Evangelical Lutheran Church Installs First Transgender Bishop During Ceremony In San Francisco

Evangelical Lutheran Church Installs First Transgender Bishop During Ceremony In San Francisco

By Jeffrey Cawood

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) installed its first openly transgender bishop on Saturday during a ceremony at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco with 65 bishops and more than 150 pastors in attendance.

Bishop Megan Rohrer will lead the Sacramento-based Sierra Pacific Synod, which includes almost 200 congregations in California and Nevada. The 41-year-old biological female uses the pronouns “he” and “they” and is married to a wife, Laurel. The couple has two children.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Rohrer “served as pastor at Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Parkside neighborhood and chaplain for the San Francisco Police Department before being elected to a six-year bishop term” earlier this year.

“I step into this role because a diverse community of Lutherans in Northern California and Nevada prayerfully and thoughtfully voted to do a historic thing,” Rohrer said in a statement. “My installation will celebrate all that is possible when we trust God to shepherd us forward.”

The Chronicle reported, “The two-hour service featured messages, prayers, music and Bible readings chosen by Rohrer, including the story of a follower of Jesus who met and baptized a eunuch – groundbreaking in ancient times.”

At the time, Rohrer told ABC 10 News the election was “bigger than just one person.”

“There are many people who have been hurt by churches, and as someone who wears the same uniform, I would like to say ‘I’m sorry’ if you have been hurt by people of faith,” said Rohrer. “And I also want to say, ‘Welcome.’”

Rohrer was barred from serving in the church’s leadership positions in the mid-2000s due to what Rohrer’s bio described as “policies against gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer individuals.” The church had only allowed gay and lesbian people into the ordained ministry if they remained celibate. In 2009, however, the church reversed course and voted to open the ministry to gay and lesbian people living in committed relationships.

The Associated Press reported, “Rohrer became one of seven LGBTQ pastors accepted by the progressive Evangelical Lutheran church in 2010 after it allowed ordination of pastors in same-sex relationships.”

Daily Wire


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