides support and sanctuary for immigrants and their families. We have the honor to be one of their sponsors at St. Paul. Following will be a Q&A with the producer and a dessert social!

Where: Saint Paul Lutheran Church ~ Iglesia Luterana San Pablo

‘Connecting with God, each other and the world’  ~  ‘En communión con Dios, los unos con los otros y con el mundo’

701 S. Pleasant Ave, Lodi, Ca 95240
Phone: 209-368-2747 


Friday, May 10th – 5:00-7:00pm

Wine Tasting – ($10)

Enjoy an open-house style wine tasting of five premium Lodi wines by Markus Wine Co, including the Zin Boldly Zinfandel created by a Lutheran for Lutherans. Meet with Lodi Winemaker and members and staff of St. Paul, for this social event.

Where: Saint Paul Lutheran Church ~ Iglesia Luterana San Pablo
701 S. Pleasant Ave, Lodi, Ca 95240
Phone: 209-368-2747 


Tickets available at the door.

Post Assembly Private Wine Tasting

After Synod Assembly, join us for a private Wine Tasting!

Sat, May 11, 2019, 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM 

Enjoy an open-house style tasting of five premium Lodi wines by Markus Wine Co, including the Zin Boldly Zinfandel created by a Lutheran for Lutherans. Meet with Lodi Wine Maker Markus Niggli, for this social event in the private garden of the Bordeaux Inn in downtown Lodi. Light appetizers served. Wine available on site for purchase – including Zin Boldly.

Tickets @ $13 each, limited availability (maximum of  50 people)

Click here for tickets: Wine tasting Saturday May 11th 

Pre-order Zin Boldly Old Vine Zinfandel – for pick up at the Lodi Grape Festival May 11th during lunch. 20% of all sales are donated to the Synod. Order here (pickup code = synod)

Additional things to do before and after assembly. Visit the Visit Lodi website here or take our word for it on these top activities!

Lodi Lake and Nature preserve. Take a stroll within the Lodi lake nature preserve, along the Mokelumne River or rent a kayak at Lodi Lake Lodi Lake and Boat House , or visit one of our natural parks/preserves

Stroll Downtown Lodi – School Street area between Lodi Ave and Lockford St.

Visit Wineries. Note wineries close by 5:00pm. Lodi Wine and Map

After hour wine experiences:
at 21 N. School Street (open Saturday until 7:00pm) &


Restaurant favorites

Fine dining:

Casual Fare:

Café & Deli:



All room blocks are full. For housing questions, contact Diane Niggli.

We have a small block of rooms Holiday Inn Express at $149/night plus taxes:

  • One-night’s deposit, non-refundable within 30 days.
  • If you no longer need your reservation, please cancel ASAP so another attendee may book the room.
  • To make reservation: call 209-210-0150 and reference group code SPS when making reservations or Click Here  to reserve online.
  • Cut-off for hotel reservations is 5:00pm, April 18th, or as the room block sells out.

Additionally, we have a two-night stay available at the Bordeaux Inn, in downtown Lodi at $155/night plus taxes.  For any inquiries, please contact Diane Niggli.

 Keynote Speaker:

Instead of a keynote speaker, there will be 3 speakers giving 5 minute Faith Reflections.

Bianca Dueñas

Director of San Joaquin Immigrant Empowerment Project, California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation

Bianca Dueñas is an immigration attorney at California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation and a former Equal Justice Works Fellow. Her work is focused on providing immigration legal services to build capacity and empowerment among Central Valley immigrant farmworkers, including her hometown of Lodi, California. Bianca is also focused on providing community presentations and outreach to rural communities about issues that impact immigrant families. She has extensive experience working with low-income, rural communities and in assisting with a wide range of immigration relief. Bianca received her J.D. from UC Davis School of Law and her B.A. from Stanford University.

Nuri Rubio

Organizer at Unite Here Local 49, Hospitality Union, Sacramento

My name is Nuri Rubio, I was born in Mexico. I was brought to the US at the age of one. I have been here since, and grew up in Stockton Ca. My parents worked in the fields and to this day still continue to work there. I grew up wanting to understand why they did not spend as much time as we had wanted them too. I decided to put myself in their shoes and went to work in the fields during my summer breaks in high school. I am grateful for that experience since it motivated me to pursue a college degree. I recently graduated from Sacramento State University with a sociology degree and I have continued to remain active in my community. Being a DACA recipient has brought some obstacles along the way how ever I continue to strive for my goals of helping my community. I have helped organized citizenship workshops and have helped numerous
people apply for their citizenship, even though I am far from being able to apply for citizenship I continue to help others achieve their dream. Being able to help others even if it does not benefit me directly does not stop me because I know that by helping one more person
each day as a society we can make great changes.

Luis Magaña

California Agricultural Workers Organization (OTAC)

Luis Magaña-Acevedo was born in Jaripo, Michoacán, México, the son and grandson of migrant workers. In the 70s, Luis emigrated with his mother and brothers to join his father in the Central Valley of California, where he worked as a child in agricultural fields. In the early 80’s, he founded the first community organization of mutual aid of Mexican migrant workers called the “Lázaro Cárdenas” Campesino Association. In the early 90’s in Fresno, CA, he formed the Peasant Alliance, a coalition of nine peasant and indigenous migrant organizations in the Central Valley.

He is founder of the newspaper “Semilla”, an independent newspaper of migrant workers in California;founder of the VOZ Project of Immigrants in the Central Valley of California; founder of the Bracero Asso- ciation of Northern California for the dignity, recognition and justice of ex-migrant laborers; and founder of the Center for Peasant Culture in Stockton California.

He is currently the organizer and volunteer director of the California Agricultural Workers Organization (OTAC), a non-profit organization of migrant worker members.

Bible Study Leader:

Our one day assembly will not include a Bible study.

ELCA Churchwide Representative: Victoria Flood

Director of Mission Support

Victoria Flood serves as Director for Mission Support in the churchwide expression of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).  Learning more about the ministries of our church through visits in synods and with congregations is one of Victoria’s greatest joys in this position.  She is often heard saying, “Mission Support is rooted in our faith and our relationships.  It is one of the most tangible ways that all of us in the ELCA demonstrate we are church together for the sake of the world.”

Victoria began serving in this position in March 2016. Prior to that, Victoria served 15 years in the churchwide expression of the ELCA as part of the team in Research and Evaluation.  Prior to serving in the ELCA, Victoria worked nearly seven years in Wisconsin state government.

Victoria earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration and Public Policy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Bachelor’s degree in Humanities and Political Science from Valparaiso University.

She and her husband, Rod Boriack, live in Des Plaines, IL. They are proud parents and grandparents to 2 children – Katy (Christian); Jon (Brooke); and 2 grandchildren – Ayden and Zoe.  Victoria and Rod worship at both Our Saviour’s in Arlington Heights and Redeemer in Park Ridge.

Financial Gifts

In a change from previous years, we are inviting congregations to extend their generosity through financial gifts that the synod will divide equally between three ministries.

•   California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation – this program provides legal counsel for immigrants and migrant workers. There is a very active office in Lodi, our host community.

•   Lutheran Social Services of Northern California – support for those affected by wildfires


•   Sierra Pacific Synod Candidacy – an on-going recipient of assembly offerings, the candidacy program works with people who are discerning a call to ministry.



Questions? Email

Synod Assembly Display Space

Registration Ends on April 20, 2019

Click Here for Display Space Registration if you have previously displayed at Synod Assembly.

Click Here for the Request for Display Space if this is your first time to display.

If you have questions, please contact Laurie Gaumer.

Synod Assembly Workshops

There will be no workshops at the 2019 one day Assembly.

Want to be a Volunteer during Synod Assembly?

Our one-day Synod Assembly will be held on Saturday, May 11 at the Grape Festival Grounds in Lodi CA.

Are you attending as a non-voting visitor or have you always wanted to see an Assembly in action? Then sign-up to be a Volunteer! Follow the link below to our Volunteer Sign-up, choose your task and the amount of time you can help.


We will be forever grateful for your contribution!

Questions? Contact Laurie Gaumer


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