Both bishops raised the specter of angry reaction from overseas Lutherans should the ELCA agree to ordain gay clergy. After the Episcopal Church voted to consecrate an openly gay bishop in 2003, Anglican bishops overseas revolted and led the way in drawing thousands of Episcopalians out of the denomination and into breakaway Anglican groups.
“Like the Anglicans, we have a large number of Lutherans in Africa, and they are opposed to change,” Bishop Knoche said. “The Lutheran bishop of China told us how damaging to their work it would be if [the recommendation] would pass.”
Other issues coming before assembly include an agreement to enter into the full communion with the United Methodist Church and a vote on whether to partner with the United Nations in malaria and AIDS eradication programs.
Julia Duin is the Times’ religion editor. She has a master’s degree in religion from Trinity School for Ministry (an Episcopal seminary) and has covered the beat for three decades. Before coming to The Washington Times, she worked for five newspapers, including a stint as a religion writer for the Houston Chronicle and a year as city editor at the ...
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