Rev. Dr. William (Bill) David Huras, former Bishop of the Eastern Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC), passed away peacefully at Grand River Hospital, Kitchener on Sunday, February 26, 2023 at the age of 90 years.
Devoted and beloved husband of Barbara Elizabeth (Lotz) for 65 years, Bill was a loving father and grandfather and great grandfather.
Bill was mission developer for two Lutheran congregations – St James in Renfrew (1957-62) and Advent in Toronto (1962-78). He led the creation of these parishes, including the construction and dedication of the associated church buildings.
In 1978, he was elected President of the Eastern Canada Synod of the Lutheran Church in America, the largest synod of Lutheran churches in Canada. Through actively building bridges with other ecumenical churches, and serving on the Lutheran Merger Commission, he helped create the ELCIC, uniting many Lutherans across the country into one church. Bill was then elected Bishop of the new Eastern Synod of the ELCIC.
ELCIC National Bishop Susan Johnson remembers Bill, who she often called “church dad,” with fond memories. “He really took a chance on me,” she says, referring to when he made her an assistant to the bishop, the first woman in the position in the Eastern Synod. “He was an important part of the history of our church, bridging the time before, and after merger. His love of God, and love of the church shone through everything that he did.”
Bill ultimately became one of the longest serving Lutheran synodical bishops in North America, serving from 1978 to 1998 when he retired. His contribution to the church has been truly extraordinary.
Bill’s full obituary along with service information and a link to the service livestream can be found here.