Can Prayer Change ANYTHING?
If you believe it can, please join me and hundreds of others in a prayer vigil starting right now (Friday, Jan. 19).
In Atlanta, an ELCA pastor is on trial for loving someone, again. Bradley Schmeling has served several years as a pastor, and his congregation loves him and he, them. He also loves Darin, his partner and a pastor who is no longer serving in the ELCA.
The ecclesiastical trial began this morning, Jan. 19, and will continue through Monday, Jan. 22. During this time, we who are concerned about the pastor, the congregation, the policy, the process, the church, are invited to join together in a prayer vigil in support of Pr. Schmeling and St. John Lutheran Church in Atlanta.
I have read the long list of those already committed to pray, and am on the verge of tears as I recognize friends and colleagues from all over the country who are setting aside time and fear to be able to "come out" and pray. What is not in question is whether or not Pr. Schmeling has "kept the guidelines"--no, he has not. What is also not in question is whether he is a good and faithful pastor; many will testify that he is (whether they're allowed in the courtroom or not remains to be seen). What IS in question, in my not-so-humble-opinion, is whether the guideline serves the mission of the church, or is a deterrent to it. Scripture tells us not to be a stumbling block to our neighbor's faith; the ELCA keeps falling down over this one.
If you would like to add your name to the list, please go to
right now and do it. You may do so anonymously if you choose. You may pray without signing up, of course, but if you do sign up, all those involved will know you are praying, and what a difference it can make to know you're being prayed for when you're under fire.
Thanks. For more info, go to www.lcna.org or www.stjohnsatlanta.org