Czech Lutherans hold synod

SECAC holds its 2014 convention.
The Silesian Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession holds its 2014 convention. (Photo: SECAC).

Czech Republic – The Silesian Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession (SECAC) held its national synod May 30-31, 2014 in Třinec, Czech Republic.

This year’s convention focused on the theme of Music and the Reformation, with Rev. Leszcek Czyz serving as guest lecturer. The event saw sixty-two pastoral and lay delegates come together to conduct the business of the church. They were joined by a number of guests from other church bodies.

Among other business conducted during the two days of convention, SECAC voted on whether to end fellowship with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Brunswick—a member church of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD)—over doctrinal differences regarding morality, especially human sexuality. The vote did not pass, but illustrated a growing frustration in SECAC over the moral position of some of its partner churches.

SECAC earlier ended its partnership with the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) in 2009 after the ELCA voted to bless same-sex marriages and admit non-celibate homosexuals to the ministry.

SECAC is a member church of the Lutheran World Federation, but has strong ties to a number of International Lutheran Council (ILC) churches. It holds a partnership agreement with Germany’s Independent Evangelical Lutheran Church (SELK) and cooperates with The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) in a number of areas. Earlier in May, Rev. Ing. Libor Šikula of SECAC’s national Church Council represented the church at the ILC’s European regional conference in Germany, serving as one of the presenters.

SECAC operates primarily in the northeast corner of the Czech Republic, uniting believers of both Czech and Polish background. The church has more than 21 churches and preaching stations and a membership of more than 15,300 people, making it the largest Lutheran church in the Czech Republic.

UPDATE (July 15, 2015): An earlier version of this article incorrectly implied that the vote to break ties with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Brunswick had passed. It did not.

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Mathew Block

Mathew Block is Communications Manager for the International Lutheran Council. He is also editor of The Canadian Lutheran magazine, and formerly served as Communications Manager for Lutheran Church–Canada.

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