Today's Date: May 24, 2024
LENNAR DFW DIVISION HOSTS HOPEKIDS EVENT FOR CHILDREN WITH LIFE-THREATENING MEDICAL CONDITIONS AT KIDZANIA USA   •   ARCHIPELAGO INTERNATIONAL CONTINUES EXPANSION IN THE CARIBBEAN AND LATIN AMERICA WITH PLANNED NEW OPENINGS, MULTIPLE SIGNINGS AN   •   NaphCare and NaphCare Charitable Foundation Recognize Mental Health Month with Patient Art Initiative   •   University of Phoenix Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) Celebrate Volunteer Opportunities During April   •   Sallie Mae’s Donna Vieira Honored by Girls Inc. of New York City   •   CareView Communications Unveils Software Version 5.12, Expanding Patient Safety Capabilities   •   Newrizon Partnered With Al Yemni Group, Bringing Its Futuristic EV Truck In GCC Region   •   Atour Unveils Sustainability Records in 2023 With Milestone ESG Report   •   Sprinklr Named a Leader in the 2024 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Content Marketing Platforms for the Fifth Consecutive   •   Folded Flag Foundation Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary on Memorial Day 2024   •   LifeNet Health Partners with The Honor Foundation to Propel Veteran Careers into the Civilian Sector   •   LOUD AND LIVE STUDIOS AND CELIA CRUZ ENTERTAINMENT RELEASE COMMEMORATIVE ALBUM WITH NEWLY FOUND RECORDINGS OF CELIA CRUZ   •   Brave Healer Productions Releases Dreaming with Bees, a Book about Overcoming Grief   •   Vontier Declares Regular Dividend   •   Spirit Airlines Expands U.S. Military Benefits to Include Spouses and Children   •   Northern Kentucky University Selects YuJa Panorama Digital Accessibility Platform to Serve Nearly 16,000 Students Campuswide   •   Tuvalu Launches AI Weather Forecasting System with Atmo, Inc. and the Global Centre for Climate Mobility   •   Alma Unveils Alma Harmony™ and Alma IQ™ in U.S. Market, Advancing Personalization in Aesthetic Treatments   •   Annual Map the Meal Gap Study Shows Increasing Food Insecurity for Georgia Families   •   Q2 and Austin FC Announce the 2024 Dream Starter Competition Winner - 29ELEVEN THE SALON
Bookmark and Share

Lutheran Assembly Opens Ministry to Partnered Gay and Lesbian Pastors

MINNEAPOLIS (ELCA) - The 2009 Churchwide Assembly of the Evangelical
Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) voted today to open the ministry of the
church to gay and lesbian pastors and other professional workers living
in committed relationships.
The action came by a vote of 559-451 at the highest legislative body
of the 4.6 million member denomination. Earlier the assembly also
approved a resolution committing the church to find ways for
congregations that choose to do so to "recognize, support and hold
publicly accountable life-long, monogamous, same gender relationships,"
though the resolution did not use the word "marriage." 
The actions here change the church's policy, which previously
allowed gays and lesbians into the ordained ministry only if they
remained celibate.
Throughout the assembly, which opened Aug. 17, the more than 1,000
voting members have debated issues of human sexuality. On Wednesday they
adopted a social statement on the subject as a teaching tool and policy
guide for the denomination.
The churchwide assembly of the ELCA is meeting here Aug. 17-23 at
the Minneapolis Convention Center. About 2,000 people are participating,
including 1,045 ELCA voting members. The theme for the biennial assembly
is "God's work. Our hands." 
Before discussing the thornier issues of same-gender unions in the
ordained ministry, the assembly approved, by a vote of 771-230, a
resolution committing the church to respect the differences of opinions
on the matter and honor the "bound consciences" of those who disagree. 
During the hours of discussion, led by ELCA Presiding Bishop Mark S.
Hanson, the delegates paused several times each hour for prayer,
sometimes as a whole assembly, sometimes in small groups around the
tables where the voting members of the assembly sat, debated and cast
their votes.
Discussion here proved that matters of sexuality will be contentious
throughout the church. A resolution that would have reasserted the
church's current policy drew 344 votes, but failed because it was
rejected by 670 of the voting members. 
Pastor Richard Mahan of the ELCA West Virginia-Western Maryland
Synod was among several speakers contending that the proposed changes are
contrary to biblical teaching. "I cannot see how the church that I have
known for 40 years can condone what God has condemned," Mahan
said, "Nowhere does it say in scripture that homosexuality and same sex
marriage is acceptable of God."
But others said a greater acceptance of people who are gay and
lesbian in the church was consistent with the Bible. Bishop Gary
Wollersheim of the ELCA Northern Illinois Synod said, "It's a matter of
justice, a matter of hospitality, it's what Jesus would have us do."
Wollersheim said he had been strongly influenced by meetings with youth
at youth leadership events in his synod, a regional unit of the ELCA.
Some speakers contend that the actions taken here will alienate ELCA
members and cause a drop in membership. But Allison Guttu of the ELCA
Metropolitan New York Synod said, "I have seen congregations flourish
while engaging these issues; I have seen congregations grow recognizing
the gifts of gay and lesbian pastors."
During discussion of resolutions on implementation of the proposals,
Bishop Kurt Kusserow of the ELCA Southwestern Pennsylvania Synod asked
that the church make clear provision in its policies to recognize the
conviction of members who believe that this church cannot call or roster
people in a publicly accountable, lifelong, monagamous, same-gender
relationship. A resolution that the denomination consider a proposal for
how it will exercise flexibility within its existing structure and
practices to allow Lutherans in same gender relationship to be approved
for professional service in the church. That resolution passed by a vote
of 667-307.
Information about the 2009 Churchwide Assembly is at on the ELCA Web site.

Back to top
| Back to home page

White House Live Stream
alsharpton Rev. Al Sharpton
9 to 11 am EST
jjackson Rev. Jesse Jackson
10 to noon CST


Sounds Make the News ®
Atlanta - WAOK-Urban
Berkley / San Francisco - KPFA-Progressive
Chicago - WVON-Urban
KJLH - Urban
Los Angeles - KJLH - Urban
WKDM-Mandarin Chinese
New York - WKDM-Mandarin Chinese
New York - WADO-Spanish
WBAI - Progressive
New York - WBAI - Progressive
Washington - WOL-Urban

Listen to United Natiosns News