News:


Main Menu

LCMS Dystopian Future

Started by Jim Butler, May 16, 2023, 10:53:56 AM

Previous topic - Next topic

RDPreus

I know the Gottesdienst guys, and they are all good men and fine theologians.  For those of you who would like to attend a good conference featuring some of the Gottesdienst guys and yours truly, I'd like to recommend Christ and the Law: Catechesis on the Ten Commandments, June 21-23, at Peace Lutheran Church in Sussex, Wisconsin.  Pastor Peter Bender is the host.  I hope to see some of you there!  I'm sure you will find it edifying.

Dave Benke

Quote from: Dan Fienen on May 21, 2023, 02:18:21 AM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 18, 2023, 04:55:49 PM
I am fine with orthodox hymns that reflect stem from any culture of people of any skin color. But they shouldn't be segregated into a hymnal just for those people. Call it Christians Hymns for Divine Service and put it in every congregation. Don't make a black hymnal for black peoole served by the black clergy caucus educated at tne black seminary. It was a bad idea then and a bad idea now.

My 8th grade class is in D.C. this week. Eleven are black, ten are white. None, I hope, care one way or the other. We didn't send two buses, schedule separate tours for them, or plan a segregated graduation ceremony like so many progressives these days seem to like.
So, what do you suggest, Peter? Come out with a new edition of LSB thicker by say 200 orthodox hymns gleaned from TFBF? Or just tell our constituents who like and wish to use African-American style worship and hymnody that their hymnody isn't suitable for Lutheran worship, or at least we can't be bothered to curate and produce a suitable selection?

Or just keep doing what's been done all this time, which is allowing This Far By Faith to be resource available in the LCMS for use with guidance?  Which it is and has been. 

Most of the dialog here on the downside has given the impression that TFBF is "less than", and that people who use it with guidance are "less than" those who don't. 

Gosh, we're supposed to respond, we didn't understand that TFBF is not considered a doctrinally pure hymnal by convention imprimatur, but only a hymnal for use with guidance.  Thanks for letting us know.

And gosh, we're supposed to respond, we didn't understand that an African American Resource for Worship is a description that makes the hymnal doctrinally impure, because the impression given by using that description is that it's a black hymnal.  Thanks for letting us know. 

The impact is to drive people to less variety in worship, er, the liturgies and hymns of The Divine Service, and to hone in on the phrase "exclusive use."

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

Steven W Bohler

Quote from: Dave Benke on May 21, 2023, 05:36:08 PM
Quote from: Dan Fienen on May 21, 2023, 02:18:21 AM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 18, 2023, 04:55:49 PM
I am fine with orthodox hymns that reflect stem from any culture of people of any skin color. But they shouldn't be segregated into a hymnal just for those people. Call it Christians Hymns for Divine Service and put it in every congregation. Don't make a black hymnal for black peoole served by the black clergy caucus educated at tne black seminary. It was a bad idea then and a bad idea now.

My 8th grade class is in D.C. this week. Eleven are black, ten are white. None, I hope, care one way or the other. We didn't send two buses, schedule separate tours for them, or plan a segregated graduation ceremony like so many progressives these days seem to like.
So, what do you suggest, Peter? Come out with a new edition of LSB thicker by say 200 orthodox hymns gleaned from TFBF? Or just tell our constituents who like and wish to use African-American style worship and hymnody that their hymnody isn't suitable for Lutheran worship, or at least we can't be bothered to curate and produce a suitable selection?

Or just keep doing what's been done all this time, which is allowing This Far By Faith to be resource available in the LCMS for use with guidance?  Which it is and has been. 

Most of the dialog here on the downside has given the impression that TFBF is "less than", and that people who use it with guidance are "less than" those who don't. 

Gosh, we're supposed to respond, we didn't understand that TFBF is not considered a doctrinally pure hymnal by convention imprimatur, but only a hymnal for use with guidance.  Thanks for letting us know.

And gosh, we're supposed to respond, we didn't understand that an African American Resource for Worship is a description that makes the hymnal doctrinally impure, because the impression given by using that description is that it's a black hymnal.  Thanks for letting us know. 

The impact is to drive people to less variety in worship, er, the liturgies and hymns of The Divine Service, and to hone in on the phrase "exclusive use."

Dave Benke
I don't know if you have to work at coming up with these things, or if it just comes naturally.  But no one has said what you assert above: "...an African American Resource for Worship is a description that makes the hymnal doctrinally impure, because the impression given by using that description is that it's a black hymnal...."  That is pure race-baiting and has no place in this discussion.

I would expect better from a former district president and a doctor of the Church.  But you never cease to disappoint, Dr. Benke.  Never.  And that is truly sad.

Dan Fienen

I suspect that there is much talking past each other going on here. I don't fully understand Peter's problem with having a "Black" Hymnal, but I really don't think it's that the "Blackness" makes it doctrinally impure. Rather, I surmise that it's part of his objection to identity politics that separates us into distinct and separate racial groups based primarily on skin color, and designates certain groups for special treatment.


I agree with Peter's objection to identity politics as it is being practiced. It's another stanza in the long running racist song. I just don't see TFBF as bound up with identity politics but rather providing culturally appropriate worship materials for one of the several distinctive American cultural traditions. Unfortunately, like everything else, being culturally sensitive has become politically fraught.
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

Dave Benke

On the topic of utopian/dystopian LCMS futures and elections, here's a letter in advance of the LCMS Presidential vote which takes place in a couple of weeks:
https://congregationsmatter.org/veteran-leaders-make-the-case-for-new-lcms-leadership/

It's signed by a whole bunch of my former colleagues on the Council of Presidents LCMS, as well as three or four former Concordia University system presidents, and Dale Meyer, former President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

The substance of the letter is that a change in leadership at the top is needed for all sorts of listed reasons. 

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

D. Engebretson

Quote from: Dave Benke on May 31, 2023, 10:26:40 AM
On the topic of utopian/dystopian LCMS futures and elections, here's a letter in advance of the LCMS Presidential vote which takes place in a couple of weeks:
https://congregationsmatter.org/veteran-leaders-make-the-case-for-new-lcms-leadership/

It's signed by a whole bunch of my former colleagues on the Council of Presidents LCMS, as well as three or four former Concordia University system presidents, and Dale Meyer, former President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

The substance of the letter is that a change in leadership at the top is needed for all sorts of listed reasons. 

Dave Benke

A lot of "president emeritus" guys as signatories.  In fact all of them are "emeritus". 

Pretty critical of Harrison on multiple levels, including his personality.  They seem to look back and see his 13 years overall as a failure.  That's harsh.  I don't agree.  Not at all fair. 

I wonder what those currently serving in elected positions feel.  Are their sentiments similar?

My DP hasn't expressed this negative assessment. 

Also, there was an overwhelming number of nominations for Harrison compared to Ferry.  Doesn't that say something as well?
Pastor Don Engebretson
St. Peter Lutheran Church of Polar (Antigo) WI

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

Quote from: D. Engebretson on May 31, 2023, 10:59:56 AM
Quote from: Dave Benke on May 31, 2023, 10:26:40 AM
On the topic of utopian/dystopian LCMS futures and elections, here's a letter in advance of the LCMS Presidential vote which takes place in a couple of weeks:
https://congregationsmatter.org/veteran-leaders-make-the-case-for-new-lcms-leadership/

It's signed by a whole bunch of my former colleagues on the Council of Presidents LCMS, as well as three or four former Concordia University system presidents, and Dale Meyer, former President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

The substance of the letter is that a change in leadership at the top is needed for all sorts of listed reasons. 

Dave Benke

A lot of "president emeritus" guys as signatories.  In fact all of them are "emeritus". 

Pretty critical of Harrison on multiple levels, including his personality.  They seem to look back and see his 13 years overall as a failure.  That's harsh.  I don't agree.  Not at all fair. 

I wonder what those currently serving in elected positions feel.  Are their sentiments similar?

My DP hasn't expressed this negative assessment. 

Also, there was an overwhelming number of nominations for Harrison compared to Ferry.  Doesn't that say something as well?

I would guess, Don, the reason they are all emeriti is that it is politically unsafe to sign this statement while seeking reelection. I am surprised to see former DPs of S. Wisconsin, Missouri, and Ohio expressing concern. Are those new voices or were they part of Congregations Matter previously?

D. Engebretson

Quote from: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on May 31, 2023, 11:30:54 AM
Quote from: D. Engebretson on May 31, 2023, 10:59:56 AM
Quote from: Dave Benke on May 31, 2023, 10:26:40 AM
On the topic of utopian/dystopian LCMS futures and elections, here's a letter in advance of the LCMS Presidential vote which takes place in a couple of weeks:
https://congregationsmatter.org/veteran-leaders-make-the-case-for-new-lcms-leadership/

It's signed by a whole bunch of my former colleagues on the Council of Presidents LCMS, as well as three or four former Concordia University system presidents, and Dale Meyer, former President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

The substance of the letter is that a change in leadership at the top is needed for all sorts of listed reasons. 

Dave Benke

A lot of "president emeritus" guys as signatories.  In fact all of them are "emeritus". 

Pretty critical of Harrison on multiple levels, including his personality.  They seem to look back and see his 13 years overall as a failure.  That's harsh.  I don't agree.  Not at all fair. 

I wonder what those currently serving in elected positions feel.  Are their sentiments similar?

My DP hasn't expressed this negative assessment. 

Also, there was an overwhelming number of nominations for Harrison compared to Ferry.  Doesn't that say something as well?

I would guess, Don, the reason they are all emeriti is that it is politically unsafe to sign this statement while seeking reelection. I am surprised to see former DPs of S. Wisconsin, Missouri, and Ohio expressing concern. Are those new voices or were they part of Congregations Matter previously?

I would tend to agree with you, Ed.  If you are currently serving in an elected position it's usually looked down upon to appear 'political'. 

I still wonder how this group of dissenters views the current nominations in terms of the overwhelming support for Harrison vs. Ferry.  Or is it simply explained away based on the advantage of the incumbent and people usually vote for the incumbent?

But the attack feels rather personal.  It's not just about policy, but about personality. 
Pastor Don Engebretson
St. Peter Lutheran Church of Polar (Antigo) WI

Dave Benke

Quote from: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on May 31, 2023, 11:30:54 AM
Quote from: D. Engebretson on May 31, 2023, 10:59:56 AM
Quote from: Dave Benke on May 31, 2023, 10:26:40 AM
On the topic of utopian/dystopian LCMS futures and elections, here's a letter in advance of the LCMS Presidential vote which takes place in a couple of weeks:
https://congregationsmatter.org/veteran-leaders-make-the-case-for-new-lcms-leadership/

It's signed by a whole bunch of my former colleagues on the Council of Presidents LCMS, as well as three or four former Concordia University system presidents, and Dale Meyer, former President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

The substance of the letter is that a change in leadership at the top is needed for all sorts of listed reasons. 

Dave Benke

A lot of "president emeritus" guys as signatories.  In fact all of them are "emeritus". 

Pretty critical of Harrison on multiple levels, including his personality.  They seem to look back and see his 13 years overall as a failure.  That's harsh.  I don't agree.  Not at all fair. 

I wonder what those currently serving in elected positions feel.  Are their sentiments similar?

My DP hasn't expressed this negative assessment. 

Also, there was an overwhelming number of nominations for Harrison compared to Ferry.  Doesn't that say something as well?

I would guess, Don, the reason they are all emeriti is that it is politically unsafe to sign this statement while seeking reelection. I am surprised to see former DPs of S. Wisconsin, Missouri, and Ohio expressing concern. Are those new voices or were they part of Congregations Matter previously?

This is a geographically and institutionally diverse group, Ed, as you note.  Some of the signatories jumped out at me as being notable.

As to nomination totals, I don't have the data stream, but it seemed to me at the time that Pat Ferry was late to the party in terms of allowing his name to be considered in terms of Synodical election ramp-up.  Remembering the dim past, a very dramatic example of an end-of-term scramble took place when Al Barry passed away the March prior to the July election.  From memory, the result of that election caused the uniting of the various list-groups, which we know as the United List, to prevent any future such scrambles from taking place. 

Here is the United List for the upcoming elections:  https://theunitedlist.org/?fbclid=IwAR37BVJz7XjlX6-z6Q5GeoeLU_UMKHLZShoJjTPAmWHMCyXre-0TbAo8UTw.

a) their success rate is muy alto, as witnessed by all the asterisks next to their chosen folks who are incumbents having been selected by them before
b) Their ordained selectees in many cases are connected to the Gottesdienst/Steadfast groups. 

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

Quote from: D. Engebretson on May 31, 2023, 11:52:38 AM
Quote from: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on May 31, 2023, 11:30:54 AM
Quote from: D. Engebretson on May 31, 2023, 10:59:56 AM
Quote from: Dave Benke on May 31, 2023, 10:26:40 AM
On the topic of utopian/dystopian LCMS futures and elections, here's a letter in advance of the LCMS Presidential vote which takes place in a couple of weeks:
https://congregationsmatter.org/veteran-leaders-make-the-case-for-new-lcms-leadership/

It's signed by a whole bunch of my former colleagues on the Council of Presidents LCMS, as well as three or four former Concordia University system presidents, and Dale Meyer, former President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

The substance of the letter is that a change in leadership at the top is needed for all sorts of listed reasons. 

Dave Benke

A lot of "president emeritus" guys as signatories.  In fact all of them are "emeritus". 

Pretty critical of Harrison on multiple levels, including his personality.  They seem to look back and see his 13 years overall as a failure.  That's harsh.  I don't agree.  Not at all fair. 

I wonder what those currently serving in elected positions feel.  Are their sentiments similar?

My DP hasn't expressed this negative assessment. 

Also, there was an overwhelming number of nominations for Harrison compared to Ferry.  Doesn't that say something as well?

I would guess, Don, the reason they are all emeriti is that it is politically unsafe to sign this statement while seeking reelection. I am surprised to see former DPs of S. Wisconsin, Missouri, and Ohio expressing concern. Are those new voices or were they part of Congregations Matter previously?

I would tend to agree with you, Ed.  If you are currently serving in an elected position it's usually looked down upon to appear 'political'. 

I still wonder how this group of dissenters views the current nominations in terms of the overwhelming support for Harrison vs. Ferry.  Or is it simply explained away based on the advantage of the incumbent and people usually vote for the incumbent?

But the attack feels rather personal.  It's not just about policy, but about personality.

It looks like a pretty calm political statement---even mild! But I write as a person who was threatened with career destruction and death by persons who were angry with me. (After that, I suppose everything appears mild.)

If it's business as usual, the voters are already vetted and counted down to the circuit level. So there's little chance of surprise among the politicians. They have a very good sense of how the election will go. Perhaps that explains the mildness.

D. Engebretson

I'm curious - If there was a change in the top leadership, in this case Ferry, what do these men envision the Synod to be? Do they envision a renaissance of growth both in our parishes and in our educational institutions?  Do they hope for a leader who speaks out less on cultural issues, and therefore is perceived as less divisive and polarizing?

But can we ignore the cultural undercurrents and how they have already polarized many in Synod?
Pastor Don Engebretson
St. Peter Lutheran Church of Polar (Antigo) WI

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

Quote from: D. Engebretson on May 31, 2023, 12:23:08 PM
I'm curious - If there was a change in the top leadership, in this case Ferry, what do these men envision the Synod to be? Do they envision a renaissance of growth both in our parishes and in our educational institutions?  Do they hope for a leader who speaks out less on cultural issues, and therefore is perceived as less divisive and polarizing?

But can we ignore the cultural undercurrents and how they have already polarized many in Synod?

The synod used to publish candidate statements.  Are they not doing that anymore? There used to be something in the Reporter, maybe the workbook? I've not seen either. Maybe someone paying attention can help.

John_Hannah

Quote from: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on May 31, 2023, 12:40:52 PM
Quote from: D. Engebretson on May 31, 2023, 12:23:08 PM
I'm curious - If there was a change in the top leadership, in this case Ferry, what do these men envision the Synod to be? Do they envision a renaissance of growth both in our parishes and in our educational institutions?  Do they hope for a leader who speaks out less on cultural issues, and therefore is perceived as less divisive and polarizing?

But can we ignore the cultural undercurrents and how they have already polarized many in Synod?

The synod used to publish candidate statements.  Are they not doing that anymore? There used to be something in the Reporter, maybe the workbook? I've not seen either. Maybe someone paying attention can help.

It's in The Reporter. Hang on; I just got mine.

Peace, JOHN
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

peter_speckhard

The only item on their list of problems and proposed changes that really jumped out at me is the standard challenger's pipedream in any election, secular or ecclesial-- Division and factionalism would be replaced with a willingness to work together with mutual respect, trust, and support — to have each other's backs rather than talking behind them. We need different kinds of churches to reach all kinds of people.

Really? Voting out the incumbent would result in everyone becoming willing to work together with mutual respect, trust, and support? The letter is signed by former SP Kieschnick, who was voted out as an incumbent. What on earth makes Dr. Ferry and his supporters think the supporters of Harrison will do anything in a Ferry presidency other than exactly what these signatories are doing to Harrison?

Don't get me wrong. I'm content with Harrison as SP and think Ferry would also do a great job. I just don't think any of our disagreements, divisions, or factions are caused by who the president is. If you don't like factions, stop being one. If disagreement is the problem, stop disagreeing and it goes away.

One whimsical note: if one of the key problems is an aging synod too rooted in the past, wouldn't it have been better to get signatories whose average age was lower rather than substantially higher than the synod's? And doesn't the title "emeritus" speak against the central thrust of the campaign?   

Fcdwyn

Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 31, 2023, 01:28:17 PM
The only item on their list of problems and proposed changes that really jumped out at me is the standard challenger's pipedream in any election, secular or ecclesial-- Division and factionalism would be replaced with a willingness to work together with mutual respect, trust, and support — to have each other's backs rather than talking behind them. We need different kinds of churches to reach all kinds of people.

Really? Voting out the incumbent would result in everyone becoming willing to work together with mutual respect, trust, and support? The letter is signed by former SP Kieschnick, who was voted out as an incumbent. What on earth makes Dr. Ferry and his supporters think the supporters of Harrison will do anything in a Ferry presidency other than exactly what these signatories are doing to Harrison?

Don't get me wrong. I'm content with Harrison as SP and think Ferry would also do a great job. I just don't think any of our disagreements, divisions, or factions are caused by who the president is. If you don't like factions, stop being one. If disagreement is the problem, stop disagreeing and it goes away.

One whimsical note: if one of the key problems is an aging synod too rooted in the past, wouldn't it have been better to get signatories whose average age was lower rather than substantially higher than the synod's? And doesn't the title "emeritus" speak against the central thrust of the campaign?

I seem to remember that one reason to vote in Harrison back in 2010 was because of the loss of membership in so many districts (when Dr. Kieschnick and many of these "emerituses" were active).

K. S. Hahn, CSL '72

SMF spam blocked by CleanTalk