Wednesday, May 13, 2009

It's time for UALC to leave ELCA

They just don't get it--either what the Bible says, or what the people are saying. The excuses just keep coming. If we're "clearning the rolls," then why aren't we bringing in new members? If there is an economic slump, what about all the good years we've had this decade? The homosexuality position is totally unbiblical but it is built on many other unbiblical beliefs that have come out of the seminaries in the last 50 years. Rev. C.J. Conner at The Christian Post.
    "Since 2001, the ELCA reports a loss of 400,078 members. In 2007, on any given Sunday, only 28.9% of ELCA’s 4,709,956 members attend services. This is a steady annual drop in Church attendance, and leads many to theorize that the trends suggest the loss is far higher than the ELCA is able to quantify.

    John Brooks, ELCA communications director says that all of these things have nothing to do with the protracted debate in the ELCA on homosexuality. He points to the economic recession that engulfs all of America right now. He also maintains that the loss of membership recorded for the last 7 years is due to congregations “clearing their rolls of inactive members” and is relatively equivalent to membership losses experienced across the mainline churches.

    Brooks echoes the sentiments represented in a recent Public Religion Research survey of Mainline Pastors, including ELCA pastors. 46% of those surveyed do not believe that the mainline churches are declining because they are becoming theologically liberal. In fact, 47% thinks that the decline has been caused by a loss of courage among the churches to take prophetic stands for justice.

    Mark Hanson, presiding Bishop of the ELCA, has consistently and strongly urged his clergy to take prophetic stands on social justice issues. At the same time, he has asked his members not to let the ELCA’s position on homosexuality to detract from all the good work the denomination does. “The issue of homosexuality in this Church is not all that we are,” he says.

    But to many in his flock it seems the conflict has consumed the church, has depleted valuable resources, tarnished the ELCA name, and has overtaken the Christian priority of bringing people to Christ. For them, the ELCA has indeed become too liberal. Many of the polite and gracious people of the ELCA, primarily of quiet and reserved Scandinavian background, are more apt to vote with their feet and pocketbooks than to engage a fight with denominational polity."

No comments: