Southeastern Synod ELCA

Conferences & Deaneries

Conferences

Conferences are geographic divisions of the synod. They are organized as a way for congregations to cooperate in mission and ministry with each other for the sake of the world.  

The role of conferences in the synod is outlined in Chapter 12 of the synod constitution. Conferences are the principal means through which inter-congregational worship, education, and ministry are provided. Conferences are encouraged to have at least one event per year that incorporates education and worship for its member congregations.  Conferences should have elected officials as outline in the synod constitution.  Conferences also elect representatives to the Synod Council every two years.

Click here to find an interactive map of ELCA ministries around the world, including our Southeastern Synod congregations and ministries

A list of conference chairs and a geographical description of the conferences follows:

Conference 1-Ebenezer (East Georgia from Augusta to the Georgia coast)
Conference Chair: None

Conference 2-Good N.E.W.S (Southern Georgia from outside I-285, including Macon and Valdosta)
Conference Chair: Ms. Carla Stickles, Catula, GA

Conference 3-Trinity (Inside I-285)
Conference Chair: Ms. Roxann Thompson, Decatur, GA

Conference 4-Magi (Northeast Georgia from outside of I-285, including Elberton and Hartwell)
Conference Chair: Deaconess Amanda Spangler, Athens, GA

Conference 5-Mission (Northwest Georgia)
Conference Chair: The Rev. Dr. James Clark,  Dunwoody, GA

Conference 6-Life Together (East Tennessee from Chattanooga to Bristol, TN)
Conference Chair: The Rev. Ed Myers, Johnson City, TN

Conference 7-Diaspora (Alabama, from Montgomery northward)
Conference Chair: The Rev. Randy T Jones, Montgomery, AL 

Conference 8-The King (Middle Tennessee, Memphis, and Tupelo)
Conference Chair: Mr. Gary Wicks, Franklin, TN

Conference 9-Gulf Coast (Jackson, MS, Dothan and Mobile, AL, and congregations southward)
Conference Chair: None

The conference chair serves as a liaison between the conference and the bishop. The conference chair is elected to serve a two-year term and is eligible to serve for one additional consecutive term. 


Deaneries

Deaneries are smaller geographic divisions of the synod made up of the rostered ministers in an area.  Deaneries are served by a dean who is appointed by the bishop.  Synod deans serve as an extension of the Office of the Bishop and coordinate communication on behalf of the bishop, provide pastoral care to rostered ministers in their deaneries, and, in some cases work with assistants to the bishop in congregation call process work.  Deans are also available to consult with congregations on behalf of the bishop and, at the bishop's request, may represent the bishop and this synod at churchwide, synodical, conference and congregational worship services and other special events.

Coalitions are non-geographic organizations of ELCA members and congregations, organized around a particular mission or ministry focus.  Chapter 12 of the Synod Constitution states that “The purpose of such groupings shall be to foster interdependent relationships among congregations, institutions, and synodical and churchwide units for missional purposes.” (S12.01.)

The Rev David Hunter Conference 1
The Rev Jason Talsness Conference 1
The Rev Dave Helfrich Conference 2
The Rev Fritz Wiese Conference 2
The Rev John Barichivich Conference 2
The Rev Mary Peters Conference 3
The Rev Patti Axel Conference 4
The Rev Chris Hermansen Conference 5
The Rev Rick Ohsiek Conference 6
The Rev Jim Nipper Conference 6
The Rev Dr John Rossing Conference 6
The Rev Gary Soop Conference 7
The Rev Karen Boda Conference 7
The Rev Cliff Bahlinger Conference 8
The Rev Rick Roberts Conference 8
The Rev Dave Parr Conference 9
The Rev Tom Clark Conference 9