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  •  And we ELCA Lutherans (21+ / 0-)

    are careful to always refer to ourselves as ELCA Lutherans.

    You know, just to be clear which side of the hate line we stand on.

    © grover


    So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

    by grover on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 03:31:27 PM PST

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    •  I married a Lutheran... (11+ / 0-)

      ELCA. I was raised Methodist and didn't know much about the various branches of Lutheranism... I thought they were all pretty tolerant and mellow (as had been my experience in the Methodist Church). We wanted to be married in any little historic Lutheran church somewhere not too far from home. Luckily his family explained to me that I should stay away from Missouri Synod. I felt weird asking the pastors when I would call them up, but the ELCA ones seemed to know what I was getting at, even without saying much about it explicitly.

      •  ELCA is quite liberal (7+ / 0-)

        Women have been clergy members for quite a few years in ELCA.  In 2009 at the synod in the Twin Cities, they voted in favor of admitting LGBT individuals as clergy.  On all the major issues they're with mainstream America (women's rights, abortion, etc.).  After the brouhaha in '09 when a faction of ELCA didn't like the vote on LGBT clergy, I think there's going to be another faction within Lutheranism if they didn't have a change of heart afterward.

        LCMS and WELS [the latter is allegedly the brand of Lutheranism in which Michele Bachmann was raised; I don't think she still follows it] are..., well, most assuredly not liberal.

        As modern religions go, ELCA isn't too bad, nor is it too radical.

        I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

        by NonnyO on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 10:35:49 PM PST

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        •  Yes, I am happy (6+ / 0-)

          with what I have seen of the ELCA. The church that my husband was raised in (and that his parents still attend) has long had female pastors. There is absolutely no preaching against gays and no hellfire or other silliness. They are very focused on charity, too, and not just for the "right" people. It's a lovely community.

          My MIL is from Wisconsin, and was raised very much in the Norwegian Lutheran social justice mold. That's what it is all about for her, and she devotes much of her time and money to helping those in need. (She's also a former teacher, lifelong Democrat, union supporter, someone who is solidly upper middle class but thinks she needs to pay MORE taxes to support education, SS, etc.). Her whole family is the same way, and they would have been a little shocked if I had accidentally picked a Missouri Synod church for our wedding! They fully understand the bit about "there but for the grace of God go I", and take very seriously their obligation towards the less fortunate.

        •  The new faction of Lutheranism has already formed. (4+ / 0-)

          It's called the NALC  - North American Lutheran Church.  It's been around since 2010.  Curiously, the NALC is continuing to ordain women even as they stubbornly resist ordaining gays and lesbians.

          Sadly but not really surprisingly, a church in Ohio which I attended as an undergraduate in the mid-1980's bolted the ELCA for the NALC at the first opportunity.  It wasn't quite so conservative during my student days (maybe slightly right of center), but I've been growing more and more wary of the direction it's been moving every time I stopped by while visiting my alma mater.  It has really morphed into an evangelical megachurch with a Lutheran veneer (they still baptize infants).

          I attended a service at this church in June 2011 on my way home from a vacation just after they made that decision.  One of the NALC's national bigwigs was the guest preacher that day.  He didn't talk about "teh ghey," but the kind of theology he proclaimed was worthy of Al Qaeda  - a lament about the supposed persecution of Christians in contemporary American society and an open invitation to the congregation to deliberately, consciously seek martyrdom.

          I could never in good conscience set foot in this church again, something that is particularly difficult for me to say because that church meant a lot to me during my formative years and their music director was one of my mentors.

          •  That's too bad (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            freelunch, TheDuckManCometh

            I was baptized and confirmed before the various Lutheran factions became ELCA, but being a teenager, I didn't pay much attention to what the church was doing.  (I think the church my family belonged to was officially ALC back then.)

            The minister we had as I was in confirmation classes pissed me off so badly by lying to me that the first time I read the bible cover-to-cover I was a teenager.  The second time was in my early 20s.  Thereafter I started reading a lot of history (pre-Xian religious history included).

            Church was never all that important to me, so - after years of reading - atheism came naturally as a result of historical studies.

            I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

            by NonnyO on Fri Feb 08, 2013 at 07:10:50 AM PST

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