We are pleased to announce our newest RIC community – St Andrew’s Lutheran Church, West Los Angeles!
“Our name “St. Andrew’s” comes from our deep commitment to be followers of Christ. Andrew was the first apostle to follow Jesus. He introduced others to the ministry of Jesus, but was eventually killed because he chose to remain faithful to Christ in the face of oppression,” the congregation professes on their website. “Andrew refused to stop encouraging others, caring for the marginalized, and speaking out against injustice. His example speaks profoundly to life at St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church today.”
Their “Mutual Ministry” committee worked diligently to help the church first identify their mission priorities and then craft a statement to the broad heart-felt welcome they felt exemplified their congregation.
St. Andrew’s was founded in 1950 on the west side of Los Angeles as a mission church and called Carol Nolte, their first female pastor, in 1982. Pastor Nolte had been instrumental in helping St. Andrew’s discuss issues of sexuality and welcome. After she passed away in 2005, the congregation called the Rev. Josh McFuffie, who walked the congregation through the ELCA’s drafted “Human Sexuality” statements through 2009. Following his term, St. Andrew’s was served by the Rev. Dr. Guy Erwin, their first publicly identified gay pastor. After that, they once again took the bold and public action of calling their second publicly identified gay pastor, Pastor Caleb Crainer, in the fall of 2012.
Please join us in welcoming, St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church to the RIC community and post your congratulations here on facebook.
Will you consider helping us support more congregations along their welcoming journey? Your support helps us continue to provide networks, educational resources and training to LGBT Lutherans, allies and over 500 congregations and ministry settings (and rapidly counting) that publicly declare their welcome and affirmation of LGBT people. We can’t do it without you. Please donate or become a ReconcilingWorks member today!