8/12/2016 10:50:00 PM

NEW ORLEANS – In her report to the 2016 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) Churchwide Assembly, ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth A. Eaton reflected on the ELCA’s work over the past three years and lifted up future priorities for the church.

Eaton said much of her focus the past three years has been on the “how and why we do this work,” reminding the assembly of her four emphases for this church: We are church. We are Lutheran. We are church together. We are church for the sake of the world.

“I think it’s important when we organize our work together that we understand that we are church first,” Eaton said. “And we need to be clear that our lives are formed by word and sacrament, that we gather as the beloved children of God around the means of grace, that our lives are in Christ.”

Emphasizing the Lutheran identity and the distinctive Lutheran voice, Eaton said she hoped the church is beginning to understand that “God is calling us to be a diverse, inclusive, multicultural church.”

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