Serving God, Changing Lives

William Gafkjen reelected bishop of ELCA Indiana-Kentucky Synod

​CHICAGO — The Rev. William O. Gafkjen, Indianapolis, was reelected June 9 to serve a third six-year term as bishop of the Indiana-Kentucky Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The election was held during the synod assembly, June 9-11 at the Horizon Convention Center in Muncie, Ind.

The bishop was reelected on the first ballot with 204 votes. A total of 192 votes was needed to for election.

Gafkjen has served as bishop since 2010. Prior to his election he was assistant to the bishop of the synod from 2002 to 2010. Previously he served congregations in Minnesota, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Indiana.

Gafkjen earned a Bachelor of Arts from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., in 1979 and a Master of Divinity from Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minn., in 1985. He received a Doctor of Ministry in Gospel and Culture from Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Ga. St. Olaf is one of 26 ELCA colleges and universities. Luther is one of seven ELCA seminaries. Columbia is one of 10 seminaries of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Information about the Indiana-Kentucky Synod is available at

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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

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