New Principal for ALC
12 March 2014
The following announcement appeared in the LCA e-news, dated 12-03-2014 and was written by Linda Macqueen.
The Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA) has called a versatile parish pastor with governance and leadership experience to lead Australian Lutheran College (ALC) as its next principal.
On 24 February, at the conclusion of events marking the commencement of ALC’s academic year, LCA Bishop Rev John Henderson announced that the General Church Council (GCC) had called Pastor James Winderlich, the senior pastor of St Stephen’s Lutheran Church, Adelaide.
Pastor Winderlich has since accepted the call.
‘The GCC prayed earnestly and deeply before extending this important call, engaging in intense and searching discussions with the ALC Board of Directors, which has governance oversight of the college on behalf of the church’, Bishop Henderson said.
‘We are confident that Pastor Winderlich has the God-given faith, skills and ability to play his part in leading our tertiary college into a strong vibrant future.’
Pastor Winderlich believes that ALC is wide open with opportunities to advance the gospel in contemporary Australia, New Zealand and further afield. He said that the college’s VET expansion and the new ALITE research facility indicate that it is becoming increasingly aware of and sensitive to the needs of LCA congregations, schools, aged-care and other agencies as they serve people in a changing context.
‘There seems to be a growing desire across the LCA to explore innovative ways to communicate the gospel and interact with our wider communities’, he said. ‘We are also ideally placed to build on strong ecumenical relationships here in Australia and with Lutheran churches overseas, particularly in South-East Asia. ALC needs to continue to explore how it might effectively partner with those who carry out a wide variety of ministries.’
Pastor Winderlich has been a pastor of the LCA for 22 years. After ordination in 1991, he served the Southport-Ashmore parish, Queensland, for six months, and then the Maryborough parish for four years. During this time he was also a part-time police chaplain.
In 1995 he moved to South Australia, where he served as pastor of the Paringa/Meringur and Magill parishes before accepting the call to St Stephen’s in the heart of Adelaide city. There he has served side by side with Sudanese special ministry pastor Peter Deng and now with Chinese pastor Wing Tso.
Pastor Winderlich’s cross-cultural experience comes also from the LCA’s ministry with Aboriginal people in central Australia. As chairman of the Finke River Mission Board, he was instrumental in advancing the effective delivery of theological education to Aboriginal pastors and lay leaders.
As chair of the LCA’s national Safe Place Committee, he steered the review and development of policy and procedures. He is an ambassador for White Ribbon, an organisation campaigning to end violence against women.
He has credentials in Human Resources and Workplace Training and Assessment, and has recently been admitted to the doctoral program of the University of Divinity (Melbourne) through ALC.
Pastor Winderlich is Second Assistant Bishop of the South Australia/Northern Territory District.
‘ALC has a major role in the mission and ministry of the LCA’, Bishop Henderson said. ‘Like the church itself, it has many joys but also many challenges. Pastor Winderlich knows that a high level of service, commitment and leadership will be asked of him, and so I ask church members to pray for him as he prepares to take up this important work.’
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