The Rev. Herbert W. Chilstrom is a giant in Lutheran life. And he’s just written an autobiography detailing his decades of experience in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Chilstrom (who turns 80 this month) was the first ELCA bishop — elected to his post at the church’s constituting convention in April 1987. He was re-elected to a four-year term at the 1991 ELCA Churchwide Assembly.

He is the former bishop of the Minnesota Synod of the Lutheran Church in America, one of the three church bodies which merged to form the ELCA on Jan. 1, 1988.

Prior to that, Chilstrom had served as a parish pastor, a professor and synod bishop. He has also served on numerous boards and received many distinguished honors during his career. A native of Litchfield, Minn., Chilstrom is now retired and resides with his wife, Corinne, in Saint Peter, Minn.

In his recently published autobiography “A Journey of Grace: The Formation of Leader and a Church,” Chilstrom begins with a reflective account of his family roots, childhood, education, pastoral and teaching career. The narrative includes his life as bishop, his role in the formation of the ELCA and his ministry as the first presiding bishop.

Chilstrom is holding several book-signing events in Minnesota this month. You can catch him at:

Trinity Lutheran Church in Pelican Rapids on Oct. 12 at 3 p.m.
Normandale Lutheran Church in Edina on Oct. 13 at 1 p.m.
First Lutheran Church in St. Peter on Oct. 16 at 4 p.m.