The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Former synod treasurer accused of funds misuse

Barry R. Herr, 61, former treasurer of the Lower Susquehanna Synod, based in Harrisburg, Pa., was arrested March 13 and charged with misappropriating more than $1 million in church funds.

His arrest followed his July 31, 2007, dismissal by the synod’s governing council and months of investigation by the synod and police. Believed to have begun siphoning off funds in 1991, Herr faces 36 charges of criminal use of a communication facility (electronic transfer of funds) and one count of theft by deception. With bail set at $25,000, Herr was released on his own recognizance.

Authorities told The Patriot-News, Harrisburg, they believed Herr bought classic cars with the funds.

B. Penrose Hoover, synod bishop, called the events “shocking and tragic” in a March 13 pastoral letter. “[It] saddens us and touches the lives of all who are part of the gospel ministry we share in the Lower Susquehanna Synod and the church at large,” he added.

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