Calling a Rostered Minister

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

– Jeremiah 29:11

Begin a New Pastoral Ministry in Your Congregation

The Metropolitan Chicago Synod is a partner to your congregation in transitioning from one rostered ministry to another. In this section, you’ll find support, resources and service to help you in the process every step of the way. No matter where your congregation is on this journey, we can help.

Transition Process

What is the Transition Process?

The transition process is the time between one pastor leaving a congregational call, and another accepting a call to the congregation. Use this information when a pastor resigns or leaves a congregational call.

What’s next?

What do we have to do to call another pastor?

Call the synod office at 773-248-0021 to find out which pastoral staff member (associate to the bishop) will be working with your congregation.

After calling the synod office and setting up a meeting with the bishop’s associate, the bishop’s associate meets with the congregation council to review the five-part transition process.

An associate to the bishop will walk with your congregation throughout the process, and will be available for questions and consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Until we call a new pastor, what do we do?

Congregations will either contract with an Interim Pastor or rely on pulpit supply.

How much do we pay?

This is negotiated between the interim pastor and the congregation according to synod salary guidelines. The synod office will assist with this.

Recommended pulpit supply rates are available here→


Transition is a time of opportunity in the life of your congregation. That being said, transitions present both challenges and opportunities. Some members may be looking toward the past with nostalgia, while others might be looking forward to the future with hope.

Because of this natural tendency, to either look toward the past or the future, the synod office has established a partnership with a group of pastors who have been called and prepared to lead congregations in transition toward the opportunity that this time represents. These interim pastors have experience and expertise in helping congregations to grieve their loss in a healthy way, and then to embrace the creativity, imagination, and hope that God always uses to turn our eyes forward.

The interim pastor is not your “next pastor,” but the interim pastor will help you identify and welcome your next pastor in a joyous and healthy way.

The interim pastor does this through a five-part process that includes:
  1. When a Pastor Leaves
  2. Assessment
  3. Completion of Ministry Site Profile
  4. Call Committee and Selection and Call Process
  5. New Pastor is Called

The details of the process will vary depending on the congregation. This transition information is designed to explain the general pattern of the process. As you move through this, the synod office encourages you to contact the pastoral staff member that will walk with you through the process for advice, prayer, and encouragement.

For help in setting up a Ministry Site Profile (MSP), please contact Heather at the synod office at or 773-248-0021.

Transition — The Five Steps

The time between one pastor leaving, and another being called, is called the Transition Process. There are five steps that are included in this process.

Transition Process | The Five Steps

Learn more about each of the five steps: 

ELCA Resources

Additional Resources


Your Constitution

If your congregation is revising its constitution, or if you have a question about your constitution, email the synod secretary, the Rev. Erin Clausen: .

You can also view a webinar about this topic.

Quick Search

Find It Fast

Looking for a specific form, policy or guideline? Try a keyword search at the top of the page, or search document library here→

New Contact

Change of Contact?

Has your congregation had a change of contact information? Send any updates of your address, phone number or key contact e-mail addresses by emailing Heather Haynes, 

Metropolitan Chicago Synod Office

Ph: 773-248-0021

Address: 1420 W. Dickens Avenue, Chicago, IL 60614

In Jesus’ name: we proclaim the gospel, make disciples, do justice.


What does this mean?