Archive for January, 2009

How should we Talk About Speaking the Gospel? by Pr. Klemet Preus

January 31st, 2009 2 comments

(This is post three of a four post series on evangelism. The other posts are archived in the Pr. Klemet Preus section of the Brothers’ Café.)   I have a theory about one of the great challenges facing our church when it comes to talking to others about Jesus. It’s our vocabulary. We insist on using the wrong words and this makes the task seem much more difficult than it is.   We use the word “witness” to refer to talking about Jesus. It’s as if we saw something when we really didn’t. Or it’s as if we are testifying   More…

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Steadfast Lessons from the Past: Is the Book of Jonah Really Historical? by Rev. Walt Otten

January 30th, 2009 2 comments

(Some of our readers may be unfamiliar with the ‘battle for the Bible” in the LCMS during the late 1960’s and 1970’s. Many in the synod, even seminary professors, fell prey to the false teaching that the Bible contains errors and is not entirely, word for word, God’s word. A critical battle ensued. Rev. Otten digs into his past to share this episode from that crucial struggle.)

Graphic Fun and Games with Kieschnick and Harrison Papers Reveals Profound Differences, by Pr. Rossow

January 29th, 2009 13 comments

There is a website called Wordle ( that allows you to submit a document and it will turn it into a graphic featuring the major words of the text. The interesting thing is that it weights the words according to how many times they are used. The more a word is used, the larger graphic it gets. It will make sense once you look at the attached examples. (We thank J.J. for giving us this idea.) What happens when you submit two recent papers on the future of the synod, one from President Kieschnick and one from Matt Harrison, to   More…

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St. Louis Pizzas Already in the Freezer for Conference Pizza Contest

January 29th, 2009 6 comments

Registrations for our National Conference are still coming in and it is not too late. We just got another eight registrations today. Because our meals are all being homemade, (except for the pizza that will be ordered the night of the banquet)  we really do not need a final number until a day or two ahead of the conference when we go do our shopping for the freshest ingredients we can find. The St. Louis pizzas have already arrived for one third of the great manly pizza debate. As previously posted, the banquet will include an opportunity to decide which   More…

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A Tale of Two Surveys, by Scott Diekmann

January 28th, 2009 9 comments

This Synodical restructuring thing is serious business.   We’re not just deciding how to route the interoffice mail here.   As several fellow LCMS members whom I trust have pointed out, what we decide at the 2010 Synodical Convention may change the structure of our Synod from one which is based on a doctrinal orientation to one which is based on a hierarchical command structure.   If that happens, doctrine will take a seat somewhere towards the rear of the airplane, right at a time when one engine has already flamed out, there’s a load of ice on the wings,   More…

More on church loyalty (Mollie)

January 28th, 2009 6 comments

I’ve studied the differences between the Lutheran Confessions and other church body’s teaching enough to know that it’s highly unlikely I would ever convert to something else. Sometimes I play the game of asking myself what I’d do if there were no Lutheran churches left on earth but I can’t bear to play the game for too long. But here’s an interesting story from Religion News Service that shows I’m in the minority: Americans are more loyal to their toothpaste or toilet paper than to their religious denomination, making consumers more choosy about Charmin or Colgate than they are about   More…

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Accuracy in Academia Cites Ayers Petition (Signed by Concordia Faculty) as the Most Dubious Move of the Year, by Pr. Rossow

January 28th, 2009 4 comments

Yesterday we followed up on the gay activist story in the Northwest District of the LCMS. Today we offer this interesting perspective as a follow-up on another travesty of supervision in the LCMS – the Ayers petition signing at Concordia University, Chicago (LCMS).

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New ULMA Post: Report from Indianapolis: January 2009 General Meeting

January 28th, 2009 No comments

(Editor’s Note: ULMA is the United Lutheran Mission Association. They are an independent confessional Lutheran group that is dedicated to establishing new confessional churches. Their posts are archived on the “Regular Columns” portion of the website.)   January 20, 2009   The United Lutheran Mission Association (ULMA) held their semi-annual meeting on January 10, 2009 in Indianapolis. In spite of bad weather, the meeting was attended (in person or by phone), by representatives from our missions as well as several visitors.

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More Contact with the Northwest District on Gay Activist Situation, by Pr. Rossow

January 27th, 2009 4 comments

I took some time today to call President Schumacher in the Northwest District Office. There is an on-going problem at Bethlehem Lutheran Church – Renton, Washington (LCMS). The biography for the music director on the congregation’s website lists as a part of his experience, artistic direction of the Gay and Lesbian Choir of Seattle.

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The jobs of Pastors and People In Bringing People into the Communion of the Church, by Pr. Klemet Preus

January 27th, 2009 1 comment

(Editor’s Note: This is the  second in a four part series from Pastor Preus. It also builds on his previous series on Ablaze. All of his posts can be found archived in the Brothers’ Cafe.) In my previous six blogs I showed why the Ablaze! program is flawed. In the next three I will show from the Bible a better way.     The Bible is really pretty simple about how the church grows despite our efforts to make it more complicated than it needs to be. In the Bible certain words are used to refer to certain communicative actions.   More…

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Newly Crowned Miss America Attended Lutheran Elementary School in Indiana

January 26th, 2009 14 comments

BJS website reader Joe Hildreth reports that the new Miss America, Katie Stam is from Seymour, Indiana and attended one of the local LCMS elementary schools. Here is Joe’s report. I was hoping you could post a congratulations to the new Miss America, Katie Stam. She is from Seymour, IN, a hotbed of Lutheranism. Her conservative Lutheran upbringing is evidenced by her morals and strength. She attended one of our local Lutheran elementary schools and her mother is even a teacher at another local Lutheran elementary school. Her aunt explained to me Sunday morning that her father had to re-record   More…

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“Men of Faith” Chapter in Plano, Texas Raises Over $800 for Issues, Etc.

January 26th, 2009 1 comment

One of the goals of the Brothers of John the Steadfast is to raise funds for new Lutheran media, particularly the radio show Issues, Etc. The “Men of Faith” BJS chapter in Plano, Texas recently had an “Oktoberfest in January” fundraiser. The dinner raised over $800 for Issues, Etc. This news  is reported to us by Brother of the John the Steadfast Larry Everett from Faith Lutheran Church in Plano where the chapter is located. The Brothers of John the Steadfast organization was started last summer and  already has ten chapters around the country and in Canada, including the “Men   More…

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Reading through the Book of Concord, week of Jan 26th

January 25th, 2009 2 comments

One of the goals of the Brothers of John the Steadfast is the creation of reading groups whose intention is to get with a Pastor and read through the Book of Concord. For those people who do not have access to a reading group, it occurred to us that we might try creating an “online reading group” right here on the BJS site.

New Column: Welcome Dr. Daniel Gard, Professor – Concordia Seminary, Fort Wayne

January 24th, 2009 3 comments

(Editor’s Note: We are very honored to have Dr. Daniel Gard, Professor of Exegetical Theology and Dean of Military Chaplaincy at Concordia Theological Seminary, Ft. Wayne – Indiana,  writing a new column for us. We are also eating a little crow since our post on Thursday whined about the reluctance of Concordia Seminary profs to write for BJS. Dr. Gard’s column is titled “Random Thoughts from an Absent Mind.” Like all of our regular columns it will be archived on the “Regular Columns” page. For more biographical information on Dr. Gard click here. I am particularly proud since Ft. Wayne   More…

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Some Valentines Dinner Suggestions If You are Bringing Your Sweetheart to the National Conference

January 24th, 2009 13 comments

We asked a couple of Bethany – Naperville seasoned business entertainers to make a list of recommended restaurants in Naperville and Chicago for those who may want to bring their Valentine to the conference and go out for a special dinner Saturday night after the conference closes. If you have any questions please send me an e-mail at [email protected]  or call me at the church (630/355-2198).

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