Mobbing: Organized Spiritual Abuse in the LCMS

Started by Matt Staneck, January 09, 2019, 09:05:32 AM

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Rev Geminn

Quote from: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on March 05, 2019, 08:39:38 AM
Here was something unexpected:

"I witnessed a birthday party for Dr. Scaer in the south classroom building of the second floor where a group of seminarians created a mock worship for Dr. Scaer's birthday. They used lecterns and torches from the Chapel, one of the hymns they sang was 'Jeremiah Was a Bull Frog' and toward the end of the service they brought a live pig into the hallway which was subsequently kissed by Dr. Scaer." Student letter, Aug. 1, 1988 cited by Werning, Making the Missouri Synod Functional Again, p. 206.

I was aware of the raucous and satirical parties at the Fort Wayne symposia (e.g., Pseudo-Deutero Q lampoons) and Scaer's appeal to humor but I had not seen this sort of thing in classrooms when I visited the campus.

Scaer writes, "Probably in the late fall or early winter of 1988, Norbert Mueller became aware that some board members were intent on removing Preus. . . . Opposition to Robert Preus began to coalesce in April 1988" (Memoirs, Kindle book location 5706). Robert Preus was "honorably retired" in 1989. Is the above event an example of the concerns brought against Preus's administration, leading to his "retirement"?

Pages 273-274 has more info on IQ parties as they relate to David Scaer.  I was on the CTSFW campus once, actually sat in on a Scaer class then had to leave in the middle of class.  I remember seeing fliers in the dorms that mocked him, can't remember the details.  It was all just really weird to me.

Dave Benke

Quote from: Dan Fienen on March 05, 2019, 04:17:16 PM
When I attend CLJC, Concordia Lutheran Junior College, Ann Arbor, back in the days before it was 4 year and before it had joined forces with Mequon, they were in transitions.  A year or two before I attended they had stopped having all the girl dorms on side of the campus and all the guys on the other.  (Having a number of murders of young women in the area made them rethink the wisdom of isolating all the girls on one side of the campus.  My dorm, on the girl side, was a new dorm suddenly reserved for boys, Ruth.  The intercom panel at the door where an outsider could buzz a room was labeled the "Girl Caller.")  But it was still a year or two before they could have dances on campus.  The students had to rent a public school gym for a dance but they had unbent enough to allow it to be advertised on campus as a dance (in the years previous it had been a "You Know What") and to run the campus bus used to transport students to the mall and into Ann Arbor to the dance.

Wow.  What I remember is that we were allowed to have square dances.  And I remember our parish pastor waxing eloquently against the Beatles in the mid-60s - "those mop-topped swing-kings of teen-time-tunes in their skin-tight sausage pants."  It was a Hard Day's Night for those of us under forty in the nave that morning.  Because we couldn't stop laughing.  And we knew it was wrong to laugh.

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

Dave Likeness

During my freshman college year at Concordia Jr College, Milwaukee we had a "social" in the Student Union.
It was February 21, 1960, as 75 college men entertained 55 women from Downers College, the University
of Wisconsin,Milwaukee, and Deaconess Hospital.  I served as Master of Ceremonies for the event labeled
"Bavarian Inn"  I gave an opening 15 minute monologue on the three ways of dating college women. 
It involved the "Shy" type, the "Aggressive type" and the   "Concordia" type.  Of course all 3 types failed
very miserably.

There was also music, comedy skits, pantomime.and refreshments.  It was such a successful evening that
the professor who was Director of Student Activities  hoped that such social events could become a regular
happening on our all-male campus.  I told him that the best thing that could happen to Concordia Junior
College was to become co-educational and allow women to enroll there.

Dave Benke

Quote from: Dave Likeness on March 05, 2019, 07:49:28 PM
During my freshman college year at Concordia Jr College, Milwaukee we had a "social" in the Student Union.
It was February 21, 1960, as 75 college men entertained 55 women from Downers College, the University
of Wisconsin,Milwaukee, and Deaconess Hospital.  I served as Master of Ceremonies for the event labeled
"Bavarian Inn"  I gave an opening 15 minute monologue on the three ways of dating college women. 
It involved the "Shy" type, the "Aggressive type" and the   "Concordia" type.  Of course all 3 types failed
very miserably.

There was also music, comedy skits, pantomime.and refreshments.  It was such a successful evening that
the professor who was Director of Student Activities  hoped that such social events could become a regular
happening on our all-male campus.  I told him that the best thing that could happen to Concordia Junior
College was to become co-educational and allow women to enroll there.

One of my roommates, Mark Bertermann, of Racine, ended up dating the first co-ed at Concordia, a girl named Ethel, who later became his wife.  She passed away several years ago, unfortunately.  Her dad was the inimitable Oliver C. Rupprecht.  During the year Ethel entered, my Secunda year (freshman college) which was followed by a much larger entering group of female students in the '65-66 junior college year, we held rallies on campus AGAINST the entrance of women, including a group of our stronger guys carrying a VW Bug up the steps of the Ackmann Gymnasium and onto the floor, while chanting "Co-Ed is NO-Ed!"  I guess the VW was to prove that women could not carry a VW Bug up the steps of the gymnasium.  At the time it all made sense.

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

Brian Stoffregen

Quote from: Dan Fienen on March 05, 2019, 04:19:20 PM
Quote from: Richard Johnson on March 05, 2019, 04:15:38 PM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on March 05, 2019, 11:28:00 AM

I've confessed the sin in these precincts before: I like Earth and All Stars. ]

Me too. Mea maxima culpa.

Not my absolute favorite, currently Herbert Brokering's "Stay with Us," by I'll also confess to liking it and I have a soft spot in my heart for loud boiling test tubes.


A member, who was a chemical engineer, really liked the test tubes line, too.
I flunked retirement. Serving as a part-time interim in Ferndale, WA.

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

This was an interesting passage in Werning's book:

"I visited with Professor Marquart on March 16th, 1992 in his office and asked him why he thought some students would be offended at what was said and done at this IQ party. He answered, "I put the line on taking the name of the Lord in vain." I asked him, "so the Eighth Commandment and other questions of ethics do not concern you." [sic] He had no answer. At the next faculty meeting, the question of offense at the IQ party was raised, and both Dr. Scaer and Professor Marquart indicated that there may have been some things that happened which were not right, and they would talk to some people. That is all that was said and done." (Making the Missouri Synod Functional Again, p. 274)

In the paper I write about a shift in ethics in the LCMS away from the divine command ethics traditionally held by Lutherans and toward outcome based ethics typical of Neo-orthodoxy. I am not the first to notice a change in ethics. Danker raised the issue in 1977.

In a mobbing environment, humor and teasing become tools. Mocking and ridicule cease to be "fun" and are designed to get under a target's skin. If the target complains, then the target is ridiculed for lacking a sense of humor, compounding the mobbing effect. It's interesting that Werning describes Marquart drawing a line between first table offense and second table offense. In some ways this is classic. Ridicule of God is clearly cause for offense. But Werning's testimony indicates an atmosphere where second table violations were accepted and came to be celebrated---even becoming a test of orthodoxy to prove that one was not a Pietist.

All sinners are inherently antinomian. No surprise. What is surprising is the justification of antinomianism in Lutheran circles today. It manifests itself in the ELCA in one way and in the LCMS in another way. Yet both are clear examples of antinomianism. My concern is that the LCMS is becoming neo-orthodox in its theology under the guise of confessionalism, that even the conservative "Confessional Lutherans" are making this shift.

John_Hannah

Quote from: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on March 08, 2019, 07:45:54 AM
This was an interesting passage in Werning's book:

"I visited with Professor Marquart on March 16th, 1992 in his office and asked him why he thought some students would be offended at what was said and done at this IQ party. He answered, "I put the line on taking the name of the Lord in vain." I asked him, "so the Eighth Commandment and other questions of ethics do not concern you." [sic] He had no answer. At the next faculty meeting, the question of offense at the IQ party was raised, and both Dr. Scaer and Professor Marquart indicated that there may have been some things that happened which were not right, and they would talk to some people. That is all that was said and done." (Making the Missouri Synod Functional Again, p. 274)

In the paper I write about a shift in ethics in the LCMS away from the divine command ethics traditionally held by Lutherans and toward outcome based ethics typical of Neo-orthodoxy. I am not the first to notice a change in ethics. Danker raised the issue in 1977.

In a mobbing environment, humor and teasing become tools. Mocking and ridicule cease to be "fun" and are designed to get under a target's skin. If the target complains, then the target is ridiculed for lacking a sense of humor, compounding the mobbing effect. It's interesting that Werning describes Marquart drawing a line between first table offense and second table offense. In some ways this is classic. Ridicule of God is clearly cause for offense. But Werning's testimony indicates an atmosphere where second table violations were accepted and came to be celebrated---even becoming a test of orthodoxy to prove that one was not a Pietist.

All sinners are inherently antinomian. No surprise. What is surprising is the justification of antinomianism in Lutheran circles today. It manifests itself in the ELCA in one way and in the LCMS in another way. Yet both are clear examples of antinomianism. My concern is that the LCMS is becoming neo-orthodox in its theology under the guise of confessionalism, that even the conservative "Confessional Lutherans" are making this shift.

Insightfull.

Peace, JOHN
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

Steven W Bohler

When Werning says "That is all that was said and done", does he mean at that particular meeting or in general?  How would he know what was "said and done" outside of that meeting?

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

Matthew Paul, to be clear in communication, I do not want a call to an LCMS congregation. The general editor of The Lutheran Study Bible is content to serve an independent Lutheran church. Trying to communicate with me through mobbing techniques does not help your cause.

Dave Benke

Quote from: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on December 11, 2019, 08:29:58 AM
Matthew Paul, to be clear in communication, I do not want a call to an LCMS congregation. The general editor of The Lutheran Study Bible is content to serve an independent Lutheran church. Trying to communicate with me through mobbing techniques does not help your cause.

Who is Matthew Paul?  Two first names.  Or, a first and middle name with no surname.  Or somebody named Matthew Paul, first and last.

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

RDPreus


Steven W Bohler

Rev. Engelbrecht<

I have the same question as Dr. Benke.  But also add: why post your response here?  Matthew Paul (whoever he is) did not post here, did he?  Isn't calling him out here, in its own way, a kind of "mobbing"? 

Dave Benke

I'm thinking there must be a Matthew Paul Preus in that large clan.  True or false?

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

peter_speckhard

If someone contacts me in private and I respond in public, it seems to me I'm the one calling upon the power of the mob.

RDPreus

Quote from: Dave Benke on December 11, 2019, 03:08:08 PM
I'm thinking there must be a Matthew Paul Preus in that large clan.  True or false?

Dave Benke

Sorry, no Matthew Preus.  My daughter Mary has a son named Matthew Robert Gottwalt.  My son Paul has a son named Anders Paul Preus and my son Mark has a son named Paul David Preus.  So, counting middle names, we have two grandsons with the name Paul and one with the name Matthew, but no Matthew Paul.

Thanks for asking!  :)

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