To the People of the Southwest California Synod of the ELCA,

This year, we will gather as the Southwest California Synod as never before—completely virtually. It will be different. You won’t greet fellow synod leaders in the hall or during the breaks. You will be responsible for your own coffee and snacks. And you’ll have to stretch your legs as you walk around your own office or living room. But no matter the format, we will gather—in mind, body and spirit, through the wonders of the internet “for such a time as this.”
Much of our business will be the same important work: receiving annual reports, adopting a budget, electing folks to serve in numerous positions throughout the synod, etc. We pray that you will be encouraged and inspired by the work we’ve been doing together as the people of God in this place and that you will be enriched and energized by the time shared together. (And it’s our goal that this isn’t just another Zoom that you have to navigate and endure.)
Our foremost piece of business will be to elect the next Bishop of the Southwest California Synod. We are already in the process of collecting pre-nominations through March 26. Please visit the synod website for the appropriate form to submit a pre-nomination. However, our first ballot will be an ecclesiastical one that allows for a nomination by a registered voting member for any ordained clergy in good standing in the ELCA. We continue to pray that this process would bring forth leaders who are gifted and called “for such a time as this.”
We are grateful for this opportunity to gather together—to worship our Great God, celebrate the ministry we share, and dream together about the work God calls us to in the future.
Please note: the deadline for registration is Friday, May 7. In order to conduct the business of the church, particularly related to voting in this new medium, this deadline is firm. Please register early as soon as possible!

The Rev. Nikki Fielder, Synod Assembly Chair

Congregations should have, or should be receiving soon, an invoice detailing their voting representation and fee/refund due If you have questions about registration, voting membership, or assembly fees please contact
Assembly Registration
Deadline: May 7, 2021
Voting Members should register as soon as possible at the registration link.

Rostered ministers who are retired, designated as disabled, or on leave from call shall have voice but not vote during the Synod Assembly will not be charged a fee for the 2021 assembly and should register here.

For information about registration, congregational representation, assembly fees, and requirements for attendance, please see the link at right.
Registration for the 2021 Synod Assembly

The Congregational Registration fee for one called Rostered Minister and two lay voting members for the 2021 Synod Assembly is $395. If your congregation paid the early bird registration fee for the 2020 Assembly, a refund for the difference will ...

Read more
The 2021 SWCA Synod Assembly will be live streamed, and any member of our congregations or community is welcome to join the virtual viewing! Information about our streaming platform will be available on our website before the assembly to to our email list. This is an opportunity for anyone who is curious about synod governance and who hasn't been able to attend an in-person assembly.
Bishop's Election
Pre-nomination Deadline: March 26, 2021

The 2021 Committee for a Bishop's Election calls upon members and congregations of this synod to prayerfully consider qualified candidates for this position and Call, and additionally for qualified candidates to discern if they may be Called to this position of stewardship, guidance, and leadership.

Candidates for Bishop must be ordained pastors of the ELCA. Those who are pre-nominated, either by others or by themselves, will be asked to complete a biographical information form that has been prepared by the Committee. By action of the ELCA Churchwide Assembly in 2009, “background checks and screening shall be required and completed for persons nominated as synodical officers prior to their election, if possible, or as soon as practical after their election.” (S9.12) The Committee will oversee this constitutional provision so that these background checks are completed for all those pre-nominated by the time of the Synod Assembly.

Any member of a congregation of this Synod may submit to the Synod office the name of any person they wish to pre-nominate as a candidate for bishop by using this form

Information regarding pre-nominated candidates, as well as additional information about the election process at the Assembly, will be made available to voting members as well as to the synod at large.

For more information about the procedures for nominating and election a Bishop, please see the link below or the webpage linked at the upper right.

Notice of a Bishop's Election

During the 2021 Southwest California Synod Assembly on June 4 - 5, voting members will elect a new bishop. The 2021 Committee for a Bishop's Election now calls upon members and congregations of this synod to prayerfully consider qualified...

Read more
Call for Resolutions and Memorials
Deadline: April 2, 2021
Resolutions and Memorials may come from any institution, agency, synod ministry board, coalition, or congregation, and must be signed by at least five people who are members of the SWCA Synod.

Memorials address broad policy issues, while resolutions have a narrower focus, requesting consideration or action by individual offices, units, or the Church Council. For more information and instructions, see link at right.
Call for Resolutions and Memorials for the 2021 SWCA...

Memorials and resolutions enable our Churchwide Organization to address broad policy issues or issues important to God's mission in the world. Memorials address broad policy issues, while resolutions have a narrower focus, requesting...

Read more
Nominations for Synod Leadership
Deadline: April 30, 2021
At the 2021 Synod Assembly in June, voting members will select two thirds of this governing body, including the Vice-President, Members-at-Large, Youth Representative, and Conference Representatives. They will also select committee members, as well as voting members for the 2022 Churchwide Assembly.

If you have a desire to share your gifts and passion as a leader in this community of faith, please watch videos from current synod leadership at the link to the right and run for synod office!
2021 Nominations for Synod Leadership

Members of the SWCA Synod Council and Synod Committees share the experience and responsibilities of their roles serving the synod's and the ELCA's ministries. At the 2021 Synod Assembly in June, voting members will select two thirds of this...

Read more
Synod Self-Assessment
In July of 2020, the SWCA Synod began creating a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) review of its practices, activities and mutual ministries with and among the conferences, congregations and congregants. The results are linked at right.
Quick Links
Southwest California Synod of the ELCA| (818) 507-9591||