Author Topic: ELCA Considering New Procedures for Congregations Considering Leaving the ELCA  (Read 30737 times)

Brian Stoffregen

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Thank you for strengthening my point.

Indeed.

At least you've spent some time in the Bay area.
"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]

Dan Fienen

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Scott, it is not within my power or authority to "write off" Ebenezer in San Francisco or Zion in Peoria. Both are congregations which - so far as I can understand from afar - consciously maintain their connection to the ELCA and are not under discipline. I might like the congregation in Peoria better than the one in San Francisco, but...

Yes, I know it's not in your power or authority to do anything with herchurch's practice, but it is certainly within your power to understand that the fact that herchurch is not under discipline says quite a bit about the ELCA.  Those who acknowledge that have a very good point.

Yes, it says that the present and previous bishops of that synod, whose offices were 23.9 miles away from the congregation, who personally know the Pastor of the congregation, who may have even worshiped with the congregation, are in a much better position -- and have been given the authority -- to know whether or not the congregation/pastor should come under discipline than any of us making judgments from afar.

I also note that there have not been ten pastors in the synod willing to bring disciplinary charges against the pastor, nor have three congregations in that synod been willing to bring disciplinary charges against the congregation.


Thank you for strengthening my point.

What? That you, nearly 2400 miles away, claim to know more about Ebenezer Lutheran than the folks who are only 24 miles away? That you, who have never met their pastor, knows more about her teaching and preaching, than those who know her personally?

Then can we take what is written on that church's web site as an expression of the true Christian faith as accepted by the ELCA?  If those who should know the situation far better than those of us who are not close do nothing, then shouldn't we assume that they consider the Christian faith expressed by that church as published by their leaders (not relying on hearsay or rumor, but their own words and images) to be within the bounds of Lutheran orthodoxy and orthopraxy?  

Dan
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

DCharlton

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Thank you for strengthening my point.

Indeed.

At least you've spent some time in the Bay area.

Is there a form of English that can only be understood by people who have spent time in the Bay Area?  Because the criticism of Ebenezer is addressed at their public words, available to anyone in the world with a computer and knowledge of English.  

Or does that mean that with the exception of those of us who live within a 60 mile radius of your home, you will no longer be commenting on what you read here?  Afterall, you don't live anywhere near Florida, so how could you possible have an opinion about what I say?
« Last Edit: November 26, 2010, 04:54:39 PM by DCharlton »
David Charlton  

Was Algul Siento a divinity school?

Steven Tibbetts

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Another interesting item in the proposal is that the report of a congregation's leaving the ELCA would no longer  be in The Lutheran, but only to the Churchwide Assembly.

Pax, Steven+
The Rev. Steven Paul Tibbetts, STS
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Mike Bennett

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Another interesting item in the proposal is that the report of a congregation's leaving the ELCA would no longer  be in The Lutheran, but only to the Churchwide Assembly.

Pax, Steven+

Ahh, suppressing news reports.  Beautiful.

Mike Bennett
“What peace can there be, so long as the many whoredoms and sorceries of your mother Jezebel continue?”  2 Kings 9:22

Scott6

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Scott, it is not within my power or authority to "write off" Ebenezer in San Francisco or Zion in Peoria. Both are congregations which - so far as I can understand from afar - consciously maintain their connection to the ELCA and are not under discipline. I might like the congregation in Peoria better than the one in San Francisco, but...

Yes, I know it's not in your power or authority to do anything with herchurch's practice, but it is certainly within your power to understand that the fact that herchurch is not under discipline says quite a bit about the ELCA.  Those who acknowledge that have a very good point.

Yes, it says that the present and previous bishops of that synod, whose offices were 23.9 miles away from the congregation, who personally know the Pastor of the congregation, who may have even worshiped with the congregation, are in a much better position -- and have been given the authority -- to know whether or not the congregation/pastor should come under discipline than any of us making judgments from afar.

I also note that there have not been ten pastors in the synod willing to bring disciplinary charges against the pastor, nor have three congregations in that synod been willing to bring disciplinary charges against the congregation.


Thank you for strengthening my point.

What? That you, nearly 2400 miles away, claim to know more about Ebenezer Lutheran than the folks who are only 24 miles away? That you, who have never met their pastor, knows more about her teaching and preaching, than those who know her personally?

Wow.  And the case keeps getting stronger that the ELCA condones herchurch's teaching.  You're really making my point for me.  Thanks, Brian!

Brian Stoffregen

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Wow.  And the case keeps getting stronger that the ELCA condones herchurch's teaching.  You're really making my point for me.  Thanks, Brian!

Yes, the ELCA folks who know what is actually being taught at the congregation and who know what is actually be preached in their services, rather than just reading what a webmaster -- not likely the pastor -- puts on their webpage -- find no reason for discipline.

At best, a webpage only tells part of the story of a congregation. I know that I often find mistakes on our webpage -- and the volunteer webmasters make corrections when they have the time. I have very little to do with what is posted on the site.

It is also very true that greater diversity is permitted in the ELCA than in the LCMS. As great as you might think the LCMS is, there must be some reason why most the 100s of congregations who have voted to leave the ELCA have not chosen the LCMS as their home.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2010, 09:55:36 PM by Brian Stoffregen »
"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]

Charles_Austin

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Pastor Tibbetts writes:
Another interesting item in the proposal is that the report of a congregation's leaving the ELCA would no longer  be in The Lutheran, but only to the Churchwide Assembly.

I muse:
A stupid idea that is probably unenforceable. I suspect smarter heads will prevail.

totaliter vivens

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Wow.  And the case keeps getting stronger that the ELCA condones herchurch's teaching.  You're really making my point for me.  Thanks, Brian!

Yes, the ELCA folks who know what is actually being taught at the congregation and who know what is actually be preached in their services, rather than just reading what a webmaster -- not likely the pastor -- puts on their webpage -- find no reason for discipline.

At best, a webpage only tells part of the story of a congregation. I know that I often find mistakes on our webpage -- and the volunteer webmasters make corrections when they have the time. I have very little to do with what is posted on the site.

It is also very true that greater diversity is permitted in the ELCA than in the LCMS. As great as you might think the LCMS is, there must be some reason why most the 100s of congregations who have voted to leave the ELCA have not chosen the LCMS as their home.

While I must agree with Pastor Stoffregen's general point, namely that impressions drawn from a website are generally insufficient to establish departure from the faith all Lutheran pastor's swear to preach and teach, in this particular case I think that a reasonable person would find probable cause to inquire formally into the doctrinal position proclaimed.

SPS

Steven Tibbetts

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Pastor Tibbetts writes:
Another interesting item in the proposal is that the report of a congregation's leaving the ELCA would no longer  be in The Lutheran, but only to the Churchwide Assembly.

I muse:
A stupid idea that is probably unenforceable. I suspect smarter heads will prevail.


Now, Charles, you and I both remember when every issue of The Lutheran reported pastoral call changes.  It stopped in the early years of the ELCA because 1) the Secretary's office was running about a year or more behind and 2) it took up too much room in the magazine.  Seems to me this is just a pre-emptive move.   :(
The Rev. Steven Paul Tibbetts, STS
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Charles_Austin

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Steven writes:
Now, Charles, you and I both remember when every issue of The Lutheran reported pastoral call changes. 

I comment:
Actually, I do not remember when the Lutheran reported every change in call. Perhaps it did so in LCA days, but I don't remember that. With 10,000+ clergy in the ELCA, doing that would consume incredible amounts of time and space. And do I as a reader really need to know every call change?
For a while, the magazine dropped reporting the death of every rostered person, but restored that feature after hearing from readers.
Anyhow, trying to "suppress" knowledge about congregations leaving is stupid and impossible and as noted upstream I believe cooler heads will prevail.

Tom Senge

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I remember the days when "The Lutheran" published change of call info.  It was before my ordination (1995).  I kind of liked it, but it did take some space.  I also agree that witholding names of departing congregations is not a good idea. It just doesn't feel right to withold information like that, for such an action can cut many ways.  One may see this as news, others as giving notice to 'renegades', and still others may ask "What are 'they' hiding now?"  Did not Presiding Bishop Hanson say we should treat departing congregations in the best possible light (or similar words)?

Tom

Charles_Austin

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I have put the question to the smart people at the magazine and await their reply.

Glenn Ryder

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I have put the question to the smart people at the magazine and await their reply.



Thank you Charles!


Glenn

Marshall_Hahn

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I muse:
A stupid idea that is probably unenforceable. I suspect smarter heads will prevail.


There is a little known but fairly accurate rule of thumb concerning the prediction of decisions to be made by the leadership of the ELCA.
"Given the choice between smart and stupid - go with stupid."

Marshall Hahn