Delegates to the June 21-23 LCMS Northwest District convention in Portland, Ore., re-elected the Rev. Paul A. Linnemann of Portland as district president.
Linnemann’s election to his second three-year term in that office came on the first ballot.
The theme of this 63rd convention of the district was “Walking toward Oneness,” based on Eph. 4:11-13.
Delegates also elected:
- the Rev. Jonathan M. Dinger, pastor of Grace Lutheran Church and School, Pocatello, Idaho, first vice-president.
- the Rev. Theodore “Ted” Werfelmann, pastor of Light of Christ Lutheran Church, Federal Way, Wash., second vice-president.
- the Rev. Mark E. Hoelter, a retired pastor in Portland, third vice-president.
- the Rev. Dr. Jonathan Rockey, pastor of St. John Lutheran Church, Palmer, Alaska, fourth vice-president.
- the Rev. Dan J. Kunkel, pastor of Faith Lutheran Church, Oroville, Wash.; Hope Lutheran Church, Tonasket, Wash., and Immanuel Lutheran Church, Tonasket, fifth vice-president.
- the Rev. Roger M. Sedlmayr, pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Twin Falls, Idaho, sixth vice-president.
Lindemann and the vice-presidents were installed at the convention.
Among resolutions adopted by Northwest delegates is one to memorialize the 2013 Synod convention for the LCMS Council of Presidents and the two seminaries to develop a model of distance education for forming pastors that reduces cost and can be made available both nationally and at the district level for ongoing continuing education. The resolution notes that such a model would attempt to balance the needs for distance learning with the needs for residential learning and calls for it to be implemented “on a pilot basis” prior to the 2016 Synod convention.
Another adopted resolution affirms the 1989 Synod convention’s Resolution 3-05B and the ministry of licensed deacons. It calls on the district to “rise in gratitude and thanksgiving for the ministry of our licensed deacons who are providing vital Word and Sacrament ministry to such bodies of Christians who would not otherwise be fellow partakers of the means of grace without them.” The resolution also will be sent to the 2013 Synod convention for its consideration.
District convention delegates also adopted a resolution to set a priority of facilitating a collaborative “think tank” to delve into campus ministries in the district. Its intent would be to use academic areas as opportunities for intentional mission and ministry, especially in light of cutbacks in campus ministries in the Missouri Synod over the last several decades.
Delegates also resolved for the district to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, which occurs Oct. 31, 2017. Over the next five years, the celebration will be promoted among Northwest District congregations, with a “pointed focus on this rich faithful heritage.”
Also adopted was a special mission project for the district to expand its efforts to grow and develop new ethnic ministries in the next three years. The district board of directors will manage the project’s implementation and funding.
After considerable floor debate, delegates adopted a resolution to commend the efforts of the Synod to continue prayerful conversation on the topic of celebrating the Lord’s Supper. The resolution notes that the district also will promote “healthy discussion” of the practice and theology of the Lord’s Supper, based on Scripture and the Lutheran Confessions.
As has been the case at other district conventions this year, Northwest District delegates approved several changes to update the district’s Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws, in response to Synod-restructuring decisions made by the 2010 LCMS convention.
Posted June 26, 2012