ELCA Churches Will Continue to Hold Virtual Services
REDWOOD FALLS -- Some Lutheran churches in Minnesota say they plan to start holding worship services next week, despite the Governor's order requiring places of worship to keep people to 10 or less both inside and outside.
However, not all Lutheran churches say they'll defy the Governor. Bishop Jon Anderson of the Southwest Minnesota ELCA says the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America will continue with their virtual services.
Part of what we've been trying to do is help our congregations think about how they invite their people to continue to be generous and then create pathways for them to do that, whether it's mailing in their gifts or whether it's using digital tools
Anderson says the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America will continue to abide by the Governor's Executive Order.
We would argue that our congregations have never closed. We would say that the church is actually all the baptized ones, or all God's people, who are spread out in our community living out their faith lives. They gather in congregational buildings to do worship, but we also worship as we live out our lives in God's world.
Anderson says there are 235 congregations in the Southwest Minnesota Synod of the ELCA, which includes St. Cloud.
While he says they will continue to abide by the Governor's rules, he says he was surprised and disappointed by the Governor's announcement on Wednesday.
Roman Catholic and Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod congregations across Minnesota plan to resume holding worship services in defiance of the state's ban on gatherings of more than 10 people. Archbishop Bernard Hebda and the Rev. Lucas Woodford say the restrictions are an unconstitutional violation of religious freedom.