Originally Posted by Pablo Rafael
I had mentioned earlier in the thread about the Episcopal General Convention that I thought the ELCA would soon follow in opening their doors fully to LGBT individuals. I hadn't expected it this soon, however. It is great news.
And whereas people often think of Episcopalians as far left liberals, the Lutherans are generally regarded as more conservative. It is good to see the grace of God extended to all people in both denominations. And it also makes sense since the ELCA and Episcopal churches are in altar and pulpit fellowship with each other.
I did listen to Bishop Hanson's remarks. He used the Bible and applied it to all sides and situations in the discussion, a very Lutheran trait.
Now who will be next...
It's important to understand that this victory was 20 years in coming. Resistance to the requirement that LGBTs sign a vow of celibacy began when a small group of people in the Bay Area of California, recognized the inequality of that requirement. They decided that it was time to start ordaining gays and lesbians who would not sign the vow and did so 20 years ago this month. Jeff Johnson, Ruth Frost and Phyllis Zillhart were the first to be ordained extraordinaire, at St. Francis Lutheran. That church was promptly expelled. But the movement couldn't be stopped. I believe there have been extraordinaire ordinations of some 50-60 pastors since then. The ELCA expelled some churches and tried to work with and/or ignore others.
It was this act of resistance that started the chain of events that led to this weeks amazing victory.
To this day, St. Francis celebrates the feast of the expulsion.