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ELCA Study on Funding Theological Education

10/25/1996 12:00:00 AM



FUNDING ELCA THEOLOGICAL EDUCATION

One of the last elements of a major study by the Evangelical
Lutheran Church in America is about to bear discernible results -
- the funding of theological education.  A study of theological
education that began in 1989 has helped shape the eight ELCA
seminaries of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America into
three "clusters" that gather all the theological education
resources of the church in their territories into an ELCA
Theological Education Network.  The study noted that churchwide
support of the seminaries had dropped from about 50 percent of
the seminaries' budgets to about 25 percent.  The church's 1995
Churchwide Assembly directed the ELCA Division for Ministry to
develop a process that would increase financial support for
theological education.  The division's board met in Chicago Oct.
18-20 and heard that confidential discussions are underway to
establish a national trust for seminary scholarships. "It's at a
very delicate stage," said the Rev. Joseph M. Wagner, executive
director of the ELCA Division for Ministry.  "It's not public
yet."  When the board meets in March, it will receive a full
report with recommendations on funding of theological education.
In separate action the board approved $5,468,620 in division
expenditures for 1997 -- a $37,895 increase from the $5,430,725
budgeted in 1996.  The largest item in the division's budgets for
both 1996 and 1997 is $3,825,380 in funding for ELCA seminaries.

For information contact: Ann Hafften, Dir., ELCA News Service, (312)
380-2958 or AHAFFTEN@ELCA.ORG; Frank Imhoff, Assoc. Dir., (312)
380-2955 or FRANKI@ELCA.ORG

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