A female Lutheran pastor in Minnesota sparked viral attention after leading her congregation in a “sparkle creed” prayer during a live-streamed service for LGBT pride month, referring to God as “nonbinary” and portraying Jesus with “two dads.
“Sparkle Creed” Prayer
The Edina Community Lutheran Church (ECLC) in Minnesota has become a viral sensation after one of its female Lutheran pastors, Anna Helgen, delivered a “sparkle creed” prayer during a Sunday service live stream to celebrate LGBT pride month.
She Refers to God as “Nonbinary”
The prayer, which referred to God as “nonbinary” and depicted Jesus Christ as having “two dads” while wearing a fabulous tunic, gained significant attention and sparked both support and controversy.
It’s Called the Sparkle Creed
During the prayer, Helgen recited the statement of faith known as the “sparkle creed,” which emphasized a belief in a nonbinary God with plural pronouns and a rainbow spirit that embraces the diversity of humanity.
Prayer for Inclusion and Love
The prayer also called for love and inclusion, urging the congregation to recognize that “love is love is love.”
“Shake It Off”
Helgen concluded with a reference to pop star Taylor Swift and her song “Shake It Off,” asking for the ability to overcome challenges and embrace resilience.
Promoting Advocacy for All People
ECLC’s participation in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s “Reconciling In Christ” initiative promotes the welcome, inclusion, celebration, and advocacy of people of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions.
Working for Racial Equality
The church commits to working for racial equity, anti-racist efforts, and supporting the national program.
Engaging in Activities That Honor LGBT Individuals
As part of this initiative, ECLC engages in activities that honor LGBT individuals, including children’s ministry curriculum for pride month.
Stolen Land of Native Americans
Additionally, the ECLC website acknowledges the complicity of Christians and Christian churches in the theft of native land and commits to being active advocates for justice for native people.
Truth Telling Is Important
They emphasize truth-telling and healing as essential components of their commitment.
Openly Transgender Bishop
The election of the first openly transgender bishop in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s history, Rev. Megan Rohrer, by the ELCA Sierra Pacific Synod in May 2021, drew further attention to the progressive nature of some branches within the denomination.
Criticism From the Christian Community
This historic election prompted both support and criticism from different segments of the Christian community, with conservative voices expressing concerns about departing from traditional biblical interpretations.
Division Within Christian Communities
The developments at ECLC and within the ELCA highlight the ongoing debates and divisions within Christian communities regarding issues of gender, sexuality, inclusivity, and social justice.
Managing Contemporary Social Issues
These conversations continue to shape the landscape of religious institutions and their relationships with contemporary social issues.
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