Poll

Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?

David Adams
0 (0%)
David Benke
9 (16.1%)
William Diekelman
0 (0%)
Carl Fickenscher II
1 (1.8%)
Daniel Gard
4 (7.1%)
Randall Golter
0 (0%)
Matthew Harrison
30 (53.6%)
Herbert Mueller, Jr
0 (0%)
Wallace Schulz
1 (1.8%)
Dean Wenthe
0 (0%)
Someone else (please provide a specific candidate)
3 (5.4%)
Who cares? Throw a dart at the roster directory.
8 (14.3%)

Total Members Voted: 38

Author Topic: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?  (Read 8884 times)

Mike Gehlhausen

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #60 on: January 23, 2013, 02:30:50 PM »
Pastor Fouts,

What do you mean by the vast number of firings in the realm of world missions? A new person was called to be Executive Director of International Mission, but that position had not been filled since the restructuring so no one was fired to fill it. There had been two interim co-directors serving. One of them was given accountability for the entire arm of Synod's mercy work. The other has recently taken a call to serve up at Concordia Wisconsin. The further restructuring inside the OIM resulted in two people having their positions eliminated, I think. Part and parcel of the down-sizing of Synod because of the convention mandated restructuring has entailed the loss of positions in most every department. I mean, the COW used to have an Executive Director, an Associate Director, a full time admin and a commission of seven members. Now its work is given under National Mission to me and one part-time admin. I'm sure not seeing a "vast number of firings" in International Mission, though.

As I recall, at the end of 2010 there were approximately 12 people let go from WM.

Considering the Blue Ribbon restructuring, I am still not certain that 12 is vast.  Even if it is, I am uncertain that it was avoidable.

Didn't Pr. Butler say that perhaps the most strange (and likely) outcome of the 2010 convention would be that Rev. Harrison would be elected and yet saddled with overseeing Blue Ribbon restructuring he personally was uncertain about?

On the other hand, if additional changes in how missionaries are called and sent have been made so that significant numbers of them have been called back -- I remember some calling back of missionaries was happening and blamed on President Kieschnick even before President Harrison was elected -- then that is a quite different issue.

Mike

Weedon

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #61 on: January 23, 2013, 02:47:16 PM »
Scott,

Thanks for the info. That happened before I came on so it wasn't on my radar screen. My experience, though, is that there is significant "belt tightening" across the IC to focus the effort on Synod's mission priorities with maximal bang for the buck. Sadly RIF has been part of that.

Daniel L. Gard

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #62 on: January 23, 2013, 02:49:12 PM »
However, one change that is cause for concern is that for the first time in many years veteran missionaries, men who for many years served on the mission field in various parts of the world, are not part of the leadership team.  The International Mission Department experienced a greater loss in terms of persons with experience. 

Marie Meyer

I'm not sure that is true. The man who heads missions (I cannot remember the title or the name of the person) served as a missionary of the LC-MS for well over 20 years. He was a chaplain in the U.S. Army.

scott8

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #63 on: January 23, 2013, 02:56:24 PM »
Scott,

Thanks for the info. That happened before I came on so it wasn't on my radar screen. My experience, though, is that there is significant "belt tightening" across the IC to focus the effort on Synod's mission priorities with maximal bang for the buck. Sadly RIF has been part of that.

As I recall, no other department had comparable reductions.  I can no longer find the exact data, though I remember it was made known at the time.

Mike Gehlhausen

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #64 on: January 23, 2013, 03:11:31 PM »
Scott,

Thanks for the info. That happened before I came on so it wasn't on my radar screen. My experience, though, is that there is significant "belt tightening" across the IC to focus the effort on Synod's mission priorities with maximal bang for the buck. Sadly RIF has been part of that.

As I recall, no other department had comparable reductions.  I can no longer find the exact data, though I remember it was made known at the time.

And as I recall, mission also underwent some of the most dramatic restructuring going from LCMS World Mission to Departments of National and International Mission.

You imply that the disparity between departmental reductions was avoidable.  I tend to disagree.  You, of course, are closer to mission administration.  Do you believe it was avoidable given the Blue Ribbon mandates?

Mike

mariemeyer

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #65 on: January 23, 2013, 04:12:33 PM »
However, one change that is cause for concern is that for the first time in many years veteran missionaries, men who for many years served on the mission field in various parts of the world, are not part of the leadership team.  The International Mission Department experienced a greater loss in terms of persons with experience. 

Marie Meyer

I'm not sure that is true. The man who heads missions (I cannot remember the title or the name of the person) served as a missionary of the LC-MS for well over 20 years. He was a chaplain in the U.S. Army.

Chaplain Gard:

This is not to discredit chaplains, my grandfather was a chaplain in WWI, but to the best of my knowledge LCMS chaplains were not part of the synod's  Mission Board or listed among called full time missionaries serving in various countries outside the USA. These missionaries were not associated with the US military.  It is my understanding that LCMS missionaries under the Board for Foreign Missions often avoided being associated with the USA military.   

The experience of a military chaplain and a full time called missionary in Nigeria or Guatemala would be quite different.  So also was the experience of  my husband who served for 7 years under the Mission Board of the Southeastern District.  All were/are missionaries, but the experiences quite different.

Marie

Daniel L. Gard

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #66 on: January 23, 2013, 04:19:23 PM »
However, one change that is cause for concern is that for the first time in many years veteran missionaries, men who for many years served on the mission field in various parts of the world, are not part of the leadership team.  The International Mission Department experienced a greater loss in terms of persons with experience. 

Marie Meyer

I'm not sure that is true. The man who heads missions (I cannot remember the title or the name of the person) served as a missionary of the LC-MS for well over 20 years. He was a chaplain in the U.S. Army.

Chaplain Gard:

This is not to discredit chaplains, my grandfather was a chaplain in WWI, but to the best of my knowledge LCMS chaplains were not part of the synod's  Mission Board or listed among called full time missionaries serving in various countries outside the USA. These missionaries were not associated with the US military.  It is my understanding that LCMS missionaries under the Board for Foreign Missions often avoided being associated with the USA military.   

The experience of a military chaplain and a full time called missionary in Nigeria or Guatemala would be quite different.  So also was the experience of  my husband who served for 7 years under the Mission Board of the Southeastern District.  All were/are missionaries, but the experiences quite different.

Marie

This is a point on which many people are confused. Every active duty chaplain is a called missionary of the Synod and serves under the old Board for Mission Service (I'm not sure what is called under restructuring). Men like Pastor Hannah, a career Army chaplain with a long and distinguieshed record of service, are in every way missionaries - both in divine call and function. That they serve in the military institution does not diminish that status - it is simply different than other missionary positions. In fact, there are more missionaries to the armed forces than to any other mission field.

Dave Likeness

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #67 on: January 23, 2013, 05:37:10 PM »
In the September 2012 edition of the Lutheran
Witness, the following statistic was listed:

LCMS Career Missionaries.......98

It seems that we usually were closer to 130
in our recent past.  Someone else may have
access to these numbers.


mariemeyer

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #68 on: January 23, 2013, 05:41:33 PM »
However, one change that is cause for concern is that for the first time in many years veteran missionaries, men who for many years served on the mission field in various parts of the world, are not part of the leadership team.  The International Mission Department experienced a greater loss in terms of persons with experience. 

Marie Meyer

I'm not sure that is true. The man who heads missions (I cannot remember the title or the name of the person) served as a missionary of the LC-MS for well over 20 years. He was a chaplain in the U.S. Army.

Chaplain Gard:

This is not to discredit chaplains, my grandfather was a chaplain in WWI, but to the best of my knowledge LCMS chaplains were not part of the synod's  Mission Board or listed among called full time missionaries serving in various countries outside the USA. These missionaries were not associated with the US military.  It is my understanding that LCMS missionaries under the Board for Foreign Missions often avoided being associated with the USA military.   

The experience of a military chaplain and a full time called missionary in Nigeria or Guatemala would be quite different.  So also was the experience of  my husband who served for 7 years under the Mission Board of the Southeastern District.  All were/are missionaries, but the experiences quite different.

Marie

This is a point on which many people are confused. Every active duty chaplain is a called missionary of the Synod and serves under the old Board for Mission Service (I'm not sure what is called under restructuring). Men like Pastor Hannah, a career Army chaplain with a long and distinguieshed record of service, are in every way missionaries - both in divine call and function. That they serve in the military institution does not diminish that status - it is simply different than other missionary positions. In fact, there are more missionaries to the armed forces than to any other mission field.

Checked the Annual and see where there is confusion.  Listed under International Ministries are the Veterans Affairs Chaplains at VA Hospitals in the States. I would not dispute that they serve on a mision filed.  Also named are The Military Chaplains, including Active Duty, Reserve and Civil Air Patrol chaplains. They also are missionaries serving on a mission field. The VA chaplains together with active and reserve chaplains out number missionaries serving in Africa, East Asia, Eurasia, Latin America, and South Asia.   It is the latter whose representation seems to have been reduced in the new Office of International Mission. The different nature of where they serve, the fact that they are are on the field with families, that they must become fluent in one or more new languages and be immersed in a new culture does in someway set them apart from men like my husband who called as "missionaries at large" here in the states.   

Memory tells me there was a time that all full time missionaries serving in countries outside the USA were, like the chaplains, listed by name in the Annual.  They may still be, but I could not find any such listing.

 

Daniel L. Gard

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #69 on: January 23, 2013, 05:50:09 PM »
The number of military and VA chaplains is not determined by the budget of the Synod - we are the best deal the Synod has in missionaries because we are not paid by the Synod. Our costs are paid by the Kingdom of the Left.

Unfortunately, the number of missionaries paid by Synod is determined by the Synod's budget. There is nothing I would like more than for us to get back to funding the very things that the Synod was formed to do - formation of pastors and other workers, missions and publishing (CPH is self-funding). In military terms, these are the mission essential tasks of the Synod. Everything else is a "nice to have" but do not rise to the level of essential.

LutherMan

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #70 on: January 23, 2013, 05:55:37 PM »
I imagine you could be correct.  That said -- I think Kieschnick will probably get more nominations than Maier.   
Isn't he close to seventy by now?  Would he really want to step back into the rigors of such a role again?

Dave Benke

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #71 on: January 23, 2013, 09:55:56 PM »
I'm in the relatively rare position of pretty much agreeing with Chaplain Gard, as to the nominees and as to the result. 

Further, I think
a) the volume level church-politically is way, way down.  This is a good thing
b) the volume level of "die so genannte" moderate wing is set just barely above zero.  The sound of politics in the Missouri Synod is basically the sound of one hand clapping.
c) the result of the one hand clapping in terms of the overall denominational elections will begin to be felt in the fall of 2013 and through to the 2016 convention in terms of action and energy.
d) the force of the Koinonia Project will be the premier force for dialog rather than convention resolution dictates in the denomination for at least the next two conventions
c) I kind of disagree with the Chaplain on the percentage result.  My Karnak the Magnificent forecast is between 75-80% for President Harrison. 

Dave Benke

Thanks for this excellent analysis, Dave.  You always put it in a way I can understand.

I will say, however, with regard to "volume" in the church-political amplification zone, that low volume can mean many and varied things.  If the volume is down, there are people who are
a) pensively waiting for a shoe to drop
b) keeping their heads down and just doing their work locally - this I believe is a good thing
c) scheming behind the scenes
d) figuring out how to deal with the call for dialog when they've either got other things to do and don't really care, or really don't care for any more dialog and just want to fling that other shoe down on the carpet.

I hope this doesn't mess up your analysis, which is as always crisp and useful to me.

Dave Benke

scott8

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #72 on: January 23, 2013, 10:10:42 PM »
That they serve in the military institution does not diminish that status - it is simply different than other missionary positions. In fact, there are more missionaries to the armed forces than to any other mission field.

Ministry to American men and women in the Armed Forces is certainly a mission field.  It is also quite different from other sorts of mission work among other cultures on the soil of those cultures where you are called to serve to strengthen the work of the individuals there according to culturally-appropriate forms.  Skills developed in one area do not necessarily translate well into another.  Further, chaplains, being used to functioning under orders and within strong hierarchies, are not necessarily a good fit for the more fluid and less authority-based environments of civilian mission work, just as civilian missionaries would not a good military chaplain in command of soldiers make.

Dave Likeness

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #73 on: January 23, 2013, 10:19:03 PM »
In the 9:55 post tonight, this was the first time
that I eavesdropped on Bishop Benke talking
to himself.  This New Yorker has got something
going when he can pull that off.  Try decaf and
you will not be the only one in the room.

J.L. Precup

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Re: Who Should Be Nominated For LCMS Synodical President?
« Reply #74 on: January 23, 2013, 11:17:35 PM »
That they serve in the military institution does not diminish that status - it is simply different than other missionary positions. In fact, there are more missionaries to the armed forces than to any other mission field.

Ministry to American men and women in the Armed Forces is certainly a mission field.  It is also quite different from other sorts of mission work among other cultures on the soil of those cultures where you are called to serve to strengthen the work of the individuals there according to culturally-appropriate forms.  Skills developed in one area do not necessarily translate well into another.  Further, chaplains, being used to functioning under orders and within strong hierarchies, are not necessarily a good fit for the more fluid and less authority-based environments of civilian mission work, just as civilian missionaries would not a good military chaplain in command of soldiers make.

Agreed, Scott.  Having served as both a missionary and a military chaplain, I can attest that they are very different.  As a military chaplain stationed overseas for almost six years in the Philippines, Spain, and Korea, it was actually living and being in a mission field of a little slice of America surrounded by fences in a foreign land.  Was it lonely sometimes?  Yes, but there were like speaking and thinking people there with lots of resources.  As a missionary in Mexico for six year, it was entirely different.  It was lonely sometimes, but there were people speaking a different language and sometimes thinking differently with precious few resources.

Each is a special ministry in a special mission field, but quite separate.
Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who work, or watch, or weep this night, and give your angels charge over those who sleep. Tend the sick, Lord Christ; give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous; and all for your love's sake. Amen.