Open Hearts. Open Church.

The North/West Lower Michigan Synod Task Force on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

Vision Statement

As Jesus draws all people to himself1, we are freed to transcend societal divisions and embody the radical grace, forgiveness, and inclusion modeled by Christ2.
1 John 12:32
2 Galatians 3:26-28

Purpose Statement

Recognizing that congregations and individuals in our Synod are at different points on their spiritual journey toward reflecting the full welcome and inclusion that Jesus shows toward all of God’s children, the Mitten Synod offers Open Hearts, Open Church as a resource team to provide guidance, support, and companionship as we journey with
regard to full inclusion of all sexual orientations and gender identities.


  • To continue to grow in our understanding of our mission and ministry through prayer, the study of the Bible, and of historical and theologically relevant texts.
  • To support the leadership of the Synod with respect to issues of sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • To walk alongside and equip congregations with an understanding of sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • To collect and compile hard copy and electronic resources for rostered and lay leaders, congregations and all the baptized.
  • To support Reconciling in Christ congregations in their continued process of welcome and inclusion.
  • To increase our presence at select PRIDE events.
  • To develop partnerships within the ELCA and other organizations for advocacy and ministry.
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