Rabell-González has denied those accusations to Religion News Service.
Salazar-Davidson said she warned Rohrer of the cultural implications of removing the pastor on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, but she said Rohrer told her the timing was dictated by ELCA policy.
“This was devastating because, no matter how many times or ways I explained it, no matter how much I said how significant December12th was to an entire culture, I was not heard. Our culture was not heard. Our ancestors were not heard. The people and the culture did not matter — policy did,” Salazar-Davidson told RNS in an email.
“It was devastating to watch a community that I belong to and care for on such a deep level be hurt.”
Within days, groups across the denomination had joined the outcry.
Asociación de Ministerios Latinos de la ELCA released a statement saying the bishop and council’s removal of the pastor on “one of the most important days for our Latinx community” showed “a lack of empathy and understanding toward their Latinx siblings.”
“This unfortunate situation is a clear and painful example of how systemic racism is deeply rooted in our church, and the long journey ahead of us to dismantle it,” it said.
Extraordinary Lutheran Ministries, which organizes queer ministry leaders in the ELCA and had ordained Rohrer before the ELCA ordained LGBTQ people, announced it was suspending Rohrer’s membership, citing “an existing pattern of behavior.”
A little more than a week later, Rohrer posted a public apology on the synod’s blog, saying they hadn’t understood the impact removing the pastor on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe would have on “the greater church.”
But as word of what had happened at Misión Latina Luterana continued to spread, Eaton announced a three-member listening team to investigate. Eaton received the listening team’s report in early June. Shortly thereafter, she requested Rohrer’s resignation and later, at the listening team’s urging, made the report public.
The release of the report coincided with the Sierra Pacific Synod’s meeting, and Rohrer’s fate became the subject of a two-hour forum on the developments.
“This pains me to say that as much as Bishop Megan has done for LGBTQ inclusion, that effort has not translated to the Latiné community,” said the Rev. Dawn Roginski, interim pastor of St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church in San Mateo, California. “We cannot pick and choose where to be inclusive. We need to be inclusive of all people as a synod.”