Archive for February, 2010

Wyneken wisdom

February 28th, 2010 5 comments

A few months ago my family had the pleasure of attending a lecture on Friedrich Conrad Dietrich Wyneken, the second president of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod. LCMS World Relief and Human Care Executive Director Matt Harrison was the lecturer. He’s translated Wyneken’s writings and written extensively on some of our early Synodical Presidents. Well, the good people of Columbus, Indiana, were blessed to hear Harrison speak on Wyneken this weekend and you have to check out this 2-minute clip with a funny Wyneken anecdote. I love how Lutherans sound the same from the time of the Reformation to   More…

“We all have a vested interest in this case” – Clarity on the Oakland Situation from the Rev. Dr. Martin Noland

February 26th, 2010 36 comments

Yesterday we posted some news and commentary from Reclaim News on the intriguing situation with a congregation out in Oakland, California. The district is fighting to take the property away from the congregation. It is a story with as many twists and turns as California Coastal Highway 101, not to mention a couple hundred pages of deposition of the synodical president,  and so it is difficult to follow. BJS regular Martin Noland has commented on the post from yesterday and left us with a gift of clarity for the current stage of this story. Here is his comment.

Good (?) Stuff Found on the Web — Equipping Laypeople to give Pastoral Care

February 26th, 2010 62 comments

Sometimes I find the good, but sometimes I find the bad, as people submit things to me for pointing out to BJS readers. Unfortunately this one is bad — it is a LCMS church that is holding a two-day conference about “Lay Pastoral Ministry”. Register Now! International conference for “equipping laypeople to give pastoral care” April 23-24, 2010 Host: Christ Memorial Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, St. Louis. “Welcome to participating in the 2010 International Conference on Pastoral Care of the Congregation by Lay People.” Keynote Speaker: Ken Haugk of Stephen Ministries This conference will offer a diversity of Workhop Leaders to   More…

The One Positive Difference Between the Health Care Summit and the Blue Ribbon Process, and Some Troubling Similarities, by Pr. Rossow

February 26th, 2010 12 comments

As the synod undergoes President Kieschnick’s attempted blue ribbon overhaul, it has been interesting to compare the process to President Obama’s unending, aborted attempts to overhaul the American healthcare system. There are several similarities that ought to alarm the members of LCMS churches and delegates to the convention but there is at least one major, positive difference. The LCMS task force has actually made some changes after getting feedback. We do not know the exact form these changes will take but as they make the regional presentations the Task Force is hinting that certain proposals just are not going to   More…

FYI – Reclaim News Analysis of President Kieschnick’s Ash Wednesday Deposition, by Pr. Rossow

February 25th, 2010 51 comments

As many of our readers know, President Kieschnick has been deposed in a lawsuit involving the LCMS California/Nevada/Hawaii District and a parish in the San Francisco area. Reclaim News has provided commentary on part of the deposition which we have printed below. We  kept our distance  from the early reports of this  story because frankly, there were so many twists and turns that it was a little hard to figure out where the clear blame was to be assigned.

Excellent reading on Haiti

February 25th, 2010 5 comments

I know that our brothers and sisters in Haiti are in our thoughts and prayers. I wanted to commend for your reading this amazing article about a priest who runs an orphanage in Haiti. Based on my limited conversations with LCMS brethren who have visited Haiti in the past month, reporter Matt Labash absolutely nails the current scene down there. The article also has a powerful message about how we care for the dead and what that care means about how we view the living.

Great Stuff Found on the Web — Cross Focused Leadership for Missouri

February 23rd, 2010 2 comments When you are “fishing around the Web,” you never know what new “fish” you might “catch.” My latest “catch” is “Cross-Focused Leadership for Missouri.” You can find it here: It is apparently designed for LCMS convention delegates, that is, those going to Houston this summer. There are a couple of letters addressed specifically to delegates. But it also has a fair amount of useful information for people interested in what’s going on in the Missouri Synod today. It has a number of posts in the Overtures and Resolutions section about the Blue Ribbon Task Force proposals, including some   More…

On the benefits of working together

February 23rd, 2010 1 comment

I was reading this nice little piece about how Michigan’s first Black LCMS congregation was started: In 1930, a group of black families meeting in their homes formed Michigan’s first black Lutheran church for the small number of black families who missed their Lutheran roots in the South. They held rotating church services in their homes to form St. Philip’s Lutheran Church. The parish, first recognized as a mission church, shared a pastor with a church in Windsor, Ontario. It reminded me of this lecture I heard in Baltimore this past fall. Rev. Matthew C. Harrison discussed an early LCMS   More…

General Pastoral Conference of the Northern Illinois District Passes Watered Down Motion on Cooperation with the ELCA

February 23rd, 2010 30 comments

Brother of John the Steadfast Pastor Ben Ball of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Brookfield, Illinois passed this on to us this morning. It is a motion to limit cooperation  with the ELCA in matters that involve word and sacrament.   The original motion called for the cessation of all cooperation with the ELCA, a position that the Brothers would agree with, but during debate the motion was watered down to just include cooperation that involves word and sacrament ministry. The watered down motion does bring something important to the table.  The LCMS in convention (2001) affirmed  that the  ELCA   More…

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Arch Books

February 22nd, 2010 5 comments

I grew up with a large library of Arch Books and I think that the simple rhymes and illustrations helped me learn my Bible stories a great deal. I just saw that Concordia Publishing House has some Arch Books online and the e-reader looks great. Check it out here. You can even take a survey and enter to win some free books!

Higher Things Conferences filling up fast!

February 22nd, 2010 4 comments

One of the things we at SteadfastLutherans promote is the Higher Things conferences and organization. They provide a truly lutheran set of gatherings around the country for our young people. These help them in that difficult period of time when our young are pulled in so many different ways by the world around them as they try to move towards adulthood. Please read this announcement from them on their conferences this year; make sure your church youth group doesn’t miss out on an opportunity to attend one of these conference by waiting too long to register — in either Utah   More…

Great Stuff Found on the Web: Video Promoting Issues Etc

February 19th, 2010 6 comments

Found on Pastor Weedon’s blog as well as a tweet from IssuesEtc: An advertisement for Issues, Etc. that highlights one of the shows consistent features: providing comment upon the calendar of feasts, festivals and commemorations provided in our Lutheran Service Book:

Great Stuff Found on the Web — MercyJourney’s Post on A Little Book on Joy

February 18th, 2010 3 comments

Matt Harrison’s Little Book of Joy is designed for this season of the year, and he’s posted the following on his website, It’s well worth your reading, and you can obtain your copy here, or you can save on shipping by purchasing 5 copies here.

Latest on KFUO-FM sale

February 18th, 2010 210 comments

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a committee opposed to the sale of KFUO-FM to Joy FM has filed a supplement to its petition to the FCC. I really have no idea how seriously the FCC will take any of these complaints but they are interesting none-the-less. LCMS layman Robert Duesenberg asserts that the LCMS Board of Directors made the decision to sell KFUO in one of their eleventy billion executive (closed) sessions. The specific session was held on February 19, 2009. And then while an experienced media broker named Robert Cox tried to inquire about the possible sale, he   More…

Somebody has a Favorite New Name for the LCMS, by Pr. Rossow

February 17th, 2010 75 comments

Click on  and see where it takes you. Apparently in some minds the LCMS name change has already taken place. Now I suppose that someone is just being smart in buying up web names but why would it already be hot? I’m just saying…