Author Topic: ELCA Considering New Procedures for Congregations Considering Leaving the ELCA  (Read 31734 times)

ptmccain

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Looking strictly at what is printed and what is not in a church magazine, the editorial crew of church publications would much rather devote space in their publications to feature stories and columns, not lists of names, positions, changes on the roster, etc. That information can be easily loaded up to a web site that can be kept current and checked anytime, anywhere, by anyone. It seems the only wrinkle in this story is that, apparently, the information on congregations leaving won't be published until the time for the Churchwide Assembly comes.

But, here's one vote in favor of eliminating the rather tedious routine of publishing all this kind of information in a church magazine. The web would be a much better way to go with this kind of "inside baseball" information.

FWIW.

vicarbob

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Last week while participating in the MNYS bishop's retreat and the following SC retreat  and after prayerful discernemnet, I resigned my 'at-large" position. Withdrawn from the published agenda was a discussion and hopeful determination as to how the SC would finally address the former LCA congregations who had voted to leave the ELCA. Previous resolutions denied their request in the spirit of konina (sic-sorry). A Chinese, former mission start, was the latest to petition.
There are a number on the SC who have put forward the understanding that should the Synod agree to grant their request, based upon their statements that the ELCA no longer subscribes to Holy Scripture, to grant the petition would affirm that position on "our" part. There is, IMHO merit to this understanding.
What then is left for the SC to do?
Constitutionally, they can be "disciplined" for calling a non-rostered ELCA pastor.
Held on the roster and pray that they see the error in their decision to leave.
Expel and retain the property pursuant to NYS law. (Which, I believe will affirm the Synod's right to determine internal property matters and discipline)
In the case of mission starts and those who have received partnership grants and other assistance over the years, they can satisfy their obligations or depart w/o the property. I have wrestled with the latter and find it not to be punitative in its spirit.
What disturbed me most was a brief 'discussion' which briefly touched upon, "What if they want to return in the future"? I was horrified by info shared that it would extremely difficult to return! Early Church Fathers wrestled with "this' and their decisions I would have hoped been our guide.
Ipray for themembers of these congregations and theMNYS Council as they continue to wrestle and discern.

Charles_Austin

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Pastor Hahn writes:
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."

I comment:
Thank you for this most charitable depiction of our called and elected leaders. I wish you well as you separate yourself from what you consider such rampaging idiocy.

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Looking strictly at what is printed and what is not in a church magazine, the editorial crew of church publications would much rather devote space in their publications to feature stories and columns, not lists of names, positions, changes on the roster, etc. That information can be easily loaded up to a web site that can be kept current and checked anytime, anywhere, by anyone. It seems the only wrinkle in this story is that, apparently, the information on congregations leaving won't be published until the time for the Churchwide Assembly comes.

But, here's one vote in favor of eliminating the rather tedious routine of publishing all this kind of information in a church magazine. The web would be a much better way to go with this kind of "inside baseball" information.

FWIW.

Have to disagree. Especially when you have publication like The Lutheran, whose readership is mostly over 70 and not as computer savvy as younger generations.

And I would compare it to obituaries in the local paper. Sure, I could go on line every day and see who might have died. I probably wouldn't. But I always read the obits in the local paper, and often learn that people I know have died.
The Rev. Richard O. Johnson, STS

Brian Stoffregen

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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."

That's the best construction you can put on the leadership of the ELCA!
"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]

Evangel

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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."

That's the best construction you can put on the leadership of the ELCA!

Is the exclamation point instead of a question mark a Freudian slip? (!)   ;)
Mark Schimmel, Pastor
Zion Lutheran Church, LCMC
Priddy, TX
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ACXXIII, "Your majesty will graciously take into account the fact that, in these last times of which the Scriptures prophesy, the world is growing worse and men are becoming weaker and more infirm."

Brian Stoffregen

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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."

That's the best construction you can put on the leadership of the ELCA!

Is the exclamation point instead of a question mark a Freudian slip? (!)   ;)

Technically, the sentence is not a question, which would be: "Is that the best construction you can put on the leadership of the ELCA?"

Assuming that Marshall seeks to speak/write under the rubrics of Luther's Small Catechism, I'm surprised that this would be the best construction he could offer.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2010, 05:24:33 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]

Steven Tibbetts

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But, here's one vote in favor of eliminating the rather tedious routine of publishing all this kind of information in a church magazine. The web would be a much better way to go with this kind of "inside baseball" information.


And even when I was a boy, pastoral changes and obituaries were my favorite parts of the magazine.  They weren't just lists of names, they were family updates.  "I know that pastor!"  "We have a [E]LCA church there?  Cool!"  Etc., etc., etc.

The Rev. Steven Paul Tibbetts, STS
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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."

That's the best construction you can put on the leadership of the ELCA!

How about that -- Hahn, Stoffregen, and Tibbetts are in agreement!

gdr,vvf
The Rev. Steven Paul Tibbetts, STS
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Marshall_Hahn

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Pastor Hahn writes:
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."

I comment:
Thank you for this most charitable depiction of our called and elected leaders. I wish you well as you separate yourself from what you consider such rampaging idiocy.

Assuming that your response is meant to be sarcastic, Pastor Austin, I will respond by saying that, when you are able to respond charitably and with understanding toward those who are critical of the ELCA - those who have invested just as much time, effort, talent and love toward the church as you, I might add - then I will be willing to accept admonishment from you.

I will also add that I make no judgments as to why the decisions being made by the leadership are so poor.  I am at a loss to explain them.  But the rule of thumb stands.

Marshall Hahn

Terry W Culler

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The ELCA can indeed choose to make life difficult for congregations wanting to leave.  But at what price.  All a congregation need do is call a non-ELCA pastor, refuse to send any money to the Synod, refuse to take calls or answer mail or have anything to do with them.  Then they can join the LCMC and dare the ELCA to sue them.  So let's hope common sense and Christian love shine through all this rampant nonsense about making leaving difficult and things work themselves out fairly and honestly.  I really can't understand why a denomination would want to keep a congregation against its will.  Such behavior seems simply stupid to me.
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Timotheus Verinus

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Re: ELCA Considering New Procedures for Congregations Considering Leaving the EL
« Reply #101 on: November 27, 2010, 02:58:03 PM »
Pastor Hahn writes:
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."

I comment:
Thank you for this most charitable depiction of our called and elected leaders. I wish you well as you separate yourself from what you consider such rampaging idiocy.

and


That's the best construction you can put on the leadership of the ELCA!

How about that -- Hahn, Stoffregen, and Tibbetts are in agreement!

gdr,vvf

Actually, and especially when there is much evidence to the contrary, it is the best construction to assign idiocy, as opposed to premeditated, malicious intent. Please feel free to offer a better alternative, to malicious intent or naivete? (is that a better word?) I am usually at a loss to find a better construction. I am not sure, "naive, deluded, confused" or such terminology is a better construction than idiocy. Those would be the only options I can see for self-evident implosions in the face, being dressed up with lipstick on the pig? All other constructions apply intentional response, knowingly causing a great deal of pain.

TV
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Charles_Austin

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Pastor Culler writes:
I really can't understand why a denomination would want to keep a congregation against its will.  Such behavior seems simply stupid to me.

I respond:
It has been said that synods may have constitutional and fiduciary responsibilities with regard to the property of congregations under its care. Therefore, a synod council might even be subject to legal action if they just said: "Sure! Go! And you can have the church, the school, the parsonage" every time a congregation wants to leave. Those who do not want their congregation to leave, even if they are a 10 percent minority, can have a valid, constitutional, legal claim to the property.
It is not necessarily a matter of keeping "a congregation against its will," but a matter of proper concern for the assets of the church and the members who want to remain with the ELCA and the synod.
This has been explained before.

Brian Stoffregen

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It has been said that synods may have constitutional and fiduciary responsibilities with regard to the property of congregations under its care. Therefore, a synod council might even be subject to legal action if they just said: "Sure! Go! And you can have the church, the school, the parsonage" every time a congregation wants to leave. Those who do not want their congregation to leave, even if they are a 10 percent minority, can have a valid, constitutional, legal claim to the property.
It is not necessarily a matter of keeping "a congregation against its will," but a matter of proper concern for the assets of the church and the members who want to remain with the ELCA and the synod.
This has been explained before.

Similarly, what would happen if someone got upset at a congregation and demanded that all of his offerings for the past year be returned to him?

What if a congregation does not spend designated money for what it was designated, can the donator request their money back or does it belong to the congregation?
"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]

Marshall_Hahn

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Similarly, what would happen if someone got upset at a congregation and demanded that all of his offerings for the past year be returned to him?

What if a congregation does not spend designated money for what it was designated, can the donator request their money back or does it belong to the congregation?

I have yet to hear of a congregation which demanded that its Mission Support donations be returned to it from the ELCA.

Marshall Hahn