Beginning the Candidacy Process

  • Talk to your home church pastor
  • Meet with the Assistant to the Bishop for Candidacy, Pastor Dana Blouch-Hanson – call 717-652-1852, ext. 111; 800-692-7282, ext. 111 (PA only) or email, to set an appointment.
  • Suggested Readings
  • Meet with other pastors, chaplains, and deacons to speak about their call to ministry and yours
  • Complete application and autobiographical essay
  • Submit Congregational Registration and Support Forms (You must have been an active member of an ELCA congregation for one year.)
  • Complete psychological/career evaluation
  • Complete criminal and child abuse background checks
  • Complete ELCA Required Questions Form
  • Complete a Personal Health Assessment
  • Complete Financial Statement and Financial Planning Worksheets
  • Submit copies of all post-secondary transcripts and continuing education certificates
  • Provide two letters of recommendation
  • Complete initial interview – a structured interview with the person or people to be your relators on the candidacy committee
  • Complete entrance interview with the candidacy committee

Note: The seminary admissions process is a separate entity and can occur concurrently with the candidacy process. However, final seminary admission to a degree program is contingent upon a positive entrance decision from the candidacy committee

(For information on ELCA seminaries visit