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LCMS Dystopian Future

Started by Jim Butler, May 16, 2023, 10:53:56 AM

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Michael Slusser

Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 16, 2023, 08:16:49 PM
Quote from: Dave Benke on May 16, 2023, 06:47:45 PM

Thanks, Jim - have read and commented to you.  Here's an excerpt from an editorial in today's New York Times about Christian nationalism and the Republican party:  - "If we are going to have one nation under God, which we must, we have to have one religion," Flynn said at a 2021 ReAwaken America event. "One nation under God and one religion under God, right?  A major question for Republicans in 2024 is whether this militant version of Christian nationalism — one often rooted in Pentecostalism, with its emphasis on prophecy and revelation — can overcome the qualms of more mainstream evangelicals.

The issue isn't whether the next Republican presidential candidate is going to be a Christian nationalist, meaning someone who rejects the separation of church and state and treats Christianity as the foundation of American identity and law. That's a foregone conclusion in a party whose state lawmakers are falling over themselves to pass book bans, abortion prohibitions, anti-trans laws and, in Texas, bills authorizing school prayer and the posting of the Ten Commandments in classrooms. 

What's not yet clear, though, is what sort of Christian nationalism will prevail — the elite, doctrinaire variety of candidates like Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida or the violently messianic version embodied by Flynn and Trump.



Given the book ban thing is a classic NYT deliberate lie-- no books have been banned, people have objected to their placement in elementary school libraries, and rightly so according to all sane people who have actually looked at the books in question-- which of the other things in the NYT author's screed do you personally object to? Abortion bans? Parental consent laws and age limits on sex change operations? It being okay for public school students to pray? Are the Ten Commandments simply a major part of the world students live in, like maps or the periodic table of the elements or anything else worthy of space on the classroom wall as worth knowing? Or do you actually think Texas is going enforce them and criminalize people who do not worship the triune God?

I think if RJN were alive he'd be ashamed of what his old New York Lutheran comrades were twisting themselves in knots to try to defend. He knew to roll his eyes at NYT articles like this.
In other words, no books have been removed from Florida school libraries. Why not just say that, Pr. Speckhard?

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

Jim Butler

Quote from: Michael Slusser on May 17, 2023, 09:27:42 AM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 16, 2023, 08:16:49 PM
Quote from: Dave Benke on May 16, 2023, 06:47:45 PM

Thanks, Jim - have read and commented to you.  Here's an excerpt from an editorial in today's New York Times about Christian nationalism and the Republican party:  - "If we are going to have one nation under God, which we must, we have to have one religion," Flynn said at a 2021 ReAwaken America event. "One nation under God and one religion under God, right?  A major question for Republicans in 2024 is whether this militant version of Christian nationalism — one often rooted in Pentecostalism, with its emphasis on prophecy and revelation — can overcome the qualms of more mainstream evangelicals.

The issue isn't whether the next Republican presidential candidate is going to be a Christian nationalist, meaning someone who rejects the separation of church and state and treats Christianity as the foundation of American identity and law. That's a foregone conclusion in a party whose state lawmakers are falling over themselves to pass book bans, abortion prohibitions, anti-trans laws and, in Texas, bills authorizing school prayer and the posting of the Ten Commandments in classrooms. 

What's not yet clear, though, is what sort of Christian nationalism will prevail — the elite, doctrinaire variety of candidates like Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida or the violently messianic version embodied by Flynn and Trump.



Given the book ban thing is a classic NYT deliberate lie-- no books have been banned, people have objected to their placement in elementary school libraries, and rightly so according to all sane people who have actually looked at the books in question-- which of the other things in the NYT author's screed do you personally object to? Abortion bans? Parental consent laws and age limits on sex change operations? It being okay for public school students to pray? Are the Ten Commandments simply a major part of the world students live in, like maps or the periodic table of the elements or anything else worthy of space on the classroom wall as worth knowing? Or do you actually think Texas is going enforce them and criminalize people who do not worship the triune God?

I think if RJN were alive he'd be ashamed of what his old New York Lutheran comrades were twisting themselves in knots to try to defend. He knew to roll his eyes at NYT articles like this.
In other words, no books have been removed from Florida school libraries. Why not just say that, Pr. Speckhard?

Peace,
Michael

Book have been removed from Florida school libraries. But that doesn't mean that they have been "banned." You can still purchase them in the state.

It's really question of discretion. Money is not unlimited. Which would be a better purchase: a copy of the Hunger Games or a book in which girls talk about the colors of lipstick that will indicate what type of sex act they will do with a boy (in quite graphic detail, I might add).
"Pastor Butler... [is] deaf to the cries of people like me, dismissing our concerns as Satanic scenarios, denouncing our faith and our very existence."--Charles Austin

peter_speckhard

Quote from: Michael Slusser on May 17, 2023, 09:27:42 AM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 16, 2023, 08:16:49 PM
Quote from: Dave Benke on May 16, 2023, 06:47:45 PM

Thanks, Jim - have read and commented to you.  Here's an excerpt from an editorial in today's New York Times about Christian nationalism and the Republican party:  - "If we are going to have one nation under God, which we must, we have to have one religion," Flynn said at a 2021 ReAwaken America event. "One nation under God and one religion under God, right?  A major question for Republicans in 2024 is whether this militant version of Christian nationalism — one often rooted in Pentecostalism, with its emphasis on prophecy and revelation — can overcome the qualms of more mainstream evangelicals.

The issue isn't whether the next Republican presidential candidate is going to be a Christian nationalist, meaning someone who rejects the separation of church and state and treats Christianity as the foundation of American identity and law. That's a foregone conclusion in a party whose state lawmakers are falling over themselves to pass book bans, abortion prohibitions, anti-trans laws and, in Texas, bills authorizing school prayer and the posting of the Ten Commandments in classrooms. 

What's not yet clear, though, is what sort of Christian nationalism will prevail — the elite, doctrinaire variety of candidates like Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida or the violently messianic version embodied by Flynn and Trump.



Given the book ban thing is a classic NYT deliberate lie-- no books have been banned, people have objected to their placement in elementary school libraries, and rightly so according to all sane people who have actually looked at the books in question-- which of the other things in the NYT author's screed do you personally object to? Abortion bans? Parental consent laws and age limits on sex change operations? It being okay for public school students to pray? Are the Ten Commandments simply a major part of the world students live in, like maps or the periodic table of the elements or anything else worthy of space on the classroom wall as worth knowing? Or do you actually think Texas is going enforce them and criminalize people who do not worship the triune God?

I think if RJN were alive he'd be ashamed of what his old New York Lutheran comrades were twisting themselves in knots to try to defend. He knew to roll his eyes at NYT articles like this.
In other words, no books have been removed from Florida school libraries. Why not just say that, Pr. Speckhard?

Peace,
Michael
Because it isn't true. Little Black Sambo has been removed from Florida elementary school libraries, probably years ago. And rightfully so. You approve of that. Everyone know not every book belongs in a children's library. Yet nobody accuses you of banning books. That's because normal people are capable of distinguishing between banning books (which is forbidding people to have them) and merely determining what book are good for taxpayers to encourage children to read. The NYT knows this, but deliberately lies because "book banning" is click bait whereas choosing age-appropriate subject matter for school libraries is not.

If I posted the pictures from some of the books in question here in the alpb forum, it would be taken down and people would lament what a cesspool the forum had become. Yet those same people think it ludicrous that anyone would object to those same pictures being what fourth graders leaf through during free time in the library. 

Dave Benke

Having read the paper, the author came across to me as a conservative Lutheran from the Missouri Synod who's alarmed by the connections to alt-right and far right political actors and institutions under the heading of Christian nationalism and white nationalism.  He speaks from personal experience, has done his homework, knows our denominational history, and is understanding of LCMS theology.

Having followed the extend of those thought patterns into our institutional settings and expressions by the leadership from seminary to synodical praesidium to district convention overtures and resolutions to the national level in preparation for its convention, I share his concern. 

Deflecting that concern will be the task of those interested in continuing the directions already being taken.  Deflecting the methods that blur the church-state distinction to the point of obliteration on issues taking the denomination down the alt-right/far right path will present a monumental theological challenge.  Because we've long since left the territory of reasonable discourse in the Missouri Synod.

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

John_Hannah

Just one symptom of alt-right tendency in the LCMS is the long ago declining to endorse This Far By Faith, the hymnal of Black Lutherans. Of course many congregations still use it which also suggests an erosion of synodical influence.

Peace, JOHN
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

Weedon

John,

That is the most breathtakingly ignorant statement I have read on this board. And that's saying a lot! But not at all what I expect from you. Our constitution's requirement of "exclusive use of doctrinally pure agenda and hymnbooks" is what excluded that volume from endorsement.

Charles Austin

I don't get it. The hymnal was not approved, and yet a lot of your congregation are using it.
Pastor Hannah thinks this suggests a decline in the influence of synodical authority.
Why is that statement ignorant.
Iowa-born. Long-time in NY/New Jersey, former LWF staff in Geneva.
ELCA PASTOR, ordained 1967. Former journalist. Retired in Minneapolis.
GUILTY on ALL 34 counts

Weedon

#22
What is ignorant is making the rejection of a hymn book that was found not to be doctrinally pure into a sign of the LCMS's supposedly "alt-right" tendency. It makes zero sense.

Dave Benke

Quote from: Weedon on May 17, 2023, 10:51:12 AM
John,

That is the most breathtakingly ignorant statement I have read on this board. And that's saying a lot! But not at all what I expect from you. Our constitution's requirement of "exclusive use of doctrinally pure agenda and hymnbooks" is what excluded that volume from endorsement.

The LCMS participated in the preparation of This Far By Faith all along the way.  In the end, however, it was approved for use with guidance at an LCMS convention (1998?), but not as an official hymnal of the LCMS.  To state the case as simply as you have, Will, is to give the impression that the hymnal cannot be used in the LCMS, which is not the case. 

The person in front of me on line at that convention spoke passionately about NOT allowing the hymnal to be used with guidance.  The next speaker, an African American woman delegate, said "Thank you, Missouri Synod, for giving us this hymnal to use!".  The next speaker called the question, so I didn't get to speak my peace.  The motion passed by a super majority of voters.  The speaker passionately against the use of the hymnal with guidance was at the time a Ft. Wayne Seminary professor, who is now a media influencer and teacher with 1517. 

This hymnal is a great resource for the congregation I serve, and for many in multi-cultural and black ministry.

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

Weedon

Used "with guidance" is to admit that it fails the Constitution test: "exclusive use of doctrinally pure Agenda and hymn books." Unless you think that exclusively doctrinally pure material requires guidance in use! And, of course, the LCMS participation in the putting together of material has never guaranteed that what was put together would pass LCMS doctrinal norms: LBW? Welcome to Christ?

Dave Benke

Quote from: Weedon on May 17, 2023, 12:01:37 PM
Used "with guidance" is to admit that it fails the Constitution test: "exclusive use of doctrinally pure Agenda and hymn books." Unless you think that exclusively doctrinally pure material requires guidance in use! And, of course, the LCMS participation in the putting together of material has never guaranteed that what was put together would pass LCMS doctrinal norms: LBW? Welcome to Christ?

I think you think you're making a point.  The point I'm making is that the LCMS has indeed approved the hymnal for use with guidance, and many of our multi-cultural and Black congregations are using This Far By Faith with guidance.  The point you end up making is not simply that the hymnal failed, during the Barry administration, the purity clause.  Instead, you're indicating to me as a pastor of a congregation made up overwhelmingly (although not "exclusively) of black and brown members is that we're impure.  You could back away from that and say with us, "Thank God we have This Far By Faith.  It's beneficial to the faithful."  That's my invitation to you.

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

Weedon

Ha! Let me be clearer, then, Bishop: In my opinion, the use of any resource that is not doctrinally pure in ANY of our congregations is not something to celebrate. It does a DISSERVICE to the members on whom it is foisted by suggesting that a little bit of error is not a big deal. This holds true regardless of the skin pigment of said members.

And now that I have your attention, how about you retract or at least back up your statement on that other thread about those who hold to the perpetual virginity of the Mother of God denying communion to those who don't?

peter_speckhard

Quote from: John_Hannah on May 17, 2023, 10:35:00 AM
Just one symptom of alt-right tendency in the LCMS is the long ago declining to endorse This Far By Faith, the hymnal of Black Lutherans. Of course many congregations still use it which also suggests an erosion of synodical influence.

Peace, JOHN
"The hymnal of Black Lutherans" is simply a schismatic, segregationist label. Is LSB for Black Lutherans? Or is it the designated White hymnal? I can see Lutherans having different hymnals for people who speak different languages, but it is contrary to the Gospel to have different hymnals for different skin colors. I think St. Paul would "oppose you to your face" if you introduced the idea of "the hymnal of Black Lutherans" in his presence.

John_Hannah

At the time of its publication, This Far by Faith, I think was the only "Lutheran" hymnal that included the many classic hymns of the American black Christian tradition. It remains the only Lutheran resource for many  black Christian hymns. Some have by now found their way into the principal hymnals (LSB, ELW) fortunately.

Peace, JOHN
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

Charles Austin

I can hear Julie Andrews singing "A spoonful of error helps the doctrine go down."
Iowa-born. Long-time in NY/New Jersey, former LWF staff in Geneva.
ELCA PASTOR, ordained 1967. Former journalist. Retired in Minneapolis.
GUILTY on ALL 34 counts

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