Remembering Bishop Dr David W. Preus

Bishop Dr David W. Preus, Vice-President of the LWF, February 1987. Photo: LWF/Emily Demuth
Bishop Dr David W. Preus, Vice-President of the LWF, February 1987. Photo: LWF/Emily Demuth

The LWF gives thanks for the life of the former LWF Vice President

(LWI) - The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) joins the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) in giving thanks for the life and service of Bishop Dr David Walter Preus, a former LWF Vice-President who died in the United States on 23 July at the age of 99.

Born in 1922, Preus was ordained in 1950. From 1973 to1987 he served as Presiding Bishop of the American Lutheran Church (ALC), one of three American Lutheran denominations that eventually merged to form the ELCA in 1988. Known as a calming presence and a seeker of common grounds, Preus led the denomination into the merger.

In words of remembrance delivered at the bishop’s funeral service, ELCA Presiding Bishop and LWF Vice-President Elizabeth A. Eaton said, "We stand on the shoulders of giants, and that is certainly true of Bishop Preus. He lived a life of service. He was faithful and steadfast.”

At the 1970 LWF Assembly in Evian, France, Preus was appointed an LWF Executive Committee member representing the ALC. At the 1977 LWF Assembly in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania he was appointed LWF Vice-President, serving in that role until 1984.

Bishop Dr David Walter Preus was also a member of the Central Committee of the World Council of Churches.

LWF/A.Gray