Lutheran Ordained Ministry

Essential information for ordained ministry scholarship


The purpose of this scholarship is to provide assistance to Lutheran women who are second-career students entering their final year at an ELCA seminary.

  • This scholarship was established in 1996 to honor the first bishop of the ELCA, Bishop Herbert W. Chilstrom, and his wife, the Rev. Corinne Chilstrom.
  • It was intentionally begun during the 25th anniversary year of the ordination of women in the predecessor ELCA bodies.
  • The average award has been $1,000.

Eligibility and Guidelines

The applicant must:

  • be a citizen of the United States of America.
  • hold membership in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
  • have experienced an interruption in education of at least five years since college graduation.
  • be endorsed by her synodical candidacy committee.
  • be preparing for ordained ministry in the ELCA.

Additional Scholarship Committee Considerations

  • Involvement in Women of the ELCA

Recipient Commitment

  • Women of the ELCA must be notified in writing of any change in education plans.
  • Scholarship funds must be used within the academic year awarded.
  • Scholarship funds must be returned if the educational program is canceled, or if it is terminated by the recipient’s personal decision.
  • If requested, recipient will be interviewed for Women of the ELCA print and/or electronic media.

Application Process Time Line

February 15

  • The final date for all application materials to be postmarked and mailed to Women of the ELCA. There are no exceptions.


  • The scholarship applications are processed.
  • The Scholarship committee meets and makes it’s awards.


  • All recipients will receive written notification of the decisions of the scholarship committee.


  • The first scholarship check will be processed—payable to the recipient’s institution.

Please Note

  • The average award is $1,000.
  • Women of the ELCA reserves the right to not award scholarships in any given year.


Download the application

Mail all application to:

Women of the ELCA Scholarship Program
ATTN: Valora Starr
8765 W. Higgins Rd.
Chicago, IL 60631-4101

It is the responsibility of the applicant to insure that Women of the ELCA has received all completed application materials. You will not be notified if documents are incomplete. If you have questions or need clarification, please call 1-800-638-3522, extension 2741, or email: [email protected]