Short Bio and Photos:

Michael Rinehart is Bishop of the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, a community of over one hundred congregations, campus ministries, retreat centers, and other agencies. Michael studied music at Valparaiso University, a Lutheran university in Valparaiso, Indiana, focusing on organ performance and singing in the VU Schola Cantorum, Chorale, Concert Choir. He received his Master of Divinity at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio. He lives in Montgomery, Texas with his wife and children.


  • Board of Directors, Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston
  • Board of Directors, Houston Coalition for Mutual Respect
  • Board of Directors, Louisiana Interchurch Conference
  • Faith Council, Harris County District Attorney’s Office
  • Houston Community of Conscience
  • Chaplain, American Guild of Organists, Houston Chapter (2019-present)
  • ELCA Bishops’ Immigration Ready Bench
  • Author of Learning to Pray Again
  • Writer for Sundays and Seasons.


  • Board of Directors, LEAD, a non-profit leadership organization launched by the Gulf Coast Synod (2012-2019)
  • Houston Coalition for Immigration Reform

Serving as bishop of the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (since 2007) is an honor, a challenge, and a joy. It has given me the opportunity to work with many gifted pastors and committed people of faith. We’re creating communities that make disciples who serve the world in Jesus’ name.

Together we plant new congregations, send missionaries, prepare pastors and deacons, support companion synods, camps, campus ministries, and more. Our vision is to be a network of growing, Christ-centered, outwardly-focused congregations passing the faith to the next generation.

Biographical Information

Born: August 2, 1961, Columbus, Ohio
Children: Yuliana and John
Parents: Warren and Patricia Rinehart

Undergraduate studies: Bachelor of Music in organ performance from Valparaiso University, a Lutheran university in northern Indiana, 1983

Seminary: Masters of Divinity from Trinity Lutheran Seminary, Columbus, Ohio, 1988.


  • St. Paul Lutheran Church, Davenport, Iowa (1988-1994)
  • Christ Lutheran Church, Charlotte, North Carolina (1994-1997)
  • Grace Lutheran Church, Conroe, Texas (1997-2007)
  • Bishop, Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod (2007-present).

Incidentally, played in the main stage band for four LCMS Youth Gatherings:

  • Denver, Mile High Stadium in 1989: Blessed in the Journey
  • New Orleans, Super Dome 1992: A Time for Joy
  • San Antonio, Alamo Dome 1995: River of Light
  • Atlanta, Atlanta Dome 1998: Called to Be

LOW RES photos (for web)

HIGH RES photos (for print)