Bishop Sani Ibrahim “Charlie” Azar was born June 22, 1961 in Lebanon. Bishop Azar is a product of The Evangelical Lutheran Schools in Palestine, graduating from The Evangelical Lutheran School of Bethlehem in 1979. Bishop Azar earned his theology degree from Ludwig Maximillian University in Munich, Germany in 1987. He was ordained March 25, 1988 and elected bishop, January 2017. Bishop Azar served as pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in the Old City, Jerusalem for 30 years.
Before becoming the pastor of Redeemer, Bishop Azar served as youth pastor and president of the ELCJHL Synod. Presently, he serves on the board of The Near East School of Theology, the board of the Bethany Beyond the Jordan Baptismal Site, and as President of the Lutheran Ecclesiastical Court. He also serves on The Department of Services to Palestinian Refugees (DSPR) a division of the Middle East Council of Churches, and the Housing Committee of the Augusta Victoria Hospital Lutheran World Federation board. In his service to the church, Bishop Azar has always been a member of the ELCJHL Church Council. He also is a board member of the Jerusalem Society of Berlin Missions and the Vice President of the Evangelical Lutheran German School of Talitha Kumi in Beit Jala.
Bishop Azar is the founder of the Day Care Center for the Elderly located next door to Redeemer in the old Martin Luther School building.