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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Breathing confidence

The 2001 Churchwide Assembly gathered in Indianapolis, Aug. 8-14, under the theme "Making Christ Known: Sharing Faith in a New Century." The 1,039 voting members who met for the ELCA's seventh assembly displayed an assurance outstripping that of previous assemblies.

This was an activist and multifaceted assembly — choosing a new bishop after insisting on an additional opportunity to hear from nominees; solidifying the church's intention to live into full communion with the Episcopal Church by seeking greater unity within its own ranks; setting promising directions in evangelism and Asian and Latino ministry; establishing a definite plan for discussing and deciding gay and lesbian issues; and challenging itself to stand with Africa as it fights AIDS and poverty.

This assembly revealed a church hungry for unity, anxious for outreach and eager to work together to heal its divisions and strengthen its witness.

Voting members breathed confidence that the future holds promise and blessing, even as they moved forward on controversial issues, which they have now set squarely before the entire ELCA.


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