What is a Synod?

Synods unite the work of congregations within their areas, serve as regional support, and guide pastoral and other staff candidates. In order to strengthen the relationship between synod leaders and the churchwide office, many churchwide teams relate to and support the work of the synods.


The Southwest California Synod is a Reconciling In Christ Synod, making a public commitment to welcome, include and celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA+) people. For information about becoming a Reconciling in Christ congregation or organization, please contact the Region 2 RIC Coordinator or the RIC office.



We are also a Lutheran Restoring Creation Synod. Lutherans Restoring Creation is a grassroots movement promoting care for creation in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, cultivating a community of dedicated stewards of earth and neighbor who proclaim God’s promise of hope and healing for all.


Quick Facts:

More than 120 churches comprise the Southwest California Synod

The Synod is divided into nine different conferences. The nine conferences are:

  • Channel Islands
  • Central Coast
  • Foothill
  • Greater Long Beach
  • Los Angeles Metropolitan
  • San Gabriel Valley
  • South Bay
  • Techachapi
  • Twin Valleys

The Southwest California Synod serves the counties of:

  • Kern
  • Los Angeles
  • San Luis Obispo
  • Santa Barbara
  • Ventura

Four bishops have served the Southwest California Synod.

  • The Rev. Roger Anderson
  • The Rev. Paul Egertson
  • The Rev. Dean W. Nelson
  • The Rev. Dr. Guy Erwin

The two companion synods of the Southwest California Synod are:

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hong Kong (ELCHK)

S'nodo Luterano Salvadore (Lutheran Salvadorian Synod)