News and Updates

A Detailed Explanation of the Road Ahead

Synod Assembly is fast approaching, and we will soon have a bishop-elect! Since this is a process that is new to many of you, we want to be very clear that the pre-identification process does not guarantee that those pre-identified will be on the ballot.

The following explanation will further your understanding:


The Pre-Assembly Discernment Process ends on Friday, May 4.

The profiles and forum videos featuring the pre-identified pastors will be removed from the bishop election website on the evening of Friday, May 4th. None of these pastors, nor any pastors, are nominees for the office of Bishop at this time. This process was created simply for members of our synod to get to know a few pastors who could potentially be nominated. The information will be removed so that no pastor has an advantage when nominating begins.


There are currently NO NOMINEES for bishop
of the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin.

The pre-assembly discernment process was an introductory period only. Nominations will occur on the first ballot at synod assembly. Please read below to learn more about the ecclesiastical ballot process we will be following.


We will follow an ecclesiastical ballot process.

This balloting process is used by synods to allow the Holy Spirit to be a part of the process for electing a bishop. Up to five ballots may be needed to elect a bishop.

The First Ballot: This ballot will serve as the nominating ballot. There are no names on this ballot. Instead, voting members of the assembly will write the name of an ELCA minister of Word and Sacrament (a pastor) they would like to nominate for the office of Bishop. A pastor does not have to be a member of the synod or a participant in the pre-assembly discernment process to be nominated. While rare, an election can occur on this ballot if a nominee receives 3/4 of the votes cast. Pastors who are nominated but wish to withdraw must do so following the results of this ballot.

The Second Ballot: This​ ballot includes the names of all eligible nominees from the first ballot, except for those who have withdrawn. An election can occur on this ballot if a nominee receives 3/4 of the votes cast.

The Third Ballot: This​ ballot includes the names of the top seven pastors who receive the most votes on the second ballot, plus ties. These nominees will have the opportunity to submit biographical information and will address the assembly with a brief speech. An election may occur on this ballot if a nominee receives 2/3 of the votes cast.

The Fourth Ballot: This​ ballot includes the names of the top three pastors who receive the most votes on the third ballot, plus ties. These nominees will have the opportunity to participate in a question-and-answers session moderated by the Bishop Election Task Force. An election may occur on this ballot if a nominee receives 60% of the votes cast.

The Fifth Ballot: This​ is the final ballot. It includes the names of the top two pastors who receive the most votes on the ​fourth ballot, plus ties. ​The pastor who receives a simple majority will be elected.

 

Please visit the Resources page to read the official documents governing this election. Forum videos and pre-identification profiles are available on the website until May 4th. If you have any questions about the bishop election process, please contact the task force.

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