Author Topic: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced  (Read 141345 times)

RevG

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #750 on: January 26, 2021, 09:50:55 AM »
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I understand such searches like this one are extremely sensitive matters, but I really desire more transparency in general

I understand and sometimes wish for the same but it is a solemn call and not a simple hiring and it is done with probably way more transparency than a professor called to a seminary.

Larry,

More often than not I’m inclined to read your comments as that of a “company man.”   The two are certainly not the same nor is the process for hiring/calling.  I take from your comment that because the process is more transparent than hiring a professor I should be at peace with the process.  I’m sorry, but that just doesn’t cut it for me.  The two aren’t the same.  It’s a “solemn call” but it comes with a five year contract.  Tom Egger wasn’t on the short list, but now is one of two finalists.  In such circumstances invoking God and the call process seems all too convenient and might even be a breach of the second commandment.  It just seems to me that we use the divine call as cover when it is advantageous.  A “sacred canopy” of sorts.   And again if Dr. Egger is the guy, great.  But for the better part of this past decade I’ve seen a lot of damage done under the “sacred canopy.”  So I think it’s okay to say, “Hey, what’s going on there?”

Peace,
Scott+

Dave Benke

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #751 on: January 26, 2021, 12:18:31 PM »
To anyone on the outside of the process, there's a clear choice between the two finalists.  Joel Lehenbauer's experience in administering and organizing the theological department of the national church body for a significant period of time, working with faculty of both seminaries through all that time, and gaining an appreciation of the breadth and scope of the Synod and its significant issues of interpretation in so doing are all of far, far greater reach than the experience and wisdom set of Thomas Egger. 


Courage and clarity will be required.  Joel Lehenbauer has been able to navigate the choppy waters of LCMS interactions between the theology on paper and the practice out in the field in an adept and Gospel-centered way.  To me he's far and away the better choice.

Dave Benke
I've bolded the only parts of your post that I find problematic, since you seem to be responding to everything except the point. You didn't just say Lehenbauer was a great choice, you said it was clearly a matter of him being "far and away the better choice." If that means anything, it means you are saying Egger isn't even close to as good a choice. That puts the selection committee in a bad light, and sets up problems if they go with Egger. Why do that? It prevents it from being a win-win. If you can't see the difference, well, that would be a shame. But I suspect you can tell the difference.

I believe, as one outside the process, that there is a clear choice.  Lehenbauer.  I'm not forced to have an opinion, but I have one. 

There are and should be questions about what happened in the selection process, because they went back from 7 of 44 to remove 6 of the 7 and replace those 6 with someone from the initial list.   The disclosures in that area are not up to me or anyone else, but to the committee. 

The selection committee can give their rationale for whom they are led to choose, or not. 

For me, as one from the outside, to state that between the two chosen there is a clear choice, is neither wrong nor unethical nor unhelpful to the selection committee.  It's simply my stated opinion.  So now we're down to the word "anyone" in the phrase "as anyone outside the process...l."   I wish to retract that word and replace it with the word "one."

Dave Benke

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #752 on: January 26, 2021, 12:57:05 PM »
To anyone on the outside of the process, there's a clear choice between the two finalists.  Joel Lehenbauer's experience in administering and organizing the theological department of the national church body for a significant period of time, working with faculty of both seminaries through all that time, and gaining an appreciation of the breadth and scope of the Synod and its significant issues of interpretation in so doing are all of far, far greater reach than the experience and wisdom set of Thomas Egger. 


Courage and clarity will be required.  Joel Lehenbauer has been able to navigate the choppy waters of LCMS interactions between the theology on paper and the practice out in the field in an adept and Gospel-centered way.  To me he's far and away the better choice.

Dave Benke
I've bolded the only parts of your post that I find problematic, since you seem to be responding to everything except the point. You didn't just say Lehenbauer was a great choice, you said it was clearly a matter of him being "far and away the better choice." If that means anything, it means you are saying Egger isn't even close to as good a choice. That puts the selection committee in a bad light, and sets up problems if they go with Egger. Why do that? It prevents it from being a win-win. If you can't see the difference, well, that would be a shame. But I suspect you can tell the difference.

I believe, as one outside the process, that there is a clear choice.  Lehenbauer.  I'm not forced to have an opinion, but I have one. 

There are and should be questions about what happened in the selection process, because they went back from 7 of 44 to remove 6 of the 7 and replace those 6 with someone from the initial list.   The disclosures in that area are not up to me or anyone else, but to the committee. 

The selection committee can give their rationale for whom they are led to choose, or not. 

For me, as one from the outside, to state that between the two chosen there is a clear choice, is neither wrong nor unethical nor unhelpful to the selection committee.  It's simply my stated opinion.  So now we're down to the word "anyone" in the phrase "as anyone outside the process...l."   I wish to retract that word and replace it with the word "one."


Is there a point in the process that nominees can opt out of the call? I ask because in our election of bishops, voting members can nominate anyone on the ELCA clergy roster for the first ballot. Those on the first ballot are contacted to see if they are willing to serve if elected. They can opt out of being on the second ballot.
"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]

DeHall1

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #753 on: January 26, 2021, 01:03:03 PM »
To anyone on the outside of the process, there's a clear choice between the two finalists.  Joel Lehenbauer's experience in administering and organizing the theological department of the national church body for a significant period of time, working with faculty of both seminaries through all that time, and gaining an appreciation of the breadth and scope of the Synod and its significant issues of interpretation in so doing are all of far, far greater reach than the experience and wisdom set of Thomas Egger. 


Courage and clarity will be required.  Joel Lehenbauer has been able to navigate the choppy waters of LCMS interactions between the theology on paper and the practice out in the field in an adept and Gospel-centered way.  To me he's far and away the better choice.

Dave Benke
I've bolded the only parts of your post that I find problematic, since you seem to be responding to everything except the point. You didn't just say Lehenbauer was a great choice, you said it was clearly a matter of him being "far and away the better choice." If that means anything, it means you are saying Egger isn't even close to as good a choice. That puts the selection committee in a bad light, and sets up problems if they go with Egger. Why do that? It prevents it from being a win-win. If you can't see the difference, well, that would be a shame. But I suspect you can tell the difference.

I believe, as one outside the process, that there is a clear choice.  Lehenbauer.  I'm not forced to have an opinion, but I have one. 

There are and should be questions about what happened in the selection process, because they went back from 7 of 44 to remove 6 of the 7 and replace those 6 with someone from the initial list.   The disclosures in that area are not up to me or anyone else, but to the committee. 

The selection committee can give their rationale for whom they are led to choose, or not. 

For me, as one from the outside, to state that between the two chosen there is a clear choice, is neither wrong nor unethical nor unhelpful to the selection committee.  It's simply my stated opinion.  So now we're down to the word "anyone" in the phrase "as anyone outside the process...l."   I wish to retract that word and replace it with the word "one."


Is there a point in the process that nominees can opt out of the call? I ask because in our election of bishops, voting members can nominate anyone on the ELCA clergy roster for the first ballot. Those on the first ballot are contacted to see if they are willing to serve if elected. They can opt out of being on the second ballot.

Yes, nominees can (and several did) have their name withdrawn from consideration.

Randy Bosch

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #754 on: January 26, 2021, 01:31:08 PM »
...They can opt out of being on the second ballot. 

What a harsh euphemism for self-extinction (another harsh euphemism), "opt out of being"!   ;)

"We must sadly announce that on the second ballot, Pastor XYZ will opt out of being..."
« Last Edit: January 26, 2021, 01:34:04 PM by Randy Bosch »

FrPeters

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #755 on: January 26, 2021, 02:05:31 PM »
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More often than not I’m inclined to read your comments as that of a “company man.”   The two are certainly not the same nor is the process for hiring/calling.  I take from your comment that because the process is more transparent than hiring a professor I should be at peace with the process.  I’m sorry, but that just doesn’t cut it for me.  The two aren’t the same.  It’s a “solemn call” but it comes with a five year contract.  Tom Egger wasn’t on the short list, but now is one of two finalists.  In such circumstances invoking God and the call process seems all too convenient and might even be a breach of the second commandment.  It just seems to me that we use the divine call as cover when it is advantageous.  A “sacred canopy” of sorts.   And again if Dr. Egger is the guy, great.  But for the better part of this past decade I’ve seen a lot of damage done under the “sacred canopy.”  So I think it’s okay to say, “Hey, what’s going on there?”

I smiled at your words since I tend to be a rather harsh critic of Synod things.  In the comment I suggested that I wish I were in the know like you.  But the bylaw has been followed, the electors are in charge of the process, and we don't exactly have much choice in the matter but to trust our leaders.  I tend to believe that the Spirit is still at work even when we think we are the masters of the process -- something we as Lutherans pay lip service to but are not always so confident of.  I have no idea why names were placed on the list or not and I have no inside information about any of this.  I was surprised by the choice of Larry Rast the last time around.  Many of the names on the list are simply names to me without much more acquaintance than that.  What I do not like is the impression that something nefarious is going on. 
Fr Larry Peters
Grace LCMS, Clarksville, TN
http://www.pastoralmeanderings.blogspot.com/

RevG

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #756 on: January 27, 2021, 10:17:32 AM »
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More often than not I’m inclined to read your comments as that of a “company man.”   The two are certainly not the same nor is the process for hiring/calling.  I take from your comment that because the process is more transparent than hiring a professor I should be at peace with the process.  I’m sorry, but that just doesn’t cut it for me.  The two aren’t the same.  It’s a “solemn call” but it comes with a five year contract.  Tom Egger wasn’t on the short list, but now is one of two finalists.  In such circumstances invoking God and the call process seems all too convenient and might even be a breach of the second commandment.  It just seems to me that we use the divine call as cover when it is advantageous.  A “sacred canopy” of sorts.   And again if Dr. Egger is the guy, great.  But for the better part of this past decade I’ve seen a lot of damage done under the “sacred canopy.”  So I think it’s okay to say, “Hey, what’s going on there?”

I smiled at your words since I tend to be a rather harsh critic of Synod things.  In the comment I suggested that I wish I were in the know like you.  But the bylaw has been followed, the electors are in charge of the process, and we don't exactly have much choice in the matter but to trust our leaders.  I tend to believe that the Spirit is still at work even when we think we are the masters of the process -- something we as Lutherans pay lip service to but are not always so confident of.  I have no idea why names were placed on the list or not and I have no inside information about any of this.  I was surprised by the choice of Larry Rast the last time around.  Many of the names on the list are simply names to me without much more acquaintance than that.  What I do not like is the impression that something nefarious is going on.

Yeah, that is definitely worthy of a chuckle and I get that.  You’ve always struck me as a cantankerous sort, but primarily against the lasting remnants of the Kieschnick era.  I’ve always understood your criticism in that vein and there is certainly plenty to criticize.  Yet you do sit on the CCM and seem to be in alignment with the current administration. You’re an “obedient rebel” and yet you’re also “the Man.”  Of course, everything is in the eye of the beholder and I am certainly no exception.  And that’s the location from which I read your comment.  I'm with you, I don’t like the nefarious suggestion either, which is where my desire for transparency comes from.  It is not helpful at all.

Peace,
Scott+

FrPeters

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #757 on: January 27, 2021, 11:01:02 AM »
I actually got a couple of emails from folks who know me well; they sent me your comment and they laughed at the suggestion as well.  Being on the CCM is not being an insider and the CCM by design has little contact with anyone in Synod.  I was shocked at my appointment since my blog is not exactly mouthpiece for anyone but myself and most folks know where I stand.  That said, my criticisms tend to be lobbied with those who have the power to change things and not so much on public forums.  I try not to be partisan within the categories of Synod politics but I am definitely partisan when it comes to things liturgical, to the Eucharist as beating heart of the Church, to a high view of the ministry, to a sacramental understanding of both ordination and absolution, to the idea that either the Church stands for something and can hold its members accountable for that or it stands for nothing is the lukewarm that will be spewed from the Lord's mouth (as Revelation says).  I have no time for or sympathy for contemporary Christian music used in worship, contemporary worship (as it is called) in general, or taking things away from the Divine Service (though I am not adverse to and support adding things like incense, genuflection, sanctus bells, tabernacles (real ones and not the Tupperware in which the consecrated hosts are stored in the sacristy in most churches), Eucharistic vestments, clerical collars on pastors, and a host of other things. 

I am cantankerous, curmudgeonly, crusty, and old.  All  I want is Lutherans to believe like Lutherans, worship like Lutherans, plant missions like Lutherans, and live as Lutherans -- and if we fail it will not be because we betrayed our Confessions.  What I want from any seminary president is the somebody who will be the person who forms pastors who believe, worship, evangelize, and live as LUTHERANS -- liturgical, confessional, and courageous.  Sometimes the folks who hold elective office in our church disappoint me by settling for less and I let them know.
Fr Larry Peters
Grace LCMS, Clarksville, TN
http://www.pastoralmeanderings.blogspot.com/

RevG

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #758 on: January 27, 2021, 11:34:33 AM »
I actually got a couple of emails from folks who know me well; they sent me your comment and they laughed at the suggestion as well.  Being on the CCM is not being an insider and the CCM by design has little contact with anyone in Synod.  I was shocked at my appointment since my blog is not exactly mouthpiece for anyone but myself and most folks know where I stand.  That said, my criticisms tend to be lobbied with those who have the power to change things and not so much on public forums.  I try not to be partisan within the categories of Synod politics but I am definitely partisan when it comes to things liturgical, to the Eucharist as beating heart of the Church, to a high view of the ministry, to a sacramental understanding of both ordination and absolution, to the idea that either the Church stands for something and can hold its members accountable for that or it stands for nothing is the lukewarm that will be spewed from the Lord's mouth (as Revelation says).  I have no time for or sympathy for contemporary Christian music used in worship, contemporary worship (as it is called) in general, or taking things away from the Divine Service (though I am not adverse to and support adding things like incense, genuflection, sanctus bells, tabernacles (real ones and not the Tupperware in which the consecrated hosts are stored in the sacristy in most churches), Eucharistic vestments, clerical collars on pastors, and a host of other things. 

I am cantankerous, curmudgeonly, crusty, and old.  All  I want is Lutherans to believe like Lutherans, worship like Lutherans, plant missions like Lutherans, and live as Lutherans -- and if we fail it will not be because we betrayed our Confessions.  What I want from any seminary president is the somebody who will be the person who forms pastors who believe, worship, evangelize, and live as LUTHERANS -- liturgical, confessional, and courageous.  Sometimes the folks who hold elective office in our church disappoint me by settling for less and I let them know.

Well, I’m glad you got a couple of emails about it and I’m glad I could provide a laugh. I could do without knowing you’re crusty, but I admire your honesty.  And I legitimately appreciate your voice concerning the things that you note above and what you often write about.

Peace,
Scott+

Dave Benke

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #759 on: January 27, 2021, 01:00:38 PM »
to a sacramental understanding of both ordination and absolution

Flesh that out a little, Larry - along with your feelings about contemporary music, it influences whom you would believe could serve best as a Seminary President, much less an elected official.   

My inductive understanding from what you and Will have brought into this exchange about the two remaining candidates is that Dr. Egger would favor or maybe strongly favor liturgical worship and disfavor contemporary hymnody/songnody (songnody?), even though he is listed as a professor in the exegetical department.   

At CTSFW my Brooklyn homeboy Dave Scaer has arbitrated for the sacrament of ordination pretty much forever.  I don't know who is the St. Louis point person for that opinion, at least in the Systematics department, but maybe Dr. Egger is as well.

Dave Benke




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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #760 on: January 27, 2021, 01:36:33 PM »
Bishop,

FWIW, I don’t think anything I wrote about either Tom or Joel ever came close to addressing worship matters. Of course, there is a strong heritage at CLS of OT exegetical scholars being quite apt students of (and advocates for) the liturgy. It sort of goes hand in glove with the subject matter of the OT, I guess. I think of the commanding influence of both Horace Hummel to Andrew Bartelt.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2021, 01:42:57 PM by Weedon »

Dave Benke

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #761 on: January 27, 2021, 03:28:43 PM »
Bishop,

FWIW, I don’t think anything I wrote about either Tom or Joel ever came close to addressing worship matters. Of course, there is a strong heritage at CLS of OT exegetical scholars being quite apt students of (and advocates for) the liturgy. It sort of goes hand in glove with the subject matter of the OT, I guess. I think of the commanding influence of both Horace Hummel to Andrew Bartelt.

Well, my STM is in OT, and I'm avidly an Ordo/Weekly Eucharist person - the book Worship in Ancient Israel and others would tell you, to be sure, that there are significant lacunae in the actual worship practices of Israel, but we do have a healthy thousand and a half years to work through. 

That being said, there is a difference between the question of liturgical usage and the question of the sacramental nature of ordination and absolution in an LCMS seminary, and what the presidential candidates would think about that question. 

Dave Benke

Weedon

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #762 on: January 27, 2021, 03:35:14 PM »
The Lutheran Church has a position on the question of absolution / ordination. They MAY be understood as sacraments; absolution with the only reservation being that the definition of sacrament being employed doesn’t require an earthly sign; but ordination only within certain clear parameters as outlined in the Apology. But since the Lutheran Confessions themselves give more than one way of counting sacraments, the preference for one system over the other obviously can be no more than that: a personal preference. Because both of the brothers in question worked together on the latest iteration of the Synodical Catechism, I suspect they’d be agreement with the position found in that book in questions 236, 237; acknowledging the wider historical use of the term for the mysteries of the faith; noting the usual definition; and then including a special note on Absolution as a sacrament as a possibility, though it lacks the external sign.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2021, 03:37:28 PM by Weedon »

Dave Benke

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #763 on: January 27, 2021, 03:43:23 PM »
The Lutheran Church has a position on the question of absolution / ordination. They MAY be understood as sacraments; absolution with the only reservation being that the definition of sacrament being employed doesn’t require an earthly sign; but ordination only within certain clear parameters as outlined in the Apology. But since the Lutheran Confessions themselves give more than one way of counting sacraments, the preference for one system over the other obviously can be no more than that: a personal preference. Because both of the brothers in question worked together on the latest iteration of the Synodical Catechism, I suspect they’d be agreement with the position found in that book in questions 236, 237; acknowledging the wider historical use of the term for the mysteries of the faith; noting the usual definition; and then including a special note on Absolution as a sacrament as a possibility, though it lacks the external sign.

I personally, it should be stated, am a Loehe genetically, so have no problem with the position you're arbitrating for.  I think in the "culture" of the Missouri Synod there's a lot more hesitancy about accepting (to these folks) "new" sacraments, many millions of Lutherans having answered the confirmation/first communion question about the number of sacraments in the Lutheran churches with "2."

Dave Benke

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Re: Nominees for Concordia Seminary President Announced
« Reply #764 on: January 27, 2021, 03:45:41 PM »
Hmm. Well, I was trained at 801 that we don’t make a deal over the number of the sacraments. Sasse was point man for laying this out (newly translated by Nagel in those days and published by CPH) and so I have always taught in my congregations as I was taught at the seminary and as the Confessions themselves say. And I’ve never had a single person get their nose bent out of joint on it, FWIW.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2021, 04:06:20 PM by Weedon »