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ELCA Sexuality Studies; Task force recommends pastoral response, not policy change

On Jan. 13, the Task Force for ELCA Studies on Sexuality released its "Report and Recommendations." The five-part document recommends no changes in policies related to the blessing of same-sex unions or on the church's policy prohibiting people in such unions from serving on the church's ministry rosters (see www.elca.org/faithfuljourney/tfreport for the full report).

But the recommendations seek to create space for "partnered" gay and lesbian ministers to serve in some situations. To the extent that the recommendations don't involve policy changes, they could be adopted by a simple majority of the Churchwide Assembly in Orlando, Fla., Aug. 8-14 (see January, page 44).

The assembly will receive the task force's report and recommendations and act on ELCA Church Council resolutions concerning its content. Synod councils can send recommendations to the Church Council before its April meeting. Synod assemblies will have the opportunity to respond to the report and the council's recommendations through memorials to the Churchwide Assembly.


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