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March 12, 2010

ELCIC Human Sexuality Task Force Receives Study Feedback, Starts Next Phase

Members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) responded enthusiastically to the call to provide feedback on the ELCIC's Study of Human Sexuality. As of the February 28 deadline for feedback over 500 responses had been received at the National Office via online feedback, as well as through written submissions.

The ELCIC Study of Human Sexuality was made available for individual and congregational use at the end of September 2009. The study, prepared by the ELCIC Human Sexuality Task Force, engaged members of the church in dialogue and respectful conversation as part of a consultation process to generate feedback and inform the process of drafting a social statement. The study touched on personal discipleship, local ministry contexts, and the mission of the wider church.

Over 500 responses to the study were received as of the end of February with responses continuing to come in after the deadline; the task force will be including the additional responses in the process as they are able. The next step in the process will involve the task force reviewing all of the submissions and, using the feedback, writing a first draft of a social statement.

Each member of the task force is reading every response that we have received, says Judy Wry, chair of the Human Sexuality Task Force. We want to thank the members of the church for their prayerful and thoughtful consideration of the study. All of the comments will be carefully considered as we embark on the next phase in the development of a social statement.

The draft social statement, when available, will be distributed widely for consultation. Feedback from the draft statement will inform revisions that will lead to the proposed social statement. Following a review of the statement, it is intended that National Church Council will present it to the 2011 ELCIC National Convention. Delegates to the convention must endorse the final draft before it becomes an official social statement of the church.

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The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada is Canada's largest Lutheran denomination with 162,100 baptized members in 611 congregations. It is a member of the Lutheran World Federation, the Canadian Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches.

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