The Evangelical Lutheran Regional Church of Saxony is divided into three levels: local churches, church districts and the regional church. Each of these levels has its own governing body and working structures.
Leading and managing the regional church
The legislative body and representative of all the local churches in the regional church is the regional synod. It has 80 members. 60 members are elected by the parochial church councils every six years – 20 of them pastors and 40 lay persons. The church leadership appoints a further 20 people. The executive committee, consisting of the president and 6 synod members, leads the synod; it meets in Dresden twice a year, in spring and in autumn.
The regional bishop is the leading clergyman in the regional church and leads it by word and sacrament – according to the regional church’s constitution. This means that he does not have any administrative rights. He is involved in the decisions made by the regional church office through voting rights without being a member of the body himself.
The highest administrative body in the Regional Church of Saxony is the Evangelical Lutheran regional church office in Saxony, which has its headquarters in Dresden. It is led by the president of the regional church office. The latter represents the regional church in legal matters and is in charge of managing all matters for the regional church, if other bodies are not responsible for them.
All the leadership bodies are combined on the 18-person church leadership committee. It is chaired by the regional bishop. It consists of the president and six members of the regional church office, the president of the regional synod and a further nine elected synod members.
The Regional Church of Saxony is a member of the United Evangelical Lutheran Church of Germany (VELKD) and is one of the 20 member churches in the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD).
The church districts adopt an mediating role between the leadership of the regional church and the local churches. The area covered by the regional church is divided into 16 church districts (dioceses). Each church district is led by a superintendent.
The leading committee for each church district is the church district synod. It consists of representatives from the local churches.
The local churches form the bedrock and are the smallest unit. There are currently 702 churches and parishes. According to the local church rules, these churches are legally responsible bodies governed by public law. Each church is led by an elected parochial church council. The local churches and parishes are each assigned to one of the 18 church districts.