To me, it's not a good sign when a church body considers resorting to coercive means (the law, as Scripture would call it), to force people to stay in relationship with it, in spite of people's qualms about the errors and heresies into which the body has fallen.
Many Lutherans believe that the only way for them to step back into Christ's Church--which exists anywhere the Gospel is rightly proclaimed and the sacraments are rightly administered, according to the Augsburg Confession, a basic statement of faith for Lutherans--is to leave the ELCA.
I want to reform the ELCA. And I pray for it and work for it. But, the signs increase daily that instead of repenting for its many departures from the historic Christian faith and the authority of God's Word, the Bible, that the leadership who have hijacked the body intend to pursue their agenda, moving the ELCA ever further away from the cornerstone Lutheran confessional principles, "Grace alone. Faith alone. Word alone."
They intend to dig in and force all who feel they can no longer be attached to a body that has fallen into grievous error, to stay. Why?
It's sad at so many levels.
UPDATE: Earlier today, my son Philip, shared this quote from one of the ancient church fathers, Athanasius, with me. It's utterly appropo:
"Vainly then do they run about with the pretext that they have demanded Councils for the faith's sake; for divine Scripture is sufficient above all things; but if a Council be needed on the point, there are the proceedings of the Fathers, for the Nicene Bishops did not neglect this matter, but stated the doctrine so exactly, that persons reading their words honestly, cannot but be reminded by them of the religion towards Christ, announced in divine Scripture" (Athanasius, de Synodis, Part 1, 6)