The occasional, often ill-considered thoughts of a Roman Catholic permanent deacon who is ever grateful to God for his existence. Despite the strangeness we encounter in this life, all the suffering we witness and endure, being is good, so good I am sometimes unable to contain my joy. Deo gratias!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Evangelical Lutherans and Us

As you have no doubt heard, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, at their national convention in Minneapolis, voted to ordain homosexual pastors who are involved in same-sex relationships. It must be a comfort to all those ELCA Lutherans to know that their church can decide what is or is not sinful simply by putting it to a vote. This, of course, is pretty much the same attitude taken by the Voice of the Faithful and other similar organizations who believe the Catholic Church should be run more "democratically." It's also the kind of attitude that has led to the continuing decrease in membership among mainstream Protestant churches.

What will be the effect on the Lutherans in this country? I expect we'll see many, many congregations leaving the ELCA over the next few years. And what about us Catholics? Although the Catholic Church teaches, and will continue to teach, that homosexual relationships are inherently sinful, it's a scandal that more than a few of our bishops turn a blind eye to the presence of such relationships among some of their clergy. The people in the pews aren't blind, and such unofficial tolerance has an impact on their attitudes and their faith.

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