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Julie Recher
At 27, Julie Recher has amassed an impressive list of accomplishments and life experiences. In 2009, Recher graduated from Roanoke College with a 3.9 GPA and a BA in Psychology. At Roanoke, she was a member of several academic honor societies including Phi Beta Kappa, Alpha Chi and Sigma Delta Pi to name a few. She has traveled all over the world including to the United Kingdom, Mexico, Nicaragua and France. Recher attained a Master of Divinity Degree from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia (LTSP) in 2013. While at LTSP, she earned the Karl Elser Wurster Memorial Award "for her demonstration of academic merit and promise of ministry".

This past Sunday, Julie added another entry to her incredible list of accomplishments when she was chosen as Associate Pastor by the congregation of Atonement Lutheran Church in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. Since approximately August 2009, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) has accepted members in committed same-sex unions to serve in leadership roles. With a congregation of over 1,500 members, being chosen as a faith leader to so many people is an incredible honor for anyone, regardless of gender or sexual orientation. But the fact that she's married to a woman does make this decision all that much more significant considering how religion is far too often used to discriminate against members of the LGBT community.

So, when you read stories about angry homophobic morons screaming about how homosexuality is a sin and against God, think about Julie Recher and how she received over two-thirds of the required votes from the Atonement Lutheran congregation to become Associate Pastor, and smile knowing that there are faith communities in Pennsylvania that respect who a person truly is and acknowledge his/her contributions to society without prejudice and fear.

Originally posted to RovingBlueDot on Tue Jun 24, 2014 at 08:24 AM PDT.

Also republished by LGBT Rights are Human Rights, Street Prophets , DKos Pennsylvania, and DKos Southeastern Pennsylvania.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Just wondering (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SpringCityPADem, commonmass

    What the ELCA has in common with the Missouri synod faction of the Lutheran church. My parents are members in the Ms group and boy do they hate the gays!
      I've seen church pamphlets around their house subtly or explicitly explaining how to vote, who to hate, (starting with our president) and which pastor was lecturing about our christian  nation's origins.
      I'd like to show this article to my folks to enlighten them a bit, but I'm concerned that my mom will just explain it away by saying ELCA is just the unauthorized liberal splinter faction of the 'true' Lutheran church.

    "I sometimes lose my train of thought while engaging myself in meaningful conversation" - DN13

    by Devout Nonbeliever on Tue Jun 24, 2014 at 09:35:17 AM PDT

    •  Actually, the ELCA is the largest Lutheran... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blue muon, commonmass

      Denomination in the United States...Check out the sweet info in this Pew Research Center article
      It appears though, that the Missouri Synod is in the "Prohibits Same Sex Marriage" column on the Pew infographic :(

      •  I grew up in the ELCA church. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Cali Scribe, SpringCityPADem, Munchkn

        As best I know, there is nothing in common between Missouri Lutherans and ELCA Lutherans except the name.  I think you can pretty much think of MS as right wing and many in ELCA as moderate to left wing.  My wife was Episcopal so I went over to that and there is little difference between ELCA and Episcopal.  We think of ourselves as Thinking Christians.  

        "War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength", George Orwell, "1984" -7.63 -5.95

        by dangoch on Tue Jun 24, 2014 at 01:19:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The ELCA formed by a merger (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SpringCityPADem, Munchkn

      of two progressive Lutheran churches: the American Lutheran Church (ALC) and the Lutheran Church in America (LCA).

      I'm a recovering Lutheran -- Missouri Synod (or as I'm prone to call it, Misery Synod); I left after high school over some doctrinal differences, mainly "closed Communion" where only LCMS members can receive Communion. I had visited churches with friends and had been welcomed at the Lord's Table without question; to me "closed Communion" felt like inviting friends to visit, then leaving them alone in the living room while you went in to the dining room to have dinner. I've since found a home in the Episcopal Church; we've had gay/lesbian priests for quite some time.

      Only Lutheran church more conservative than the LCMS is the Wisconsin Synod.

      There's only one rule that I know of, babies -- goddammit, you've got to be kind. -- Kurt Vonnegut

      by Cali Scribe on Tue Jun 24, 2014 at 01:49:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for the informative link (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SpringCityPADem, commonmass

    It reinforces my assumption that religion is nothing more than a medieval form of crowd control with an 'insider/outsider' platform suited to different demographics.
      That said, I was forced as a child to undergo the Lutheran indoctrination against my (11 year old) will. I never wanted to be baptized, go to catechism or be confirmed to this hypocritical, racist and intolerant club.
      During catechism the pastor lamented about the trend of young people leaving the church as soon as they could after they turned 18. To me this was a great idea, so within hours of becoming an adult I was a registered Democrat, then found the nearest church member to witness my defection.
      I haven't had any luck trying to excommunicate myself though.

    "I sometimes lose my train of thought while engaging myself in meaningful conversation" - DN13

    by Devout Nonbeliever on Tue Jun 24, 2014 at 10:26:21 AM PDT

    •  I am an atheist who was confirmed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      in an LCA (as it was known then) church. They didn't do it at age 11 though. I was about 14. I have fond memories of those people, but I did excommunicate myself by burying my little "I am a Lutheran" token under a tree. That was about the time I found out what a monster Martin Luther was.

      Also, if you go to the website for the Freedom From Religion Foundation, they have de-baptism forms you can fill out.  ;)

      As for this diary. Good to know that there are still some nice Lutherans around. Now if they could just change their affiliations with Martin.  He certainly would NOT approve of a gay minister!

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