Leaders of the ELCA and the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod agreed they would do all they can to continue their longtime cooperative ministries despite ELCA Churchwide Assembly decisions making it possible for rostered leaders to be in lifelong, publicly accountable, monogamous same-gender relationships.
Leaders met as the Committeeon Lutheran Cooperation Sept. 28-29.
Leaders of three cooperative ministries — Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, Lutheran Services in America and Lutheran World Reliefâ€”also attended the meeting.
LCMS President Gerald B. Kieschnick said his church disagrees with the ELCA action, but the LCMS has "a real concern ... for doing everything we possibly can to deliver ministry" to people in need. "We don't take this lightly. We believe that working together with other partners can enhance the ministry that's delivered to the recipients," he said.
ELCA Presiding Bishop Mark S. Hanson expressed gratitude to Kieschnick, saying, "What you have said is very clear (and) honest."
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