By PANU KASAR in Lae
THE 27th ELC-PNG Synod held at Martin Luther Seminary in Lae Morobe province finally clarified the Church's stand on the issue of homosexual clergy.
The Synod attended by over 2,000 participants from the 17 districts of ELC PNG passed a number of historical resolutions. The resolution on homosexuality was one of them. After hours of heated debate by the synod's theological committee, a final resolution was passed on the issue to be presented to the synod.
The resolution was passed with a majority voice against homosexual clergy in ELC PNG. The stand came in the wake of concerns raised by Papua New Guinean Lutherans on the Church's position in response to the legalising of gay clergy in parts of the Lutheran Church of America (LCA).
The resolution eased tensions among the Lutheran population and gave new insights to how ELC PNG will respond to global issues in the future.
Albert Horick a delegate of the ELC's Papua district said: "Anything that is classified as sin in the word of God cannot be allowed in the Church. The church must also clearly state its stand to its partners, even the LCA".
The Synod further resolved that homosexual marraiges will not be recognised in ELC-PNG. Homosexuals will be excommunicated and dealt with following the process of counseling and reconciliation.
Apart from this issue the Synod passed ELC-PNG's new constitution as well as its corporate plan and the election of the new head bishop.