Back in 2009, when the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America voted to allow practicing homosexual clergy, the agreement was that both liberal and conservative voices would be honored in the ELCA on this issue. For years, Living Lutheran, the national ELCA magazine, in numerous articles has promoted only one point of view, the liberal one. Numerous articles are like this one from the January 2018 issue:
"Elizabeth Rawlings (is) the ELCA pastor of The Sanctuary, the Lutheran/Episcopal campus ministry at the University of Washington, Seattle...Many of the students identify as LGBTQ+, and Rawlings, who is bisexual, knows that to lead such conversations for those who are in a critical stage of their faith development means "being real and...being open about when and how I struggle."
At The Sanctuary's website, the Episcopal priest is also "out queer". The website reads:
"Together, we worship, play, pray, dance, do yoga, hike, eat, meditate, make art, conversate and much more. We are a Q Center Safe Zone and a Reconciling In Christ ministry (a designation given to ELCA ministries who are supportive of the LGBTQ+ community). We engage in interfaith conversation and relationship. We do our best to live out the radical, gracious love of God in Jesus Christ." (see here)
For years now I have been waiting--and waiting and waiting--for one article in Living Lutheran to express a conservative view on homosexuality. Churches and groups around the country are helping people out of homosexual behavior (see restoredhopenetwork.org), but such a story has never made it into Living Lutheran. Given how left of center the ELCA has become, I am guessing such a story never will. So much for "diversity" in the ELCA.
In Jesus our Savior,
Pastor Tom Brock
(Here is the Living Lutheran article. Below is Rev. Brock's second blog)
The Bible is "biased, contradicts itself and can get real weird...(a) mess" says Lutheran/Episcopal Ministry
In my previous post, I shared about The Sanctuary, the Lutheran/Episcopal campus ministry at the University of Washington, Seattle, which was mentioned in an article in Living Lutheran Magazine, the national magazine of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The ministry fully supports the LBGTQ+ agenda. The Episcopal priest is "out queer" and the Lutheran pastor is bisexual.
How does a "Christian" ministry get to the point where it celebrates behaviors that the Bible condemns? This is done by getting rid of the authority of Scripture. Below is the ministry's statement on what the Bible is all about.
"What is the Bible?
The Bible is one of the resources we use to guide our lives of faith. As Lutheran & Episcopalian Christians, we believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God. It is a collection of stories of God's people and how they saw God acting in their lives and the lives of others. As it was written, edited, compiled and translated by humans who were products of their time and place and likely had their own agendas, there is bias, sometimes it contradicts itself, and it can get real weird. When we read the Bible, we consider the context of those involved in passing the stories down to us when we apply Biblical teaching to our own lives. Even with the mess, the contradiction and the weirdness, God is present in the Bible and is present with us when we read scripture. The Bible is one of the tools we use to understand who God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are, how they have acted in history, and how they are still active in the world (and our lives) today." (see here)
Martin Luther, who taught the Bible alone is the highest authority in the Christian life, would ask to have his name removed from the Lutheran/Episcopal campus ministry in Seattle.
Sincerely in Christ,
Pastor Tom Brock