July 18, 2019
Dear Friends in Christ,
On June 12th, following extensive discussion with Bishop Viviane, prayer, and consultation with the Synod Attorney; the Executive Committee of the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin found Bishop Viviane “unable to serve” under S8.56 of the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin Constitution and placed her on an immediate paid temporary suspension. Health concerns were a primary component of this decision. The Bishop was encouraged to use the time of her suspension to focus on her physical, emotional and spiritual health.
As you know, personnel matters must always be handled with discretion and a degree of confidentiality. That is true for all employees and it is also true for a bishop. I trust that you all understand this and will support the decision of the Executive Committee and will respect the privacy of Bishop Viviane. We also ask that you refrain from asking staff to provide you with additional information. The Synod Executive Committee and the Council will continue to work with Churchwide advisors to examine this matter and will keep you informed as updates are available.
Please continue to hold Bishop Thomas-Breitfeld, the Synod Council, Churchwide and Synod staff in your prayers.
Jane Cahill Wolfgram
Synod Vice President
South-Central Synod of Wisconsin, ELCA