Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Denominational Profile

History

Association of Evangelical Lutheran Churches
Lutheran Church in America
American Lutheran Church (1960-1987)

merged intoEvangelical Lutheran Church in America (1988)

 

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (1988) continues several varied streams of Lutheran church life introduced to America during the Colonial era. The ELCA was formally constituted in 1988 as a merger of the Lutheran Church in America, the Association of Evangelical Lutheran Churches and the American Lutheran Church.

Membership Data

Year Clergy Churches Members
1987 17,052 11,133 5,288,230
1988 16,083 11,120 5,251,534
1989 17,246 11,067 5,238,798
1990 17,402 11,087 5,240,739
1991 17,426 11,074 5,245,177
1992 17,416 11,055 5,234,568
1993 17,455 11,023 5,212,785
1994 17,322 10,973 5,199,048
1995 17,425 10,955 5,190,489
1996 17,402 10,936 5,180,910
1997 17,510 10,889 5,185,055
1998 17,589 10,862 5,178,225
1999 17,611 10,851 5,149,668
2000 17,651 10,816 5,125,919
2001 17,693 10,766 5,099,877
2002 17,706 10,721 5,038,006
2003 17,666 10,657 4,984,925
2004 17,725 10,585 4,930,429
2005 17,665 10,549 4,850,776
2006 17,655 10,470 4,774,203
2007 17,619 10,448 4,709,956
2008 17,660 10,396 4,633,887
2009 17,609 10,348 4,542,868

Data were taken from the National Council of Churches' Historic Archive CD and recent editions of the Yearbook of American and Canadian Churches. Denomination descriptions provided by Dr. J. Gordon Melton, Director, Institute for the Study of American Religion (ISAR). [More information on data sources]