There will be two opportunities to remember God’s promises in Christ Jesus and give thanks to God for the life and witness of former Presiding Bishop Herb Chilstrom.
Services of Holy Communion:
Thursday, February 13, 2:00
Desert Hills Lutheran Church
2150 S. Camino del Sol
Green Valley, Arizona
ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton will bring a greeting, Bishop Deborah Hutterer will preach, and Pastor Martin Overson will preside. Reception to follow.
Saturday, February 15, 1:00
Gustavus Adolphus College
800 W College Ave, St Peter, MN
St. Peter, Minnesota
ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton will preside and bring a greeting, Presiding Bishop Emeritus Mark Hanson will preach, and Bishop Jon Anderson will bring a greeting, Gustavus Chaplain Siri Erickson will host. Reception to follow.
At both services, clergy and all rostered leaders of the ELCA, together with clergy of all ecumenical partners, are invited to robe and process (the color of the day will be green) and are asked to RSVP.
- RSVP to Desert Hills email [email protected]
- RSVP to Christ Chapel click this link – https://forms.gle/ZB162Zyf99ETnKg5A.
At Gustavus rostered ministers and ecumenical guests will gather in Alumni Hall in the Johnson Student Union between the Jackson Campus Center and the Folke Bernadotte Library. Participants in the service will gather in the basement of Christ Chapel prior to the service.
Ride sharing is encouraged. Parking Notice:
On Saturday, February 15 parking on campus may exceed capacity due to the high number of guests anticipated both for the Herb Chilstrom Memorial Service and campus admission and athletic events. Parking attendants will be present from 11:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. to assist visitors in finding an available parking spot. This may necessitate going off-campus to overflow parking and taking a shuttle to campus. Drop-off locations are available by Christ Chapel, the Jackson Campus Center, and Lund Center. Please allow extra time either to walk a significant distance across campus to reach your destination or be in remote overflow parking.
The family prefers that memorial gifts be given to the Herbert Chilstrom Chair in New Testament Studies at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, or to one of the Chilstrom Student Scholarship Funds at Luther Seminary; Augsburg University, Minneapolis; Gustavus Adolphus College; or Concordia College, Moorhead, Minn.
We thank you, Lord God, for Bishop Chilstrom, who planted your message in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. We praise you for the gift of your Holy Spirit, who worked in him to gather and give order to this community, and who still sustains it. Remembering all those who have gone before us, we pray that we may follow as he followed, in the way, the truth, and the life, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.
– Prayer from The Grand Canyon Synod
ELCA News Release
Herbert Chilstrom, first ELCA presiding bishop, dies at 88
Herbert W. Chilstrom, 88, the first presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), died Jan. 19 at his home in Green Valley, Ariz. He was born in Litchfield, Minn., on Oct. 18, 1931.
He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Corinne (Hansen), also a Lutheran pastor; a daughter, Mary Cress of Mesa, Ariz.; and a son, Christopher Holt of Baltimore; and four sisters, Winnifred Christenson of Robbinsdale, Minn.; Virginia Francis of Pickens, S.C.; Martha (Charles) Anderson of Ashby, Minn.; and Janet (Frederick) Sickert of West Linn, Oregon. He was preceded in death by son Andrew, sisters Adeline Christenson (Earle) and Lorraine Juul (Dick), and brother David.
Chilstrom completed academic degrees at Augsburg University, Augustana Seminary, the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Princeton Seminary, and New York University, where he earned a doctor of education degree.
He served Lutheran congregations in Pelican Rapids, Elizabeth and St. Peter, Minn.
He was professor and dean at Luther College, Teaneck, N.J., from 1962-1970. In 1976 he was elected bishop of the Minnesota Synod of the Lutheran Church in America (LCA). At the 1987 merger that created the 5.2-million-member ELCA, he was elected the first presiding bishop.
Chilstrom was awarded 15 honorary doctorates by 15 colleges, universities and seminaries. He was named a Commander of the Royal Order of the North Star by King Carl Gustav IV of Sweden, received the Pope John XXIII award from Viterbo College, the Servus Dei Award from the ELCA, as well as numerous other honors and awards.
Chilstrom served on numerous boards of directors, including vice president of the Lutheran World Federation, Geneva, Switzerland; Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minn.; Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota; Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minn.; the National Council of Churches and others.
He also authored numerous books and articles.
After retirement he continued to be active in church and community, preaching and lecturing in many parts of the country. He became a Minnesota Master Gardener, volunteering and serving as interim director at the Linnaeus Arboretum at Gustavus Adolphus College.
The family prefers that memorial gifts be given to the Herbert Chilstrom Chair in New Testament Studies at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, or to one of the Chilstrom Student Scholarship Funds at Luther Seminary; Augsburg University, Minneapolis; Gustavus Adolphus College, or Concordia College, Moorhead, Minn.