Plenary 3 Wednesday morning

Started by Richard Johnson, August 10, 2022, 08:46:41 AM

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Richard Johnson

The session begins with what is called "Morning Prayer" (though it bears no resemblance to traditional Matins). A song, a brief reflection, a litany, and we're good to go.

Many of the assembly members are dressed in red today, a request made, as a sign of solidarity with (I think) missing indigenous women. Up this morning should be introduction of proposed constitutional and bylaws amendments, the second ballot for vP, the report of the Presiding bishop, elections report on Veep, first common ballot (for all the other positions), then Declaration to American Indian and Alaska Native People and address by National Congress of American Indians President Fawn Sharp.

The Secretary rattles off the numbers of the amendments that have been removed from en bloc. They will be considered tomorrow.

There were 56 persons named on the first ballot for VP. 25 withdrew, leaving 31 names on the second ballot. Bp. Eaton gives instructions for the use of the voting machines in this ballot. Credentials reports 822 registered members. The ballot is preceded by song and prayer, and then the ballot is taken.

Carlos Pena, interim vice president, brought the recommendations of the church council. These are mostly pro forma or non-controversial.

Bp. Eaton then turns the chair over to Pena, who in turn calls on her to give her report as Presiding Bishop. She begins by asking pastors and deacons to stand in recognition of their faithful work during the pandemic. She also commended congregations for their creative flexibility during this time. She describes the ELCA's response to the pandemic, giving support to synods and congregations in their efforts.

She then speaks about "The Collaborative," an effort by the ELCA leadership to figure out how better to reach younger and more diverse people. She calls on Kimberly Jackson, Director of Leadership Development, to explain this program. A good bit of jargon here, and I'm not quite sure what the heck this program really is.

She then calls on Rebecca Payne to talk about the Congregations Lead Initiative. Then the staff person for African Descent Ministries. The theme here seems to be that  many things were being planned and executed during the pandemic. "The church has never closed."

Report of the 2nd veep ballot:
801 valid votes

Beasley 211
Siddiqui 163
Aranda 106
Borchardt 60
Auger 56
Archer 32
Smith 31

These seven are the "finalists" who will address the assembly this afternoon.

The elections committee chair now gives instructions for casting the first common ballot--this is the massive ballot for church council and various board and committee members.  But there's a technological problem, and so some thumb twiddling until Bp. Eaton calls for a video to be shown.

Speaking of technological problems, I just had one here. Bp. Eaton jumped ahead on the agenda to hear the report of the task force on Repudiating the Doctrine of Discovery. I've been writing notes about this, but they suddenly vanished. In sum, several members of the task force are reporting on the Declaration of the ELCA to American Indians and Alaska Native People and what it means. Vance Blackfox, director of Indigenous Ministries and Tribal Relations (a new position) is introduced and speaks. Then an address from Fawn Sharp, president of the National Congress of American Indians, followed by a lengthy ovation.

Now back to the first common ballot, and another lengthy explanation. There are lots of people to vote for, and so the voting actually takes place over the lunch break. Announcements, and then closing song and prayer. The next session begins at 2 p.m., but there is Eucharist immediately following this session. The intro on the service booklet says:
This service of Holy Communion follows the four-fold pattern of Lutheran worship, but the words and music are derived from a variety of Native American sources. It was designed with the help of Indigenous persons who are leaders in the ELCA, and it is offered in a spirit of hope for deeper understanding of the Native experience in this land and in this church. It represents elements from various Native peoples: there is no single "Native" spirituality or religious pattern, but many. No single worship service could represent all Natives, but this one attempts to include aspects of many traditions, and the worship leaders come from a variety of Native (and some non-Native) ELCA communities.
The Rev. Richard O. Johnson, STS

Terry W Culler

Just when was "discovery" deemed to be a doctrine of the Church?
"No particular Church has ... a right to existence, except as it believes itself the most perfect from of Christianity, the form which of right, should and will be universal."
Charles Porterfield Krauth

Charles Austin

"Doctrine" in that phrase is not used in an ecclesiastical setting.
Iowa-born. Long-time in NY/New Jersey, former LWF staff in Geneva.
ELCA PASTOR, ordained 1967. Former journalist. Retired in Minneapolis. Often critical of the ELCA, but more often a defender of its mission. Ignoring the not-so-subtle rude insults which often appear here.

Richard Johnson

Quote from: Charles Austin on August 10, 2022, 11:29:47 AM
"Doctrine" in that phrase is not used in an ecclesiastical setting.

Actually, in a sense, it is. The "doctrine" is one promulgated by the Roman popes in the 15th and 16th centuries, giving the church certain rights over the areas "discovered" by the explorers.
The Rev. Richard O. Johnson, STS

pastorg1@aol.com

I'm hoping Africa will discover and colonize Europe while bringing it Christianity.

Peter (cf. Lambeth Conference 2022) Garrison

Pete Garrison
RC Catechist

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