Author Topic: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation  (Read 101609 times)

DeHall

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #450 on: March 08, 2012, 11:06:38 AM »
Rarely, Pastor Awtrey, have I encountered such arrogance....
You should read your own posts more often.

efretheim

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #451 on: March 08, 2012, 11:09:48 AM »

And yet the ELCA is still the largest Lutheran denomination in North America even after 2009. A majority of the members and congregations are not leaving. Who knows if we still be the largest 20 years from now?


It appears to be a temporary thing.  The ELCA membership for 1988 was 5.2 million, the LCMS 2.6.  The ELCA membership for 2010 was 4.2 million, the LCMS 2.3 million.   The ELCA started almost exactly twice as big as the LCMS, now it is only 1.8 times the size.  The ELCA has declined by 20%, the LCMS by 12%.  The losses in the ELCA have been accelerating in the last few years, the losses in the LCMS have been slowing.

The LCMS has never tried to be the biggest Lutheran denomination in North America, just itself.  It isn't my cup of tea, but it doesn't tell me it is, or that I have to play with them.

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #452 on: March 08, 2012, 11:10:13 AM »
I understand Brian. I was there also during that chaos. I went over to LCMS in 1985/6ish, prior to "there being there." With many friends and family growing through the "birth of the new thing," I was there at kitchen tables, and visiting in pews, in discussions with folks like Richard on "how could I go to LCMS?" Substantive discussions, on what was unfolding as it evolved.


Ah, but those at the kitchen tables and in the pews were not likely members of the commission of 70 who were actually making the decisions that would form the new church. Hearing directly from a member of the CNLC and sitting in on a synod transition team's meetings gives more direct and likely more accurate information than what often happens around kitchen tables or coffee fellowships.





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As an aside to the Richard reference I was a member of Peace Lutheran in Grass Valley from 1974-Nov 76, when the events were just beginning. I'm sorry if you think that doesn't quailify as being "there."


'74-'76 can be considered a precursor to the new Lutheran church. Would the ELCA have happened if there hadn't been Seminex and the AELC -- and the removing of fellowship with the ALC by the LCMS -- all that happened in those years? Perhaps not. I was in an ALC seminary at the time -- after attending an LCMS college during fellowship between the ALC and LCMS. I received communion regularly in chapel. I preached occasionally in chapel.


The sentiment I heard was that the ideal that the ALC had of not uniting with the LCA unless the LCMS could be part of bringing together the three main branches of Lutheranism in the U.S. was dashed by the events in those years. It was also generally assumed that theologically we were closer to the LCA; but in terms of polity, we were closer to the LCMS.

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To the points you make, I will agree that we were predicting, divining, projecting things that would happen, as basically already decided. And to this extent, you are correct that they were sometimes more like "lies" than facts. BUT BUT did the predictions in fact come true? By and large I have to say that the "lies" ended up being true and later facts. The technicalities that were technically true, ended up being lies. That is the simple reality and seen no clearer than CWA '09.


What has not changed in the ELCA during these 24 years is our Confession of Faith. I thought and continue to think that it is a far superior one than what we had in the ALC and in the LCA. There was little differences in the core beliefs of the three predecessor bodies. Polity practices were a different story.
"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]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #453 on: March 08, 2012, 11:16:22 AM »
So we can still agree, that the ELCA is not an Orthodox Lutheran Church!  It's anything but, and has always been that way from the start!   ;) :)


Only if you can give us your definition of what defines an "Orthodox Lutheran Church." We in the ELCA believe that we are Orthodox Lutherans: believing in the Trinity of God, the Lordship and two natures of Christ, the power of the Gospel to save (and the Law to convict of sin); the Bible as the Word of God, the Confessions as the proper interpretation of scriptures -- what about our beliefs are not orthodoxy Lutheranism?
"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]

Timotheus Verinus

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #454 on: March 08, 2012, 11:56:47 AM »
Charles I am truly sorry that my simple witness has created a wall, such that it seems to be framed as arrogance at the outset.  I will take ownership of creating that error with poor communication. What I ask you to do, is to try and understand that what you presume in many cases is not true. When you respond this is so. And I reply, "you aren't hearing me." we have a failure in premise leading to errors in conclusions.

If either of us is arguing against a caricature, the conclusions will be off base. When the conclusions are personal attacks, that failure is any thing but gracious. The remedy is to try and get past the caricatures. I thought and still think, that perhaps the first caricature that we might discuss rationally is that I have "[been led] from one church body to another,"  which I infer, (and assert that you plainly intend) means some sort of "peripatetic wanderings" here one year, there the next.

That is a false characterization. Much of your argument hangs on that. To discuss it, the underlying personal attack, I will have reply in personal witness, with "my" etc. That is the charge you bring. We are not young men. I have been in each church body, longer than some here have been Lutheran. That is not flitting from flower to flower. It is a constant Lutheran continuance. If you see, only being in ELCA, and a thread in one predecessor body as the majority and faithful Lutheran answer, I would propose that is rather arrogant. My witness is no more than I have not been cloistered in an LCMS(or any other) shell. I was there in ELCA places, when these issues were being discussed.

Charles, if your caricatures were true, and they are not, then I would agree with you. What you do not hear, is they are not true. They are caricatures which you turn into straw men.

I do want to answer one other charge you make and have made for years, that is simply false and maliciously so. I do not and have not had relations with ELCA that, "only exist so that you can lead them from our 'errors.' "  You say you "can only conclude," and you conclude wrongly. That means you aren't hearing what is being said. Either present evidence that we can discuss whether this charge is true, or recognize that your conclusion may have taken a wrong turn somewhere. If your conclusion is off, then you are being slanderous.

To the "absolute truth" discussion you continue to miss the point. At this early entrance We are not discussing "just what is included in your 'absolute truth.' " At least not yet. You keep forcing a premise on absolute truth as the starting point. We disagree, (at this point anyway) not on what the "absolute truth is," but whether such a thing exists. We can't discuss those truths until we get past that.

TV
« Last Edit: March 08, 2012, 12:31:03 PM by Timotheus Verinus »
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Coach-Rev

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #455 on: March 08, 2012, 11:58:28 AM »
And yet the ELCA is still the largest Lutheran denomination in North America even after 2009. A majority of the members and congregations are not leaving. Who knows if we still be the largest 20 years from now?


As more and more of the disgruntled people leave, more and more of the members of the ELCA will be in agreement with the 2009 decisions. The ladies who will be at our Bible study later today have expressed their agreement with it.


As I've said before, the ELCA Clergy facebook page has over 3600 members (a few more than who belong to this forum) and, for the most part, they support the direction of the ELCA.

Snark like this deserves a response.  My response is this:  the faithful have always been a remnant.  8)

Timotheus Verinus

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #456 on: March 08, 2012, 12:09:07 PM »
...
Ah, but those at the kitchen tables and in the pews were not likely members of the commission of 70 who were actually making the decisions that would form the new church.
..

I do not say that I was in the smoke filled rooms, but you may want to notice that I drive by Lowman Home, White Rock SC, as I visit my dad's house, and many like a certain bishop emeritus are there, who were in "those pews" and at "those kitchen tables," and were in the smoke filled rooms.  I will grant you my perspective is second hand to the decision rooms, but your caveat may not be true? Bishop Crumley and others had to eat breakfast somewhere, and there really aren't a lot of restaurants in that part of Lexington/Newberry counties. But you are correct, no I wasn't in the decision rooms.

TV
« Last Edit: March 08, 2012, 12:25:00 PM by Timotheus Verinus »
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George Erdner

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #457 on: March 08, 2012, 12:27:02 PM »
For what it's worth, I refer to the woman who bore me as my mother. I refer to the place where I grew up as my home town. I refer to the congregation I belong to as my congregation. I refer to my favorite NFL football team as my team. Whether it's something serious or something trivial, I often use the word "my" to describe a particular connection or affiliation that has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with any ownership, real or implied.
 
I imagine that many people, including my friends and acquaintances, use the word "my" in the same way. At least, those who understand how the English language works do. And, those who understand English don't get snarky about it when someone else uses the word in that manner.
 

Don Whitbeck

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #458 on: March 08, 2012, 01:14:46 PM »
If I had known this, I would of love to have discussed what went on from his prospective as well as yours.  However, you’re right about one thing, a New Lutheran Church like NO OTHER, sure blew up like a volcano and the last eruption in 2009 sent it flying.  Of course I'm sure more is to come as the ashes settle from the last one.


And yet the ELCA is still the largest Lutheran denomination in North America even after 2009. A majority of the members and congregations are not leaving. Who knows if we still be the largest 20 years from now?


As more and more of the disgruntled people leave, more and more of the members of the ELCA will be in agreement with the 2009 decisions. The ladies who will be at our Bible study later today have expressed their agreement with it.


As I've said before, the ELCA Clergy facebook page has over 3600 members (a few more than who belong to this forum) and, for the most part, they support the direction of the ELCA.

Good for them Brian!  However, your numbers may drop again in Africa, and Asia, as the partnerships take up the cause of not being members there of, due to what they have flatly rejected in the new decree of the ELCA in 2009.

These Pastors, Bishops, Gay partners in Ordination, will answer to a Holy God! The final judgment will be his, not mine, or anyone else’s.  I for one want to stay true to his Word, although not perfect by any means.

Remember dear friend, Christ is still the head of his Church. Even through the ELCA has put him in the back seat, he still controls it, and evil will not stand against for any period of time.

Be Thankful for those Pastor who stood on their Confessional vows, and refused to align themselves with the new degree.  Its one thing to have a Confession of Faith and follow it, it another to have one and just pretend we follow it.  ;)  :)
The Voice of God will NEVER Contradict the Word of God

Don Whitbeck

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #459 on: March 08, 2012, 01:36:14 PM »
So we can still agree, that the ELCA is not an Orthodox Lutheran Church!  It's anything but, and has always been that way from the start!   ;) :)


Only if you can give us your definition of what defines an "Orthodox Lutheran Church." We in the ELCA believe that we are Orthodox Lutherans: believing in the Trinity of God, the Lordship and two natures of Christ, the power of the Gospel to save (and the Law to convict of sin); the Bible as the Word of God, the Confessions as the proper interpretation of scriptures -- what about our beliefs are not orthodoxy Lutheranism?

Oh, Brian, come on now!  :D  :o  How many times has this been discussed, on ALPB over the years?  The conclusion is that same.  Even after years of discussions, we reject your liberal revisionist doctrine, as you reject our conservative view of Lutheranism.  I sure don't want to open that can of worms again. My goodness, how much more do we have to repeat the beat?  ;)
« Last Edit: March 08, 2012, 01:39:44 PM by Confessional Lutheran »
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Charles_Austin

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #460 on: March 08, 2012, 01:49:43 PM »
All I can say, Pastor Awtrey, is "whatever". And since our exchange does not seem to interest anyone else, "whatever" seems like the best I can say.

DCharlton

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #461 on: March 08, 2012, 01:56:52 PM »
As I've said before, the ELCA Clergy facebook page has over 3600 members (a few more than who belong to this forum) and, for the most part, they support the direction of the ELCA.

Brian rejects Task Force on Human Sexuality's own studies because they were not based on a random sample, etc...  Therefore, he argues that we cannot conclude that a majority of people in the ELCA opposed changes to V&E. 

Now, he puts forward this anecdote about facebook as proof that a majority of those in the ELCA support its direction.   :o
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Charles_Austin

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #462 on: March 08, 2012, 01:59:31 PM »
Someone writes:
How many times has this been discussed, on ALPB over the years?  The conclusion is that same.  Even after years of discussions, we reject your liberal revisionist doctrine, as you reject our conservative view of Lutheranism.

I muse:
Ah, but "confessional Lutheran" has only been in this forum for seven months, so how can he or she know about "years of discussions"?

DCharlton

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #463 on: March 08, 2012, 02:01:26 PM »
What has not changed in the ELCA during these 24 years is our Confession of Faith. I thought and continue to think that it is a far superior one than what we had in the ALC and in the LCA. There was little differences in the core beliefs of the three predecessor bodies. Polity practices were a different story.

Does this confession of faith accurately reflect what is actually preached and taught in ELCA congregations and seminaries?  Does this confession of faith influence the decisions made by churchwide and synodical assemblies? 

If not, it is little more than a museum piece.
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Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Estranged members sue ELCA-LCMC congregation
« Reply #464 on: March 08, 2012, 04:02:33 PM »
What has not changed in the ELCA during these 24 years is our Confession of Faith. I thought and continue to think that it is a far superior one than what we had in the ALC and in the LCA. There was little differences in the core beliefs of the three predecessor bodies. Polity practices were a different story.

Does this confession of faith accurately reflect what is actually preached and taught in ELCA congregations and seminaries?  Does this confession of faith influence the decisions made by churchwide and synodical assemblies? 

If not, it is little more than a museum piece.


It is an essential part of every class on Lutheranism that I teach. I divide our Confession of Faith between "Catholic" teachings that we share with Christians everywhere and our "Lutheran" teachings from our Confessions.
"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]