Ripple effect

Gay issues surround Lutheran assembly
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s top legislative body had a full plate as it convened in Milwaukee in mid-August—major statements or initiatives on evangelism, mission, worship, health care and the Middle East, as well as an invitation to join a new ecumenical group. Though the docket included an interim report by a task force studying sexuality, homosexuality was not expected to be the hot topic at this year’s Churchwide Assembly.

But the possibility of an assembly not preoccupied with gay and lesbian issues dissolved as awareness grew of the implications of an action taken a week earlier by the Episcopal Church, one of the ELCA’s partners in full communion. The Episcopal General Convention confirmed the election of an openly gay cleric, V. Gene Robinson, as bishop of the New Hampshire diocese.


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