Author Topic: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)  (Read 19032 times)

Dan Fienen

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #30 on: July 06, 2021, 12:30:09 PM »
Someone asks:
So by extension, given your inherent "whiteness", do you believe that you are therefore a racist yourself and that all you have and all you have done in your life is owed to the supposed privileges you have enjoyed due to that "whiteness"?
I answer:
Not ďall I have done in my lifeď, but being white has given me privileges and put me in places that helped me along with help that I would not have had if I were African-American, Native American or a recent immigrant.
If we grant that being white have given us privileges and opportunities that we would not have had otherwise, what should be the consequence of that?
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

Michael Slusser

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #31 on: July 06, 2021, 12:40:11 PM »
Someone asks:
So by extension, given your inherent "whiteness", do you believe that you are therefore a racist yourself and that all you have and all you have done in your life is owed to the supposed privileges you have enjoyed due to that "whiteness"?
I answer:
Not ďall I have done in my lifeď, but being white has given me privileges and put me in places that helped me along with help that I would not have had if I were African-American, Native American or a recent immigrant.
If we grant that being white have given us privileges and opportunities that we would not have had otherwise, what should be the consequence of that?
We should learn, cultivate, and actively exercise the virtues appropriate to the advantages we have received. From those to whom more has been given--especially if those advantages were bolstered by injustice to others--more will be required. We may not be able to undo the injustices (in fact, we almost certainly can't), but we should assume extra obligations without complaint and try to mitigate the effects of past and present injustice.

Peace,
Michael
Fr. Michael Slusser
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David Garner

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #32 on: July 06, 2021, 12:56:24 PM »
Someone asks:
So by extension, given your inherent "whiteness", do you believe that you are therefore a racist yourself and that all you have and all you have done in your life is owed to the supposed privileges you have enjoyed due to that "whiteness"?
I answer:
Not ďall I have done in my lifeď, but being white has given me privileges and put me in places that helped me along with help that I would not have had if I were African-American, Native American or a recent immigrant.
If we grant that being white have given us privileges and opportunities that we would not have had otherwise, what should be the consequence of that?
We should learn, cultivate, and actively exercise the virtues appropriate to the advantages we have received. From those to whom more has been given--especially if those advantages were bolstered by injustice to others--more will be required. We may not be able to undo the injustices (in fact, we almost certainly can't), but we should assume extra obligations without complaint and try to mitigate the effects of past and present injustice.

Peace,
Michael

Any extra obligations?  I mean, I agree with you in principle.  The problem seems to arise when we start to articulate exactly what obligations we ought assume.  For example, I am in favor of changing laws to eradicate racial disparity in sentencing and police attention.  I am in favor of tax dollars being paid to help foster this.

I am not in favor of being silenced because I am white and therefore not entitled to a say in the discussion.  I think that's racist.

At some level, it is not the principle, but the specifics, that are troublesome.  I've taught my children that there is a middle way between adopting all of the demands of the loosely connected "Black Lives Matter" movement and adopting the equally problematic "All Lives Matter" corollary and refusing to accept the truth that black lives do, indeed, matter.  Of course it is true that all lives matter.  The point is black lives matter too, and all lives are not as easily discarded, and therefore extra attention is warranted where the problem is -- too many black people are killed in this country at the hands of the police.

Or the abortionist, but I digress.

Yet, my children do not have to become Marxists to accept that truth.  They can agree with the sentiment "black lives matter" without adopting the methods and goals of the organization.  So it is here. I agree with you we ought, as those who have been advantaged by institutional policies that harm black Americans, endeavor to undo that damage, inasmuch as we are able.  But until someone says "this is what you must do," the sentiment and my agreement with it are largely meaningless.
Orthodox Reader and former Lutheran (LCMS and WELS).

Steven W Bohler

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #33 on: July 06, 2021, 01:07:09 PM »
Someone asks:
So by extension, given your inherent "whiteness", do you believe that you are therefore a racist yourself and that all you have and all you have done in your life is owed to the supposed privileges you have enjoyed due to that "whiteness"?
I answer:
Not ďall I have done in my lifeď, but being white has given me privileges and put me in places that helped me along with help that I would not have had if I were African-American, Native American or a recent immigrant.

Perhaps in your day, 50-60 years ago, that may have been true.  But today it is white males who go to the back of the line.  With the consent/approval of the government.  Colleges lower admission standards for minorities and women.  Affirmation Action hiring of less qualified candidates based simply on skin color or gender.  Blame from media, education establishment, popular culture for virtually ALL ills in society.  And on and on.  So, if YOU feel you had "white privilege" then by all means apologize for it for yourself.  But do not arrogate the same attitude towards other white males who have NOT had such perceived advantages.

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #34 on: July 06, 2021, 01:40:10 PM »
So by extension, given your inherent "whiteness", do you believe that you are therefore a racist yourself and that all you have and all you have done in your life is owed to the supposed privileges you have enjoyed due to that "whiteness"? And if this is true, do you now want the culture and society in which you live rebuilt to "abolish" this "whiteness"?


I'm a bit unique. My "whiteness" also includes Jewish ancestors - some of the most persecuted people in history. Being "white" even in America, doesn't mean there will be no persecution. My mother experienced some of that. She felt more in common with the Black students in high school than with white students. She brought a greater openness to others to our family than we might have had otherwise.


I believe I was privileged. I had opportunities that many others didn't have. My brothers and I all got through college and graduate schools without any debts. I also think that there's a difference between racism and naÔvetť. My mother tells of the first time I saw a Black person (a porter on a train). I was about two-year-old. I said something like, "Look at that dirty person." Those words may sound racist, but from a two-year-old they were words expressing a lack of experience and knowledge. My mother quickly apologized and corrected my incomplete understanding.


Besides having privileges that come from being a moderately wealthy white family in the suburbs, I also admit that I grew up quite ignorant about people from other races. There were 694 people in my high school class. Only two of them were Black. (I just checked the year book.) I didn't interact with either of them. I didn't know about their life experiences. I've since had close friends from minority races, but still lack a lot of knowledge about their experiences growing up Black or Native or Asian or Latinx in America. I have made comments that were heard as racists without knowing it.


I've also been in a position of selecting worship leaders for synod worship services. One of our goals is to be inclusive. I never selected a person of color just because they were people of color; but from a group of people who were all good readers, the female and or person of color might get selected before a white male. If the bishop was preaching, and he often did at one service, we would look for a female clergy to preside. We selected males and females, young and old, to distribute the sacrament to the hundreds in attendance. On one hand, I didn't like having expected "quotas," but on the other hand, I knew that visible inclusivity represents the coming kingdom of God. I believe that we should manifested that future kingdom as much as possible among the believers now.


The first "message" I remember preaching, even before I was ordained, while traveling on gospel teams, was about whether or not one would be comfortable in heaven with all those other people God had let in: people from every race, tribe, language, denomination, etc. If one wasn't comfortable with them here on earth, one might not be comfortable in heaven. (Today I would probably include conservatives and liberals, traditionalists and progressives in the mix of the heavenly crowd.)
"The church Ö had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #35 on: July 06, 2021, 01:42:22 PM »
Are there LCMS pastors or congregations advocating CRT making this resolution necessary? It doesn't seem so.


I'm not an LCMS pastor, but I did see the attached meme on Facebook, and shared it.
"The church Ö 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]

Donald_Kirchner

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #36 on: July 06, 2021, 01:49:16 PM »
Are there LCMS pastors or congregations advocating CRT making this resolution necessary? It doesn't seem so.

I'm not an LCMS pastor, but I did see the attached meme on Facebook, and shared it.

Thank you for your daily example of total illogic.
Don Kirchner

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Charles Austin

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #37 on: July 06, 2021, 01:52:49 PM »
Pastor Bohler:
With the consent/approval of the government.  Colleges lower admission standards for minorities and women.  Affirmation Action hiring of less qualified candidates based simply on skin color or gender. 

Me:
And that may be some of the ďextra obligationsď that father Slusser mentioned.
I donít think I care for all of it either, but get over it.
Retired ELCA Pastor. Iowa native. Now in Minneapolis. One must always ponder both the value and the dangers of poking the bear. Aroused and stimulated, the bear usually shows its true self. Or it might leap to an extreme version of itself. You never know with bears.

mariemeyer

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #38 on: July 06, 2021, 02:00:46 PM »
Lutheran Church -Missouri Synod president, Matthew Harrison, posted the Mid South District CRT resolution on Facebook.  His comments begin with one word.  ""Excellent."

I find it totally inappropriate  that the president of my church would use the social media in this way.  What has the LCMS come to?

Former Atlantic District president David Benke offered a resolution that reflects how Christian pastors, particularly those who identify themselves as Lutheran, are called to lead their people in the mission of the Church.

In heart and mind I grieve that the resolution was adopted and that President Harrison posted it on Facebook with his endorsement.

Marie Meyer

What about the resolution "grieves" you?  Is it that the resolution "rejects CRT" or something else?

Pr. Engebretson, What prompts you to ask if there is "something else?"     What in my post suggests your question?

Marie Meyer

I think it was simply an attempt to cover anything else in the resolution that bothered you.  I just wondered about the specifics behind your "grieving" over the resolution. 

As I was typing this David Garner replied first.  He captures my intent.

From David Garner.....
"As I read it, Pr. Engebretson was surprised you would be grieved by a mere rejection of CRT, and was wondering basically "is that all?"

Perhaps I misread him, but I don't think it's anything nefarious.  Dr. Benke has said he reads the resolution as a rejection of the work of LRJ, of which I am unfamiliar and cannot comment, but if one were a supporter of LRJ's work and thought LRJ's work did not promote CRT, that would be a reason other than rejection of CRT that might grieve a person."

Permit me to explain.

I first read about the Southern District resolution on Facebook, not on the Lutheran Forum where matters of faith are discussed.  Only after the district resolution on CRT was posted here did I report that the resolution appeared on Facebook with President Matthew Harrison's one word comment, "Excellent."

I was grieved that the subject of a resolution as adopted by an LCMS District and endorsed by the synodical present appeared on a social media platform.  I do not consider Facebook a media that allows for a thoughtful discussion of issues where politics, morality and theology intersect.  One word comments do not offer an opportunity for a teachable moment, nor do they open minds for being teachable.   

IMO, past and present issues related to race relations in our country continue to provide "teachable moments."   For example, while visiting a museum with several grandsons, one was troubled by the photo of a lynching that took place during the Jim Crow era.  it was a teachable moment, not to make him feel guilty for being white, but a moment simply to explain what happened in that time of our nation's history.

I am also persuaded all American citizens benefit from being "teachable" about the reality of our history.  For this reason I think CRT merits consideration. 

As a Lutheran, I look to LCMS leaders to recognize how racism, past and in present,  provide "teachable moments" in the Kingdom of the Left. At issue is recognizing how best do we, citizens of the Right, address a moral issue in the Kingdom of the Left. To do this I submit we  have to open ourselves to being taught, first by Scripture, but also by our history as citizens of the United States of  America. 

IMO, the resolution passed by the Southern District, endorsed by the LCMS president and promoted here by fellow LCMS for further similar resolutions  in other districts do NOT contribute to teachable moments or opening minds to knowing the truth about our nation.

For this reason, I am persuaded that LCMS pastors and laity must give careful attention to the up or down CRT resolution put before delegates to an LCMS district convention.   

Marie Meyer

Jeremy Loesch

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #39 on: July 06, 2021, 02:16:51 PM »
Are there LCMS pastors or congregations advocating CRT making this resolution necessary? It doesn't seem so.


I'm not an LCMS pastor, but I did see the attached meme on Facebook, and shared it.

That meme was from an LCMS pastor?  I think it's a pretty big load of idealistic BS.  There are theories that cross the line from theory to fact- evolution being one of them.  CRT is in the process of evolving from theory to fact.  Children are being taught to hate their race, hate their country. 

Not all theories are created equal. 

Jeremy
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Jeremy Loesch

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #40 on: July 06, 2021, 02:19:16 PM »
Either I didn't use the quote function properly, but the meme didn't show up in the portion I quoted.  You can find it in a post from Pastor Stoffregen upstream.

Jeremy
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Donald_Kirchner

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #41 on: July 06, 2021, 02:22:58 PM »
Are there LCMS pastors or congregations advocating CRT making this resolution necessary? It doesn't seem so.


I'm not an LCMS pastor, but I did see the attached meme on Facebook, and shared it.

That meme was from an LCMS pastor?  I think it's a pretty big load of idealistic BS.  There are theories that cross the line from theory to fact- evolution being one of them.  CRT is in the process of evolving from theory to fact.  Children are being taught to hate their race, hate their country. 

Not all theories are created equal. 

Jeremy

Nor are they logically connected using the term "hate."
Don Kirchner

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Donald_Kirchner

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #42 on: July 06, 2021, 02:28:05 PM »
"At least nine Catholic and Anglican churches across Canada have gone up in flames amid a backlash over the country's use of church-run residential schools to forcibly assimilate indigenous children from the late 19th century until the 1970s."

https://www.foxnews.com/world/canada-church-fires-first-nation-residential-schools-graves?cmpid=fb_fnc&fbclid=IwAR2p4g9-Nhhy8lvH7sU23Iq4-PayhnN6sGGxO-VCJSLPPWuM3yHsekmwk-Y
Don Kirchner

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DeHall1

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #43 on: July 06, 2021, 02:36:34 PM »
From David Garner.....
"As I read it, Pr. Engebretson was surprised you would be grieved by a mere rejection of CRT, and was wondering basically "is that all?"

Perhaps I misread him, but I don't think it's anything nefarious.  Dr. Benke has said he reads the resolution as a rejection of the work of LRJ, of which I am unfamiliar and cannot comment, but if one were a supporter of LRJ's work and thought LRJ's work did not promote CRT, that would be a reason other than rejection of CRT that might grieve a person."

Permit me to explain.

I first read about the Southern District resolution on Facebook, not on the Lutheran Forum where matters of faith are discussed.  Only after the district resolution on CRT was posted here did I report that the resolution appeared on Facebook with President Matthew Harrison's one word comment, "Excellent."

I was grieved that the subject of a resolution as adopted by an LCMS District and endorsed by the synodical present appeared on a social media platform.  I do not consider Facebook a media that allows for a thoughtful discussion of issues where politics, morality and theology intersect.  One word comments do not offer an opportunity for a teachable moment, nor do they open minds for being teachable.   

IMO, past and present issues related to race relations in our country continue to provide "teachable moments."   For example, while visiting a museum with several grandsons, one was troubled by the photo of a lynching that took place during the Jim Crow era.  it was a teachable moment, not to make him feel guilty for being white, but a moment simply to explain what happened in that time of our nation's history.

I am also persuaded all American citizens benefit from being "teachable" about the reality of our history.  For this reason I think CRT merits consideration. 

As a Lutheran, I look to LCMS leaders to recognize how racism, past and in present,  provide "teachable moments" in the Kingdom of the Left. At issue is recognizing how best do we, citizens of the Right, address a moral issue in the Kingdom of the Left. To do this I submit we  have to open ourselves to being taught, first by Scripture, but also by our history as citizens of the United States of  America. 

IMO, the resolution passed by the Southern District, endorsed by the LCMS president and promoted here by fellow LCMS for further similar resolutions  in other districts do NOT contribute to teachable moments or opening minds to knowing the truth about our nation.

For this reason, I am persuaded that LCMS pastors and laity must give careful attention to the up or down CRT resolution put before delegates to an LCMS district convention.   

Marie Meyer

Which of these resolutions SPECIFICALLY "do NOT contribute to teachable moments or opening minds to knowing the truth about our nation."?


RESOLVED, That the LCMS Mid-South District reject any doctrine that teaches:   

● Oneís race, ancestry, or nationality are inherently superior to the race, ancestry, or nationality of another.
● Any individual is inherently racist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously, because of his or her race, ancestry, or nationality;

RESOLVED, That the circuits of the Mid-South District of the LCMS develop an objective mission and ministry action plan for outreach to diverse communities among us;

RESOLVED, That the congregations of the LCMS Mid-South District be encouraged to conduct conversations on race and diversity, to strengthen unity within the congregation; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the congregations of the LCMS Mid-South District be encouraged to engage members of their communities in these conversations, in light of Christís Gospel; and be it further

RESOLVED, We commend those within the LCMS Mid-South District who intentionally proclaim and work to reach out with the Gospel of Jesus to those who are different from themselves in the light of the Great Commission; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That the Mid-South District send this resolution to the Synod as it gathers at its 2023 Convention to do similarly.


De Hall

pearson

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Re: Mid-South District of the LCMS rejects Critical Race Theory (CRT)
« Reply #44 on: July 06, 2021, 03:02:09 PM »

There are theories that cross the line from theory to fact- evolution being one of them.  CRT is in the process of evolving from theory to fact.  Children are being taught to hate their race, hate their country. 

Not all theories are created equal. 


I think you have put your finger squarely on one dimension of the issue with CRT, Pr. Loesch.  The problem with CRT is not with the "critical" or with the "race."  There's no question but that critical examination and evaluation of race and rectification of America's historic formal, legal and economic structures affecting racial categories is long overdue.  The problem is with "theory."

In the natural sciences, "theory" is a term that refers to something like "a proposal for organizing and giving meaning to empirical data."  In short, "theory" emerges out of the empirical data; it follows from the data.

But that's not the way "theory" works in the social sciences and the liberal arts.  In those domains, "theory" is an ideological construct used to assemble and "interpret" a narrowly selected range of phenomena assumed to be relevant to some problem.  In short, the empirical data is gathered insofar as it fits the antecedent "theory"; the data follows from, and made legitimate by, the "theory."  In the end, the narrowly selected range of phenomena are critically assessed; but the antecedent "theory" -- never.  The "theory" is the basis for the critical assessment, so the "theory" cannot itself be critically assessed.

Critical Legal Theory, out of which Critical Race Theory developed, operates the same way:  first you articulate a "theory" that addresses  certain features of legal practice, then you line up those features in an interpretive profile that validates the "theory," and then you hold up the "theory" as a comprehensive account of jurisprudence.

To claim (as does the meme offered by Pr. Stoffregen earlier) that such "theories" are nothing more than "tools for problem solving and critical thinking" is equivalent to the claim that racial, ethnic or sexist jokes are "harmless."  I mean, they're just jokes, right?  I mean, it's just "theory," right?

Tom Pearson