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Stories from the ELCA

On the drive home yesterday I heard a beautiful piece from Minnesota Public Radio, reported by Sasha Aslanian with context, depth and emotion. She told the story of Ruth Frost and Phyllis Zillhart, partnered lesbians who will be added to the ELCA roster of ordained clergy after a "rite of reception" this weekend.

The host then mentioned that there was more coverage available online through American Public Media's Public Insight Network.  The word "more" was underselling things—"treasure trove" would have been more appropriate.

I think of the Public Insight Network as akin to the "time and talent" card that many churches hand out at stewardship season-it connects the knowledge and experiences of citizens to radio reporters. Since the ELCA vote last summer allowing the ordination of partnered gay and lesbians, hundreds of Lutherans have shared their thoughts and experiences with American Public Media via an online form with questions like, "What have you discovered about yourself or your faith community in the past year?"

The "A church divided, together" project is astounding, but what strikes me most is not the quality journalism but the instinct to share.  While so many congregations refuse to meaningfully talk about the ELCA vote and the questions behind it, American Public Media offers a breath of fresh air and a model for telling our story.

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