One of San Francisco’s most courageous churches is featured in a new book about the churches acceptance of LGBT members and clergy.
First United Lutheran Church and their relationship with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA is a full chapter in the new book “Does Jesus Really Love Me,” which chronicles author Jeff Chu’s search for acceptance of LGBT members as he travelled across the US.
Jeff Chu and current FULC pastor Susan Strouse will be at Books Inc at 2275 Castro St. in San Francisco for reading and book signing on April 18 at 7:30.
In 1990 the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) suspended First United from membership for ordaining Jeff Johnson, an openly gay pastor, against the wishes of the denomination. At the same time, St. Francis Lutheran Church in San Francisco was suspended for ordaining two openly lesbian pastors, Ruth Frost and Phyllis Zillhart. After nearly 20 years as an independent church, the ELCA realized that the expulsion was unfair and invited FULC to rejoin. On July 15, 2012, the congregation did vote to rejoin the ELCA and in October held a Service of Reconciliation and Healing. First United continues to advocate for the full inclusion of all people.