Welcome to Katie and Martin’s little blog. We have been worried for some time about the way power is used in the Lutheran Church of Australia. While we talk about grace and the work of the Holy Spirit, we are aware of how various people in positions of power within the LCA maintain a conservative stance on women’s ordination. While this may ensure they remain comfortable and unthreatened by change, it also means that the LCA is quietly sliding into oblivion as people move out of our Church and into more progressive settings.
The influence that conservatives have over the LCA leadership, ALC graduates, General Convention, the way scripture is interpreted and who is ordained into the public ministry of the Church, continues to deny a membership trend, as was made obvious by the significant majority vote for women’s ordination in 2000. Their power and influence is considerable. While the ELCA in the US ordained women in the 1970’s, we are still suffering from the compromises made that were necessary when our own two Synods combined. Enough is enough. It is time to get out of our isolation and back into the world where we have much work to do.
This blog is to discuss the abuse of power within the LCA, and how the worrisome and somnolent affects of theological conservatism are bleeding the essence from the LCA and its membership.
In the meantime, take heart from online social networking. Never before have there been so many ways for people to share their hope for the future and to quickly disseminate news. No longer do we need to rely on the sanctioned lines of communication within the Church. No longer do we need to remain silent, when work from special committees gets shelved, when we have witnessed and taken part in abuse of power against women, against delegates at General Synod, against laity. No longer do we have to shrug when conservative ALC lecturers mould students, entrenching conservatism in the Church well into the future.
Communication is enlightening and empowering. The more we communicate with each other, the less we in the LCA will submit to those who have much to gain from a passive membership. We all have a vested interest in theology and we should all participate in theological discussions. Therefore it is important not to leave the big decisions in the LCA to those in positions of power.
Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important. C.S.Lewis
The call to justice for women in ministry is not just moderately important, it is essential to our core beliefs that come from Jesus. Without action towards justice for women in the LCA we are simply another ‘moderately important’ community organisation.