The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America released a Draft Social Statement on Human Sexuality today. It’s the latest round of discussions that have taken place throughout the twenty years of the ELCA’s existence.
“There is a lot in the statement that can be affirmed, but there are some glaring theological errors here,” said Spring, the retired bishop of the Northwestern Pennsylvania Synod.
“The draft statement would change the definition of marriage by implication. This is a cause of great concern,” Spring said. “Lutherans have traditionally defined marriage as ‘a lifelong covenant of faithfulness between a man and a woman.’ The statement calls marriage a relationship of love and trust between two people. From this perspective, the statement opens the door to supporting same-gender committed relationships.”
“Lutherans have traditionally addressed sexuality biblically by starting with creation and noting that God created humans male and female. The draft statement seems to have avoided those biblical passages and that perspective of human sexuality,” Spring explained. “There is a surprising absence of procreation as a purpose of marriage,” he added.