The Rev. James S. Dunlop, 2005 graduate of the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg, was elected bishop of the Lower Susquehanna Synod on the fifth ballot by the voting members of the 2013 annual Synod Assembly held June 6-8 at Messiah College in Grantham, PA.
Bishop-elect Dunlop will succeed Bishop B. Penrose Hoover effective September 1, 2013, to lead the synod's 239 worshiping communities. Bishop-elect Dunlop is the fourth bishop elected since the ELCA was formed in 1988 from three predecessor Lutheran bodies.
The Rev. James S. Dunlop currently serves as pastor of St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Littlestown, PA. Ordained in 2005, Dunlop received the Master's of Divinity degree from the Seminary in the same year, and the Bachelor of Arts, Magna Cum Laude, from Gettysburg College in 1978. He has served as chairperson of the Compensation and Benefits Committee and as a member of the Budget and Finance Committee of the Lower Susquehanna Synod. He is Dean of the Hanover Conference and is a voting member to the ELCA Churchwide Assembly in 2013. Dunlop has served as both president and secretary of the Littlestown Ministerium.
When asked about the principal priority for the Lower Susquehanna Synod, Rev. Dunlop said "The principal priority for the Church in changing times must be to identify, strengthen and support the leaders in the Church so that they may serve the mission of the Church and the word of God may continue to spread.
"We must find ways, in partnership with the seminary," he added, "to strengthen continuing education for all of our rostered leaders so that they develop skills needed in the 21st century."