Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Lutherans Model Dialogue on Gay Issues

I have a Catholic Coalition for Church Reform (CCCR) meeting tomorrow evening, but afterward my friend Paula and I are hoping to show our support for LGBT Lutherans by attending the Lutherans Concerned North America Inclusive Religious Service, starting at 7:30 p.m. at Central Lutheran Church (333 S. 12th St., Downtown Minneapolis).

I’ve heard that more than 1,000 people are expected to attend this service as part of the 2009 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) Churchwide Assembly that’s currently taking place here in the Twin Cities. A historic Social Statement on Human Sexuality and Implementing Resolutions will be considered during the Assembly - which, of course means, that our Lutheran brothers and sisters are ahead of us Catholics when it comes to dialogue on this important issue.

Indeed, reflecting on the following by James Carroll, I think it’s safe to say that the Lutherans are being more faithful to the Catholic tradition than are contemporary Roman Catholics:

Change is built into the way truth is perceived, and every person’s perception has something to offer every other’s. Therefore revision, criticism, dialogue, and conversation are far more relevant to truth-seeking than conformity to dictation from above. This flies in the face not of Catholic tradition but recent Catholic tradition.

People are reporting that they are “cautiously optimistic” on a positive outcome for the Social Statement on Human Sexuality and Implementing Resolutions following a vote on Monday that rejected a move by critics of the proposal to require approval from a two-thirds supermajority instead of a simple majority when the measure comes to the final vote.

For more information on the ELCA Churchwide Assembly, visit www.goodsoil.org.

Recommended Off-site Links:
Lutherans Strive to Avoid Split on Gay Issue - Jeff Strickler (
Star Tribune, August 17, 2009).
God’s Work, Our Hands - David Weiss (Goodsoil Central, August 18, 2009).
Lutheran Play Fair: ELCA Rejects Supermajority Maneuver for Vote on Gay Ministers - William Lindsey (Bilgrimage, August 19, 2009).

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