Virginia S. Aebischer, Columbia, S.C., was elected July 25 to serve a six-year term as bishop of the South Carolina Synod of the ELCA. The election took place during an online synod assembly.

Aebischer was elected on the fifth ballot, with 280 votes.  Jacqueline Utley, pastor of Ascension Lutheran Church in Columbia, received 211 votes.

The bishop-elect has served as assistant to the bishop since 2008. She served as pastor of Mt. Tabor Lutheran Church in West Columbia, S.C., from 2001 to 2008, and as pastor of the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in Charleston, S.C., from 1989 to 2001.

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