Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches
- Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches
The Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches was an American Lutheran Christian denomination that existed from 1902 to 1971. In 1971 it merged with the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod, and it now operates as a non-geographic district of that body (see SELC District (LCMS)).
The denomination was founded by Slovak Lutheran immigrants in Connellsville, Pennsylvania on September 2 1902 as the Slovak Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Augsburg Confession in the United States of America ("Slovenská evanjelická celocirkev augsburgského vyznania v Spojenych štátoch amerických"). At its origin, the denomination had ten clergymen and 15 . Most congregations were composed of recent immigrants, and liturgies were usually conducted in the Slovak language.
The name was changed in 1913 to Slovak Evangelical Lutheran Synod of the United States of America. In 1945, the name was shorten to Slovak Evangelical Lutheran Church. By 1959, the use of Slovak as a primary liturgical language had died out and the denomination was renamed the Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches.
In 1971 during its convention held at Zion Lutheran Church in Clark, NJ, the Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches officially merged with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod with whom it had always been a partner. The SELC became a non-geographic district of the LCMS. As a part of the LCMS, the SELC could no longer be considered a "synod," thus it is officially known as the SELC District of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. The district retained the initials "SELC" to mark its origins and heritage.
Today, as part of the LCMS, the SELC District oversees 55 congregations in 11 US states and 2 Canadian provinces and has nearly 18,000 baptized members and over 13,000 communicants. The district is strongest in the Northeastern United States and the Midwest.
Presidents of SELC
*Daniel Jonaten Záboj Laucek 1902–05
*John Pelikán 1905–13
*Stephen Tuhy 1913–19
*J. Pelikán 1919–21
*John Somora 1921–22
*John Samuel Bradác 1922–39
*Andrew Daniel 1939–49
*Paul Rafaj 1949–63
*John Kovac 1963–69
*Milan A. Ontko 1969–71
* [http://www.selc.lcms.org/ Official website of the SELC District of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod]
* [http://www.lcms.org/ca/www/cyclopedia/02/display.asp?t1=s&word=SYNODOFEVANGELICALLUTHERANCHURCHES Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches]
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