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June 20, 2007

Final Preparations for the ELCIC's National Convention Under Way at University Campus

As Lutherans from across Canada prepare to meet in Winnipeg for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC)'s Eleventh Biennial National Convention, final preparations were under way at the Fort Garry Campus of the University of Manitoba, the location where delegates will gather for convention. Almost 400 delegates and special guests, 100 visitors, and 200 volunteers are expected to be part of the convention's business meetings and worship services, which will officially start on Thursday, June 21 and conclude on Sunday, June 24.

Even before the National Convention registration desk opened on Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. at the University of Manitoba's University Centre, a flurry of activity was seen on campus throughout the day. Aside from ELCIC and university staff who were busy with set-up and last minute preparations, the campus, which is usually quiet at this time of the year, saw the influx of delegates arriving to check into their dorm rooms.

Adding to the on-campus activity, National Church Council members met Wednesday to review final arrangements and deal with matters pertaining to National Convention.

Prior to the start of the ELCIC National Convention, which will officially begin at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, delegates will join members of the Anglican Church of Canada (ACC)'s General Synod on Thursday to spend the day together. Those not in attendance at the Joint Day can view the entire day's proceedings through a video webcast which will be available for access through the ELCIC and ACC websites. The location on the ELCIC website where the link will be posted is: http://elcic.ca/In-Convention/2007-Winnipeg/default.cfm

June 21, the day of the Joint ELCIC/ACC gathering, is also significant in that it is National Aboriginal Day. Representatives from about 10 Canadian churches and church-affiliated organizations will gather at the same venue as the delegates and members from the ELCIC and ACC, the Winnipeg Convention Centre, to renew a landmark covenant with Indigenous peoples that pledges the churches to continue working on human rights and justice issues for native peoples. A ceremony will mark the 20th anniversary of the signing in 1987 of the document entitled A New Covenant: Towards the Constitutional Recognition and Protection of Aboriginal Self-Government in Canada. Following the ceremony, a news conference and the release of a commemorative poster and a statement calling on all Christians to work ecumenically and collaboratively with Aboriginal peoples will take place.

In addition to the Anglican and Lutheran churches, representatives at the recommitment ceremony are expected from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Canadian Council of Churches, the Christian Reformed Church in North America, KAIROS (an ecumenical group working on justice initiatives), the Mennonite Central Committee Canada, the Mennonite Church Canada, the Presbyterian Church in Canada and the United Church of Canada.

Information and highlights from the ELCIC's Eleventh National Convention will be posted on the ELCIC's website: www.elcic.ca

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NOTE FOR MEDIA REPRESENTATIVES: Media are invited to attend the ELCIC's Eleventh Biennial National Convention and/or the recommitment ceremony and news conference. All media must registered, forms for accreditation can be found at the following link: http://elcic.ca/In-Convention/2007-Winnipeg/Media-Information.cfm

The recommitment ceremony will be held Thursday, June 21 at 3 p.m. at the Winnipeg Convention Centre, 375 York Blvd., in Hall A on the 3rd floor. The news conference will follow at 4 p.m. in the VIP Ballroom on the same level.

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The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada is Canada's largest Lutheran denomination with 174,555 baptized members in 620 congregations. It is a member of the Lutheran World Federation, the Canadian Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches.

Material provided through ELCIC Information is intended for reproduction and redistribution by recipients in whatever manner they may find useful.

For more information, please contact:
Trina Gallop, Manager of Communications
302-393 Portage Ave. Winnipeg MB R3B 3H6
204.984.9172
tgallop@elcic.ca

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