Delegates to the 70th convention of the LCMS California-Nevada-Hawaii (CNH) District re-elected the Rev. Dr. Robert Newton to his fifth term as district president. Newton ran unopposed and was elected by acclamation.
Meeting April 17-19 in San Jose, Calif., the convention had as its theme “Run the Race — Eyes Fixed on Jesus.”
In his address to the delegates, Newton noted how during the days of the “churched” culture, the bridge between people and the church was strong. In today’s “post-church” culture, he said, this bridge has collapsed, and the church is marginalized. With the rise of post-modernism, formerly established Judeo-Christian ideas are being challenged, Newton said.
The Rev. Dr. Tom Zelt was elected first vice-president. Zelt is senior pastor at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Fremont, Calif. He previously served two terms as the district’s first vice-president from 2006 to 2012. The standing first vice-president, Rev. Paul Hoffmann, declined a nomination to run for re-election to the position.
The Rev. John Standley ran unopposed for a third term as district secretary and was re-elected by acclamation. Standley has served as the pastor of Cordova Lutheran Church in Rancho Cordova, Calif., since 2000, and he was first elected district secretary in 2009.
Treasurer Donna Herzog also ran unopposed and was re-elected to a second term by acclamation. Herzog is a member of Redeemer Lutheran Church, Redwood City, Calif.
Delegates adopted three resolutions during the convention.
Resolution 1-01 urged the convention to affirm and strengthen the work of the District Mission Agency. The CNH District Mission Agency was formed more than a year ago when the district board of directors provided a three-year grant in the amount of $500,000. A separate Mission Agency was formed with William Swift as its chair. After interviewing prospective candidates, the Rev. Mike Lange was selected to be the first District Mission Agency executive director. After a period of discussion, the resolution was adopted by a show of hands.
Resolution 1-03 expressed concerns about the LCMS Commission on Constitutional Matters (CCM) opinion circulated last year regarding the interpretation of the final paragraph of Synod Bylaw 3.8.3 per the Synod’s 2013 Handbook, Page 114, and its reference to the Board for International Mission as “the only sending agency through which workers and funds are sent to the foreign areas of the Synod.” The adopted resolution will be forwarded for consideration by the Synod’s 2016 convention.
Resolution 2-01 commended the Synod for its efforts in encouraging and guiding LCMS congregations in addressing unresolved concerns regarding the celebration of the Lord’s Supper. The resolution went on to encourage congregations to promote serious study and discussion of the theology and practice of the Lord’s Supper based upon God’s Word and the Lutheran Confessions. The resolution was adopted without comment.
During the convention, delegates also were joined by members from district congregations for a mission conference led by Lange.
Posted April 22, 2015 / Updated April 23, 2015 and May 18, 2015
Rev. Dr. Zelt was elected as 1st Vice President for two terms, first in 2006 and again in 2009.