By Roy S. Askins
TAMPA, Fla. — On Tuesday, July 23, delegates of the 67th Regular Convention of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) passed Res. 9-07, which reverses 2010 Res. 4-07, adopted at the 64th Regular Convention of the LCMS, which reduced the number of candidates on the ballot for LCMS president from five to three.
The bylaw change introduced complications into the voting process.
“One of the main issues was the issue of procedurally electing the president. We had to go back and add wording to the bylaw,” said the Rev. Dr. Donald Fondow, chairman of Floor Committee 9 on Structure and Governance and LCMS Minnesota North District president.
Some delegates believed the expanded slate might prevent the timely election of president of the Synod.
Currently, the Synod Handbook requires the Synod secretary to present the slate of candidates to congregations four weeks prior to convention.
The Rev. Dr. John W. Sias, Synod secretary, also explained potential concerns with the election process. Failing to amend the election process could, among other issues, cause “a candidate [to be dropped] that would be the choice of a majority of people.” This is less likely if the system currently used in other Synod election processes would also be applied to election of president of the Synod.
To fix the bylaw issues, Floor Committee 9 proposed Res. 9-19 on July 24. This resolution adjusted the timelines stipulated by election bylaws and brought the process for electing the president of the Synod into conformity with existing election practices.
“The main intent was to go back to the way we previously did it in terms of the number of potential candidates,” said Fondow. “This enables an opportunity for more diversity of candidates that can be looked at and set forth for elections.”
Posted July 24, 2019
The 67th Regular Convention of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod met July 20–25 in Tampa, Fla., at the Tampa Convention Center under the theme “Joy:fully Lutheran.” For more convention news: