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West Virginia-Western Maryland Synod
Page Contents
  • Governing documents
  • Synod Assembly 2019 & 2020
  • Synod Council
    • Executive Committee
    • Standing committees appointed by Synod Council
      • Nominating Committee
      • Finance Committee
    • Ad hoc committees appointed by Synod Council
      • Governing Documents
      • 2020 Synod Assembly Planning
      • Commission for Synodical Lay Worship Leadership
      • Synod Assembly Future Sites
  • Standing committees elected by Synod Assembly
    • Consultation Committee
    • Discipline Committee
  • Conferences & deans
  • Other Entities and Appointees

Governing Documents

Several required provisions of the Constitution for Synods were amended by Churchwide Assembly 2019. They are now integrated into our synod's constitution. In addition, Synod Council, at its fall meeting, adopted a continuing resolution governing email voting by Synod Council. The updated documents can be downloaded here:

For information regarding congregational governing documents, visit the congregations page.

Synod Assembly 2019 & 2020

The first installment of Synod Assembly 2019 information is now up. Visit the Synod Assembly Page to find out the when, where, and what of the assembly.

The official call of Synod Assembly 2020 was never issued because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Synod Council reserves the right to call a regular or special Synod Assembly at any point. As of now, there are no definite plans to do so. Visit the Synod Assembly Page to learn more about the ramifications of not holding Synod Assembly 2020.

Officers

An asterisk (*) indicates those whose terms are expiring while we are unable to hold an assembly because of the pandemic. They continue in office until replaced by the next regular Synod Assembly.

Office
Occupant
Term
Term Period
Bishop
The Rt. Rev. Matthew Lynn Riegel, S.T.M.
1
2015-2021
Vice President
Paul Wangerin
3
2019-2022
Secretary
Norma Gensler
2
2017-2021
Treasurer
Joseph Solberg
1
2016-2020*

Synod Council

Synod Council meets regularly three to four times during the year with special meetings held, often by teleconference, as need. The Synod Council is chaired by the vice president. The membership of the Synod Council includes the four officers of the synod and twelve voting members from around the synod, representing a balance of clergy and laity, geographical distribution, and age. An asterisk (*) indicates those whose terms are expiring while we are unable to hold an assembly because of the pandemic. They continue in office until replaced by the next regular Synod Assembly. "Until next regular assembly" indicates that a vacancy appointment has taken place, and those appointments continue until replaced by the next regular Synod Assembly.

Seat
Occupant
Term
Term Period
Clergy MVMC
The Rev. Ruth Bullwinkle 1
2018-2021
Clergy PC
The Rev. Jason Felici
1
2019-2022
Clergy OKVC
The Rev. Emilie Theobald-Rowlands
2
2019-2022
Clergy UOVC
The Rev. Bill Ridenhour
1
2019-2022
Laity MVMC
Debby Borrelli
1
2019-2022
Laity PC
Elizabeth Rini
1
Until next regular assembly
Laity OKVC
Andrea Brock
1
2018-2021
Laity UOVC
Nancy Weeks
1
2018-2021
Laity At-large
Mary Sanders
1
2018-2021
Laity At-large
Pam Pritt
1
2017-2020*
Young Adult
The Rev. Michael Wright
1
Until next regular assembly
Youth
Abigail Spray
1
2019-2020*
WELCA (Advisory)
Priscilla Horner

WELCA designee

Executive Committee of the Synod Council

The four offices, one clergy member of the Synod Council, and two lay members of the Synod Council are appointed by the Synod Council to serve as the Executive Committee of the Synod Council.

Seat
Occupant
Bishop
The Rt. Rev. Matthew Lynn Riegel, S.T.M.
Vice President
Paul Wangerin
Secretary
Norma Gensler
Treasurer
Joseph Solberg
Clergy
The Rev. Ruth Bullwinkle
Laity 1
Nancy Weeks
Laity 2
Pam Pritt

Standing Committees Appointed by Synod Council

Nominating Committee

Seat
Occupant
Clergy MVMC
The Rev. Ruth Bullwinkle, Chair
Clergy PC
The Rev. Karen Erskine-Valentine
Clergy OKVC
The Rev. Patrice Weirick
Clergy UOVC
The Rev. Joel Richter
Laity MVMC
Mary Sanders
Laity PC
Wm. "Bill" Ack
Laity OKVC
George Friedline
Laity UOVC
Lois Broyles

Finance Committee

Members: Paul Wangerin, The Rev. Bill Ridenhour, Bruce Dalton, with the treasurer and bishop serving ex officio.

Ad Hoc Committees Appointed by Synod Council

Synod Assembly Future Sites

Appointed to identify sites for future synod assemblies consistent with the directives and counsel of SA19.06.10. Members: The Rev. Matt Day, Nancy Weeks, and Pam Pritt.

Governing Documents

Initially appointed with instructions to review this synod's continuing resolutions and the 2019 Churchwide Assembly's recommended amendments to the Constitution for Synods and make report to Synod Council its recommendations prior to any required deadlines for amendments of this synod's governing documents, the committee has been further authorized to
  • report its recommendations related to non-required provisions in the Model Constitution to Synods, as found in its progress report for this meeting, directly to Synod Assembly 2020;
  • review the Provisional Guidance for Deans with power to recommend any needful amendments to the Bylaws and Continuing Resolutions to the either the Synod Council or the Synod Assembly; and
  • make recommendations to Synod Council with respect to holding Synod Assembly in 2021.
Members: The Rev Jason Felici, The Rev. Sally Bartling, and The Rt. Rev. Matthew Riegel.

Commission on Synodical Lay Worship Leadership

Charged with review of the Plan for Synodical Lay Worship Leadership, reporting back to Synod Council with recommendations, and with development of steps for implementation. Members: The Rev. Sean Smith (Chair), The Rev. Sally Bartling, and Stephanie Setley.

2021 Synod Assembly Planning

Appointed to assist in matters related to the planning of the 2021 Synod Assembly. Members: Andrea Brock, Matthew Riegel, Elizabeth Rini, Joseph Solberg, Nancy Weeks, and Michael Wright. Jason Felici was also appointed to serve as an advisory expert in parliamentary law.

Standing Committees Elected by Synod Assembly

An asterisk (*) indicates those whose terms are expiring while we are unable to hold an assembly because of the pandemic. They continue in office until replaced by the next regular Synod Assembly.

Consultation Committee

Seat
Occupant
Term Period
Clergy 1
The Rev. Linda Muhly
2018-2024
Clergy 2
The Rev. Diane Day
2018-2024
Clergy 3
The Rev. Emilie Theobald-Rowlands
2014-2020*
Clergy 4
The Rev. Jess Felici
2019-2025
Clergy 5
The Rev. Randy Richardson
2018-2021
Clergy 6
The Rev. Sally Bartling
2016-2022
Laity 1
Joseph Harney
2018-2024
Laity 2
Pam Pritt
2014-2020*
Laity 3
Steve Gnegy
2015-2021
Laity 4
Dinah Courrier
2016-2022
Laity 5
Jeanne LeMasters
2016-2022
Laity 6
Jane Hazer
2016-2022

Discipline Committee

Seat
Occupant
Term Period
Clergy 1
The Rev. Tony Setley
2018-2024
Clergy 2
The Rev. Matt Day
2018-2024
Clergy 3
The Rev. Jason Felici
2015-2020*
Clergy 4
The Rev. Carl Ames
2015-2021
Clergy 5
The Rev. Ian Reid
2017-2023
Clergy 6
The Rev. Paul Schafer
2017-2023
Laity 1
Brandon Mitchell
2018-2024
Laity 2
Nancy Weeks
2018-2024
Laity 3
Paul Wangerin
2015-2021
Laity 4
Joseph Solberg
2015-2020*
Laity 5
Norma Gensler
2017-2023
Laity 6
Jim Nichols
2017-2023

Conferences & Deans

The WV-WMD Synod has four conferences, three of them further divided into two clusters each:

  • Mon Valley-Mountain Conference (MVMC)
    • I-79 Corridor Cluster: The Rev. Linda Muhly, Dean
    • Mountaintop Cluster: The Rev. Don Thomas, Dean
  • Potomac Conference (PC): The Rev. Matthew Day
  • Ohio-Kanawha Valley Conference (OKVC): The Rev. Randy Richardson, Dean
  • Upper Ohio Valley Conference (UOVC): The Rev. Paul Schafer, Dean

A full listing of the congregations of each conference can be found in B12.01 of the Synod Bylaws.

A new protocol for deans was adopted by Synod Council at its January 2020 meeting. It is currently under review for codification by the Ad Hoc Committee on Governing Documents. It will be posted upon completion of codification. In the meantime, you may request a copy of the Provisional Guidance Related to Deans from the bishop.

Other Entities & Appointees

Various church-related entities have boards or other positions which are filled through the appointment of the Synod Council or the bishop.

Entity
Position
Occupant
Term
Appointment
United Lutheran Seminary
Board of Directors Melody Stevens
2020-2022 Synod Council
West Virginia Council of Churches
Council
The Rt. Rev. Matthew Riegel
N/A
Ex officio
Caroline Furnace
Board of Directors The Rev. Matt Day
At Will
Bishop
WV-WMD Hunger
Hunger Lead
Mary Sanders
At will
Bishop

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