Author Topic: The Effort to Normalize Everything  (Read 1130 times)

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #30 on: June 05, 2022, 02:35:13 PM »
I wonder whether unclear standards led to the disruption we are seeing. If the bishop of SPS was elected with accomodations because of disability, leading to disruptive decisions and needless offense, wasn't the bishop unintentionally set up for failure? Wouldn't it have been better to determine the person was not ready for the office and choose a different candidate who  had full ability and was able to keep the office?

They would not be the first bishop who was later unfit for the office.

Brian, how long has this bishop been in this office?

Bishop Rohrer has been in office less than a year. I don't know that they had been to the "baby bishop's retreat," where newly elected bishops meet with "mature" bishops to learn more about their new position - and also seek to be a united force in the church. They has  been in the office longer than another bishop who resigned.


From John Tietjen's online obituary:

The ELCA Metropolitan Chicago Synod elected Tietjen to be its first bishop in June 1987, but he resigned in November 1987, before assuming the office.  His resignation followed a difference with the synod council over appointments to the bishop's staff.

I thought this bishop had a short term. It's a highly sensitive office that requires a lot of diplomacy. If the bishop had a known disability with diplomacy, why put the bishop and congregations through that? I hope things get clearer for all concerned.
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DCharlton

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #31 on: June 05, 2022, 02:47:05 PM »
The Grand Canyon Synod is RIC. I recently heard from a member of a call committee that they said, "No," when asked if they would consider a LGBT candidate. The issue is that it may take longer to find a candidate that fits the congregation and is willing to move to our corner of the world. (And we are a more liberal congregation than the other ELCA congregation in town.)

Thanks for proving my point.  In an RIC Synod, when 6 out of 7 ELCA seminaries are RIC, a congregation either is open to an 2SLGBTQIA candidate, or they have to wait an inordinate amount of time.  This is a subtle but effective form of coercion.
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Richard Johnson

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #32 on: June 05, 2022, 03:47:55 PM »
The Grand Canyon Synod is RIC. I recently heard from a member of a call committee that they said, "No," when asked if they would consider a LGBT candidate. The issue is that it may take longer to find a candidate that fits the congregation and is willing to move to our corner of the world. (And we are a more liberal congregation than the other ELCA congregation in town.)

Thanks for proving my point.  In an RIC Synod, when 6 out of 7 ELCA seminaries are RIC, a congregation either is open to an 2SLGBTQIA candidate, or they have to wait an inordinate amount of time.  This is a subtle but effective form of coercion.

2S! Wow, David, kudos to you for being right on top of the latest thing! But you forgot the + at the end.  ;) :o
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DCharlton

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #33 on: June 05, 2022, 06:43:46 PM »
So close.
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Brian Stoffregen

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #34 on: June 05, 2022, 11:02:11 PM »
The Grand Canyon Synod is RIC. I recently heard from a member of a call committee that they said, "No," when asked if they would consider a LGBT candidate. The issue is that it may take longer to find a candidate that fits the congregation and is willing to move to our corner of the world. (And we are a more liberal congregation than the other ELCA congregation in town.)

Thanks for proving my point.  In an RIC Synod, when 6 out of 7 ELCA seminaries are RIC, a congregation either is open to an 2SLGBTQIA candidate, or they have to wait an inordinate amount of time.  This is a subtle but effective form of coercion.

The wait is that there are few candidates willing to serve in this location for what the congregation can pay. They had been vacant for a couple years before I came. (This was before the 2009 vote.) The pay was good for that time - and much better than I was receiving; and more importantly, my mother lived in Yuma. I was willing to come. However, I never sought (nor did I receive nor did we need) a raise during my 13 years here. Part of my reason for retiring was that they would be dipping into savings to pay me. I do not think that paying a pastor should be a reason a congregation goes broke.

The congregation is not all that conservative. Before I was here, there was a transvestite who had worshiped here. When I came, there was a gay couple worshiping here. (They ended up breaking up and moving away.) We lost one older couple after the 2009 vote. Another man had left before that when the gay couple volunteered and were put in a leadership position for Vacation Bible School. He objected to that, the rest of his family did not. When his college-aged daughters came to town, they were all back at our worship.

One of our active members has a daughter in a same sex marriage. They now have four children. A winter visitor talked to me about a granddaughter who was about to enter a same-sex marriage. I just learned about a couple whom I married with the bride being a member, where the husband is transitioning. She had told me when she was in high school that she was bisexual. In his coming out post on Facebook, he said that his family had known this for a long time. (They are Wisconsin Synod Lutherans. When he came with his wife, he usually would not receive communion.) Being in a conservative church does not change what a person may think about him/herself. (It may just make them feel more guilty about it.)

As a whole, the congregation is not opposed to LGBT folks. They are part of us. The report I got was that call committee was most concerned about T - and not sure the congregation was ready to call such a pastor.

Although I have supported same-sex relationships, I have never asked or encouraged a congregation to become RIC. While that is a signal to LGBT folks that the congregation is open to them, it can also become a symbol that the congregation is not open to traditional folks. If we are to truly be open to all people, we shouldn't put barriers to some.

I'll also add that the founding pastor of this congregation was later elected a bishop and participated in the irregular ordination of Anita Hill. He was a member of a congregation with a non-conforming lesbian pastor (who had a partner in a legal relationship according to CA laws at the time).
« Last Edit: June 05, 2022, 11:18:22 PM by Brian Stoffregen »
"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]

peter_speckhard

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #35 on: June 08, 2022, 01:40:47 PM »
https://www.spiked-online.com/2022/06/08/why-i-left-the-left/

This is an interesting take from a Canadian leftist who recognizes that the effort to normalize everything really amounts to cancelling a lot of things, especially women.

Coach-Rev

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #36 on: June 10, 2022, 10:26:39 AM »
Are you saying that you, with your tolerance for dissent, is typical of how members of the ELCA, including Bishops and Synodical administrations, seminaries, and the like treat those who do not fall in line with the policies growing out of Human Sexuality Social Statement. Would you stand up for those who feel themselves mistreated? Have you in this small forum stood up for those who feel mistreated for their dissent or is your first reaction to doubt the stories or explain that some who are mistreated bring it on themselves and so we should understand that their treatment is deserved.

I can answer that.  The answer is a resounding "NO."  My first encounter with one Charles Austin was on this forum.  My first post under my previous incarnation here (I left after a time because of the nastiness I encountered, and only came back when his previous incarnation was given a lifetime ban) - had to do with a failed first vote to leave the ELCA (failed by 1 vote).  The snark I received from him without him knowing any of the details of the congregation, me, or any other aspects, was overwhelmingly accusatory and negative.  It's been all downhill ever since.

Apparently the Fall of 2010 is archived or just gone now as I cannot find either of our previous incarnations, to post a link to it.
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George Rahn

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Re: The Effort to Normalize Everything
« Reply #37 on: June 10, 2022, 12:35:09 PM »
Normalize everything?  Activity under the law has that as a potential.  But like the story of the Tower of Babel, God will certainly have it come crashing down.  But as a possibility under the law,  norms and customs are malleable and therefore possible.  My take on it is that it could never come to be, however.
Just the sheer possibility is scary enough.  Also, cf. Romans 3:19-20
« Last Edit: June 10, 2022, 12:37:41 PM by George Rahn »