written by Anna Ernst, a junior (first-year) MDiv student at LSTC
On Saturday, October 5, 2013, many members of the LSTC community were blessed to celebrate and participate in the installation of new ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton at Rockefeller Chapel on the campus of the University of Chicago (only a few blocks away from LSTC!). On this unusually warm October afternoon, more than 1,500 people attended the Installation including guests and participants representing many parts of Chicago, the country, and the world! Thankful for the service of our previous Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson, we welcomed our new Presiding Bishop with such great joy that the thunderstorms following the service could not put a damper on the day.
It was a rare and special opportunity, particularly as a M. Div student at LSTC, to witness an event marking a shift of leadership in the ELCA on the churchwide level that will shape the church that current LSTC students will be leading in the next few years. I believe this installation service showed that the ELCA is striving to become a church that has and will continue to show to the world that God is love, no matter who you are, who you love, how much money you make, or whether or not you like to dance in the pews! The day of the installation was a day to remember and celebrate how much work we have to do to share the news of that love and to be proud of what we have become and are right now.
It was a blessing to be able to attend the service and to celebrate this “hers”-toric day in the life of this church that has meant so much to me, my family, and my friends. And it is a blessing to be alive right now and to be training to be a servant-leader in this church in the world! AMEN!