Terms and Conditions

TERMS OF USE
These Terms of Use were last updated on July 18, 2006

PLEASE READ THESE TERMS CAREFULLY. By using the elca.org Web site (Web Site) at elca.org or www.elca.org or by otherwise accessing any content found on this Web Site, you are deemed to have entered into an agreement with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America ®(ELCA) and to have agreed to be bound by the terms set out below. If you violate any of the Terms your permission to use this Web Site automatically terminates. The Web Site is owned and operated by the ELCA.

    1. Definitions
    2. Changes to these Terms
    3. Use of ELCA content and intellectual property protection
    4. User postings
    5. Use policies
    6. Linking to the Web Site
    7. Links to third-party sites
    8. Submissions
    9. Claims of copyright infringement
    10. Indemnification
    11. Disclaimer of Warranties
    12. Limitation of Liability
    13. Privacy Notice
    14. Legal Disclaimer
    15. Miscellaneous

 

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1. Definitions.
As used in these Terms:

  • "Web Site" means the Web site www.elca.org.
  • "We," "Our," "Us" and "ELCA" refer to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.®

2. Changes to these Terms. WE MAY AMEND THESE TERMS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT PRIOR NOTICE BY POSTING THE AMENDED TERMS ON THE WEB SITE. USE OF THE Web SITE FOLLOWING ANY SUCH CHANGE CONSTITUTES YOUR AGREEMENT TO FOLLOW AND BE BOUND BY THE TERMS AS CHANGED. For this reason, you should review these Terms whenever you use the Web Site. If you do not agree to be bound by changes to the Terms, you should not use the Web Site any further after the changes in question are published. These Terms were last revised on January 7, 2002.

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3. Use of ELCA content and intellectual property protection.

3.1. Material on the Web Site, including but not limited to text, software, code, graphics, images, data, audio and video (collectively, the "Materials"), is owned by the ELCA or third-party licensors. The ELCA and/or third-party licensors retain all proprietary rights to the Materials, including all intellectual property rights associated therewith (e.g., copyrights, patents and trademarks; for information on the use of the ELCA name, emblem and tagline -- See Trademark; See Brandmark for specific usage and trademark information on the brandmarks). Unless otherwise indicated on the Web Site, except for downloading one copy of the Materials for your personal, noncommercial use and/or printing copies of the Materials for such use, you may not sell, modify, reproduce, display, publicly perform, prepare derivative works based upon, distribute or otherwise use the Materials in any way without first obtaining the written permission of the ELCA. Requests for permission for uses not authorized by these Terms may be sent to:

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Attn: ELCA Digital Design Manager
8765 West Higgins Road
Chicago, Illinois 60631

                 Or email

3.2. You must retain all copyright, trademark and other proprietary notices contained in the original Materials on any copy you make of the Materials. You may not frame or utilize framing techniques to enclose all or any portion of the Web Site. You may not use any meta tags or any other similar hidden text utilizing the ELCA's name or trademarks.

3.3. If you violate any of this Section 3, your permission to use the Materials and the Web Site automatically terminates.

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4. User Postings.

4.4. As a user of the Web Site, you are responsible for your own communications and are responsible for the consequences of any of your postings in the public areas of the Web Site. By submitting any material for posting on the Web Site, you automatically grant (or, if you are not the owner, you warrant that the owner of such material has expressly granted) the ELCA a royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable, nonexclusive and fully sublicensable right to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, display and otherwise use and exploit such material (in whole or in part) worldwide and/or to incorporate it in other work in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

4.5. We do not represent or guarantee the accuracy, completeness or reliability of any material posted by users of the Web Site nor do we endorse any opinions expressed by any users. You may rely on material posted by other users only at your own risk. We are not obligated to screen or monitor materials posted on this Web site and you may not assume that posted materials are reviewed.

4.6. We may for any reason edit, refuse to post or remove without notice any materials posted by users. However, we have no obligation to edit, refuse to post or remove any material, including material that you may find objectionable or offensive or that violates these Terms. If you become aware of any material that violates these Terms, you may email such information to us at by clicking here. However, we do not guarantee that any action will be taken as a result of your contact. We reserve the right to expel any user and to prevent further access to the Web Site for any reason, including violation of these Terms or applicable law, or for no reason at all. However, we have no obligation to expel any user or to prevent further access to the Web Site.

4.7. Any congregation, ministry, synod of the ELCA, or ELCA affiliated organization may submit an advertisement, subject to the terms and conditions of this ELCA churchwide Web site, to the LISTSERV opportunities. Commercial advertising by for-profit organizations as well as advertising personal business products or services is prohibited. No solicitation is allowed. The ELCA churchwide organization is not involved in these transactions in any way except to be a forum for the donor and donee to meet. The ELCA churchwide organization does not check or verify information submitted; inclusion does not imply endorsement. The ELCA churchwide organization, its divisions, synods, or regions, make no representation regarding the validity of information submitted nor the quality of items listed. The ELCA churchwide organization shall not be liable for misinformation, typographical errors or misprints in the ads, misrepresentation of items, or damages experienced by anyone using this forum. The ELCA churchwide organization does not, in the case of volunteer positions, screen candidates, volunteer position listings or sites. The ELCA churchwide organization shall not be responsible in any way for misinformation, qualifications of sites or volunteers, nor any problems, claims or damages that occur as a result of vounteers serving in positions posted here. The ELCA churchwide organization reserves the right to delete, without notice, any advertisement considered inappropriate by the ELCA.

4.8. Any congregation, ministry, synod, ELCA affiliated organization or rostered individual that submits mobility information, related mobility requests or employment related information is subject to all terms and conditions of the ELCA churchwide Web site. The ELCA churchwide organization does not check or verify information submitted and posted; inclusion on the Website does not imply endorsement. The ELCA churchwide organization, its divisions, synods, or regions, make no representation regarding the validity of information submitted. The ELCA churchwide organization shall not be liable for misinformation, typographical errors or misprints in the materials, misrepresentations, or damages experienced by anyone using this forum. The ELCA churchwide organization does not, in the case of mobility, screen employers, job position postings, resumes, candidates or sites. The ELCA churchwide organization shall not be responsible in any way for screening candidates, qualifications of sites, job position postings, resumes, hiring of staff, nor any problems, claims or damages that occur as a result of the above.

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5. Use Policies. You may not do any of the following while using the Web Site:

  • interfere with or disrupt networks connected to the Web Site or violate the regulations, policies or procedures of such networks;
  • attempt to gain unauthorized access to the Web Site, computer systems or networks connected to the Web Site, through password mining or any other means;
  • interfere with another user's use and enjoyment of the Web Site;
  • upload any message, information, data, text, software, graphic files or other materials ("Content") that is unlawful, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, tortious, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous, that may be invasive of another's privacy, hateful, racially, ethnically or otherwise objectionable;
  • upload Content that contains a virus, corrupted file, or other harmful component;
  • impersonate any person or entity, including, but not limited to, ELCA personnel, or falsely state or otherwise misrepresent any affiliation with any person or entity, or upload any Content under a fictitious name;
  • upload any Content that you do not have a right to upload under law or under contractual or fiduciary relationships (including but not limited to nondisclosure agreements);
  • upload any information or grant permissions to view information to any person in a manner that exceeds your contractual or other legal authority;
  • upload any unsolicited advertising, promotional materials, junk mail, spam, chain letters, pyramid schemes, contests, surveys, or any other form of solicitation (commercial or non-commercial);
  • intentionally or unintentionally violate or encourage or assist another to violate any law or regulation in connection with your use or another's use of the Web Site; or
  • upload any Content that violates or infringes any patent, trademark, trade secret, copyright or any right, of whatever nature, of anyone.

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6. Linking to the Web Site.

You may provide a link on your site to the Web Site subject to the following requirements:

  • You may not frame or alter the appearance or visual presentation of the Web Site.
  • You may not state or imply that we endorse, sponsor or otherwise approve your site or any other sites, unless it is true and accurate. Links to the Web Site may not be used in a way that implies or suggests that we approve or endorse you, your Web site or your goods and services, unless it is true and accurate.
  • Links may be text-based using the words: "The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America,®" "ELCA," or "elca.org" or graphics based using the ELCA Emblem (the "Licensed Marks"), subject to the terms and conditions for use of the ELCA brandmark.
  • Unless you are an ELCA synod or congregation, you may only link to the home page of the Web Site, unless you receive written permission from the ELCA. Requests for permission to link to other parts of the Web Site may be sent here.
  • You may not use the Licensed Marks on any site that disparages us or any of our affiliates, or presents false information about us or any of our affiliates.
  • You may not use the Licensed Marks as a predominant feature of your site. At a minimum, this means that the Licensed Marks must appear smaller than your Web page title and any of your marks or logos, they may not be displayed more prominently than other marks or logos on your page, and they should not appear at the top of the page, but rather at the bottom, along the sides or in some location less prominent than the top.
  • You may not use the Licensed Marks in any manner that would adversely affect the name, reputation or goodwill of the ELCA, or use the Licensed Marks on any site that contains any content that is unlawful, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, tortious, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous, that may be invasive of another's privacy, hateful, racially, ethnically or otherwise objectionable.
  • You may not use the Licensed Marks on any site that violates or infringes any patent, trademark, trade secret, copyright or any right, of whatever nature, of anyone, or that violates or encourages or assists another to violate any law or regulation.
  • We will have no responsibility or liability for any content appearing on your Web site. You agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless the ELCA and its affiliates and their officers, directors, employees and agents, from and against any and all third-party claims, liability, actions, demands, costs or expenses (including, but not limited to, reasonable legal and accounting fees) arising from or relating to your Web site. We reserve the right to defend any such claim, and you agree to provide us with such reasonable cooperation as we may request.
  • By linking, you acknowledge and agree that, other than as specifically set forth in these Terms, all rights to the Licensed Marks and other ELCA marks and logos belong to the ELCA. In addition, you acknowledge the validity of the ELCA's ownership in the Licensed Marks and other ELCA marks and logos and will not contest such ownership or the validity of any registrations of the ELCA relating to such marks and logos. You agree that use of the Licensed Marks shall inure to the benefit of the ELCA. If you happen to obtain any rights or goodwill in the Licensed Marks, you agree that all such rights and goodwill will automatically vest in the ELCA and you will take all actions necessary to effect such vesting.
  • You are prohibited from using the ELCA marks or logos or any names, marks or other materials in a manner that is likely to cause confusion with, dilute or damage the reputation or image of the ELCA.
  • We reserve the right at any time and in our sole discretion to request that you remove all links or any particular link to the Web Site from your site.

Subject to these Terms and your compliance with the above requirements, the ELCA agrees to grant you a limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, royalty-free license to use the Licensed Marks solely for the purpose of establishing any link that is permitted hereunder. Except for the limited license to use the Licensed Marks set forth in this paragraph, you may not use any of the ELCA's trademarks or service marks or logos for any other reason without the express written permission of the ELCA. The ELCA may, at any time, in its sole discretion, without cause, terminate the license granted herein to use the Licensed Marks and your right to link to any pages on the Web Site. Upon our request, you agree to immediately remove all links to the Web Site and to cease using the Licensed Marks. Without limiting the foregoing, if you violate any of this Section 6, your license to use the Licensed Marks and your right to link to any pages on the Web Site automatically terminates. Thereafter, any future links to the Web Site will require the express written permission of the ELCA.

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7. Links to Third-Party Sites. The Web Site contains links to third-party Web sites. These links are provided solely for your convenience. They are not an endorsement by us of the contents of such third-party Web sites. We are not responsible for the content or practices of linked third-party sites. We do not make any representations or warranties about the content or accuracy of materials on such third-party Web sites or the practices of such sites. If you decide to access linked third-party Web sites, you do so at your own risk. You are encouraged to review the terms of use, privacy policy, and other policies of any linked site, as the policies of the linked site may differ from those of this Web Site.

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8. Submissions. We welcome comments regarding our service. However, any comments, feedback, notes, messages, ideas, suggestions or other communications (collectively, "Comments") submitted to us will be our exclusive property. Submission of any such Comments constitutes an assignment to the ELCA of all worldwide right, title and interest in all copyrights and other intellectual property rights in the Comments, and you represent and warrant that you have the right to make such an assignment and that such Comments do not violate or infringe any rights of anyone. The ELCA will be entitled to use, reproduce, disclose, publish and distribute any Comments for any purpose whatsoever, without restriction and without compensating you in any way. For this reason, we ask that you do not send us any Comments that you do not desire to assign to the ELCA, including any confidential information or any original creative materials such as stories, product ideas, computer code or original artwork.

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9. Claims of Copyright Infringement. If you believe that your work has been copied in a way that constitutes copyright infringement, please contact the Designated Agent listed in our Copyright Policy.

10. Indemnification. You agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless the ELCA and its affiliates and their officers, directors, employees and agents, from and against any and all third-party claims, liability, actions, demands, costs or expenses (including, but not limited to, reasonable legal and accounting fees) arising from or relating to your use of the Web Site or the Materials, material that you post to the Web Site or otherwise provide to the ELCA, or your breach or violation of these Terms. The ELCA reserves the right to defend any such claim, and you agree to provide the ELCA with such reasonable cooperation as it may request.

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11. Disclaimer of Warranties.

11.1. THE WEB SITE, THE MATERIALS AND THE LICENSED MARKS ARE PROVIDED ON AN AS-IS, AS-AVAILABLE BASIS WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED. TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, THE ELCA, ITS AFFILIATES AND ITS SUPPLIERS DISCLAIM ALL WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, ANY WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY, NON-INFRINGEMENT OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.

11.2. You understand and agree that: (a) we are not responsible for the timeliness, misdelivery, deletion or failure to store any information uploaded (or attempted to be uploaded) by you or any other user; (b) we make no warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of the information and services provided or obtained through the Web Site or the results of your use of the Web Site; (c) it is your responsibility to evaluate the accuracy, completeness and usefulness of all information obtained or provided through the Web Site; (d) we may, in our sole discretion, modify, add or discontinue any aspect, content or feature of the Web Site; and (e) the information on the Web Site may contain typographical errors or inaccuracies and may not be complete or current and, therefore, we reserve the right to correct any errors, inaccuracies or omissions and to change or update information at any time without prior notice.

11.3. You understand and agree that use of the Web Site and the Materials is at your sole risk, that any materials downloaded or otherwise obtained through the use of the Web Site is at your own discretion and risk and that you will be solely responsible for any damage to your computer system or loss of data that results from the download of such materials. We make no warranty or representation as to the security of any information you transmit to us.
Information on the Web Site does not constitute legal, accounting or professional advice to anyone.

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12. Limitation of Liability. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE ELCA, ITS AFFILIATES OR ITS SUPPLIERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY DAMAGES WHATSOEVER (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, PUNITIVE OR EXEMPLARY DAMAGES, OR ANY DAMAGES FOR LOSS OF PROFITS, USE, DATA, GOODWILL OR OTHER INTANGIBLES) ARISING FROM OR IN ANY WAY CONNECTED WITH THESE TERMS, THE USE OF (OR THE INABILITY TO USE) THE WEB SITE OR THE MATERIALS, THE LICENSED MARKS, OR ANY INFORMATION, GOODS OR SERVICES OBTAINED ON OR FROM THE WEB SITE, WHETHER BASED ON WARRANTY, CONTRACT, TORT (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, NEGLIGENCE), OR ANY OTHER LEGAL THEORY, AND WHETHER OR NOT THE ELCA IS ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.

13. Privacy Notice. Be sure to check our Privacy Policy to understand our practices. The Privacy Policy is subject to these Terms and is incorporated by reference herein.

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14. Legal Disclaimer. Legal Disclaimer Information on this website does not constitute legal advice to anyone. In addition, the use of this website, and the sending or receipt of information through elca.org does not create attorney-client relationship of any sort. Visitors to elca.org should be aware that communication in this manner may not be considered as privileged or confidential. Individuals requiring legal assistance should engage a qualified attorney, licensed to practice law in the particular state or jurisdiction where the legal issues have arisen. Members of the ELCA, pastors, congregations, synods, and others affiliated with this church should always consult their own attorneys, accountants, or similar professionals whenever legal issues or problems arise. Neither the Churchwide organization nor the general counsel is responsible for any loss, injury, liability, or damage related to your use of this document, whether from errors or omissions in the content of this document or any linked sites, from the site being down, or from any other use.

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15. Miscellaneous.

15.1. The Web Site is based in the United States. Access to the Materials may not be legal by certain persons or in certain countries. If you access the Web Site from outside the United States, you do so at your own risk and are responsible for compliance with the laws of your jurisdiction.

15.2. These Terms will be governed by the internal laws of the State of Illinois, without regard to its choice of law provisions. You agree that any action arising out of or relating to these Terms may be brought only in a court of competent jurisdiction in Cook County, Illinois, and you hereby consent to the jurisdiction, venue and convenience of such courts.

15.3. Headings in these Terms are for convenience only and shall not be used to interpret or construe its provisions.

15.4. If any provision of these Terms is found to be invalid, void or unenforceable by any court having competent jurisdiction, the remainder of these Terms shall remain in full force and effect.

15.5. Any waiver of any provision of these Terms will be effective only if it is in writing signed by the ELCA. No waiver of any term of these Terms shall be deemed a further or continuing waiver of such term or any other term.

15.6. Notices to the ELCA, other than as provided herein, can be sent to:

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Attn: General Counsel
8765 W. Higgins Road
Chicago, Illinois 60631

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