Retention of Parish Register

Description of Records

The parish register includes:

Communion participation
Pastors of the congregation
ELCA-rostered lay workers
Other professional lay workers of the congregation, such as choir directors and organists
Roster of officers of congregation

Care of the Records

The parish record is a permanent record and requires the utmost care. The parish record is a hard copy record and should be kept in a fire-proof safe. You may use a computer program for managing the parish register in the administration of your congregation. This database itself does not constitute a parish register.

According to the Model Constitution for Congregations, the pastor is responsible for maintaining the parish register. For further instruction, please refer to the document, Maintaining the Parish Register, which can be found on the ELCA website.

Final Disposition

Place old parish registers in a fire-proof safe in the congregation’s archives or in a bank safety deposit box.