CHICAGO — The Rev. Dr. Megan Rohrer (they/their), San Francisco, Calif., was elected May 8 to serve a six-year term as bishop of the Sierra Pacific Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). Rohrer is the first transgender bishop in the ELCA. The election took place during an online synod assembly.
Rohrer was elected on the fifth ballot, with 209 votes. The Rev. Jeff R. Johnson, pastor of University Lutheran Chapel of Berkeley in Berkeley, Calif., received 207 votes.
The bishop-elect has served as pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in San Francisco since 2014 and as community chaplain coordinator for the San Francisco Police Department since 2018. They served as executive director of the Welcome Ministry in San Francisco from 2002 to 2014, assistant night minister for the San Francisco Night Ministry from 2013 to 2018 and community garden coordinator at Project Homeless Connect from 2010 to 2012. Rohrer also served as pastor of a multiparish call serving the homeless and hungry at Welcome Ministry from 2006 to 2014.
Rohrer received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Augustana University in Sioux Fall, S.D., in 2001, a Master of Divinity degree from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley in 2005, and a Doctor of Ministry degree in 2017. Rohrer is currently a doctoral candidate in transformative studies at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. Augustana is one of 26 ELCA colleges and universities.
Rohrer’s installation is scheduled for Sept. 11 at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Walnut Creek, Calif.
The Rev. Mark W. Holmerud has served as bishop of the Sierra Pacific Synod since 2008 and will retire June 30.
Information about the Sierra Pacific Synod is available at spselca.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 nearly 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