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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Tend relationships, Hanson urges

Presiding Bishop Mark S. Hanson told the ELCA Conference of Bishops the church needs to build better relationships with pastors and others on the ELCA roster because there has been “marginal” growth in acceptance of church leadership over the past decade and a half.

The ELCA, he told the bishops gathered in Chicago Oct. 4-9, has become shorthand for the “churchwide organization” rather than the intended collective three “expressions”—congregations, synods and denominational ministries. He called on all church leaders to “tend to relationships” as the ELCA “discerns where God is leading us.”

Citing a proposal from the 2007 Churchwide Assembly, Hanson also announced that beginning in early 2008 he or a member of his staff will meet individually with synod bishops to discuss their personal and corporate stewardship and the importance of tithing. “It begins with us,” he told the conference.


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