Author Topic: ELCA Secretary Reports Draft Governance Proposals, ELCA Statistics  (Read 878 times)

LutherMan

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ELCA NEWS SERVICE
October 7, 2010

ELCA Secretary Reports Draft Governance Proposals, ELCA Statistics
10-263-JB
[Click for larger image] David D. Swartling, ELCA secretary

     CHICAGO (ELCA) -- Draft proposals for possible changes in governance of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) were presented Oct. 2 to ELCA leaders by David D. Swartling, ELCA secretary.  Swartling also presented the leaders with current statistics about the denomination.
     Swartling reported to the ELCA Conference of Bishops, ELCA synod vice presidents and ELCA seminary presidents.  The Conference of Bishops is an advisory body of the church consisting of bishops who head the church's 65 synods, the presiding bishop and secretary.
     The draft governance proposals were developed by a work group of the ELCA's Living into the Future Together (LIFT) Task Force, created by the ELCA Church Council to make a comprehensive study of the ELCA and make recommendations for the denomination's future.  The draft proposals contain recommendations for the Churchwide Assembly, the Church Council, the Conference of Bishops and churchwide program units.
     The draft proposals were reported to the ELCA leaders for response. The proposals will be considered by the Church Council at its Nov. 12-14 meeting, Swartling explained.  He presented three draft proposals related to the Churchwide Assembly:
+ Provide for a three-year assembly cycle, coupled with "strategies for missional, theological, regional, synodical and/or other events in the intervening years."
+ Reduce the number of advisory and non-voting members to the assembly whose expenses are paid by the churchwide organization.
+ Evaluate how technology can be expanded to involve more people and congregations in the assembly.
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LutherMan

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Re: ELCA Secretary Reports Draft Governance Proposals, ELCA Statistics
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2010, 08:43:22 AM »

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+ Total indebtedness of ELCA congregations is approaching $2 billion, up from $600 million total indebtedness since 1988.  Congregations are under significant financial stresses, Swartling said.
This was an interesting stat.

Dan Fienen

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Re: ELCA Secretary Reports Draft Governance Proposals, ELCA Statistics
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2010, 09:03:37 AM »

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+ Total indebtedness of ELCA congregations is approaching $2 billion, up from $600 million total indebtedness since 1988.  Congregations are under significant financial stresses, Swartling said.
This was an interesting stat.
Total indebtedness could also reflect an agressive push to expand and have facilities to welcome new members and do ministry.  Congregational indebtedness is not all bad, it can be a sign of vitality.  However when such expansion and indebtedness hit a roadblock such as a major downturn in the economy or major discord and discontent in the denomination that could bring additional stress also.

Dan
Pr. Daniel Fienen
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