Constitutional Provisions for Special Circumstances
© You may copy this document for synodical use, providing copyright is acknowledged. Revised 2013.
Files for persons removed from the roster
“When an ordained minister resigns or is removed from that roster of this church, the roster record shall be retained by the secretary of this church. . .” (churchwide bylaw 7.41.19.). A parallel provision exists for those on the official lay rosters (7.52.26.). Upon notification of the individual’s death, the file is to be sent to the archives of the synod in which the person was last listed on the roster.
Files for persons who resign from the roster
In keeping with ELCA churchwide bylaws (7.41.19.) and (7.52.26.), note that the roster records for those persons who resign from the roster are to be retained by the secretary of this church. A record of the location of the file should be kept in the synodical office for retrieval of the file in the event of an application for reinstatement. Upon notification of the individual’s death, the file is to be sent to the archives of the synod in which the person was last listed on the roster.
Files for ordained ministers who resign during disciplinary hearing
When the resignation of an ordained minister occurs during a disciplinary investigation, but before written charges are filed, the synodical bishop shall decide to what extent a record of the matter should be preserved. When the resignation of an ordained minister occurs after the written charges have been brought, a copy of the charges is to be forwarded to the secretary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America for retention as provided by ELCA churchwide bylaw (20.21.07.).
Records of the proceedings of the discipline hearing committee
If the charges were not sustained and a disciplinary hearing action was not imposed, documentary and physical evidence presented at the hearing should be returned to the party that presented the same and the balance of the material is to be destroyed. If the discipline hearing committee sustained the charges and imposed disciplinary action, (a) documentary and physical evidence shall be returned to the party that presented it; (b) the written charges, the written decision of the discipline hearing committee, and the certification or other proof that notice was given to the accused ordained minister or congregation is to be delivered to the secretary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America to be held as provided in ELCA churchwide bylaw (20.21.07.). All other material is to be destroyed.