ELCA mourns death of Vice President Bill Horne

8/17/2021 4:00:00 PM

CHICAGO (August 17, 2021) – William "Bill" Horne II, vice president of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), died Aug. 14 of a suspected heart attack. Horne was a member of St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Clearwater, Fla. He served as city manager of Clearwater since 2001. 

"Bill was a man of absolute integrity and a deep, living faith in the grace and love of Jesus. Bill embodied the Lutheran understanding of vocation as husband, father and city manager," said ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton.

Horne was elected vice president by the 2016 ELCA Churchwide Assembly. The position is the highest a layperson can hold in the ELCA, and in this role Horne presided over the ELCA Church Council. In his reports to the council, he often spoke of his practice of meditating on the Sunday lessons "to hear what God is up to in my life, and how I might apply the word to my work vocation and daily walk with my congregation, family and neighbors."

Horne loved Christ's church. He was invited by a Lutheran Air Force chaplain to be part of the community and never looked back. He was active in his congregation and sang in the choir. He also had served as the vice president of the Florida-Bahamas Synod and on the ELCA Church Council as a member and, these past five years, as the ELCA vice president. "Bill was energized by being the churchwide representative to synod assemblies. His leadership was strong, thoughtful and wise," Eaton said.

Following his election in 2016, Horne told the assembly, "Brothers and sisters, I love this church. I love you. We have a lot of work to do, and I know that our dedication and our commitment to each other and our hard work will make the ELCA what God wants us to be."

Services will be held:
Saturday, Aug. 21
11 a.m.
Calvary Church
110 McMullen Booth Rd.
Clearwater, FL 33759
Masks are required, and social distancing will be encouraged.
The service will be livestreamed here: https://streamedevents.online.church/

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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 3.3 million members in more than 8,900 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:
Jocelyn Fuller
Sr. Director, Strategic Communications


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