Recently, The Lutheran, a magazine produced by the ELCA, profiled 10 leaders under 40 years old doing ministry distinctively. Among those profiled are a poet, a state representative to the North Dakota House of Representatives and pastors for unique congregations. Each individual profiled was chosen from almost 100 nominations.

In her profile, Sr. Liz responds to the question, “What is your calling?”

““To give congregations access to the language and tools of community organizing that can help open doors that were closed … and send the church back into the neighborhood, not only around the church building but with the neighbors of church members,” Liz Colver said. “Community organizing and intentional relationships are things that Jesus tells us to do.”

At 9 years old, Liz Colver came home from Sunday school at Luther Memorial Lutheran Church in Seattle and told her mother: “I want to be a monk like Martin Luther.”

Learning that her gender barred her from the monastery surprised, but did not stop, her: “I knew I was called to serve in the church, but not as a pastor, youth director, musician or church secretary.” ”

It was during seminary that Sr. Liz discovered the Deaconess Community. The strong bond of intentional community spoke to her and continued speaking during her internship, where she was introduced to community organizing. In March, Sr. Liz was consecrated as the ELCA’s first community organizing specialist.

Congratulations to Sr. Liz on being recognized and honored by The Lutheran. To read the rest of the article and learn more about each of these ministers, please see The Lutheran’s 10 Under 40.