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architectural detail from Bockman Hall on Luther Seminary campus


For ELCA candidates

Entrance marks the beginning of the candidacy process. If not completed prior to beginning seminary, a positive entrance decision must be received in the first semester of study.

The candidacy process begins by partnering with your congregation and synod as you explore your call to ministry. You will complete components such as a candidacy application, background check, psychological evaluation, autobiographical essay prior to engaging in an entrance interview with your candidacy committee. Entrance is usually completed alongside application to seminary.

Here are a few frequently asked questions related to beginning the candidacy process.

Where can I get a copy of "Vision and Expectations"?

You can read the document, Vision and Expectations, on the ELCA website.

I haven't begun the candidacy process. What should I do?

Be in contact with your synod as soon as possible to begin this process. Your admission to the M.Div. program at Luther is provisional until a positive entrance decision is received. You have one semester to complete this process or a hold will be placed on your registration. To find contact information for your synod, visit the Synods page on the ELCA website. You can also explore the ELCA's web pages on Candidacy.

Who is on my candidacy committee?

The candidacy committee you will work with is made up of lay and clergy from the synod where your ELCA congregational membership is located.