The 2009 Youth Gathering is over, and the ELCA Churchwide Assembly is only days away.

Many teens wondered if the harmony and goodwill generated from their work in New Orleans will be undone by dissension among the church’s adults in Minneapolis.

The denomination’s national assembly is Aug. 17-23 at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

Voting members of the ELCA may consider whether to allow gays and lesbians in committed partnerships to serve as clergy. The denomination presently allows for celibate gay and lesbian clergy.

Jenna Goldenne voiced what many teens at the Youth Gathering in New Orleans this week said about the issue.

“People should be able to love who they want,” said the 14-year-old Chicago area teen. “It shouldn’t matter if they are gay or straight. It’s not really an issue for people my age. “