The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Time to get it together

The new ELCA vice president, a Texas businessman, looks at challenges and possibilities

Carlos Peña has an eye for possibility. It's a valuable gift for the new ELCA vice president (October, page 15).

When a girl he was dating, Diane, invited Peña to supper and Lenten worship at her Lutheran church, he said yes. He saw a possibility that winter evening at the University of Houston.

Today Carlos and Diane Peña have been married for 25 years and have two children. Son Steven, 21, is a junior at Texas A&M University, College Station, and Stephanie, 14, is a freshman at Ball High School in Galveston.

Diane Peña is the lower school coordinator and assistant to the headmaster at Trinity Episcopal School in Galveston, where the Peñas live.

Peña, 50, who was elected at the 2003 Churchwide Assembly to the highest position a layperson can hold in the ELCA, also sees plenty of possibility for the church. "This is a time to go out and do our mission," he says. The ELCA's history spans 15 years now, he points out, "time enough to get it together and ... be poised to act."

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February issue


Embracing diversity