Are you discerning a call to ministry?  

Do you know someone who you believe might be called to serve as a pastor or deacon?

Candidacy is the process by which the ELCA supports, uplifts, and guides emerging ministers through the training and heart-work they need to live fully into their ministry gifts. While we believe that all Christians are called to share the Good News, we understand that some people are called to ordained or consecrated ministry in the church. 

The ELCA has two ministry rosters:

  • Ministers of Word and Sacrament (pastors)
  • Ministers of Word and Service (deacons) 

Ministers of Word and Sacrament typically serve in congregational settings as parish pastors, but may also serve as mission developers, chaplains, or in other ministry contexts.

Ministers of Word and Service perform work that connects the church and the world, in congregational settings or outside church walls as community organizers, chaplains, mission developers or in parachurch ministry.  

Both pastors and deacons complete the candidacy process. To learn more about the difference between pastors and deacons click here.

The ELCA provides a variety of resources for prospective candidates at  

Oregon Synod Director of Candidacy

Christie Bernklau Halvor PhD

Have a question?  Want to begin candidacy?  Know a prospect? Email Christie.

You can read Christie’s bio here.