CHICAGO — The Rev. Christopher deForest, Kutztown, Pa., was elected Oct. 24 to serve a six-year term as bishop of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The election took place during an online synod assembly.
Rev. deForest was elected on the fifth ballot, with 260 votes. The Rev. Ryan Hersch, pastor of Atonement Lutheran Church in Wyomissing, Pa., received 222 votes.
The bishop-elect has served as pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Kutztown, Pa., since 2018. He served as pastor at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Lehighton, Pa., from 2011 to 2018 and as admissions advisor for Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa, from 2010 to 2011. Wartburg is one of seven ELCA seminaries. Prior to his ordination, deForest was interim executive director for the Haitian Timoun Foundation from 2007 to 2008, director of communications for PartyLite Gifts, Inc., from 1993 to 2003 and a video creative specialist for Tupperware from 1987 to 1992.
Rev. deForest received a Bachelor of Arts degree from University of New Mexico in Albuquerque in 1987 and a Master of Divinity degree from Wartburg Seminary in 2009.
Rev. deForest’s installation is scheduled for Dec. 5.
The Rev. Samuel R. Zeiser has served as bishop of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod since 2008.
Information about the Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod is available at nepasynod.org/.
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About the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America:
The ELCA is one of the largest Christian denominations in the United States, with 3.3 million members in more than 8,900 worshiping communities across the 50 states and in the Caribbean region. Known as the church of “God’s work. Our hands.,” the ELCA emphasizes the saving grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ, unity among Christians and service in the world. The ELCA’s roots are in the writings of the German church reformer Martin Luther.
For information contact:
Candice Hill Buchbinder