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ELCA NEWS - www.elca.org
Official news releases of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

ELCA NEWS - www.elca.org
  • ELCA provides humanitarian assistance for vulnerable people in the CAR
    CHICAGO (ELCA) – The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) has added $50,000 in humanitarian assistance to its August 2013 relief commitment of $250,000 to help those affected by the violence in the Central African Republic. The funds were disbursed through Lutheran Disaster Response. The ELCA sent $50,000 to the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Central African Republic for emergency food aid distribution to 5,000 internally displaced people. The church is one of the ELCA's com...

  • James Justman resigns as bishop of ELCA East-Central Synod of Wisconsin
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- The Rev. James A. Justman, bishop of the East-Central Synod of Wisconsin of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), resigned as bishop of the synod effective Dec. 19, 2013. In a Dec. 20 letter to members of the synod, Justman wrote that it is his hope that "you know how much I have loved this calling, and how honored I have been to share in ministry and mission with you. For personal reasons, the timing is best for me to step away at this time." Justman began...

  • ELCA leaders urge U.S. Secretary of State to continue aid in CAR
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- In a letter to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, leaders of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) expressed concern for "the grave state of human insecurity in the Central African Republic." ELCA leaders urged Kerry and other U.S. elected officials to "continue the aid measures in the Central African Republic, support the efforts of religious leaders to prevent violence and promote peace and harmony among their communities and restore order." Fighting betw...

  • 2013 Christmas Message from ELCA Presiding Bishop Eaton
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), shared a 2013 Christmas greeting with the 4 million members of this church. The full text of the presiding bishop's message follows: "O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant." We all know the story. The shepherds traveled to Bethlehem and found the little Lord Jesus wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. But what I think we often overlook is what t...

  • ELCA Malaria Campaign reaches $10 million milestone
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- Members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) have contributed $10 million to support the ELCA Malaria Campaign in their effort to raise $15 million by the end of 2015. Through the campaign, ELCA members have joined with companion Lutheran churches and partners in 13 African countries to prevent and treat malaria, educate communities about the disease and more. "We have been overwhelmed by the motivation and hard work of synods and volunteers, the creativ...

  • ELCA presiding bishop continues prayer for healing in Newtown
    "Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah: 'A voice was heard in Ramah, wailing and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be consoled because they were no more.'" Matthew 2:17-18 Nearly one year ago, 20 children and six adults were gunned down at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. As we continue to pray for the healing of families, a community and our nation, many of us still remain in shock, working to make sense of something so ter...

  • Mandela was a “valiant campaigner for justice,” says ELCA Presiding Bishop
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), is joining members of this church and "all people of good will throughout the world" in morning the passing of former South Africa President Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. Eaton said that Mandela "was one of the greatest leaders of our generation, a valiant campaigner for justice for all but especially against racial discrimination of any kind. His long struggle against white s...

  • ELCA presiding bishop invites members to pray for an end to hunger
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), is encouraging members to join with people of faith to pray for the end of hunger in response to a call from Pope Francis for a world day of prayer Dec. 10 -- Human Rights Day. "I invite you to pause wherever you find yourself at noon on Tuesday, Dec. 10, and join a worldwide wave of prayer," said Eaton in a Dec. 5 video message. "Prayer for the hungry, prayer for justice, ...

  • ELCA and The Episcopal Church observe World AIDS Day
    CHICAGO (ELCA)—The leaders of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) and The Episcopal Church are commemorating World AIDS Day on Sunday, Dec. 1, by inviting "Episcopalians and Lutherans to consider increased congregational cooperation" in working toward a future without AIDS. In their joint statement, The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the ELCA, and the Most Rev. Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori, presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church, encourage members saying, ...

  • ELCA supports those living in poverty, impacted by extreme weather
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) is committed to supporting people who live in poverty and are impacted by extreme weather events, such as the recent typhoon that struck the Philippines. Many who live in poverty are disproportionately affected by changes in climate, which affects their lives and livelihood. "Climate change is already impacting communities around the world, and the people and places that are most affected are those who live in poverty," a...

  • Lutheran Church in Malaysia's grant to ELCA aids typhoon relief
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- In a "remarkable act of accompaniment," the Lutheran Church in Malaysia sent $10,000 to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) to help meet the needs of survivors of Typhoon Haiyan, which struck the Philippines Nov. 8. "This is an extraordinary and remarkable act of accompaniment. It is a privilege for the ELCA to count on the support of its companions," said the Rev. Rafael Malpica Padilla, ELCA executive director for global mission. "We are being church toge...

  • ELCA disburses $1 million for Philippines typhoon relief
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) provided $1 million to support immediate relief efforts for survivors of Typhoon Haiyan, which struck the Philippines Nov. 8. The funds were disbursed through Lutheran Disaster Response to Lutheran World Relief. “We are showing up,” said the Rev. Elizabeth Eaton, ELCA presiding bishop. “Lutheran Disaster Response, working through Lutheran World Relief, is meeting the immediate needs of people affected by this st...

  • 'We are church for the sake of the world,' new ELCA presiding bishop says
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- In her first report to the Church Council of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), the Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, ELCA presiding bishop, said that “We are church for the sake of the world.” The council, the ELCA board of directors, met here Nov. 8-10. As the ELCA churchwide organization charts its operational plan for 2014-2016, Eaton said that understanding ourselves in this way first is imperative. “We are a church first. And at the heart of ...

  • ELCA offers prayers, financial support for Philippines typhoon relief
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- Members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) are offering prayers and financial contributions to support immediate relief efforts among communities affected by Super Typhoon Haiyan that struck the central Philippines Nov. 8. The typhoon is the one of the most powerful storms recorded, causing massive destruction and forcing more than 700,000 people to flee their homes. Lutheran Disaster Response, in partnership with Action for Churches Togethe...

  • ELCA members contact Congress in support of anti-hunger programs
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- In an effort to ensure that families across the United States receive adequate access to food, some members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) are asking members of Congress to oppose the proposed cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP. The proposed changes to the SNAP program would cut or eliminate benefits for millions of people at a time when high unemployment and underemployment rates mean that families struggle to ...

  • ELCA bishops discuss identifying, raising leaders for the future
    ITASCA, Ill. (ELCA) -- Lifting up a number of topics that will help move forward the mission and ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), an Oct. 3-8 meeting here of the ELCA Conference of Bishops was “framed by the welcoming of 13 new (synod) bishops, while saying goodbye to a beloved secretary and presiding bishop,” said the Rev. Jessica R. Crist, bishop of the ELCA Montana Synod. The ELCA Conference of Bishops is an advisory body of the church that incl...

  • Scholarships help future ELCA leaders say "yes" to the call for ministry
    ITASCA, Ill. (ELCA) -- As part of its commitment to supporting seminary students preparing for ministry, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) -- through ELCA Fund for Leaders -- has awarded scholarships to 21 students attending the eight ELCA seminaries for the 2013-2014 academic year. “What this means is that we are helping our future leaders start their ministerial careers with healthier financial realities that allow for creativity, generosity and spirit-led dis...

  • Elizabeth Eaton installed as ELCA presiding bishop
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- Marking a new, historic season of ministry in the life of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), more than 1,500 people gathered Oct. 5 at Rockefeller Memorial Chapel here for the installation of the Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton as ELCA presiding bishop. Eaton is the ELCA’s fourth presiding bishop and the first woman to lead the 4 million-member church. She will assume office Nov. 1. “I found it beautiful and deeply moving that this new ministry was beg...

  • Hanson delivers final report as ELCA presiding bishop
    ITASCA, Ill. (ELCA) -- In his final report to the Conference of Bishops of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) the Rev. Mark S. Hanson, presiding bishop of the 4-million-member church, said several initiatives underway in the denomination will have a “significant impact on the future of this church.” One such initiative is the ELCA’s conversation with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops on the possibility of the “Declaration in Via” -- declaration on a path to unity...

  • Mary Froiland elected bishop of ELCA South-Central Synod of Wisconsin
    CHICAGO (ELCA) -- The Rev. Mary Stumme Froiland was elected Sept. 28 to a six-year term as bishop of the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). Froiland was elected during a special synod assembly Sept. 27-28 in Madison, Wis. Froiland is pastor of Luther Valley Lutheran Church in Beloit, Wis., where she has served since 2000. Elected on the fifth ballot, Froiland received 200 votes to 177 for the Rev. Bryan Engfar, pastor of ...