Author Topic: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)  (Read 3803 times)

Dave Likeness

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This past week  Concordia Seminary, St. Louis issued Calls to 59 Pastoral Candidates.
Also Concordia Seminary, Ft. Wayne issued Calls to 33 Pastoral Candidates.  This makes
a total of 92 Pastoral Candidates available to parishes in the LCMS in the Spring of 2021.

Concordia Seminary, St. Louis assigned 38 seminarians for vicarage and Concordia Seminary,
Ft Wayne assigned 32 seminarians for vicarage.  This makes a total of 70 vicars available
this year to LCMS parishes.

« Last Edit: May 01, 2021, 10:30:57 AM by Dave Likeness »

Michael Slusser

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2021, 11:05:30 AM »
This past week  Concordia Seminary, St. Louis issued Calls to 59 Pastoral Candidates.
Also Concordia Seminary, Ft. Wayne issued Calls to 33 Pastoral Candidates.  This makes
a total of 92 Pastoral Candidates available to parishes in the LCMS in the Spring of 2021.

Concordia Seminary, St. Louis assigned 38 seminarians for vicarage and Concordia Seminary,
Ft Wayne assigned 32 seminarians for vicarage.  This makes a total of 70 vicars available
this year to LCMS parishes.
May the people they serve and the men themselves be blessed in their response to a pastoral Call.

Peace,
Michael
Fr. Michael Slusser
Retired Roman Catholic priest and theologian

pastorg1@aol.com

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2021, 12:26:00 PM »
Meanwhile in the ELCA:

First paragraph of the first letter to a congregation from a SF Bay Area Interim Pastor:

“Greetings! It is very good to be with you and I want to take this opportunity to introduce myself. First, I want to let you know that I identify as agender and queer. My preferred pronouns are they/them/their, but I will not yell at you if you use she/her. This is an opportunity for all of us to learn together. If you have questions, please ask so there is no need for assumptions.

Now for my background...”

Peter (There’ll (They’ll) be no yelling.) Garrison

« Last Edit: May 01, 2021, 01:53:42 PM by pastorg1@aol.com »
Pete Garrison, STS

RDPreus

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2021, 02:03:42 PM »
Meanwhile in the ELCA:

First paragraph of the first letter to a congregation from a SF Bay Area Interim Pastor:

“Greetings! It is very good to be with you and I want to take this opportunity to introduce myself. First, I want to let you know that I identify as agender and queer. My preferred pronouns are they/them/their, but I will not yell at you if you use she/her. This is an opportunity for all of us to learn together. If you have questions, please ask so there is no need for assumptions.

Now for my background...”

Peter (There’ll (They’ll) be no yelling.) Garrison

How can someone be both agender and queer at the same time?  Or is this a mystery of GLBTQ theology?

Charles Austin

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2021, 02:14:10 PM »
And if that is the first thing you want to tell a congregation, you have seriously lost sight of what that first thing ought to be or what the best thing is. That is a sad introduction. Where I, God forbid, a bishop or an assistant to the bishop in the Synod, that pastor would be in my office the next day. And since most interim calls are under the bishops authority, that call would be rescinded. Not necessarily because of who or what that person is sexually, but because of what importance they attach to it.
Retired ELCA pastor. Iowa born. Now in Minnesota. Just finished six great days in a beach house on North Carolina’s Outer Banks, with a bunch of friends and relatives. About 18 of us, and the young folks did all the cooking.

mariemeyer

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2021, 03:22:53 PM »
This past week  Concordia Seminary, St. Louis issued Calls to 59 Pastoral Candidates.
Also Concordia Seminary, Ft. Wayne issued Calls to 33 Pastoral Candidates.  This makes
a total of 92 Pastoral Candidates available to parishes in the LCMS in the Spring of 2021.

Concordia Seminary, St. Louis assigned 38 seminarians for vicarage and Concordia Seminary,
Ft Wayne assigned 32 seminarians for vicarage.  This makes a total of 70 vicars available
this year to LCMS parishes.

92 candidates from both seminaries is a troubling number.  When Bill graduated in 1963 there were 126 from St. Louis.  I do not know how many graduated from  Springfield in 1963. Bill's St. Louis class originally  numbered about 200.  Due to the opening of the Sr. College and the fact that another year was added to seminary program, members of Bill original class were asked to attend summer school for two years so that there would be a 1962 graduating class. Bill had to work summers, so he was among those who had the extra year added on to the process of becoming an LCMS pastor.

The decline in LCMS pastors entering the ministry is a matter of great concern.  It seems that the 2023 class of seminary gradates from both seminaries will number 70.  The number of vacant congregations contributes to men like Bill serving vacancies.  At 84 Bill has decided  he will no longer accept a vacancy.  We pray that the congregation he is serving will have a pastor by the end of June.  Between now and then he will confirm the youth class, baptize an infant, visit shut ins and conduct two funerals. I recently heard of an LCMS congregation that has been vacant for two years.

Marie Meyer

 

Marie Meyer

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2021, 04:42:13 PM »
Indeed. We’re starting the process to call a youth and family life pastor and originally looked into getting a spring grad. We were told that they had already had more calls come in than there were candidates. So we decided to look from the field.

GalRevRedux

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2021, 05:03:32 PM »
And if that is the first thing you want to tell a congregation, you have seriously lost sight of what that first thing ought to be or what the best thing is. That is a sad introduction. Where I, God forbid, a bishop or an assistant to the bishop in the Synod, that pastor would be in my office the next day. And since most interim calls are under the bishops authority, that call would be rescinded. Not necessarily because of who or what that person is sexually, but because of what importance they attach to it.

Thank you, Charles. I appreciate your response.

Donna
A pastor of the North American Lutheran Church.

D. Engebretson

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2021, 05:40:26 PM »
The decline in LCMS pastors entering the ministry is a matter of great concern.  It seems that the 2023 class of seminary gradates from both seminaries will number 70.  The number of vacant congregations contributes to men like Bill serving vacancies.  At 84 Bill has decided  he will no longer accept a vacancy.  We pray that the congregation he is serving will have a pastor by the end of June.  Between now and then he will confirm the youth class, baptize an infant, visit shut ins and conduct two funerals. I recently heard of an LCMS congregation that has been vacant for two years.

This situation may be exacerbated by any fall-out from the pandemic as well.  I predict that some will leave their congregations and maybe even the ministry due to burnout and fatigue.  Others may take early retirement. I am looking at my 4+ years to retirement much differently than I was prior to the pandemic. Churches have added a lot more to accommodate restrictions due to lock-downs, and many of these services will certainly be expected to continue post-pandemic, such as live-streamed serves.  The added demand of this along with the stress of getting through this crisis may have taken its toll on a lot of men.

Pastor Don Engebretson
St. Peter Lutheran Church of Polar (Antigo) WI

Donald_Kirchner

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2021, 08:45:56 PM »
Meanwhile in the ELCA:

First paragraph of the first letter to a congregation from a SF Bay Area Interim Pastor:

“Greetings! It is very good to be with you and I want to take this opportunity to introduce myself. First, I want to let you know that I identify as agender and queer. My preferred pronouns are they/them/their, but I will not yell at you if you use she/her. This is an opportunity for all of us to learn together. If you have questions, please ask so there is no need for assumptions.

Now for my background...”

Peter (There’ll (They’ll) be no yelling.) Garrison

How can someone be both agender and queer at the same time?  Or is this a mystery of GLBTQ theology?

Rolf,

It is a mystery. Check out this absolutely incomprehensible article.

https://www.verywellmind.com/what-does-it-mean-to-be-genderqueer-or-non-binary-4140578

"When someone is agender, it means that they do not have a gender identity, or that their gender identity is neutral. People who are agender may also identify with genderqueer or nonbinary as umbrella terms. It is important to mention that just as a genderqueer person is not necessarily queer, an agender person is not necessary asexual. People of any gender can have any sexual orientation."

 :o  :o
« Last Edit: May 01, 2021, 09:44:10 PM by Pr. Don Kirchner »
Don Kirchner

"Heaven's OK, but it’s not the end of the world." Jeff Gibbs

Charles Austin

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2021, 05:23:09 AM »
How many Of the new seminary graduates are going to viable parishes with a future? How many will be propping up parishes that should be closed or merged or otherwise repositioned? What is the average age of the new graduates? Where do they stand on the various “scales” in the LCMS? COWO? Confessionalism? Evangelical Catholics? What blogs do they read? What websites do they hang out in? (None here, I think.) What's the geographical spread of their first calls? How many speak Spanish? How many are married?
Retired ELCA pastor. Iowa born. Now in Minnesota. Just finished six great days in a beach house on North Carolina’s Outer Banks, with a bunch of friends and relatives. About 18 of us, and the young folks did all the cooking.

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2021, 05:48:33 AM »
Will the declining number of congregations in the LCMS correspond to the declining number of pastors? Has anyone published a study of these important numbers?

I know that consolidation was a priority for leadership in the synod but I'm wondering whether they have shared numbers and plans with the broader church so that congratulations can think about the future.

The document below shows 6,046 congregations to 6,055 active pastors with 421 candidates and 3,415 emeritus. How many of the 6,055 will retire in the next 10 years would be a good question to answer.

https://files.lcms.org/wl/?id=0P6YfWqhIvpvei9cTSh0dBsbgoWy78VV
« Last Edit: May 02, 2021, 06:34:47 AM by Rev. Edward Engelbrecht »
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Jeremy_Loesch

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #12 on: May 02, 2021, 06:22:46 AM »
As far as age, marital status, I'm not sure about that, but think more information can be guessed at in looking at the congregations the pastors are sent to. I did notice several (I didn't count) double and at least one triple parish setting.

I read the notices in The Reporter and it seems to me that there are notices every month that such and such congregation is no longer a congregation or that these two congregations have merged or that these two congregations have formed a dual parish.

And my recollection of the call process was that the seminary was very concerned about what I call the secondary aspects of the call. A map was brought out and I was asked about "favorable locations." I said east of the Mississippi and when asked why I mentioned that my parents lived in VA and if there was an emergency that was about a day's drive. Also my girlfriend's (now wife's) family also lived in VA. I was placed in a wonderful congregation on the west side of Columbus OH.

It struck me as a healthy aspect of seminary placement- healthy for the pastor and congregation. Let's get the two started off on the right foot. It's not healthy to place a pastor in a setting where he will be concerned about his family thousands of miles away. Let's not give the feeling to congregations that they will receive a pastor who will be there for 9 months and that you will fall into this cycle of being a misfit parish.

A pastor I grew fairly close to in Ohio was retired and had served his first congregation over 40 years. And a classmate is still at his first call 20 years later. I wouldn't change much about my ministry, and the calls I have had were beneficial for my family (and I think for the congregations) but I think it is beautiful to know of those two long term pastorates.

Jeremy

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2021, 07:38:14 AM »
Will the declining number of congregations in the LCMS correspond to the declining number of pastors? Has anyone published a study of these important numbers?

I know that consolidation was a priority for leadership in the synod but I'm wondering whether they have shared numbers and plans with the broader church so that congratulations can think about the future.

The document below shows 6,046 congregations to 6,055 active pastors with 421 candidates and 3,415 emeritus. How many of the 6,055 will retire in the next 10 years would be a good question to answer.

https://files.lcms.org/wl/?id=0P6YfWqhIvpvei9cTSh0dBsbgoWy78VV

As I think about it, you would need to factor for the number of clergy serving full time at:

Synod entities
Seminaries
University system
Districts
Large congregations with multiple clergy

I suppose when you subtract that number from 6,055, you have a shortfall, which is then made up by emeriti.

I recall reading about another factor: a number of new pastors do not stay in ministry after the first five years. I don't recall the percentage but that would cut your numbers again and would have to be made up by emeriti.

I wonder demographically how many emeriti will go home to heaven in the next ten years or reach a point when they cannot physically serve. That would reduce the reserves.

Surely someone has studied all of this and published the numbers so the church is well informed. I hope someone can link us to the article/study.
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Dave Likeness

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Re: Call Day For Pastoral Candidates at St. Louis/Ft Wayne (2021)
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2021, 11:17:03 AM »
Somethings never change:  We have always had full-time clergy serving at LCMS Headquarters and CPH.
We have always had full-time clergy at our LCMS Universities, Seminaries, and District Offices.
There will always be large LCMS parishes which need more than one clergyman.

What does change: The number of Lutheran high school boys  who are seriously considering to enroll
at one of our Concordia Universities for pre-ministerial courses.   The number of Lutheran men who
have a college degree and decide to enter one of our seminaries.

Bottom Line: Currently, the LCMS is in a down cycle of recruitment for future pastors.  We can pray
about it.   We increase our efforts to meet this challenge through financial assistance for college and
seminary costs.  We can encourage current parish pastors to discuss serving in the pastoral ministry
with their confirmation classes and high school youth groups.