For Rostered Leaders

Annual Reports

A Parochial Report (Forms A and C) is expected to be completed on an annual basis by February if snail-mailed or March if completed online.  Go to  The Parochial Report, while perhaps a tedious task to complete, nonetheless plays an important part in connecting your congregation with the mission and ministry of the whole […]

Congregational Files

Record-keeping is an important administrative detail for which pastors are ultimately responsible. Upon leaving a call, the synod requires a congregation’s elected secretary to verify that all congregational records are up-to-date and in good order. The model constitution for congregations specifies that it is the pastor’s responsibility to maintain the parish register. These registers already […]

Difficult Conversations

“Difficult Conversations and a New Way of Talking” was the theme of the 2016 Bishop’s Retreat held in State College.  Here are documents shared at that retreat: Bishop’s PowerPoint Presentation Gregg Kaufman’s Presentation, Part 1 Gregg Kaufman’s Presentation, Part 2 Climate Choices Gender-based Violence God Commons Health Care Issue Book Making Ends Meet Deliberate Dialogue […]

Ethical Practices

Normative Ethical Practices for Rostered Leaders of the USS: (Adopted by the Upper Susquehanna Synod Assembly in 1996) The Oath of Ordination requires a pastor to “adorn the doctrine of God our Savior by a holy life and conversation that in all our words and deeds we may seek (God’s) glory and the increase of […]

First Call

Click here for the document “First Call: Preparing for a Successful Ministry” The above document will help prepare a first call pastor, the calling congregation, and the synod for a successful transition into ministry together.  The information below describes our synod’s practices/expectations regarding theological education for rostered leaders in the first three years of their […]

HIPAA Guidance

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was enacted in 1996.  This federal legislation imposes national standards for the control of sensitive health care information.  There has been some confusion among local hospitals and nursing homes in implementing these new standards.  This has resulted in some recent inadvertent denial of patient information to clergy […]

Intentional Interim Ministry

Intentional Interim Ministry is a focused approach for guiding congregations during the time between regularly called pastors. It is not just crisis ministry, nor is it simply maintenance ministry.  It is ministry with specific “intentions” and tasks to be accomplished.  During this time the intentional interim works with the congregation on the following five tasks: […]

Leave for Pastors

The following describes this synod’s recommendations and policies regarding sabbatical leave, vacation, family leave (maternity/paternity), and holidays. Sabbatical Leave Consideration should be given by congregations to granting a sabbatical leave to a pastor every three to five years, beyond the First Call Theological Education program.  This leave is granted to provide an opportunity for the […]

Ministry Opportunities

(Updated January 31, 2018) Served by Interim/Seeking Candidates Holy Spirit, Turbotville Messiah, Mifflintown John, Belleville Mark’s, Williamsport (Intentional Interim) Served by Interim/Preparing Ministry Profiles Pine Street, Danville Currently Served by Intentional Interim Pastor Christ and Trinity, Milton Grace, Shamokin, and St. Paul’s, Gowen City Currently Served by Interim Pastor Beaver, Beaver Springs Christ, Buckhorn/St. Paul, […]


1.    A written request must be sent to the synodical bishop. This request must state clearly the reason(s) for such a request and how these reasons relate to the church’s ministry. 2.    The request must include the following information: a.    The rationale for the rostered minister remaining on the roster, including a statement of the […]

Seminary/Educational Debt Reduction

 Click Here for these Guidelines and Application The Upper Susquehanna Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America values strong and competent rostered leadership. Such leadership is essential to building a strong healthy and vibrant church on the territory of our synod. Many seminary graduates enter their first call with the burden of repaying large […]

Supply Pastors

The following describes how pastors may arrange for and compensate Sunday morning supply preachers in the event they are not able to be present for worship.   How do pastors or congregations obtain a supply pastor? Any pastor regularly serving a congregation, including a stated supply pastor or an interim pastor who is the stated […]

Transition into a New Call

This can be an exciting time of thanksgiving for both a congregation and their pastor-elect. At the same time, it can be a difficult time for the pastor being called and his/her family. The congregations of this Synod have been encouraged to be sensitive to the needs of its new pastor who is leaving one […]