Yes, it’s true. For now, the operative term is “status quo.”
My church lacked the guts to take a brave stand in favor of civil rights. (In early 2007, because of this situation and other matters, I fled organized religion and have never been happier.) Gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and members of the transgender community will continue to be welcomed at church but denied the right to have their unions blessed in the sanctuary or become ordained pastors unless they vow to live in a state of celibacy.
What a disappointment.
I am heartened, however, by the fact that the vote at the 2005 Churchwide Assembly was very close. That means that progress toward equality in the church has been made.
But the Governator vetoed legislation that would have legalized same-sex marriage in California.
So the fight is far from over on both the religious and secular fronts.
I’m sorry to say that my answer is the same. For now, the status quo prevails. I continue to be a member of the ELCA.
A better alternative simply has not presented itself. Yet.
Perhaps it will and perhaps it won’t.
Perhaps my pastor is right when he tells me that churches are humanly populated and, therefore, flawed institutions. He points out that many churches aren’t even discussing the issue of gay rights, including our Missouri Synod brothers and sisters. Touche.
And then asks me in his very sweet, caring, pastoral voice, “Janie, where do you seriously think you are going to find a pro-life church that embraces your views on civil rights?” Double touche.
Man, he really fights dirty for a pastor, don’t you think?
So here I am in the West Coast equivalent of the “little town that time forgot.” The weekend will find me enjoying coffee in the Narthex now that the weather is turning colder, and it’s a sure bet that before the year ends, I’ll find myself at some kind of potluck dinner cursing the jello (in the correct liturgical color) under my breath.
What are you gonna do? You just can’t deny where you come from. Or who your people are.
Or who you are.