For immediate release:  


     WOODLAND HILLS, CA--The Rev. Dr. R. Guy Erwin was elected to a six-year term as bishop of the Southwest California Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The election was declared after the sixth ballot on May 31 at the 26th annual Synod Assembly.  


     Pastor Erwin currently serves as the Interim Pastor of Faith Lutheran Church in Canoga Park, Calif. and as the Gerhard & Olga Belgum Professor of Lutheran Confessional Theology at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, Calif.  


     The bishop-elect is a partnered gay man whose participation in the leadership of this church was limited before the 2009 ELCA Churchwide Assembly decision. Only since 2009 has the church allowed LGBT persons in committed partnered relationships onto the ordained roster of the ELCA.


     He is also the first Native American to be elected in the ELCA. Erwin is part Osage Indian and is active in the Osage Indian Nation.  


     There is a press conference on Saturday, June 1 at the Warner Center Marriott in Woodland Hills, Calif. at 1 p.m.


     To RSVP to this conference, please email Communications Assistant Courtney Bassler.

Southwest California Synod, ELCA
1300 East Colorado Street
 Glendale, California 91205
(818) 507-9591