Archive for July, 2008

The LCMS In Her Own Words – Leadership has Replaced Faithfulness

July 31st, 2008 19 comments

(from Pr. Rossow) In this column we will be passing on extended quotes from various LCMS communications from around the synod. The intention is to establish that the LCMS has moved away from its historic Lutheran and Confessional character. Here is some advice sent out recently by one of the deployed staff of the LCMS, Northern Illinois District. My commentary follows.   Take-Away Tip for Leaders Influence Chris Widener has written an interesting booked titled, The Art of Influence: Persuading Others Begins With You. He outlines a number of rules of influencing others. Among them are the following:   Living   More…

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A Journey Back to Confessional Lutheranism – From the CLCC

July 30th, 2008 4 comments

I’m a lay person who has been constantly being educated in what it truly means to be a confessional Lutheran. I love it! It’s been a slow learning, growing process over more than a decade now. I have always been a Lutheran, born and bred. Baptized into the Lord’s family at three weeks of age, I have always just believed. I felt awe, fear, and respect for our great God, and knew he loved me so much He sent His only Son to save me from my sins. John 3:16 was my confirmation verse, and I had to do my   More…

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KFUO finances

July 29th, 2008 12 comments

Mollie here. So the July 2008 issue of Board Briefs indicates that the 2008/2009 budget for KFUO is $3,761,960. A reader notes that the 2007/2008 budget for KFUO was $3,690,792. Remember that David Strand keeps making the claim that Issues, Etc. was canceled to save money. And remember that David Strand keeps saying, with a straight face and everything, that Issues, Etc. was responsible for 40% of the AM station’s deficit. So if David Strand canned Todd and Jeff with no notice whatsoever and without telling his board or Synod’s treasures (while somehow thinking it prudent to tell President Kieschnick   More…

Categories: Mollie Hemingway Tags:

Two more Board items

July 28th, 2008 11 comments

Mollie here. One of the two most discouraging things to happen in Synod this year was the resignation in March of Pastor Edward Balfour from the board of directors. Balfour is this larger-than-life force of nature with a rather unlikely story. He was born and raised an Orthodox Jew in New Orleans and ended up a confessional Lutheran pastor in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, and a stalwart against some of the church-growth shenanigans being pulled by some in leadership. I just LOVE Pastor Balfour. Anyway, the Board Briefs included a notice of his resignation. The other notice was an oh-so-brief mention   More…

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Reading the Reporter

July 28th, 2008 3 comments

Mollie here. So I was reading my copy of the Reporter tonight and see that the quarterly newsletter from the LCMS Board of Directors is included in the July issue. A copy of the 2008/2009 Mission and Ministry Operating Budget is included. I see that the Board for Communication Services has been allocated over $2.2 million for the coming year. So the synod lost its only nationally syndicated broadcast program but we’re still spending $2.2 million . . . on what exactly? Anyway, the most interesting thing was the update on the Ablaze! program’s fundraising arm — “Fan into Flame.”   More…

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Johann Sebastian Bach

July 28th, 2008 3 comments

(from Mollie) Today we commemmorate Johann Sebastian Bach, the most wonderful composer of all time. Or, as the Aardvark put it last year: Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) is acknowledged as one of the most famous and gifted of all composers past and present in the entire western world. Orphaned at the age of ten, Bach studied with various family members but was mostly self-taught in music. He began his professional career as conductor, performer, composer, teacher, and organ consultant at age 19 in the town of Arnstadt. He traveled wherever he received good commissions and steady employment, ending up in   More…

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Top Ten Bad Jobs in the Synod If you are a Confessional Lutheran

July 26th, 2008 11 comments

(From Pr. Preus) 10. Overseas missionary. Really bad job security. 9. Any one whose sole job is working for Fan into Flame. “How do you explain that two year gap in your resume during the years 2007-2009?” 8. Executive director of Concordia Historical Institute. Really bad job security. 7. Seminary professor at Ft. Wayne without tenure. How would you like to know that your future depended upon Wayne Graumann, John Kieschnick and David Buegler – all Jesus First supporters? 6. Seminary professor at either seminary. How would you like to have a job where you had to gulp hard, plug   More…

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Good Question from Bruce B On Issues and BJS

July 25th, 2008 No comments

(from Pastor Rossow) Because the relationship between BJS and Issues, Etc. is informal, based on mutual benefit, (BJS does not manage Issues and Issues does not manage BJS but each benefits from mutual support) questions often arise about the nature of donations to each cause. Bruce B. asked such a question on our blog page about the BJS financial structure. Here is his question and my answer. What if I want to be a member of BJS yet support Issues Etc directly and “cut out the middleman” as Wilken suggests in one of his antedotes about LCMS Inc?   Bruce,   More…

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A Day in Texas: Liturgy Solutions, the “Lutheran Cathedral,” Issues, Barbeque and Cigars

July 23rd, 2008 4 comments

(from Pr. Rossow) Before I get to my day in Texas, I suggest you take a gander at a new blog site. A friend of BJS, Cantor Phil Magness is live blogging from the LCMS worship conference in Seward, Nebraska. His first post was quite positive but I think there may be some challenges to traditional worship that may arise in future posts. Check it out at   I took a couple vacation days to fly down to Texas to speak with the Texas Confessional Lutherans on unity in the conservative camp. I will share my presentation with you   More…

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A Conversation with a Middleman by Rev. Todd Wilken 7/22/08

July 22nd, 2008 19 comments

(Something LCMS Inc. doesn’t want you to know!) A short story: We were sitting in a district meeting with a mission executive from Synod. (Sounds boring already? It was. But stick with me.)   The mission exec. was scolding the assembled pastors.   He thought our congregations weren’t sending enough money up the pipeline to his office for “mission work.” Being young, I asked a stupid question, “Well, my congregation is very interested in supporting African missionaries directly. Why can’t we just do that?”   The mission exec.’s answer was an instant education in how Synod Inc. thinks about mission   More…

What is Accomplished with the Money Coming to Synod and the Districts? 7/22/08

July 22nd, 2008 13 comments

(from the Texas Confessional Lutherans) Most of you, if not all of you, will be shocked how the offering dollar is used! The following information has been relayed to me from the Purple Palace in St. Louis.   FROM THE CONTRIBUTED DOLLAR: 88.7 cents remain in the congregation for mission and ministry. 9.3  cents are passed by the congregation to the district for regional mission and ministry. 1.6 cents passes through the district to the Synod for national and international mission and ministry. 0.6 cents is allocated by Synod in support of LCMS World Mission.   Most on this list   More…

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Mission Creep(s) 7/22/08

July 21st, 2008 18 comments

(from Mollie) I can’t remember how large the six-figure salaries are that the bureaucrats in St. Louis make each year. Some certainly are worth more than others in terms of how much they help the church at large. Either way, they are never expected to raise their own funds. Would that this were true for missionaries. Many of us are waking up to the fact that ordained pastors who are sent into the mission field are forced to raise almost all of their expenses — or even more than their own expenses — while serving abroad. It boggles the mind.   More…

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On Counting 7/22/08

July 21st, 2008 No comments

(from Mollie) Richard John Neuhaus in First Things: A priest on Long Island tells me that, when he was newly ordained, he had the chance to visit with the legendary Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, who was famed for, among other things, winning many converts to the Catholic Church. Sheen was in the hospital and, as it turned out, on his deathbed. “Archbishop Sheen,” my friend said, “I have come for your counsel. I want to be a convert-making priest like you. I’ve already won fifteen people to the faith. What is your advice?” Sheen painfully pushed himself up on his   More…

Categories: Mollie Hemingway, Uncategorized Tags:

How much has/will the Restructuring Cost? 7/21/08

July 21st, 2008 15 comments

(from Pr. Preus) The Synod brought James May home and our church’s presence on West Africa has been virtually lost. We have withdrawn most of our international Word and Sacrament missionaries over the last few years simply because we can’t afford them. This makes us all sad. And the synod chose to discontinue Jeff and Todd from Issues Etc. That made me outraged. What a travesty – we are forced to cut back on vibrant missions.   It makes me a bit frustrated too because I have to believe that we could support these missions if we tried. Of course   More…

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She’s a Party Animal!

July 19th, 2008 4 comments

Some of our comments are so good I have to make sure you all get a chance to read them. This one comes from Gayle in response to the “Bred Lutheran” column. “I, too, am bred Lutheran and in some ways I feel closer to being what Martin Luther had in mind for a Christian when he read the Scriptures than some of my friends who are in families that have been Lutheran for generations. I may feel closer, yet not superior, for I know I have also come to the party late. I was late because I had been   More…

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