Monday, July 25, 2005

LCNA tries to spin huge loss in Winnipeg

Go to lengthy report on same sex floor discussion and vote here

Doesn't sound like LCNA's Emily Eastwood's spin:

July 23, 2005 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 10-2005

Lutherans Concerned Remains Committed to Achieving the Blessing of Same-Gender Relationships in the ELCIC

Lutherans Concerned remains committed to achieving the blessing of same-gender relationships in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) despite the defeat of such a motion at the National Convention of that Church body in Winnipeg, Canada, which concluded on Saturday evening, July 23, 2005.

The motion that went before the National Convention of this Lutheran Church body would have allowed a local option for pastors and congregations to bless same-gender covenanted relationships. Under the proposed local option, no congregation or pastor would have been required to perform such a blessing. The rite for any such blessing would have been prescribed by the national church body and differ from the marriage rite. The motion was not passed after considerable discussion.

"Today the ELCIC lost another opportunity to take a courageous step forward toward ensuring that gay and lesbian people are indeed welcome in this Church. Today is a day to mourn and then to recommit ourselves to work for change in the church we love," said Lionel Ketola of Keswick, Ontario, spokesperson for Lutherans Concerned-Canada.

Emily Eastwood, Executive Director of Lutherans Concerned/North America, said "While we are disappointed that the motion for local option allowing the blessing of same-gender relationships did not pass, we are pleased that 45% of the delegates voted to approve it. Five years ago, this motion would have never made it to the floor. This year, not only did the National Church Council bring the motion to the Convention, nearly half of those voting were in favor. Though we had hoped for a different result, the numbers tell a story of hope for the future.

She added, "Unlike those who threatened to withhold funds or to leave the ELCIC if the motion had passed, most of those seeking approval for blessings promised to stay, to keep talking, to bear witness to the presence of the Holy Spirit in the lives of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered believers. They do so secure in the knowledge that this issue of justice and equality will prevail. We are inexorable in the practice of our Lutheran faith and our commitment to a goal of full participation in the Church."

The convention also passed a motion asking the denomination's leaders, congregations and pastors to "seek to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace," rejecting all words and actions hostile to gays and lesbians in church and community, and taking steps to create a more welcoming place in the church for gays, lesbians, and their families. An overwhelming majority of those present voted approval of this motion. Similarly the convention defeated a motion asking the denomination to provide materials to congregations to aid homosexuals seeking to "exit the lifestyle."

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The good ship ELCA...

The good ship ELCA...
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