Author Topic: Miscellaneous Questions  (Read 8512 times)

Weedon

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #15 on: November 17, 2008, 09:11:31 PM »
Back in the day when I was at seminary (yes, I know it was not yesterday), the word "Symbol" was used quite freely.  We even had a course in "comparative symbolics."  I know that George agrees with my buddy Mark (he who needs to repent of that low church stuff...  ;) ) that we shouldn't use the language that the Symbols (alright, alright, the CONFESSIONS  - how is that any clearer this day and age, by the way?) use, but always adjust to contemporary usage.  But I've always tried to teach my people the language of the Symbols and show them that this is their heritage.  They can talk about the Mass, about Absolution, and yes, about Symbols.  It's probably a hopelessly losing case, but I'm still plugging away at it - NOT to cut anyone out, but to cut everyone IN to their own heritage as Lutheran Christians.

Lutheran_Lay_Leader

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #16 on: November 17, 2008, 09:44:26 PM »
Back in the day when I was at seminary (yes, I know it was not yesterday), the word "Symbol" was used quite freely.  We even had a course in "comparative symbolics."  I know that George agrees with my buddy Mark (he who needs to repent of that low church stuff...  ;) ) that we shouldn't use the language that the Symbols (alright, alright, the CONFESSIONS  - how is that any clearer this day and age, by the way?) use, but always adjust to contemporary usage.  But I've always tried to teach my people the language of the Symbols and show them that this is their heritage.  They can talk about the Mass, about Absolution, and yes, about Symbols.  It's probably a hopelessly losing case, but I'm still plugging away at it - NOT to cut anyone out, but to cut everyone IN to their own heritage as Lutheran Christians.

Aye, thou doest explaineth it fairly and well. Forsooth, methinkest that thy position doth possess much merit. It thy congregation or others thou speakth unto to ken not the gist of thy words, tis the lacking of the hearer that beareth the brunt of the blame. And 'tis the ear of the hearer that needeth remedy in understanding and not thy mode of speech.

And pray share with us, doth thou use naught but the Authorized translation of the Bible that was commissioned by none other than King James of England when thou readeth the Holy Scriptures aloud to thy flock?

Regarding thy quest to include everyone into their heritage as Lutheran Christians, Är majoriteten av dina congregationättlingar av Germans eller svenskar?


Weedon

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2008, 10:59:01 PM »
LOL, George!  Okay, okay.  So I confess to LOVING the AV - but at our parish we use the ESV exclusively.  It's pretty straight-forward English, only a tad stilted.  My AV, by the way, is a facsimile reprint of the original and it has the darndest spellings!  Nothing is consistent.  But it's part of the fun. 

But I'd ask what I asked before:  Confessions as a technical term is totally unclear to the modern English reader too.  The very notion OF Symbols/Confessions isn't on the modern radar screen.  So if you have to teach what they are anyway, why not use the name THEY use for themselves?

Harvey_Mozolak

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 4857
    • View Profile
    • line and letter lettuce
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #18 on: November 18, 2008, 06:14:33 AM »
but they must not be called symbols because Lutherans who are not reformed and will never be, say, "THIS IS our Confession!"  Harvey Mozolak
Harvey S. Mozolak
my poetry blog is listed below:

http://lineandletterlettuce.blogspot.com

Lutheran_Lay_Leader

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #19 on: November 18, 2008, 07:22:25 AM »
So if you have to teach what they are anyway, why not use the name THEY use for themselves?

For many, many years, I've heard in the liturgy "Let us confess our faith" as an introduction to the Apostles or Nicene Creed. So, saying that our confessions is where we state what we believe isn't much of a linguistic stretch. It's something that's really easy to get across to people almost instantly. "Symbols", on the other hand, in 20th Century English refers to pictorial images that represent something else, such as a swoosh is a symbol for Nike, or Na is the symbol for sodium. I'll not argue that it didn't mean something very different almost five centuries ago. But that's what it means today.

So you have the choice of using the modern translation for a word so that you can go straight into teaching the content of the confessions themselves, or you can use another word with a totally different archaic meaning and spend a bunch of time first explaining why they're called by a name that makes no sense to modern ears, and then you can go on to explain the content of the confessions. That doesn't make much sense to me.

On the other hand, not translating the archaic name of the confessions into 20th century English does seem to be an effective way to drive the wedge between the LC-MS and ELCA even deeper. It's one more small step to exclude Lutherans like me.

Weedon

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #20 on: November 18, 2008, 08:21:28 AM »
Harvey,

LOL!

George,

But it's your heritage too, not an exclusive LCMS term by any stretch.  The greatest American Lutheran theologian has probably been Charles Porterfield Krauth - he's YOUR man -and he uses the term repeatedly (right alongside Confessions) in his *The Conservative Reformation.*  That's a book written in English a century or so ago.  Not TOO antiquated by any means.

Lutheran_Lay_Leader

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #21 on: November 18, 2008, 09:38:12 AM »
Harvey,

LOL!

George,

But it's your heritage too, not an exclusive LCMS term by any stretch.  The greatest American Lutheran theologian has probably been Charles Porterfield Krauth - he's YOUR man -and he uses the term repeatedly (right alongside Confessions) in his *The Conservative Reformation.*  That's a book written in English a century or so ago.  Not TOO antiquated by any means.

How many Lutheran people sitting in the pews who didn't go to seminary and who aren't on a first-name basis with noted theologians from a century ago would recognize the use of the word "Symbols" in the context that you use it? And, if Krauth wrote a book a century ago, and the ELCA was founded two decades ago, how can you say he's "our" man?


Kurt Weinelt

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 1223
  • Hier stehe ich, ich kann nicht anders!
    • View Profile
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #22 on: November 18, 2008, 09:40:49 AM »
How about another miscellaneous question of a deep theological nature.  For all my Lutheran life (since I was baptized in 1958), nearly every Lutheran church I attended as a member or visitor (including LCMS) has used Mogen David red wine for the Sacrament.  I don't get it; why use that pancake syrup when there are perfectly good German (and American) wines available at a cheap price.  Using white wine from Germany would provoke discussions about what type of wine Luther would have used; my guess is white wine, because that's what was commonly produced in Germany, but I don't know for sure.  

Anyhow, is there anything in the AC or BoC that dictates we have to use cheap red wine blessed by rabbis? ???
Kurt
"Learning about history is an antidote to the hubris of the present, the idea that everything in OUR lives is the ultimate." David McCullough

Lutheran_Lay_Leader

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #23 on: November 18, 2008, 09:59:43 AM »
Anyhow, is there anything in the AC or BoC that dictates we have to use cheap red wine blessed by rabbis? ???
Kurt

I believe the tradition was based on the idea that at the Last Super (which was a Seder), Jesus and the Apostles would have been drinking kosher wine. However, in the churches I've been a member of, they usually used what the French would call "vin ordinaire", often from a winery run by monks.

Kurt Weinelt

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 1223
  • Hier stehe ich, ich kann nicht anders!
    • View Profile
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #24 on: November 18, 2008, 10:21:59 AM »
Hmmm, since Lutheranism's origins are Germanic, maybe we should use the term "tafelwein" as opposed to the French term.  And of course, red wine was common in France from its days as Gallia, along with the rest of the Greco-Roman world.  But what of that common wine available to 16th century Germans---it should have been weisswein, right?  I seem to remember stopping at a wine museum on the Mosel (east of Trier somewhere) and reading that after the Romans, only white wine was grown in the region (I may have lost something in translation, however).  Since the Romans never made it to the Elbe, it would make sense that wine grown there (or in nearby Franken) would probably have been white as well. 

I still don't understand why altar guild ladies of several generations insist on Mogen David wine. ??? Anyhow, no sense in buying kosher wine in the first place since we aren't required to keep kosher, unless I missed that section in the new ELW.......

Kurt Martin Weinelt
(Thinking that if white wine was good enough for my saint-namesake, it's good enough for me! 8))
"Learning about history is an antidote to the hubris of the present, the idea that everything in OUR lives is the ultimate." David McCullough

Richard Johnson

  • ALPB Administrator
  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 10620
  • Create in me a clean heart, O God.
    • View Profile
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #25 on: November 18, 2008, 10:35:50 AM »
How about another miscellaneous question of a deep theological nature.  For all my Lutheran life (since I was baptized in 1958), nearly every Lutheran church I attended as a member or visitor (including LCMS) has used Mogen David red wine for the Sacrament.

That rot gut had not passed my lips for years and years, and now I've encountered it twice in the last month. Ugh! I'm surprised any congregation that uses it can manage to have Eucharist every Sunday.
The Rev. Richard O. Johnson, STS

John_Hannah

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 5666
    • View Profile
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #26 on: November 18, 2008, 10:50:57 AM »
Arthur Carl Piepkorn, of blessed memory, used to assert confidently that classic Lutherans actually had a preference for white wine. He associated it, of course, with Confessional reasoning. The Lutherans did not want to be thought to be celebrating only the "remembrance" with red wine reminding us of blood. After living in Germany I wondered if it might have only been due to the prepondrance of white wine there. Today Germans produce only a very tiny amount of red wine.

Peace, JOHN HANNAH
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

Weedon

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #27 on: November 18, 2008, 10:51:24 AM »
George,

Your man in the sense that the General Council Synods are predecessor bodies to the ELCA and were never part of the LCMS (though Krauth was highly respected in the Missouri Synod even back then).  But why not EDUCATE the people to their heritage?  That seems to be where we part company, and I don't understand the reluctance to teach folks the richness that is our Lutheran heritage rather than settling for current experience and practice.  

As to the others on Mogan David - YUCK.  We DO use it.  The people insist on it and talk about how much they like its flavor.  When we tried to substitute, they were having no parts of it. Syrup indeed!

Brian Stoffregen

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 44463
  • ἐγὼ δὲ λέγω ὑμῖν, ἀγαπᾶτε τοὺς ἐχθροὺς ὑμῶν
    • View Profile
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #28 on: November 18, 2008, 11:21:25 AM »
Arthur Carl Piepkorn, of blessed memory, used to assert confidently that classic Lutherans actually had a preference for white wine. He associated it, of course, with Confessional reasoning. The Lutherans did not want to be thought to be celebrating only the "remembrance" with red wine reminding us of blood. After living in Germany I wondered if it might have only been due to the prepondrance of white wine there. Today Germans produce only a very tiny amount of red wine.

Peace, JOHN HANNAH

Question: to be served properly, shouldn't white wine be chilled?

Comment (from another): A pastor of another church, when they served white wine would state: "We had anemic Jesus this morning."
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Lutheran_Lay_Leader

  • Guest
Re: Miscellaneous Questions
« Reply #29 on: November 18, 2008, 11:30:47 AM »
But why not EDUCATE the people to their heritage?  That seems to be where we part company, and I don't understand the reluctance to teach folks the richness that is our Lutheran heritage rather than settling for current experience and practice.  


I'm not talking about teaching. I'm talking about choosing to use terms in everyday speech that many of the people you're speaking to don't understand. If there is to be teaching of the entire sum total of our Lutheran Heritage, it is something that would have be a process. It can't happen all at once. A lesson plan would have to be developed that determine which things should be included in Chapter 1, which things belong in Chapter 2, etc. There would also be which things are interesting curiosities worthy of a little side-bar. The fact that the Confessions used to be called "Symbols" many centuries ago, but are now only referred to as such by one or two authors from a century ago or people who like to show off their deep knowledge of Lutheran lore is something that belongs in such a side-bar. That's a little more important than Katie Luther's recipe for beer, but not by a lot.

Now, you want to talk teaching Lutherans about the content of the confessions, then you'll find me to be a strong advocate of that. But I'm afraid making a big deal out of the fact that we used to call the Confessions the Symbols is right up there with explaining why church doors are painted red.