graphic website title banner

Renewing worship —restructuring approved Wednesday afternoon

by Betsy Carlson (Editor, WordAlone Network)

News: August 10, 2005 pm

The 2005 ELCA Churchwide Assembly approved the proposed process for completing the Renewing Worship project and a proposed restructuring plan that puts more authority in the hands of the presiding bishop.

Earlier in the day, several attempts to delay the process for completing new worship materials failed. Attempts to bring completed worship materials back to subsequent churchwide assemblies also were voted down. The only amendment the assembly accepted was to add the words "liturgical quality" to a description of the music in the new materials.

Under the restructuring proposal that the assembly also approved today, the worship work of the church is being moved from the Division for Congregational Ministry to the Presiding Bishop's office.

The multicultural commission is being changed from a commission into a permanent unit with authority to develop programs for the church. In addition, the multicultural unit will have the power to review the work of all the other units of the ELCA. The other new units with responsibility for church programs will be: evangelical outreach and congregational mission, global mission, church in society, and vocation and education.

Service units will be communication, development (Foundation and Endowment Fund), Mission Investment Fund, and the Board of Pensions.

In the presiding bishop's office will be administration, ecumenical and inter-religious relations, human resources, research and evaluation, synodical relations and worship.