Speaking of “oh, what a mess,” here is the latest from Luther Seminary in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Awhile back the board of Luther voted to continue to not be RIC. RIC stands for Reconciled in Christ, which means that a synod, congregation, seminary, or other organization fully embraces the beliefs, values, agenda, and priorities of ReconcilingWorks.
According to its website, ReconcilingWorks advocates “for the full welcome, inclusion, and equity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex and asexual/aromantic (LGBTQIA+) Lutherans in all aspects of the life of their Church, congregations, and community.”
They define their mission in this way. “ReconcilingWorks advocates for the acceptance, full participation, and liberation of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions within the Lutheran Church.”
At this time Luther is the only ELCA seminary that is not RIC. The board feels that their current welcome statement is sufficient.
Immediately there was an uproar. Students threatened to boycott the school. There was conversation that the president should be removed from her position. Please remember that it was not that long ago that the students at another ELCA seminary, United Seminary in Philadelphia and Gettysburg, were able to force the firing of the president because someone discovered that twenty years before she had been director of an organization that held and advocated for traditional views on human sexuality. She was fired even though she is totally LGBTQ+ affirming now.
Members of the non-faculty staff wrote and signed a letter in support of the student movement to cause the seminary to become RIC. Now a letter has been written and signed by most of the faculty members, again supporting the movement. Here is a link to the letter. Talk about groveling. Talk about one more example of the ELCA’s encouraging, enabling, and empowering extreme progressive elements. Do the seminary faculty really think that good will come from their talking, acting, and handling a situation in that way? Do they really think that it will stop there – with the seminary’s becoming RIC – and the students – thus emboldened – will not go on and demand something far more?