Lutherans, wisely, hedge.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America recently had its national meeting in Orlando, Florida. Meetings of this sort are held every other year and are presided over by the ELCA's bishop. The current bishop of the ELCA is Mark Hanson. You can read one of his letters here. There are between 10 and 13 million Lutherans in the United States, making it the 4th largest church in the country, after Catholics, Baptists and Methodists, in that order.
At the meeting the delegates voted 503-490 against lifting a ban on the ordination of same-sex clergy. This measure (it needed a 2/3 majority to pass) would have allowed bishops and church districts (which are called synods) "to seek an exception for a particular candidate if that person was in a long-term relationship and met other restrictions." The delegates also voted 851-127 "to keep the church unified despite serious differences over homosexuality."
Keep in mind that the ELCA is the more liberal of the large Lutheran churches in the country. The Missouri synod, with almost 3 million members, would certainly not even consider such a measure.
I followed the meeting with interest and I'm happy that these votes turned out the way they did. I don't know all the answers to the questions about the role of homosexuals in the church, but I do know that it's not to have some policy stuffed down the throats of congregants. Solutions need to come from the bottom up.
Now, does this mean that individual churches should be able to vote on whether to call homosexuals to ordination? I don't know. Church policy on homosexuality is, for me, one of the trickiest areas of culture right now.
What should we do?