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Monday, August 17, 2009

 

ELCA Churchwide Assembly Monday - Registration, Worship & Rules

The ELCA Churchwide Assembly does not begin any business sessions until this evening. Before that time, voting members and visitors will be registering and worshipping. Registration opens later this morning and worship (Holy Communion) begins at 4:00 p.m. The opening Plenary (business) session begins at 7:30 p.m. and is scheduled to end by 9:30 p.m.

In some past assemblies the Monday evening opening plenary session has been short and quiet. However, this year the assembly rules, which call for a simple majority vote on the proposed changes in ministry policies relating to allowing "people in publicly accountable, lifelong, monogamous, same-gender relationships to serve as professional leaders of this church," will certainly be challenged by those who wish these proposed changes to need the approval of a 2/3 vote of the assembly. Many who wish to see a 2/3 vote are opposed to these changes, but some who favor the changes, also favor a 2/3 vote because they are concerned about the possible controversy a close simple majority vote may cause.

Pre-assembly news media coverage of the ELCA assembly has focused, no surprise, on the gay and lesbian issues before the assembly. As I've read these reports online, most seem to be correct in their reporting. The Minneapolis "Star Tribune" newspaper had a front page feature news story yesterday, "ELCA Convention: Lutherans strive to avoid split on gay issue." You can read it online at http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/faith/53304992.html?page=1&c=y .

A brief item is in today's Reading "EagleTimes" newspaper about my blogging from the assembly - http://www.readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=152842 .

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