The incoming vice president is a senior investigator for the U.S. Department of Labor and current vice president of the Southeastern Synod of the ELCA, which spans Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi. He grew up Muslim and became Lutheran in 2011.
Siddiqui said it was “fantastic” that the top three candidates for vice president were all people of color. They included Roberto Lara Aranda, president of Asociación Luterana de Ministerios Latinos ELCA, and Tracey Beasley, a member of Reformation Lutheran Church in Philadelphia. (Travel guru Rick Steves, a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Lynnwood, Washington, also received one vote on an earlier ballot.)
But, Siddiqui said, “That doesn’t mean we have solved racism yet. We have a lot of work to do, church.”
Siddiqui will take office in November, according to Living Lutheran Magazine. He follows Carlos Peña, who stepped into the role after the unexpected passing of Bill Horne in 2021.
Support for #Landback Movement
Voting members considered a memorial urging support for the #Landback movement.
In the end, they approved a memorial encouraging ELCA members and entities to support “creative programs of restorative justice in partnership with Indigenous peoples.” That can include returning land to the appropriate Native American nations when selling or transferring property.
The memorial also encourages ELCA members and entities to explore making land acknowledgements a part of their public gatherings, to educate themselves about the Indigenous peoples whose land they inhabit and to deepen relationships with Indigenous peoples and tribal nations.
The memorial comes as the denomination announced its Declaration of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America to American Indian and Alaska Native People for the first time in person at Churchwide Assembly. The assembly also hosted a worship service designed and led by Indigenous Lutherans and an address by National Congress of American Indians President Fawn Sharp.
Revisions to Human Sexuality: Gift and Trust
A lot has changed since 2009.
Social statements are the denomination’s teaching and policy documents.
A memorial authorized a narrow review of the social statement about sexuality to make sure its wording “reflects current church understanding, church policy, civil law, and public acceptance of same-gender and gender non-conforming couples.”