I have nothing against Pope Francis or the Roman Catholic Church, however, in all honesty I do get frustrated that when there is reason to interview a church official about a Christian festival or to hear from the voice of a denominational leader it is most often a Roman Catholic and without fail a man. Imagine my surprise and delight when yesterday CNN chose to interview our (ELCA) Presiding Bishop on the topic of opening churches again.
Yes, Lutherans have bishops! Our Evangelical Lutheran Church in America headquarters are in Chicago. It is there that our Presiding Bishop has an office. The Rev. Elizabeth Eaton is our bishop. Each geographical region also has a synodical bishop. There are 65 synods. Our synodical bishop is Bishop Patricia Davenport.
Getting back to the interview with Bishop Eaton on CNN, her response to the question about opening churches was: “The church has never been closed, we found different ways to gather, digitally mostly.” Bishop Eaton explained that people in our churches are still praying, doing Bible Study and serving the neighbor by feeding the hungry and reaching out in various ways. Bishop Eaton was very clear about stressing that this is not a faith verses freedom issue. Being careful is merely the faithful response. Good job Bishop! — RLC, Thank you all for your patience, we will be together (hopefully) before too long!
The Rev. Ellen Meissgeier