What is the IMA (Interim Ministry Association of the ELCA)?

The Interim Ministry Association (IMA) is an interest group of ELCA Intentional Interim Pastors which relates to the ELCA through the Vocation and Education Unit of the ELCA Churchwide office. As such, it is the voice for interim ministry in the ELCA and is especially interested in promoting Intentional Interim Ministry.

Why should I become a member of the IMA?
If you are an ELCA rostered leader and have an interest in interim ministry, we invite you to become a part of this organization by formally joining the IMA—if you have not already done so for 2015. We believe there is strength in numbers. Your dues and your voice will strengthen our advocacy efforts throughout the church. You can contribute your ideas and concerns to help interim ministry.

What are the benefits of becoming an IMA member?
Your annual dues (currently $60) entitles you to a discount (currently $75) on registration for the Annual Conference of the National Association of Interim Pastors (NALIP).

  • A quarterly newsletter, IMA Newsletter, and updates on information and continuing education opportunities for interim pastors through Constant Contact.
  • Promoting basic education and advanced training for interim pastors.
  • The opportunity to contribute your experience and ideas to strengthen interim ministry in all parts of our church.

What is NALIP and what is IMA’s relation to it?
The National Association of Lutheran Interim Pastors (NALIP) is the education organization in which IMA participates jointly along with the Interim Ministry Conference of the Lutheran Church— Missouri Synod. NALIP plans the program part of the Annual Conference at which IMA-ELCA holds its annual meeting. NALIP also provides basic and advanced education for interim ministers. A NALIP board composed of 2 members each from the ELCA and Missouri Synod plans the conference and oversees the education.

What is the IMA Board and what does it do?
The IMA Board consists of seven members. Five are elected at the Annual Conference held each spring for rotating 3-year terms and must be intentional interim ministers at the time of election. The board appoints two other board members as NALIP representatives.

What are some recent projects and activities IMA and its Board?
Recently, the IMA has:

  • Worked with the Board of Pensions to secure disability coverage for interim pastors between interims
  • Communicated with bishops in all of our 65 synods to increase their knowledge of intentional interim ministry
  • Used Constant Contact to inform members and other interim pastors of upcoming education and other events of interest to interim pastors
  • Been successful in securing a recognition of interim ministry in the new Rostered Leader Profile for professional leaders of the ELCA
  • Oversees the Interim Ministry Website and publishes a quarterly newsletter sent electronically to approximately 1200 recipients via email

What is the Mission, Vision and Purpose of the IMA-ELCA?

Vision: To be the voice of interim ministry in the ELCA.

Purpose: The purpose of the IMA is to strengthen and sustain excellence in interim ministry within the ELCA.

1. To raise the awareness of interim ministry throughout all expressions of the ELCA.
2. To promote the best practices of interim ministry throughout all expressions of the ELCA.
3. To nurture interim ministers by encouraging education and training.
4. To advocate on behalf of interim ministers throughout all expressions of the ELCA and separately incorporated ministries (Portico, Augsburg Fortress, Mission Investment Fund).