Following are the guidelines for churches seeking full or associate membership in the CELC. These guidelines were adopted at the 2002 Convention of the CELC and revised at the 2011 meeting.
- have member congregations and trained national clergy to share the Gospel.
- show organization, such as officers, constitution, etc.
- have an officially adopted doctrinal statement.
- have a doctrine commission/committee in operation.
- have a church budget and demonstrated support of it.
- The respective church body seeking membership is expected to be in formal church fellowship with at least one of the churches of the CELC before making application for membership.
In conjunction with its application for membership, the respective church seeking membership in the CELC should, prior to its formal application:
- be encouraged to attend at least one convention as an invited guest/observer.
- obtain recommendation for membership from two existing member churches.
- submit its constitution and doctrinal statement(s) to the CELC Planning Committee and the CELC Theological Commission for the church’s membership recommendation at least one year before the triennial convention at which its membership will be considered.
The respective church body should:
- be in doctrinal fellowship with a church of the CELC.
- be interested in developing a closer organizational relationship with the CELC.
- be comprised of organized congregation(s) with regular worship, with lay leadership, and with members providing support for the work of the church.
The church seeking Associate Membership status with the CELC should make its desire and request known through a letter sent to the CELC President.
Rights and Privileges
Voting rights and holding offices are limited to full member churches.
Associates have rights of participation in all sessions and may serve as presenters.
Full member churches should assume some appropriate level of financial support for the ongoing operations of the CELC.