CHICAGO (Sept. 2, 2020) — The Rev. Amy Odgren, Walker, Minn., was elected Aug. 29 to serve a six-year term as bishop of the Northeastern Minnesota Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The election took place during an online synod assembly.
Odgren was elected on the fifth ballot, with 167 votes. The Rev. David M. Carlson, pastor of Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Duluth, Minn., received 140 votes.
The bishop-elect has served as assistant to the bishop and director for evangelical mission in the Northeastern Minnesota Synod since 2016. She served as pastor of Spirit Lutheran Church (2015 to 2016) and as pastor and redeveloper of First Lutheran Church (2013 to 2015), both in Eau Claire, Wis. Odgren also served as assistant to the bishop and director for evangelical mission in the Northwest Synod of Wisconsin (2007 to 2013); associate pastor of First in Eau Claire (2003 to 2007), and mission developer pastor of Bridge of Life Lutheran Church in Holmen, Wis. (2001 to 2003).
Odgren received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minn., in 1980 and a Master of Divinity degree from Wartburg Theological Seminary, Dubuque, Iowa, in 2001. Gustavus is one of 26 ELCA colleges and universities. Wartburg is one of seven ELCA seminaries.
Odgren’s installation is scheduled for Oct. 17.
The Rev. Thomas M. Aitken has served as bishop of the Northeastern Minnesota Synod since 2008.
Information about the Northeastern Minnesota Synod is available at nemnsynod.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 3.5 million members in more than 9,100 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.