Twelve positions at the LCMS International Center in St. Louis will be eliminated Dec. 1, as the restructuring mandated by this summer’s Synod convention begins.
The 12 positions are being phased out as the Office of the President begins taking action, as mandated in Resolution 8-08A. The resolution was designed to streamline the Synod’s national structure to prevent redundancy among departments and to improve stewardship of human and fiscal resources, especially as unrestricted funds to the church body continue to fall and there are fewer dollars to support its ministries.
Those whose positions are being eliminated were informed individually Oct. 29 by representatives of the Synod’s Department of Human Resources.
Other International Center staff were notified in an Oct. 29 e-mail from Synod President Rev. Matthew C. Harrison.
“Since the convention,” Harrison wrote, “my staff and I have been working thoughtfully and prayerfully with Synod leadership to develop a plan for reorganization that fulfills the requirements of Resolution 8-08A and addresses the associated financial concerns our Synod must attend to.”
Harrison indicated that positions were eliminated in the areas of Black Ministry (which lost one), District and Congregational Services (three), Ministerial Growth and Support (three), LCMS World Mission (four), and the International Center’s Chaplaincy Services (one). Despite the change in the Chaplain’s Office, the president’s staff said it intends to continue chaplaincy ministry at the headquarters building, including daily worship in the International Center chapel.
In keeping with LCMS Human Resources policy, the names of the affected employees were not shared in the e-mail.
Harrison asked for “prayers as our colleagues absorb this news. At this time, care for our brothers and sisters in Christ is our primary concern. Please know that we will provide transitional services and benefits to eligible employees.”
In the e-mail, the president said his team would continue its work on implementing Res. 8-08A, “which may mean additional realignment and position changes,” and he asked all employees to “join me in praying for God’s wisdom and guidance to bless all of us during these challenging times.
“I pray that each of us will find security in the comfort and assurance that only He can give that, as we move forward, God will indeed do as He promises.”
During the week of Nov. 8, Harrison will host four hourlong meetings for International Center employees to share his “thoughts regarding the implementation of the convention-mandated reorganization” and to give employees an opportunity to ask questions and voice concerns.
In addition, an internal website has been set up that offers information on the reorganization and invites employees to submit questions, comments, and concerns.
Posted Nov. 5, 2010