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Leila Ortiz elected bishop of the ELCA Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Synod

6/18/2019 1:40:00 PM

​CHICAGO – The Rev. Leila M. Ortiz, Washington, D.C., was elected June 15 to serve a six-year term as bishop of the Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The election took place during the synod assembly, held June 14-15 at the College Park (Md.) Marriot and Conference Center.

Ortiz was elected on the fifth ballot, with 150 votes. The Rev. Jeanette D. Leisk, pastor of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Alexandria, Va., received 121 votes.

The bishop-elect has served as assistant to the synod bishop for mobility and candidacy since 2016. She served as associate pastor of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Gaithersburg, Md., from 2014 to 2016, and pastor-in-residence at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Herndon, Va., from 2013 to 2014.

Ortiz received a Bachelor of Psychology from Wagner College in Staten Island, N.Y., in 2005 and a Master of Divinity from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia (now United) in 2009. She is currently a doctoral candidate at United. Wagner is one of 26 ELCA colleges and universities, and United is one of seven ELCA seminaries.

Ortiz will be installed Oct. 12 at National Presbyterian Church in Washington, D.C.

The Rev. Richard H. Graham has served as bishop since 2007 and will retire Aug. 31.

Information about the Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Synod is available at metrodcelca.org.

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About the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America:
The ELCA is one of the largest Christian denominations in the United States, with nearly 3.5 million members in more than 9,100 worshiping communities across the 50 states and in the Caribbean region. Known as the church of "God's work. Our hands.," the ELCA emphasizes the saving grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ, unity among Christians and service in the world. The ELCA's roots are in the writings of the German church reformer Martin Luther.

For information contact:
Candice Hill Buchbinder


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