Elected: Rebecca S. Larson, 52, as executive director of the Division for Church in Society, effective Oct. 14.
When: July 23, by the division's board.
Bio: Pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada. Lutheran World Federation secretary for research and development, Department for World Service, Geneva, Switzerland. Chaired the steering committee of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, which was awarded the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize. Graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University and Waterloo Lutheran Seminary, Waterloo, Ontario; Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, Wash.; and the University of Calgary (Alberta). Served Hosanna Lutheran Church, Edmonton, Alberta.
Replaces: Charles S. Miller, who became the ELCA executive for administration and executive assistant to the presiding bishop on Dec. 31, 2001.
ELCA Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson said, "Pastor Larson brings to this office a strong understanding of the biblical and theological grounding for our life and work as a church in society. [She] will be attentive to this church in our conversations and discernment regarding God's call to our life in society. She will be mindful that all are included in this conversation. She will also help us to keep our conversation grounded in action in the world."
Elected: Stanley N. Olson, 56, as executive director of the Division for Ministry, effective Nov. 1.
When: July 25, by the division's board.
Bio: Bishop of the Southwestern Minnesota Synod. Graduate of Waldorf College, Forest City, Iowa; St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minn.; Luther Northwestern Seminary (now Luther Seminary), St. Paul, Minn.; and Yale University, New Haven, Conn. Served two Minnesota and one Connecticut congregations. Taught at Luther Seminary.
Replaces: Joseph Wagner, who retired May 2002.
Hanson said, "Pastor Olson is a servant leader. He brings to this particular call a deep commitment to equip the laity for living out their faith in daily life through a variety of vocations. He has great gifts as a theologian, a pastor with a passion for the gospel, and an ability to listen and bring people together so we might more effectively be Christ's church in and for the sake of the world."
Elected: Randall R. Lee, 46, as director of the Department for Ecumenical Affairs and assistant to the presiding bishop, effective Oct. 1.
When: Sept. 3, by the ELCA Church Council.
Bio: Executive assistant to the ELCA secretary and associate for bilateral dialogues, Department for Ecumenical Affairs. Served congregations in Evanston, Ill.; Chicago; and University City, Mo. Graduate of Valparaiso [Ind.] University; Christ Seminary-Seminex, St. Louis; LSTC.
Replaces: Jon S. Enslin, the department’s interim director.
“Randy Lee has extensive ecumenical experience as a parish pastor, theologian, ecumenical dialogue participant and part-time member of the Department for Ecumenical Affairs staff,” Hanson said
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