These questions have been sourced from the face-to-face training conducted around Australia and New Zealand and also via submission the LCA Convention of Synod email address. If you have questions about Convention that are not answered here or elsewhere on the Synod website, contact the Convention of Synod planning team via firstname.lastname@example.org
The parish can appoint a replacement or an ‘alternate’ delegate from their own membership or from another parish. An alternate still needs to be recorded as an attendee but acts only for the period of Convention. Registration can be swapped from one person to another. An alternate can represent only one parish.
There will be approximately 440 delegates, including 250 lay delegates and 130 pastor delegates. The exact number will be known only when all the delegates have formally registered at Convention.
Registrations for delegates, visitors and officials will open on 5 June 2018 and will close on 24 August 2018.
Yes; the invoices were sent on 20 February and were due for payment by 30 April. If your parish has not received this invoice, please call Debbie or Jayne on 08 8267 7300 or email email@example.com as soon as possible. If your parish has not yet paid the invoice, please attend to this as a priority, as this income is necessary to meet the costs of organising and running Convention. Included with the invoice was an application for assistance. If you have applied for this and your application has been approved, the payment will be made in the week of 11 May.
Delegate training is highly recommended but not compulsory. Face-to-face training was conducted by Grassroots Training in February and March in 13 locations in Australia and New Zealand. Online training will be available in June.
At the time of the union of the two synods (ELCA and UELCA) into the new Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA), one of the major sticking points was what was meant by the ‘inerrancy’ of Scripture. This led to a lengthy debate before union, which continued for almost two decades within the young LCA. Seminary lecturers, pastors and presidents all contributed. The debate resulted in a number of doctrinal statements on the inerrancy and authority of Scripture, the most recent of which is the Consensus Statement on Holy Scripture (1984). The documents capture and present the progression of the debate chronologically, providing access to the variety of theological opinions presented through original documents preserved in the Lutheran Archives. The dossier is available at https://e-resources.alc.edu.au/Pages/inspiration-and-inerrancy.aspx Readers might also find find helpful this article, The authority of Scripture, by Bishop John Henderson, which appeared in Lutheran Theological Journal 51.3 (December 2017).
Travel and Accommodation
Yes. LCA eNews and Synod eNews, both of which are emailed to delegates, explain how to register your interest. We’ll put you in touch with other delegates who wish to share.
This will vary considerably depending on the mode of transport used, where the delegate is coming from, the type of accommodation booked and the number of meals requested. Please refer to the Travel and Accommodation section of this website for accommodation options and advice about travel.
The opening worship will commence at 7.00pm. There will be ample signage, and volunteers will be there to help you. Registration of delegates and visitors will be open before the opening worship, from 5.00pm to 6.45pm.
Yes. This is because the planning team wants to encourage a healthy engagement and interaction between delegates who come from a range of backgrounds and places. This arrangement will commence on the Wednesday for the first plenary session and continue on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Yes. The facilitators have been appointed and will be briefed about their role on Wednesday evening prior to the commencement of the business sessions on Thursday.
Bishop John Henderson has once again expressed a hope that all delegates will participate fully in a spirit of active listening and respect for one another, as they did at the 2015 Convention of Synod. The Five Principles of Dialogue, developed by the Ordination Dialogue Group prior to the 2015 Convention, provide a framework for this to occur and to enable all delegates to feel they have been heard. If there difficulties are being experienced at a table, for whatever reason, there will be resource people available to offer assistance.
It is important that all delegates can access the information available on this website and receive LCA Synod eNews, which provides important updates about Convention. All delegates will be issued with an LCA email address and mailbox, with access to the LCA portal, and are automatically subscribed to LCA Synod eNews.
The Book of Reports will be mailed to all delegates. After 20 September, if you have not received a copy, please call Debbie or Jayne on 08 8267 7300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org In addition, the Book of Reports other relevant material and information will be available on this website, and delegates will be alerted to any updates on the page through Synod eNews. All delegates (2015 and 2018) are automatically subscribed to Synod eNews.
Yes, but we are promoting a responsible use of social media by delegates, and there will be some sessions where delegates will be respectfully asked not to use these media. The chairperson of the session will inform delegates when this is the case. The reason for this approach is that, at some times during Convention, it will be important that the information is formally approved for general release by the LCA Bishop or his representative, with the support of the LCA Communications Manager.
General Pastors Conference
The General Pastors Conference met 10–12 July 2018. The advice from General Pastors Conference, together with other relevant background information from GCC, will be included in the Book of Reports.
Section V.F.2 (b) “General Pastors Conference” of the LCA By-Laws states the following:
2. The General Pastors’ Conference shall serve as a theological adviser to the General Synod and in fulfilment of such function
(a) shall consider those questions, issues and statements of a theological and confessional nature which appear on the agenda of the Convention of the General Synod and are referred to it by the General Church Council;
(b) may voice its opinion with regard to the advisability or non-advisability of dealing with any such question or issue or of adopting a particular statement; and
(c) may recommend amendments, corrections, additions or explanations concerning proposed statements.
No, it cannot veto a proposal. However, it can recommend amendments as outlined in the By-Laws above.
The closing date for Synod proposals is 15 May 2018. Late proposals in writing and handed to the Secretary before the first business session may be accepted by Synod and placed on the agenda. At the discretion of General Church Council, new business may be submitted to Synod during the days of the Convention.
The closing date for nominations to LCA boards and committees is 15 May 2018. Nominations will not be taken from the floor. Visit the Nominations page on the LCA website for full details.
No, the agenda has quite deliberately distinguished between the reporting sessions which will be almost entirely on the Wednesday, and the sessions on Thursday, Friday (ordination issue only) and Saturday that focus on the Synod proposals.
At the time of the Synod training, the intention was that the proposals considered on Thursday would be tabled and voted upon on Saturday. However, for practical reasons, the proposals will now be debated and voted upon as they arise. The only exception is the ordination question, which will involve a process of dialogue and debate on Thursday and Friday, followed by a vote on Saturday (unless the Convention determines to vote on Friday, if time permits).
Section VII.C.6. Procedure for Transacting Business states that: ‘All reports published in the official book of reports or in supplements thereto shall be regarded as received by the convention by virtue of that fact’.
Eighteen departments and agencies will be presenting their reports three times to three groups of delegates. The intention is to enable more scope for engagement between the presenters and the delegates, while still ensuring all delegates hear from all of them. Unfortunately, due to time constraints, it will not be possible to hear from all the boards, but their reports are in the Book of Reports.
Each group will include note-takers who will compile a summary of the discussion to be posted on this website.
Visitors are welcome to attend the reporting sessions. Please note however that visitors will only be able to ask questions of the presenters at the discretion of the meeting facilitator. The limited time means that priority for questions must be given to the delegates.
This principle applies to all of the issues to be considered at Convention of Synod.
The chairperson will advise the delegates about the process for voting in respect to each of the proposals. Any process will be consistent with the Procedure for Transacting Business as outlined in the LCA By-Laws.
Nominations close on 15 May. Nomination will not be taken from the floor. The Standing Committee on Nominations is responsible for preparing the list of nominations for each of the board. The Book of Nominations will be sent to all delegates with their Book of Report. The actual voting will depend on the outcome of the proposals from GCC, which will be taken early in the business program.
We had previously advised that the Synod offering would be directed to the Local Mission 'You're Welcome!' video project. However, given the gravity of the drought affecting large parts of Australia, it has been decided to direct the offering to the support of struggling farming communities. The LCA Disaster & Welfare Fund will receive the offering, and donations will be distributed in accordance with the fund's existing procedures and regulations.
Delegates, you are invited to bring your congregation's offering with you to Synod and place it on the plate. A safer way would be to deposit the offering in the Synod Offering account at the LLL (click here). Alternatively, you may deposit in this account: LCA Synod Ac; BSB 704942; Account 100698743
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