Author Topic: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?  (Read 31489 times)

George Erdner

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #45 on: October 21, 2010, 11:38:10 AM »
I know that no one likes to hear this, especially people in the LC-MS. But, I'll say it once again anyway. Even to ELCA dissident traditionalists who oppose most of the liberal policies of the ELCA and who are disgusted by some of the ELCA's social statements on issues like abortion and homosexuality, the reputation that the LC-MS has regarding acceptance of outsiders is a problem. Some of us, for one reason or another, have come to learn that the reputation of the LC-MS is undeserved and/or a holdover from generations back. But to those who haven't had their eyes opened to the fact that the LC-MS isn't as clannish and unwelcoming as its reputation, the reputation is a stumbling block.

Like it or not (and prior responses to this same basic message indicates most LC-MS people like it not), the burden of dispelling a bad reputation, even one that is totally undeserved, falls on the shoulders of the people who have the bad reputation.

I won't dispute that the LC-MS does not deserve the reputation it has among other Lutherans. But the reputation is there, and it's up to the LC-MS to reach out to those who won't come to them because of mistaken perceptions about the LC-MS.

I only ask two things by way of replies to this post. Please don't remind me that the bad reputation of the LC-MS is based on misunderstandings and misconceptions, and that the negatives that most people think about the LC-MS aren't true. I know that, and I already said that. And please don't tell me about how welcoming people in the LC-MS are to people who enter their churches. Again, I know that to be true, but I'm talking about the people who won't walk into an LC-MS church to encounter that welcome.

kls

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #46 on: October 21, 2010, 11:41:20 AM »
And since nobody from the ELCA is chomping at the bit to provide a link to the ELCA social statement on abortion, I (from the LCMS) shall do so.

And though I know this site isn't welcomed warmly by those in the ELCA, it's the best I could do on the fly to point to a link on abortions being covered by the ELCA health plan.  Please provide a better link if you have one.

And we ask how or why LFL is "too LCMS" for ELCA people?  Perhaps it's because they actually value what the Bible says about life, as does the LCMS.

To any ELCA lurkers, I would hold your hand in a heartbeat to make you feel comfortable at an LFL conference, event, etc.  You would be made to feel quite welcome even without that, though.   :)

James_Gale

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #47 on: October 21, 2010, 12:18:12 PM »
I know that no one likes to hear this, especially people in the LC-MS. But, I'll say it once again anyway. Even to ELCA dissident traditionalists who oppose most of the liberal policies of the ELCA and who are disgusted by some of the ELCA's social statements on issues like abortion and homosexuality, the reputation that the LC-MS has regarding acceptance of outsiders is a problem. Some of us, for one reason or another, have come to learn that the reputation of the LC-MS is undeserved and/or a holdover from generations back. But to those who haven't had their eyes opened to the fact that the LC-MS isn't as clannish and unwelcoming as its reputation, the reputation is a stumbling block.

I agree.  

I don't doubt that most LCMS congregations are warm and welcoming.  But LCMS practices keep many other Lutherans from ever visiting an LCMS congregation to learn for themselves.  

The biggest reason, I think, is close(d) communion.  I understand why the LCMS practices close(d) communion and believe that it has every right to do so.  However, we outsiders all have heard stories of Lutherans being turned away at Missouri altars.  Sometimes it's handled well.  Sometimes it's not, causing enormous embarrassment and then anger.  Close(d) communion also has caused serious problems for those planning weddings and funerals for families consisting of Lutherans from different bodies.  I know of circumstances where an LCMS pastor has told all-Lutheran families that they had to choose between having communion that would be shared only by part of the family or not having communion at all.  The bitterness that resulted was palpable.

And then there are the well publicized episodes, such as the action against Bp. Benke.  While some within Missouri think that discipline was warranted, the perceived harshness -- meanness, even -- of the action did not sit well with other orthodox Lutherans.  

Again, I know that arguments can be made supporting these practices.  My only point -- and George's, I think -- is that as a result, other Lutherans seeking a church to visit or join will steer clear of LCMS congregations.  Right or wrong, that's a fact.

Papster

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #48 on: October 21, 2010, 12:19:26 PM »
Thanks to LutherMan for bumping up this topic. I missed it when it started and it is interesting to read the flow of the conversation. My wife has been much more active in the pro-life movement than I. I was a quiet supporter from the early seventies, she attended one of the first "March for Life" rallys in the mid seventies. She was a member of the Justice & Social Change Committee of the LCA NE Penn Synod at the time. The committee was considering funding a NARAL (National Abortion Rights Action League) chapter and she traveled to a NARAL meeting in Philadelphia with another committee member to access the value of offering funding. Later when one of committee members (a pastor) learned that she was pro-life he asked, "What are you doing on this committee?" and walked out of the meeting.

My wife and I authored a memorial to the NE Penn Synod Assembly to memorialize the LCA Church Assembly to revise the LCA Social Statement on Human Sexuality which was ambiguous on abortion. The memorial was passed by the synod, but when it got to the Reference & Counsel of the LCA Assembly it died in the committee before ever reaching the assembly floor for debate.

This year I attended the March for Life in Washington DC on January 22nd for the first time with my wife. I have never in my life experienced an event like that. There were upwards of 350,000 people there. It was supposed to take an hour (2:00 – 3:00 PM) to walk from the Mall Rally near the Smithsonian up Constitution Avenue around the Capitol to the Supreme Court Building for the speeches there at 3:00 PM. It was not a march, it was more like a crawl. We got to the Supreme Court at 4:15 PM long after the speeches, and a third of the crowd was still behind us. We marched with the Lutheran’s For Life group, but I think we were the only ELCA members in the group (several hundred people). What CNN reported was the presence of 60 Pro-Choice members that were holding “Keep Abortion Legal” signs. There was a total news blackout by CBS, NBC, ABC, and FOX on the March to my knowledge.

Presently we are active in the NC Chapter of the Lutherans for Life. Right now we are the only ELCA people in the chapter. It is a LCMS dominated group. The chapter members are not that excited about going to the March for Life, they see their mission more as one of education about the issue.

LutherMan

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #49 on: October 21, 2010, 12:23:35 PM »
Pr. Orovitz,
Thank you and Mrs. Orovitz & God Bless you for caring enough to be involved.

George Erdner

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #50 on: October 21, 2010, 12:28:37 PM »
Again, I know that arguments can be made supporting these practices.  My only point -- and George's, I think -- is that as a result, other Lutherans seeking a church to visit or join will steer clear of LCMS congregations.  Right or wrong, that's a fact.

Thank you for understanding and reinforcing what I was saying.

Russ Saltzman

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #51 on: October 21, 2010, 12:31:01 PM »
from Touchstone archives . . .


Everything Personal

by Russell E. Saltzman on Children Born of Rape or Incest


I belong to an on-line support group (me, in a support group, there’s a picture) composed of adult children born of rape or incest. There are more of us in the former category than the latter. Jennifer is our webmistress, organizer, facilitator, coach, head nanny, chief nag (though very nice about it), and the child of a violent rape. Mostly, I lurk. But for some in the group, I am a kind of unofficial chaplain and sometime pastoral advisor. There are children born before Roe v. Wade as well as children born after Roe v. Wade. The handles adopted by some in the group are evocative: “former fetus,” “unawares angel,” names like that.

We tell stories about how we found out about our birth circumstances, what that knowledge has meant. For every one of us, it was a discovery. No one was raised knowing the circumstances of his birth, but all of us are adoptees who simply wanted to know our origins for medical reasons or just to gain a more complete personal sense of identity. Finding we were children of rape was an incidental outcome, but always a fundamental shock. The biographical fact of adoption, frequently problematic in its own way, can become impossibly complicated with that extra layer of detail squatting on top of it. My conception and birth were the product of stepsibling incest.

If you want a genuine encounter with Angst 101—all the old “why am I here?” questions with none of the sophomoric abstractions attached—our chat room positively wallows in it, and for understandable reasons. These are ordinary people, after all, fairly attuned to the ordinary pulses of good and evil in this world, trying to come to grips with how their life can be the result of something that was so horrifically bad for someone else. Still, as I always ask when that question arises, cannot a child born of rape be an instance of God working good from evil, a lesson that Joseph learned and then taught to his brothers?

We get into discussions about our discussions with pro-choice advocates. There isn’t one of us who hasn’t been told by a pro-choice supporter that support for abortion, especially in those hard cases like rape, is, of course, “nothing personal.” I’m sure the delegates at the Presbyterian Church (USA) meeting in Columbus, Ohio, late last June 2002 would say the same thing. The PCUSA general assembly voted 394 to 112 in support of an unrestricted right to abortion, at least until such time as the fetus can survive outside the womb. Thereafter, abortion should be done only to preserve the life of the mother, to “avoid fetal suffering,” or in cases of rape and incest.

The Presbyterians have adopted a position similar to that of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and like the ELCA, PCUSA’s medical benefits plan for clergy and church workers regards an elective abortion as a reimbursable medical expense. There is no reimbursement for an elective nose job, even if your nose is big enough to qualify as a county in Rhode Island, but that’s just policy, nothing personal. (I am a pastor in the ELCA, but I dropped out of the health plan years ago over its support for abortion.)

Back to Angst 101. Everyone deals with issues of birth and origin—well, they do if they are conscious and sentient. The perilous biologic journey of sperm and egg from conception to zygote to blastocyst to embryo to fetus is just so much random chance that particular questions about the particularity that you represent are inevitable. If somebody had a headache that night, you wouldn’t be here. If the 64-some cells that formed the blastocyst had failed to travel the fallopian tubes, you wouldn’t be here. If the blastocyst had failed to implant itself on the uterine wall, you wouldn’t be here. There are a thousand natural reasons why you should not be here, and the chances of your being here at all are unutterably impossible.

The chances of pregnancy from rape are even chancier. Actual pregnancies resulting from reported rapes are ridiculously minuscule, point-oh-oh-oh-something per thousand. But it is always somebody’s bad luck when they do happen and the “ifs” roll on. If she had stayed out of the parking lot that night; if she had been more aware of her surroundings; if the guy she met hadn’t been a twisted creep; if her stepbrother hadn’t forced her on the sofa. If.

Absent a creator—absent God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth—your conception and birth are exactly that, dumb blind chance. Yet we say that God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, made you. And me. And a very talented, warm-hearted woman named Jennifer, with two sweet kids of her own. Her body itself, and my body, aging though it is, carries a living and breathing rebuke to those who regard human life as a matter of convenience. Against all appearances to the contrary, imagine this: God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, made her, made me, made you. It is more personal than the Presbyterians or the Lutherans will admit.

Russell E Saltzman
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Papster

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #52 on: October 21, 2010, 12:41:22 PM »
from Touchstone archives . . .


Everything Personal

by Russell E. Saltzman on Children Born of Rape or Incest


.........

We tell stories about how we found out about our birth circumstances, what that knowledge has meant. For every one of us, it was a discovery. No one was raised knowing the circumstances of his birth, but all of us are adoptees who simply wanted to know our origins for medical reasons or just to gain a more complete personal sense of identity. Finding we were children of rape was an incidental outcome, but always a fundamental shock. The biographical fact of adoption, frequently problematic in its own way, can become impossibly complicated with that extra layer of detail squatting on top of it. My conception and birth were the product of stepsibling incest.


My wife never understood why she had such a passion for the pro-life movement. Several years ago she discovered that both she and her sister could have been aborted if they had been conceived after Roe v Wade in 1972. That option would have been encouraged by the Social Service agencies counseling their 16 year-old unwed mother. Instead their father went to jail for six months.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2010, 12:44:41 PM by Papster »

Russ Saltzman

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #53 on: October 21, 2010, 12:53:04 PM »
from First Things archive

A Fear of Abandonment

by Russell E. Saltzman


I still enjoy telling the story of my adoption. I was a "gray market" baby in 1947, a private arrangement made between birth mother, doctor, lawyer, and adoptive parents. The attending physician had arranged to telephone the good news to the waiting couple, my parents--something like, "Congratulations. Sixteen years from now you'll have a teenager who wants his driver's license."

Unfortunately the Kansas City, Kansas, telephone operators were on strike. That was back in the days when, upon picking up the receiver, one heard "Number please?" and with the operators out the doctor sent a telegram. "Come quick," it read. "Baby boy born this 9:00 a.m."

The family story of how my adoptive mother left her home and raced two blocks up the hill on north Steward Avenue off Parallel then down a steeper hill to her aunt's house, excitedly waving the doctor's telegram, has become more elaborate year to year, at least in her sister's telling. The gist of it, though, appears that she arrived breathless, grandly flourished the telegram before her sisters and aunt, complained that having a baby was tough work and she needed a rest, whereupon she flopped down on a bed, arms and legs akimbo.

It was happy news for my adoptive parents, but that telegram proved terribly confusing to me. My folks kept it on page one in my baby book. As a young child I thumbed through that book frequently. When other kids started pondering the true origin of babies, I announced my firm conviction--citing documentary evidence--that babies originated with Western Union. Lou Ann, my sixth grade girlfriend, kindly took me aside on the playground to hint at other means, but I didn't believe her.

I've since gleaned more accurate information about where babies come from, but one fact from that telegram remains with me: I am adopted. There was never a time when I did not know I was adopted. It was a given, a fact calmly declared in public and in private, something in which to exult. In my very young years I remember feeling what now seems like a foolish kind of specialness, even a superiority over "ordinary" kids in being adopted. "But how did you find me?" I would plead. And my mother would tell how she and my father picked me, only me, from a huge room simply brimming with babies. They carefully looked at each one--"No, that's not our baby," they would say to each other--until, when they had almost given up, they at last found that one, just that one baby they knew God intended for them. Me.

I did worry about those other babies. What if no one found them quite as delightfully perfect as my parents had found me? What would happen to them? I was reassured to learn that for every baby in that room brimming with babies, special parents and a new home were waiting. Or so my mother told me.

For all the specialness that I and my adoptive parents found, I have yet at the same time always wondered about my birth parents. Just as I cannot remember a time when I did not know I was adopted, I cannot remember a time when I did not speculate about those other people. To say this takes nothing from my parents, my real parents, the ones who adopted, reared, and love me still, and who are well into their seventies, both living active lives. But it is to say that from my earliest years I have mulled over those others who, in different circumstances, would have been my real parents. I have wondered, in short, why I was given up for adoption, and for reasons I cannot explain, my questioning has always concerned my birth mother, seldom my birth father.

I never looked too hard, really, but while in my late twenties I did learn that she lived in Kansas City. The information I gained on my birth father puts my birth mother's decision for adoption in perspective. He was young, a soldier from Ft. Leavenworth. I was conceived in the late summer of 1946, less than a year after the close of World War II. I have their names--Robert and Faye--and their addresses, now fifty years out of date.

This information, little as it was, satisfied me at age twenty-seven. From it I fashioned in my mind a failed romance between a young Kansas City girl, sixteen at my birth, and a lonely, nineteen-year-old left-over World War II enlistee stationed at Ft. Leavenworth. Dashing, they were, Robert and Faye, and evidently star-crossed, as my imagination has pictured them all these years; kids, that's all, just teenagers. She vulnerable and pretty and foolish, obviously vulnerable enough and foolish enough to let her head get turned by--well, he was, wasn't he?--a handsome guy in a uniform. He, again in my imagination, perhaps was far from home, seeking company. Ft. Leavenworth is not a great place for a weekend pass. Kansas City is the place to be, the Kansas side if your pass doesn't let you cross the state line into Missouri. And there they met (at a soda fountain?), a fateful meeting that led to the assignation that led to me. Or perhaps they attended Wyandotte County High School together--Robert was only eighteen in 1946--and being romantically incautious while he was on leave, that was how I came to be. It could have happened like that.

But they were young, too young to take on the responsibilities of a marriage and a child all at once, no matter how desperately they might have wanted it otherwise. So on the best advice of family and friends I was given up, tearfully I imagined, to what they both prayed would be a better life than they, she, could provide. All that was my imagination, never too detailed and just vague enough to avoid more critical questioning.

Some adoptees never get over questioning why they were surrendered for adoption, why their parents could not have kept them and raised them and loved them for their own. No matter the childhood tales of being especially chosen, no matter the practical realities one becomes aware of later that make adoption desirable, the question lingers because it is so intensely personal. What was so bad about me that she did not want me, would not love me? What were the hardships she faced that could not be overcome . . . for me?

For me the fact of adoption still echoes with such questions. There is--I have no other description but one that sounds clichéd--a sometimes deep empty place, a hole into which I fall in times of personal stress. I deal cautiously with people; I am friendly but reserved. A fear of abandonment, I was once told, a fear of rejection, of death. It flairs up unbidden, the slightest of things innocently said nonetheless strikes deep in my being, momentarily overpowering my intellectualizations. It can be very hard on the people I love best and God knows what it contributed to the breakup of my first marriage. All of it comes from knowing that in my earliest moments, they who should have loved me best gave me up to others.

Some years ago, I wrote about being adopted, the first time I had ever made public comments on the subject. In that essay, too, I told of the imaginary scenario I had constructed in my mind: pretty girl, lonely soldier, failed romance, doomed love. Writing about it stimulated all the old, nagging questions I thought settled. They have unexpectedly resurfaced.

I know more now of my birth.

My birth father indeed was a young soldier at Ft. Leavenworth. His family forced his enlistment after he impregnated (raped?) his sixteen-year-old step-sister, my birth mother. I am the result of sexual predation, of step-sibling incest. I never knew why my mother could not keep me, would not keep me. Now I know, and the knowledge has been comforting, in a way. I learned it and, strangely perplexed that this need never arose before, I forgave her.

But the knowledge has also left me uncomfortably disconcerted. No longer was my birth the result of an ill-fated romantic liaison. It was something else, alien and other, distasteful. Now I know beyond question, I was not abandoned to adoption. I was rescued by it.

When I acquired my birth-parents' names and addresses twenty-four years ago I did it thinking to seek out my mother. I decided otherwise, to respect her privacy, to avoid hurting my parents, for a number of reasons. But it was also just after Roe v. Wade, when the enormity of abortion was gaining a sharper clarity. Her privacy was one thing, but there was another reason too. I feared a second rejection, feared hearing in some form or other that had she had the choice in 1947, she would have chosen abortion. With my romantic fiction, I at least had the notion that given a choice she might have chosen me, the child that she and Robert made in love. But I was not made in love, and possibly I was conceived in violence. Would she today have hesitated over abortion?

As the abortion business has become ever bigger in the years since, I have grimly pondered the fate of Faye's pregnancy were it to occur now under circumstances like those of a half century ago. The law then protected me. Not today. Today, hers would be a "problem pregnancy," a "crisis pregnancy," an "unwanted pregnancy."

It was all that of course and more in 1947. Carrying her pregnancy, thinking of me in her womb, might have been awful in different moments. But there were more social supports for young women with "problems" like that. Society may have regarded unmarried pregnant girls with less compassion or tolerance than today, but their babies lived. Whatever the difficulty, the shame, the discomfort, the fear; whatever dread she experienced, whatever she endured was worth it for her, for me, for my own children. I was born. The laws, the courts, the physicians, the churches, all worked to insure that once Faye was pregnant, I would be born.

Not today. Today, not even my own church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, is able to say flatly that unborn babies like me should live. No woman has an absolute right to abortion, so my church declares in its social statement on abortion. But it goes on, conversely, to say that no fetus has an absolute right to birth. The woman decides--after of course appropriate moral reflection with sympathetic listeners, but she decides. Pregnancies created in circumstances such as those of Faye and Robert in 1947 are in 1998 fair targets for "morally responsible" abortions, according to my church. Even stranger, were either Robert or Faye or their parents beneficiaries under the ELCA health plan (which means pastors and salaried church workers and their dependents), Faye's 1998 abortion would be a reimbursable medical expense. The ELCA health plan will not pay for an elective breast implant but, under the right conditions, will pay to abort someone like me. When it comes to my birth the church that values my baptism is ambivalent at best about my right to life in the womb.

Abortion is personal to me, as personal as my adoption. It is personal not only to the woman who aborts, but to me; to me, to the unborn children like me, it is personal. It is our person that is in jeopardy.

Fear of abandonment, the psychiatrist told me, fear of rejection, of death. Gosh, whatever gave her that idea?

Copyright (c) 1998 First Things 80 (February 1998). Reproduced with author's permission.
Russell E Saltzman
former editor, Forum Letter
former columnist, www.firstthings.com
essayist, https://aleteia.org/author/russell-e-saltzman/
email: russell.e.saltzman@gmail.com
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pastorg1@aol.com

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #54 on: October 21, 2010, 12:55:49 PM »
I was, what my mother charmingly called, a "bonus baby."

Happy to be here- and a rarely glimpsed ELCA contributor to Lutherans for Life.

Peter ("Life is a good"- JPII) Garrison
Pete Garrison, STS

kls

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #55 on: October 21, 2010, 12:58:09 PM »
My only point -- and George's, I think -- is that as a result, other Lutherans seeking a church to visit or join will steer clear of LCMS congregations.  Right or wrong, that's a fact.

Not in the LCMS churches I've been in, so your statement of "fact" is not 100% factual.   ;D  

Anyone experiencing "anger" over being told they can't commune ought to revisit the scriptures that the LCMS bases this practice on.  The law kills . . . it did so for me, too.  But God did His amazing work and opened my eyes and heart to the truth that comes by way of the Gospel . . . an amazing Savior in whom I receive the body and blood of each week.  I better know what I'm partaking in when I do so.  Thus the policies LCMS churches have.  It's really quite simple, and really quite loving.

Scott6

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #56 on: October 21, 2010, 01:00:51 PM »
Like it or not (and prior responses to this same basic message indicates most LC-MS people like it not), the burden of dispelling a bad reputation, even one that is totally undeserved, falls on the shoulders of the people who have the bad reputation.

Not so fast... We should fear and love God so that we do not tell lies about our neighbor, betray him, slander him, or hurt his reputation, but defend him, speak well of him, and explain everything in the kindest way.

I.e., what you said is only partly true, George.  A person falsely accused of, say, sexual harassment has very few options as to how he can help to clear his reputation; rather, he would have to rely considerably on those who listen to the accusation not giving it credence and speaking well of him.

James_Gale

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #57 on: October 21, 2010, 01:31:38 PM »
My only point -- and George's, I think -- is that as a result, other Lutherans seeking a church to visit or join will steer clear of LCMS congregations.  Right or wrong, that's a fact.

Not in the LCMS churches I've been in, so your statement of "fact" is not 100% factual.   ;D  

Anyone experiencing "anger" over being told they can't commune ought to revisit the scriptures that the LCMS bases this practice on.  The law kills . . . it did so for me, too.  But God did His amazing work and opened my eyes and heart to the truth that comes by way of the Gospel . . . an amazing Savior in whom I receive the body and blood of each week.  I better know what I'm partaking in when I do so.  Thus the policies LCMS churches have.  It's really quite simple, and really quite loving.

You miss my point.  The "fact" is that many non-Missouri Lutherans will not visit LCMS congregations because of what they have heard from others regarding their experiences.  That "fact" is indeed factual. 

The wonderful ministries of individual LCMS congregations is beside the point.  As is the argument in support of close(d) communion.

Daniel L. Gard

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #58 on: October 21, 2010, 01:33:30 PM »
Like it or not (and prior responses to this same basic message indicates most LC-MS people like it not), the burden of dispelling a bad reputation, even one that is totally undeserved, falls on the shoulders of the people who have the bad reputation.

I won't dispute that the LC-MS does not deserve the reputation it has among other Lutherans. But the reputation is there, and it's up to the LC-MS to reach out to those who won't come to them because of mistaken perceptions about the LC-MS.


George,

I do not dispute the assertion that the LCMS does not have the most welcoming of reputations among the ELCA. Years ago, as a member of the LCA, I thought the same thing. And then I visited LCMS parishes and found out the the common wisdom was, welll...... a common lie. I'm not sure how one defends oneself from malicious untruths except to keep doing what is good and right in the face of those falsehoods.  

That false images are perpetuated among some is not anything that the LCMS can do to change. People will believe what they want to believe especially if they never check it out from themselves. What they will find in almost every place are Lutherans who will welcome them. No, we will not compromise on issues like women's ordination or close/d communion in order to appear more likeable. But our parishes would welcome anyone who comes to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

James_Gale

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Re: Is Lutherans For Life "too LCMS" for ELCA Pro-Life People?
« Reply #59 on: October 21, 2010, 01:38:50 PM »
Russ --

Thanks for sharing your articles.  Thanks very much.

Jim