Category: ELCA

November 19, 2021

A pastoral message on the Rittenhouse acquittal

Dear church, In the book of Leviticus we read: “You shall not render an unjust judgment; you shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great: with justice you shall judge your neighbor” (19:15). Our social message on Community Violence urges us to become more involved in countering the reality and fear...

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July 31, 2021

Presiding Bishop’s Response to DACA Ruling

Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the ELCA, has issued a pastoral message in response to a U.S. district judge ruling to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program on July 19. “Jesus taught us that when we welcome the stranger as a person made in God’s image, we also welcome God,” the...

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July 29, 2021

Bishop: Feeding the 5,000

Bishop Davenport delivered an inspiring sermon on the feeding of the 5,000 (John 6:1-21) to Wednesday’s (July 28) online chapel service for ELCA Churchwide staff. WATCH THE VIDEO Watch the video

March 30, 2021

Writing Contest: Addressing US History of Racial Injustice

This year marks the centennial of the Tulsa Race Massacre, which took place on May 31 to June 1, 1921. Mobs of white residents, many of them deputized and given weapons by city officials, attacked black residents and businesses of the Greenwood District in Tulsa, OK. It has been called “the single worst incident of...

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February 10, 2021

Your congregation can sponsor a missionary

Dear friends: Bethany Friberg works as an ELCA missionary in Ketumbeine, Tanzania, but her definition of missionary service is much more expansive. She believes all Christians are missionaries. “I’m always struck by how wonderful it is when people have committed their life to the Lord and are praying, ‘Lord Jesus, show me how to live...

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January 15, 2021

Bishop Eaton Offers Prayer for Our Nation

As we reflect on the events at the Capitol on Jan. 6 and look toward the inauguration, and share concern about possible violence at our state and national capitols, Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton offers the following prayer: The psalmist reminds us that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm...

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July 28, 2020

ELCA unveils new design for future of church

Last week the ELCA unveiled a new design for the future of the church meant to ensure the answering of God’s call to invite more into the way of Jesus. This design will focus on attracting young, diverse people to position the ELCA for the future. “The world has changed but the message of the...

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July 8, 2020

Sacred Hospitality

Even before the 2019 Churchwide Assembly declared the ELCA a “sanctuary” denomination, congregations have been working out just what it means to be a “sanctuary.” For First English Lutheran Church in Columbus, OH, it means opening its doors to an undocumented immigrant who had lived in Columbus over a dozen years, held jobs, and paid...

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June 5, 2020

‘We Are A Nation In Distress’

  June 5, 2020   “Out of my distress I called on the Lord” (Psalm 118:5). We are a nation in distress. We are a church in distress. The coronavirus has killed 103,000 of us. The virus of racism has taken hundreds of thousands more throughout our history. Now these two deadly viruses converge. Under...

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May 30, 2020

ELCA presiding bishop calls on church to observe national day of mourning

CHICAGO (May 29, 2020) — The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), has called on the church to join with faith communities across the United States in lament and remembrance, and on our elected leaders to observe Monday, June 1, as a day of mourning to honor...

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May 30, 2020

ELCA Reaffirms Commitment to Combat Racism and White Supremacy

May 29, 2020 What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8).   The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) reaffirms its commitment to combating racism and white supremacy following the recent murders of Black Americans. Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor,...

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April 6, 2020

Considerations for Remote Council and Congregation Meetings During the COVID-19 Pandemic

During this time of social distancing because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many congregation leaders are asking how they can take advantage of technology to continue to hold necessary meetings to conduct the business of the congregation. Please bear in mind that some matters may best be postponed until the restrictions on gatherings have been lifted....

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April 6, 2020

NewPaycheck Protection Program FAQ

Updated FAQ from the ELCA Download: FAQ on PPP Loans Are churches eligible? Yes. There is some misinformation out there, and some lenders are confused, but churches are eligible. Where do we apply for Paycheck Protection Act (forgivable) loans? At a Small Business Administration-approved lender, which includes most financial institutions. What does the application entail?...

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March 31, 2020

Bishop Eaton on COVID-19 Response

During these times of COVID-19/Coronavirus, ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton provides some thoughts as many of us are quarantined.

November 20, 2019

Presiding Bishop Statement on Israeli Civilian Settlements

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America has “consistently called for an end to the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territory, the cessation of all settlement activities and withdrawal from settlements on Palestinian territory to the 1967 boundaries, a negotiated, final status agreement between Israel and the Palestinians and the establishment of and international support for...

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October 28, 2019

2021 Gathering: Boundless

The ELCA Youth Gathering team announces the theme of the 2021 Minneapolis Gathering, “boundless: God beyond measure,” based on Ephesians 3:19 CEV. “I want you to know all about Christ’s love, although it is too wonderful to be measured. Then your lives will be filled with all that God is.” What are the stories of...

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October 2, 2019

Bishop Eaton: Bold Actions at Churchwide Assembly

By Elizabeth A. Eaton This church had a meeting in August. We gathered in Milwaukee for the 2019 Churchwide Assembly. We were filled with anticipation and excitement—what would unfold during the assembly? How would we be inspired by worship and Bible study? How would we be challenged? What new insight into the work of the...

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August 28, 2019

ELCA Declaration to African Descent Peoples

Acknowledging “with regret that the ELCA as an institution has and continues to contribute to racial harassment and discrimination against people of African descent through corporate action, policy, and practices,” the 2019 Churchwide Assembly formally adopted a “Declaration…To People of African Descent.” The Assembly “confess(es) and repent(s) of the Lutheran church’s complicity in four hundred...

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August 16, 2019

Bishop’s Message on ELCA as ‘Sanctuary’

Bishop Davenport August 2019   Beloved siblings in Christ, Last week at our Churchwide Assembly, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America recommitted itself to walking alongside immigrants and refugees as a matter of faith.This Assembly action affirmed our history as an immigrant faith in the United States and the Lutheran church’s long history of assisting strangers in...

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July 2, 2019

Bishop Eaton: We Belong to the Truth

In her July column for Living Lutheran, ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton asks: “How do we live as people of Truth in a time of spin?” In deep humility, profound gratitude and real joy.  Read her column in English at and in Spanish at “Let your word be ‘Yes, Yes’ or “No, No’”(Matthew...

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