Lutherans Change Policy—Affirm Partnered Gay Ministers

  • metta

    Posts: 39104

    Aug 22, 2009 12:51 AM GMT


    USATODAY

    The nation's largest Lutheran denomination will consider lifting its ban on gay and lesbian clergy who are in lifelong, monogamous relationships as it gathers this month for a churchwide meeting.

    More than 1,000 delegates will debate church policy Aug. 17-23 at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's (ELCA) biennial General Assembly in Minneapolis.


    FAITH & REASON: Therapists, pastors agree: Gay identity no block to spiritual growth


    As at previous assemblies, the role of gays and lesbians in the 4.6 million-member church is expected to be among the most contentious issues on the agenda.

    The question is not whether openly gay and lesbian clergy can be ordained. They already are — as long as they remain celibate. The question is whether they can have committed relationships and still be called to ELCA pulpits. Partnered gay clergy are technically prohibited, though some congregations break the rule without punishment.


    http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/2009-08-10-lutheran-gay_N.htm?csp=34



    They did it:

    Lutherans Change Policy—Affirm Partnered Gay Ministers

    glaadblogLutherans, the very first Protestant tradition, founded in the 1500’s, voted to lift the ban on partnered gay clergy on Friday, August 21, 2009.




    [url]http://glaadblog.org/2009/08/21/lutherans-change-policy%e2%80%94affirm-partnered-gay-ministers/[/url]

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 22, 2009 2:18 AM GMT
    509 years later the reformation takes hold.
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    Aug 22, 2009 4:13 AM GMT
    Great. Add the Evangelical Lutheran Church to the list that gay Christians can proudly support.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 22, 2009 9:03 AM GMT
    Yea, I read about in the paper today. More fuel to our side of the fire.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 22, 2009 9:04 AM GMT
    Yep. More fuel to our side of the fire.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 22, 2009 9:20 AM GMT
    This is a great development. We need support from religious leaders if we want to to get same-sex marriage legalized. icon_smile.gif
  • MichVBPlayer2...

    Posts: 132

    Aug 22, 2009 5:03 PM GMT
    OMG, this totally just made my day. As a life long Lutheran, I feel so empowered and full of joy. I have been an active youth leader in my church and have had many discussions about my sexuality with my pastor (who I am very close to).

    The best thing I can hope for is that this might change my parents thoughts and opinions about my being gay. I can't wait to send them a link to this article.

    God be praised!!
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    Aug 22, 2009 5:37 PM GMT
    Leave it to us Lutherans to reform. It's what we do best. Ha ha. Too bad I'm another Lutheran denomination—maybe I'll have to switch.
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    Aug 22, 2009 6:04 PM GMT
    I'm happy for this church. My grandparents used to take me to their Lutheran services when I was a kid, so if I had to ever identify with any form of Christianity that would be it (although I spent most of the time coloring on the scratch paper they left in the pews...)
  • jlly_rnchr

    Posts: 1759

    Aug 22, 2009 6:30 PM GMT
    Obviously, this is good news. But it's almost more proof that religion can sometimes bypass the need for people to think for themselves. I sincerely want devout Christians to not hate gay people because it's wrong to hate gay people, not because their church finally came around to the idea. Sadly, I also don't think this will change the majority of the discussions on the topic in the average household.

    Not to be a Debbie Downer about it, it is definitely a good thing to officially have another group of support.
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    Aug 22, 2009 8:23 PM GMT
    jlly_rnchr saidObviously, this is good news. But it's almost more proof that religion can sometimes bypass the need for people to think for themselves. I sincerely want devout Christians to not hate gay people because it's wrong to hate gay people, not because their church finally came around to the idea. Sadly, I also don't think this will change the majority of the discussions on the topic in the average household.

    Not to be a Debbie Downer about it, it is definitely a good thing to officially have another group of support.


    Christians will tell you that they do not hate gay people. They just hate gayness
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    Aug 22, 2009 10:36 PM GMT
    In ways it seems to me, many have a need to be accepted, before they can accept themselves?

    So such news means nothing to me, as I accepted myself long ago. But I'm please my family Crest in in a glass stained window in a Lutheran Church in Switzerlandicon_razz.gif
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    Aug 22, 2009 11:08 PM GMT
    Hooray for my lifetime religion. We broke away from the Catholics 500 years ago and just put some more space between us.icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif
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    Aug 31, 2009 4:09 AM GMT
    Keep in mind though not all Lutherans in the US are part of the more Liberal/Progressive Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). Two smaller denominations oppose this gay-accepting move:

    [url]http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090826/ap_on_re/us_rel_religion_briefs;_ylt=Av0QHPAyaezVJO3s56PZvqA7Xs8F;_ylu=X3oDMTJ0bjMyZGhlBGFzc2V0A2FwLzIwMDkwODI2L3VzX3JlbF9yZWxpZ2lvbl9icmllZnMEcG9zAzI4BHNlYwN5bl9wYWdpbmF0ZV9zdW1tYXJ5X2xpc3QEc2xrA3JlbGlnaW9ubmV3cw--[/url]
    "MINNEAPOLIS – Two smaller, more conservative U.S.-based Lutheran denominations are expressing disappointment in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's decision to open a wider door to gay clergy.
    The ELCA voted last week to lift a ban that prohibited sexually active gay and lesbian people from serving as ministers. Under the change, congregations will now be allowed to hire homosexuals in committed relationships as clergy. Before, gays and lesbians had to remain celibate to serve as pastors.
    The 4.7 million-member denomination, which took the actions in Minneapolis at its biennial meeting,became the largest U.S. Protestant denomination to take that step.
    The Rev. Gerald Kieschnick, president of the 2.4 million-member Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, said the decision ignores biblical teaching on human sexuality, and threatens to further harm relations between the two church bodies.
    "The current division between our churches threatens to become a chasm," he said.
    The Rev. Mark Schroeder, president of the 390,000-member Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, based in Milwaukee, issued a statement expressing regret about the move.
    "To view same-sex relationships as acceptable to God is to place cultural viewpoint and human opinions above the clear Word of God," he said.
    "We are saddened that a group with the name Lutheran would take another decisive step away from the clear teaching of the Bible, which was the foundation of the Lutheran Reformation," he said."




    One of our own RealJockers belongs to one of these more conservative anti-gay Lutheran denominations. I will not name him - he knows who he is - Just another "Gay Uncle Tom" amoung us! Maybe he will come to his senses and switch to ELCA? Or maybe he thinks gays in committed loving relationships are not worthy to be ministers and are unacceptable to the God he believes in?
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    Aug 31, 2009 9:09 PM GMT
    SWL2, interesting free-flowing autobiographic post. You started taking about going to Lutheran school, but then you just seemed to go all over the place in a sort of free-flowing "what ever comes to my mind" ramble.