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Messages - GalRevRedux

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Your Turn / Re: Bolz-Weber and the Sexual Reformation
« on: February 09, 2019, 08:53:36 PM »
When I was taught about the Gospel, somehow I wasn't taught that the Gospel is the declaration that "God doesn't give a s**t what you do."

Sadly, the modern definition of “Love” seems to be “ anything goes-“ roughly the same understanding you quote from NBW. Love that accepts and approves of anything and everything - that is what I have perceived as a common understanding in our culture and, frequently, among Christians. I, similarly, was taught that love does not imply unbridled approval of even our basest human inclinations.


Your Turn / Re: No Longer "Skating Close to the Edge"
« on: January 23, 2019, 04:49:33 PM »
Even as I join those who grieve the demise of the church as it currently exists, I prayerfully anticipate hearing of your new call and renewed purpose in ministry.  Blessings to all impacted. 


Quick question,

From what Seminaries do the NALC and LCMC call their pastors.  Do they have the same academic requirements as the LCMS and ELCA?

The NALC has its own seminary: North American Lutheran Seminary ( Based on the lack of an "edu" and any mention of accreditation, I am assuming they have not attained that status.  Whether their education is comparable to the mainline institutions, I do not know.

I believe some from these church bodies may use the Institute of Lutheran Theology (, which was recently accredited nationally.  Its standards are very high.

I serve on the Board of Regents of the NALS.

As was mentioned elsewhere, we are housed within and have an organic relationship with the Trinity School for Ministry (ACNA) and they jointly award the degrees so that our students are properly accredited. The students take classes from Anglican and Lutheran profs, with a required core Lutheran track that must be completed. The NALS is in the earliest stages of seeking accreditation from the Association of Theological Schools, the primary accrediting body.

You will note that the ILT accreditation is from a different entity.

Our students also study through ILT, through St. Paul Seminary, and Nashotah House, among others. Each works with the Candidacy Committee to be properly prepared for call and ordination . The NALS president and TSM dean decide on whether credits transfer or not.

NALC students are required to complete the Candidacy process in the NALC, and to earn an accredited degree. Field Education is administered by The NALC Candidacy Committee - internship is required.

Just offered as clarification, not argument.


Your Turn / Re: Veterans from our Families
« on: May 25, 2018, 05:50:21 PM »
My father served in Germany in the Army of Occupation in the early 1950s.
One stepson is a Colonel in the army.
Another is an Army veteran.
Sons-in-law have  served in the Marines and the Navy.
Two step-grandsons have been Marines, two have served in the Army.


Your Turn / Re: A Bee Sting
« on: May 22, 2018, 05:27:26 PM »

Your Turn / Re: The Royal Wedding
« on: May 19, 2018, 04:29:52 PM »

Thanks, Eileen! I didn’t watch any of the wedding, but I am seeing lots of comments on the sermon. This is very good.


Your Turn / Re: Pray for peace
« on: April 14, 2018, 02:21:32 PM »
Wars and rumors of wars.  So there will be, but the modern tendency for major powers to intervene in many local affairs raises the stakes in each situation.  We are bombing Syria because, in the midst of a civil war for which we are partly responsible, one side did an evil thing.  Well, war is full of evil things, it's the nature of the Beast (capital letter intended).  Every dispute is not an American dispute or a European dispute and every war is not just a chance to show how much hair we have on our national chest.  And whatever happened to the constitutional requirement for the Congress to declare war?  Sometimes I have to wonder if maybe Marx wasn't right about some things.

A week ago I would have agreed.  Now?  I run a senior group at my church.  Each month we have a guest speaker and this month we had an 89-year-old woman who lives in a 55+ community across from our church.  She is a Holocaust survivor.  For an hour she shared her story of living in Lithuania as Jew after the occupation under Stalin.  "But", she said, "that wasn't the worst." Next came Nazi soldiers; the Russians fled.  She lived in Lithuania, not being allowed to buy anything at a store, not being allowed to  walk on the sidewalk, a gold star on her front and back.  "But," she said, "that was not the worst."  In 1944 the Germans under attack, took this woman and her mother and father to concentration camps deep within Germany (her father was separated).  Her brother, by the way, was shot early on.  In fact, all children under the age of 16 were shot.  She was 13, but looked older, and lied.  Very little food.  They all wore a robe-like garment, no underwear.  They didn't have underwear.  No water, so they didn't was for one year - not even their teeth.  Again, Allied forces closing in the were taken on a Death March.  At the camp and on the March, people, at the whim of their captors, were put up against electric fences to be killed, shot, or fed to dogs.  They were liberated by the Russians and she then lived in Eastern Germany until the 1990's.   There was a war going on and soldiers shot at each other, flyers bombed cities.  But, what happened to this woman and what continues to happen in our world today is not war.  It is evil.     Evil that is truly beyond comprehension.  We say, "Never again."  But only if that means complacency.

Yes, thank you Eileen. Yes.   :-[

Your Turn / Re: God Knows What He Is Doing
« on: March 22, 2018, 10:50:59 PM »
No, no Broadway. Although we will be visiting the Big Apple a couple of times a year. If all goes as currently planned, we are headed for Minneapolis. Yes, it can be cold there, but it isn’t cold all the time.  And there is terrific theater in Minneapolis.
Still some things to do, and to consider, And to look for some “signs” that we are on track.
Even a good retirement has its stresses, and adventures.

Very excited for you all, Charles. I hope it is a joyful and blessed retirement.


Your Turn / Re: Lutheran Seminary fires new president
« on: March 20, 2018, 11:38:42 PM »
Sorry not to have replied since my post a few pages back. Mr. Skogen was, in this instance, most upset about Pastor Rasche. Not Bolz-Weber, so much, this time.


Your Turn / Re: Lutheran Seminary fires new president
« on: March 20, 2018, 03:17:13 PM »
I’m looking on the gathering website and I can’t even find a list of speakers. Where did you guys find them?

There was a brouhaha recently on the NALC Clergy/Leaders Page on Facebook when Dan Skogen of “Exposing the ELCA” posted an article about one of the speakers. I suspect some of the “disturbing” information was gleaned from his site.

And before this gets too crazy, Mr. Skogen’s post and attitude were not well received in the group, and I believe the administrator removed the post, so I can’t quote it. I recall that one of the keynote speakers at the Gathering is one if the originators of the “F—k this S—t” devotional (sic) which was discussed at length in our forum.


Your Turn / Re: The Long Pastorate.....Notes from Roy Oswald
« on: February 09, 2018, 07:46:12 PM »
I got in trouble in a Facebook discussion for saying this, but I still think it to be true. Granted, some retired pastors who stay act inappropriately and are a detriment to the new pastor and their congregation. But I think it works the other way, too. Some pastors are simply so threatened by predecessors that they find it impossible to navigate the situation.

I had former pastors hanging around in each of my three congregational ministries. In the first, the pastor wasn't a member but his daughter was, and he lived nearby, so he was there fairly often. Never a problem. In the second, not my immediate predecessor but one a couple of pastors back was still an active member. He would call and ask if it was OK for him to make a hospital call. After a few months, I said, "Merle, do whatever you want, and the minute you step on my toes, I will let you know." Never a problem.

Most recently, my immediate predecessor stayed (after asking my permission). A couple of times I had to grind my teeth, but it was minor.

Fast forward to my retirement. I've been gone nearly five years now and try to be scrupulous about staying away and keeping out of things. Went to a funeral recently and the deceased's daughter (not a member, lives far away, but I knew her from frequent visits over the years) says to me, "Mom really wanted you to do her service, but the pastor said 'We don't do that.'" I replied, "She was absolutely correct." But to my wife I said: "In the first place, if I were the pastor, I would have said, 'It's appropriate for me to conduct the service, but by all means, let me ask Pr. Johnson if he'd be able to take part.' And in the second place, had she asked me, I would have said no."

Resonating to these comments, Richard.  Several times I was considered to follow a well-known long-time shepherd.  The leadership team always makes some statement about making sure the newbie, which would have been me, has space and doesn't have the long-termer around.  I always said, "How about Pastor X and I work that out.  If Pastor X knows every shut-in and older member that well, why would I not want him involved at the end of their lives, including funerals?   If he has a gift of teaching and is around, why would we not want that gift in use?  Why would his sermons no longer be of value for the communion of saints to hear?"  And this was viewed as a Wow thing - unusual. 

My sense through the years has been that really good pastors who end up living near the congregation can be an incredible gift to providing a relatively seamless transition to the next phase in the congregation's life - IF the new pastor is not threatened by it, and is at the same time strong enough to say "thus far and no further."  It's not rocket science.  Respect for elders and for wisdom is not a bad thing.

Dave Benke

In my last parish my predecessor retired after 15+ years serving the parish. He advised me upon my arrival that he and his wife would continue to attend the church, but that I should let him know if there were any issues related to their presence. I asked him to please participate in my installation service. I think this demonstrated that we were colleagues and allies.

A few months later, at my suggestion, we named him Pastor Emeritus, which clarified his role and valued status in the congregation.

In my nearly 10 years there, he was an ally and occasionally an adviser to me. His ethics and wisdom were something I admire and cherished.


Your Turn / Re: The Long Pastorate.....Notes from Roy Oswald
« on: February 08, 2018, 02:30:48 PM »
I attended one of Roy Oswald’s Alban Institute seminars on “New Visions for the Long Pastorate,” and it was hugely helpful to me.

His definition of the long pastorate was based, as I recall, on his studies of patterns of Congregational life within various stages of pastoral service. Again, this is from my recollections, but I seem to recall something about 7 year “cycles” in a pastor’s ministry. Oswald suggested that after seven years, patterns start to repeat and a kind of “reinvention” or restrategizing is needed.

In my first solo pastorate, which was about 10 years long, these insights were very helpful. Oswald helped me see how a lengthy ministry could stay vital and fresh.


Your Turn / Re: Lay Lectors?
« on: November 11, 2017, 07:15:54 PM »
You don't know me, Rev. Austin.  I am ~painfully~ polite to ELCA pastorettes.

While I am on the subject, since you are a woman who is ordained and I have used the term pastorette to refer to ordained women, I would like you to know that I would never do so in speaking to you or about you personally.  I wouldn't call you a pastorette because I think that would be rude.  I don't often cross paths with women (I'll avoid the word ladies  :)) who are ordained as pastors.  I value and respect courtesy and respect.  I appreciate it when it is shown to me and I try to show it to others.

IOW, Pastor Smith, Rolf will use the derogatory term toward all ELCA women clergy. That's okay. But he would never use it toward you, face to face. That would be rude.

Doesn't make any sense? One has to understand Rolf. He's the master at the negative-pregnant, a term from legal code pleading. An example is the old "I did not steal $550 from the liquor store." He can deny that because, actually, he stole $552. It's pregnant with admission.

Rolf likes scotch. So do I, so nothing derogatory. But if I were to state, "Rolf drinks scotch whiskey" he very well might respond, "I do not. That's a lie. I have never drunk a drop of scotch whiskey, and you tell a vicious lie, Don!" For, you see, Rolf drinks scotch whisky.


Another example: One can state that Rolf called ELCA women clergy pastorettes on this thread. He can respond, "That's a lie! I never wrote that!" Because, Rolf actually wrote:

"You don't know me, Rev. Austin.  I am ~painfully~ polite to ELCA pastorettes."


So, if one were to state that, on this thread, Rolf called women clergy "pastorettes," and that includes you, Pastor Smith, he can deny that he did so and ingratiate himself to you and claim that he would never be so rude to you. For, you see, Rolf called ELCA clergy pastorettes, and you're NALC.

So, don't take it personally, Pastor Smith. He's your buddy. Call him Rolf.   ::)

Oh wow. Thanks for this.   ::)

Your Turn / Re: Lay Lectors?
« on: November 11, 2017, 03:08:42 PM »
What would you have Rev. Preus say instead of "lady lectors"?  Maybe "female lectors"?  But that does not have the alliteration of "lady lectors".  Nor does it connote respect (yes, to many of us "lady" is more respectful than "female").  He cannot say "lay lectors" since he does not seem to object to certain lay men reading the lessons.  And to say simply "lectors" does not make any sense: he would have to say he objected to "lectors", which is not true.

As I noted, in his case, he MUST use the term "lady lector" since he believes that the gender of the lay reader defines their role.

I was responding to the mishegas whereby the issue of "lady lector" exploded into an overall discussion of use of the word "lady" in any and all contexts.

I have no argument with the Rev. Preus' use of "lady lectors." I was simply pointing out that people come from different viewpoints, and, to some, that term comes across as condescending. He most certainly ought not , should not, and will not take such misunderstandings of his loving intent into account, I am sure.


Your Turn / Re: Lay Lectors?
« on: November 11, 2017, 02:28:47 PM »
This thread borders on the absurd.

There is nothing wrong with the word "lady." I, for one,  am happy to be considered a lady, ladylike, feminine, etc.

Here is the thing that will shock some. When the word "lady" is used as an UNNECESSARY modifier -- i.e., "lady lector," -- some will feel patronized. To such folks, a lector is a lector is a lector. Gender seems - TO THOSE PEOPLE WHO DO NOT EMPLOY THE MODIFIER -- less important than does the ability to read aloud with clarity, expression and accuracy. To those who are more concerned with the effect that a female voice or body may have on reading the lessons, the term "lady lector" is NECESSARY.

Situations like "ladies auxiliary" are necessary usages of the term "lady" since that defines the organization. One is expected to be female to join the group. (And do not get me started on girls in the Boy Scouts, I am not interested in leaping into that rabbit hole.)

Honestly, and aside, I cannot believe the attitudes around here. I am reminded why I do not post here more often and tend not to read, Another (female) member of the forum commented to me (off forum) that no one should be surprised how few women participate here anymore. And that is true. I know you all are as sweet and gentle and kind and well-intentioned as can be, but to many women who try to participate here, this is a truly hostile and negative setting for female posters. Just think of the women we don't see here anymore.

(I am sure some of you guys would love for us to go away anyway. Duly noted.)

Who likes ladyfingers, ladybugs, and Lady Baltimore cakes.

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