The process of candidacy

March 5, 2018 |
Candidate Karin O’Donnell’s endorsement interview includes (l. to r.) Karin, Pastor Sara Ilderton, committee member Carole Demmy, and Dr. Sylvia Black, committee chair. Dr. Brooks Schramm, United Lutheran Seminary professor, participated via Skype. (Karin is holding “Flat Jesus,” who was there as well.)

The process of candidacy

Candidacy in the ELCA is the churchwide process of preparation and formation leading to ordained ministry for pastors, or rostered lay ministry for deacons. It involves a partnership of the candidate, congregation, synod, synod candidacy committee, seminary, and the Domestic Mission Unit of the ELCA.

The candidate often moves through the process in this way.

In the NC Synod, the candidacy process is multifaceted, whether one is a student or a member of the candidacy committee.  Both have responsibilities that contribute to the discernment and vocational process being efficient and faithful.

The Candidacy Committee member is involved with this process in these ways.

The NC Synod’s staff members who work with candidacy are the Rev. Sara Ilderton, Assistant to the Bishop for Candidacy & Boundaries, Lauren Thurow, Program Assistant for Leadership & Candidacy; and the Rev. Dr. Tim Smith, bishop. Additionally, Dr. Sylvia Black, member of Holy Trinity, Chapel Hill, serves as chair of the candidacy committee and is joined by fourteen members serving on the committee who are all either rostered ministers or lay people of the synod’s congregations.

Story by Carole Demmy



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