Approved Resources

Seeking UnderstandingSeeking Understanding: Some Issues in Biblical Interpretation Regarding Women and Justice

"Seeking Understanding" invites you into conversation around how the Bible can be faithfully utilized in a discussion of women and justice today. This three-session resource relies on the four-fold method for interpretation of Scripture used by the Book of Faith Initiative. It encourages participants to engage with both liberating and problematic texts. The leader’s guides, participant handouts, and supplemental resources can be downloaded from the links below.

This study can be used with a variety of groups, especially Bible study groups and adult forums. In each session, this resource provides a Scripture reading and prayers, useful tools and insights for interpretation, as well as discussion guides.

The ELCA Task Force on Women and Justice: One in Christ has developed this resource in order to invite others to join them in discussion and thought about these topics. Feedback can be shared through the task force's email address.

Leader’s Preparation Guide PDF Document

Session One: Guide and Handout

Session Two: Guide and Handout

Session Three: Guide and Handout

Supplemental Resources:

"Some Issues in Biblical Interpretation" and "Some Helpful Ways to Read the Bible"

For your convenience, you can use this single-document version to easily download the leader’s guides and handouts for all three study sessions.

"Miss Representation" Discussion Guide

Miss Representation“Miss Representation” unpacks how the media objectifies women and examines the effect of this powerful medium on young men and women growing up. Using interviews of young people, as well as public figures such as Condoleezza Rice, Katie Couric, Rachel Maddow, Cory Booker and Gloria Steinem, the film explores the depiction of women in mass media and questions its relation to female leadership in areas such as the film industry and government.

The task force watched the film as a group and found the discussion so valuable that they are inviting others to discuss it as well. Feedback can be shared through the task force's email address.

The discussion leader's guide and participants' questions for discussion can be downloaded in three versions. Option A splits the material into four sessions, Option B splits the material into three slightly longer sessions, and Option C is one 3-hour session. Each option is appropriate for a variety of church groups, including youth groups and men's groups! In all options, each session begins and ends with Scripture and prayer and explores one aspect of the relationship between gender and media consumption. It provides questions for discussion about the issues that concern your group and can serve as a catalyst for further reflection and action in your community.

The DVD is available through some local libraries, can be ordered through iTunes or online, viewed on Netflix or borrowed from your synod's resource center.

"A Path Appears" Discussion Guide

A path appearsPulitzer Prize-winning journalists and authors Sheryl WuDunn and Nicholas Kristof sought out stories of gender-based oppression and stories of hope for women and girls from the United States and around  the world and created a series of documentaries through the program “Independent Lens.” “A Path Appears,” a film in three episodes, presents the stories of victims and survivors of gender-based inequalities and violations of human rights as the realities of our world. However, the film also shows solutions that target the root of the problems in order to empower women. These stories offer powerful insights into the lives of women and girls around the world. Hope and movement is possible with awareness.  As the authors say: “The challenges facing women will never be addressed if they are borne in silence.

ELCA staff and the Women and Justice: One in Christ Task Force have created this discussion guide that provides questions for each of the three episodes. It can be used with your small group (including youth group, women’s group or men’s group), Bible study or listening event. The questions will help facilitators engage groups with the topics presented in the documentary and will help viewers think about the issues that the task force is addressing. Feedback can be shared through the task force’s email address,

Trigger warning: This documentary and the discussion guide contain information and references to sexual assault and violence that may be triggering to survivors.

The movie (and book) are available at some libraries. The DVD can be purchased online from Amazon or rented through Netflix. It is also available for streaming through AmazonPrime or iTunes.

Human Trafficking Curriculum Series

Human trafficking, the second largest and fastest growing illegal trade in the world, is modern-day slavery wherein people are in bondage through fraud, force or coercion. According to the U.S. Department of State and the Free the Slaves organization, between 12.3 and 27 million people are trafficked worldwide at any time. That’s approximately the total population (27 million) of Texas and Louisiana. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes estimates the total revenue of human trafficking to be $32 billion. That’s roughly the gross domestic product of Guatemala. Human trafficking is currently the second most profitable illegal trade, just behind drug trafficking. Within this vast trade in human lives, women and girls account for 70 to 80 percent of all humans trafficked worldwide. Therefore, the ELCA not only attends to ending human trafficking and caring for survivors, it also addresses root causes of trafficking, such as poverty, hunger and sexism. 

The curriculum series developed by ELCA staff members provides six one-hour sessions that educate beginners on the facts of human trafficking and how we as Lutherans can respond to the call to affect change in the systems that allow human trafficking to continue.

Access the sessions here under the Human Trafficking tab.