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LCC Congregations invited to vote on changes to the constitution

November 6, 2017 3 Comments

Editor’s Note: The letter from Rev. Schallhorn previously referred to Article XI Section 4. That citation is from the amended constitution as adopted by the 2017 convention. The letter should instead refer to Article XIV Section 4, which is the section in the current (unamended) handbook.

CANADA – Lutheran Church–Canada(LCC’s) emailed congregations on November 2, 2017 to inform them of their right to vote on changes to Synod’s Constitution accepted by the 2017 Synodical Convention in October. For congregations without email addresses, physical letters went into the mail on November 6, 2017.

The letter comes from Rev. Paul Schallhorn, Secretary of LCC’s Board of Directors. The text of the letter follows:


Dear Fellow Members of LCC,

Grace and peace to you from Him with whom live the saints and the faithfully departed.

At the recent LCC Convention, amendments to our Synod’s Constitution were adopted by the delegates.  According to Article XIV, Part 4 of the current Handbook, these amendments need to be sent to each LCC congregation for ratification.  The Article reads as follows:

  1. Proposed amendments to the Constitution adopted by a Convention shall be submitted directly to each congregation that is a member of the Synod on an official ballot, and the congregations shall by official action express their affirmative or negative vote and indicate the same to the secretary of Lutheran Church-Canada on this official ballot. The proposed amendment shall become effective at the expiration of six months from the date on which the amendment was adopted by a Convention, provided a two-thirds majority of the votes cast by congregations within that period shall have favored the amendment. At the end of the six-month period the secretary of Lutheran Church-Canada shall announce the outcome of the voting by districts in the official periodicals of the Synod.

An information package outlining the changes approved by the Convention is currently being produced and will be sent to each congregation by December 15, along with the official ballot.   Should any congregation require such materials before December 15 (due to congregational meeting schedules, etc.), they should contact the Synod office.

May God continue to give you His every blessing as you serve Him in your corner of our Synod.

Think of God Loving You,

Rev. Paul Schallhorn,
Secretary, LCC Board of Directors




  • Rev. Robert Clifford said:

    Referencing the letter above concerning the congregations’ ratification of the changes to the Constitution, should not the letter reference Article XIV Part 4 of the Constitution from the 2014 Handbook of Synod rather that referencing Article XI Part 4 from the new Constitution?

    While the 2 are substantially identical, if the Delegates to Convention had voted in a new Constitution that did not have a ratification clause & we were de-facto operating now under that new Constitution, would that mean that a post-convention ratification by congregations would then not be required to make changes to the Constitution in the 2014 Handbook?

    Or if the Delegates to Convention had voted in a new Constitution requiring a different percentage that a 2/3 majority (say, a 50% majority), would that be the margin that must be met?

    Are we already operating under the new Constitution, in which case a “yes” or “no” ratification vote doesn’t really matter? In answer to this very question posed at Convention by many Delegates (if the online video of the Convention had not been deleted you could refer to the video recording of the Convention at session 4 at the 2hr 24min mark & following), the answer we were given was 3 options:

    1. we can reverse it all at the 2021 Synod Convention;

    2. we can hold a Special Convention (~$780,000);

    3. but, in any event, this new structure is in place for the next 4 years.

    As requested by many delegates when the above was answered to us, we look forward to receiving a script to present to our respective Circuit congregations, so that a consistent message is delivered across the country from Vancouver Island to the Atlantic.

  • Rev. Robert Clifford said:

    From the most recent “ABC Connect” online newsletter this is a quote concerning the upcoming vote:
    “Note: As you vote on the proposed LCC Constitution, please realize that a vote in favour of the proposed Constitution is a vote for the new regional structure. A vote against the LCC Constitution is a vote for the current structure of the Synod with three Districts.”
    Is this correct? Please advise.

  • Rev. Robert Clifford said:

    Thank you for addressing part of my 1st Comment with the “Editor’s Note” above.
    Presumably in response to my 2nd Comment, the “Note:” below is not in the new “ABC Connect” online newsletter, but rather there is a note saying, don’t ask the District Office, ask the Synod Office.
    If the District President of the ABC District who was at Convention, who was the Chairman of a Resolution Floor Committee, who was a candidate for President of Lutheran Church Canada, doesn’t have it right & had to be corrected, presumably by Synod office, how are the rest of us supposed to rightly know what a no or yes vote actually means?
    I have heard some conversation that a congregation which votes against the changes to the Constitution means they are removed from membership in LCC; surely that is not correct.

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