Nafzger addresses church`s action on ordaining women

Thoughts of both gratitude and concern were expressed by the executive director of the LCMSNafzger Commission on Theology and Church Relations following a vote on the ordination of women at last month’s convention of the Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA). 

“In light of our LCMS understanding that the Scriptures teach that only men are to be ordained into the pastoral office, we are grateful that the LCA has made the decision to abide by their historic position,” said Dr. Samuel Nafzger.  “Yet, we know this has been a difficult issue for the members of the LCA and we pray that they will be able to move onward, working together in the mission that God has given them.”

A proposal to ordain women into the pastoral office was considered at the LCA convention in early October.  It received a majority of votes, but did not gain the necessary two-thirds majority necessary to become a public teaching of the church body.  The vote was 194 in favor and 169 against, with 20 abstentions.  A minimum of 254 votes was required for adoption by the convention, which had 385 delegates.

“They have gone about this study in a very fair way that has led to a deeper understanding of the Scriptures,” Nafzger said.  “We pray that, having gone through this process, they will now be able to unite in proclaiming the Good News of the suffering, death, and resurrection of our Savior.”

The LCA and the LCMS are both members of the International Lutheran Council.

Posted Oct. 27, 2006

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