bishop election 2020

The Eastern North Dakota Synod Nominating Committee is pleased to announce the slate of nominees that will be included on the first ballot for Bishop at the 2020 Synod Assembly in August.  They include:

  • Rev. Jessica Daum - Eastern North Dakota Synod
  • Rev. Michael Jacobson - Martin's Lutheran Church, Casselton
  • Rev. Tessa Moon Leiseth - Horace Lutheran Church, Horace
  • Rev. Lynn Ronsberg - Sharon Lutheran Church, Grand Forks
  • Rev. Ivy Schulz - Calvary Lutheran Church, Grand Forks
  • Rev. Matt Valan - Messiah Lutheran Church, Fargo
  • Rev. Kristina Weber - Trinity Lutheran Church, Jamestown

These names originally surfaced from the congregations of the synod.  Each conference then held an assembly to identify seven nominees.  This list represents the seven nominees who secured the greatest number of votes from all eight conferences.

Electing  a bishop is one of the most important responsibilities in the life of a synod in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.  As an election, it is a process governed by the constitution, bylaws, and continuing resolutions of the synod; however, it is also a call process. A such, it involves discernment, from the perspective both of individual potential nominees and of the synod as a whole.  Thus, engaging in prayerful reflection and seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit are indispensable aspects of the process. 

We invite you and your congregation to pray for those discerning a call to serve as bishop; as well as our synod as together we live our mission "Jesus Christ call us to live in love as we Serve, equip and challenge God's people."  


What’s Next?

More information on the candidates will be available soon.


Due to the continued increase of COVID-19 in our region, the synod nominating committee has decided to host the bishop candidate Open Forums in an all-digital format. Stay tuned for more details.


The synod also looking for individuals to serve in a number of different roles, including the position of synod secretary.

Click HERE for more information on what positions are needed and their duties.

Please email nominations to and include “Synod Nomination” in the subject line. Deadline for nominations: June 1st


Important Details Regarding Synod Assembly:


Each congregation is to send voting members to the annual synod assembly. The number of members each congregation sends is determined by baptized membership. Many congregations appoint their voting members at their annual meetings. Use the table below to determine the number of representatives your congregation should send, being mindful that your voting membership is diverse when it comes to age, gender, ethnicity and sexual orientation.

Please note, per constitutional requirements, 60% of the voting members at synod assembly need to be lay. It is critical that each congregation send their recommended numbers to ensure that we are able to conduct the important business of the assembly.