Dear Metro D.C. Synod Rostered Ministers and Congregations,
An important part of every ministry which often gets overlooked is how to intentionally end a rostered minister’s ministry when they retire or transition. The years of relationship and service need to have appropriate celebration and closure for all involved.
The synod staff has created two opportunities for engagement in how to approach this time. First, we are providing a discussion for rostered ministers to explore how to end/leave a call in a way that supports the ongoing mission of the parish and honors the integrity of the office of ministry. Second, we are providing a discussion for congregational leaders on the importance of ending a ministry well and how you can facilitate that good ending in your ministry context.
I invite all rostered ministers to engage in this conversation. This is information that will not only serve those looking toward retirement, but will serve all in their discernment. I also invite all congregations to have their lay leadership participate in the session for congregations. It is important to plan for separations well before they happen and create structures for positive transition.
The presenter for these two sessions is The Rev. Glenn E. Ludwig who was ordained into Word and Sacrament
Ministry for the Lutheran Church in America in 1973. During his 48 years in ministry, he has served in rural, town, and suburban parish settings. For almost thirty years, he served as the Senior Pastor of larger congregations, first in Ellicott City, MD, at First Lutheran, where he served for 23 years, and subsequently at Trinity Lutheran in Camp Hill, PA, where he was Interim Senior Pastor for three and a half years. His career also included serving as Chaplain to the University at Susquehanna University, his alma mater, from 1980-85, and as Vice President of Gettysburg Seminary from 2013-18, where he also served as Project Director for a Lilly Grant to train senior pastors in the ELCA.
He attended the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg and is a graduate (Magna Cum Laude) of Lancaster Theological Seminary in 1973, receiving the “Excellence in Ministry” Award, their highest honor, in 2000
Pastor Ludwig is also the author of seven books, the most recent of which addresses the issue of long-term pastorates and was published by the Alban Institute.
He and his wife, Stella, a retired elementary school teacher and former outdoor ministry director, live in Mechanicsburg, PA. Pastor Ludwig’s two children and four grandsons live in PA as well.
Bishop Leila M. Ortiz