Archive

Archive for July, 2010

Firearms Training, by Phillip Magness

(Editor’s Note: Cantor Phillip Magness writes the column “Not your Grandfather’s Church” for BJS. This edition is not about a local parish but about the church more broadly speaking as it met for its convention in Houston a few weeks ago.) This article is not about the primary things among us, but about something secondary: the art of music.  So, being a musical article, it is the kind of thing that is usually discussed over at the Liturgy Solutions blog, Fine Tuning. However, Pastor Rossow prevailed upon me to write this here, as he is convinced that non-musicians in the   More…

Great Stuff Found on the Web — Two Synods by Eric Comstock

July 31st, 2010 175 comments

Here is another video contrasting the two types of worship in the synod today. It’s from Eric Comstock. Check it out. President Elect Harrison certainly has his work cut out for him to try and bring unity of practice to the LCMS.

Great Stuff Found on the Web — Brian Yamabe on LCMS official services from the LSB

July 31st, 2010 20 comments

Rev Fisk has once again generated an excellent video. This one shows a problem with Worship services in the LCMS and other churches which led Brian Yamabe to write this overture. Brian would like to see it ”bubble up” as an idea from the grassroots and hopes that many would submit it to their circuit convocations, districts and to synod. Watch the video, then read what Brian has to say below.     One comment came in from a high schooler that is interesting to read: This is terrible. As a senior, I see this narcissistic paganism in my own “Lutheran” highschool.    More…

The installation of new officers

July 29th, 2010 38 comments

The installation of new officers, including President-elect Matthew Harrison, will take place Sept. 11 at the Chapel of Saint Timothy and Saint Titus on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I’ve attended one of these installations before and they are very nice. This one looks particularly nice as all clergy are invited to bring vestments and a red stole to join in the processional. Some of my highlights of attending the recent Synodical convention were those moments when you’d hear groups of pastors singing the Doxology or otherwise combining their voices to beautiful effect. I’d love to hear that service. It’s   More…

Review of “Wittenberg Confessions,” A New Book on Conversions to Confessional Lutheranism, by Scott Diekmann

July 29th, 2010 16 comments

BJS member and regular contributor to this website, Jim Pierce, has collected a series of testimonies of folks who have converted to Confessional Lutheranism. They are collected in a newly published book titled “Wittenberg Confessions” (Church and Ministry Publishers, also known as Blue Pomegranate Press). The book was edited by another BJS member Elaine Gavin. Here is a review of the book which Scott Diekmann posted on his blog Stand Firm. Because it so clearly gives the reasons for supporting traditional, liturgical and theological Lutheranism, this book would make a great gift for your church growth friends and acquaintances, particularly during this crucial   More…

Great Stuff Found on the Web — Gottesdienstonline on “What Harrison Can Do”

A loyal SteadfastLutherans reader pointed me to this article on Evangelism Myth #7: By Grace Alone, not “By Grace, alone through you” posted by the Rev. Eric Brown. While this one is good, a click through to CyberStones (from which I’ve posted previously) led me to the below article found here, posted by the Rev Fr. H. R. Curtis as an article for the next Gottesdienst Journal (Worship Journal).     The following will appear, Dv, in the next print issue of Gottesdienst along with other analysis of the future of traditional, confessional Lutheranism in the LCMS from many of   More…

Godly Examples Here on BJS of the Dialogue Harrison Looks for in the Koinonia Project, by Pr. Rossow

July 29th, 2010 18 comments

The two contrasting letters we posted in response to the recent LCMS convention have led to a “love fest” of sorts that provide a glimmer of hope for LCMS unity and more importantly signify the sort of thing President Elect Harrison has proposed for his year-long Koinonia project. (For more on the Koinonia Project see “It’s Time.”) Here are a few of the comments being posted there. First consider this comment from Andrew Strickland, who according to the comment below would not consider himself a “confessional.” (Comment #46) I must say that I find encouragement in both letters. Huh? Yes I   More…

Two More Responses to the Harrison Election, A Letter from Texas and a Letter from North Wisconsin, by Pr. Rossow

We have reviewed reactions to the Harrison election from President Kieschcnick, District President Diefenthaler and now we have two contrasting letters to consider both of which were sent in as letters to the editor of local newspapers. For sure, the basic principles at work in these two letters include “sour grapes” and “to the victor go the spoils” but there are also much deeper themes involved. I look forward to your reaction to these two letters. The first is from an LCMS pastor in Texas and was submitted to the Houston Chronicle. July 26, 2010 Dear Editor, I normally would   More…

Lest Anyone Thinks LCMS’ers Hate Homosexuals…, by Pr. Rossow

July 28th, 2010 12 comments

Brother Johannes, a frequent commenter on this site,  has left us a timely tip on the post about the ELCA and homosexuality (see comment #67). We are rightly concerned and even shocked that that the ELCA has violated the truth of God’s word by allowing practicing homosexuals to serve as ordained clergy in their denomination but that shock is not our only word on homosexuality. Johannes has referred us to a 1999 CTCR study that instructs Christians on how to minister to homosexuals and it is anything but hateful. You can view the pdf here.

Justification: Lutheran and Roman Catholic

July 26th, 2010 29 comments

A while back I was contacted by a man who was curious about the difference between the Roman Church and the Lutheran Church. Initially I sent him a copy of my brother Rolf’s short essay on justification but the man wanted something more specific. Believing that it is always a good thing to review what we believe especially in contrast to others I have decided to share part of that exchange with you.  Dear Pastor Preus,   Hello, I contacted you a while back asking about justification. You had sent me an essay and I thank you for that. I   More…

From the AP – ELCA Reinstates Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pastors, by Pr. Rossow

July 25th, 2010 82 comments

I was at a wedding reception last night and referred to the ELCA as “apostate.” Not everyone appreciated that determination. I realize it is debatable but to me, the ELCA is beyond being a mixed (heterodox) denomination. I realize there are still believing Christians in the denomination but for the life of me I cannot figure out why they stay. The ones I have talked to have admitted that neither they nor there pastors are doing anything to protest the decisions of the ELCA General Assembly. That makes no sense to me. Thanks to Pr. Roger Gallup for alerting us   More…

Another Interesting Reaction to the LCMS Convention this one from the SED President, by Pr. Rossow

July 25th, 2010 31 comments

Here is a communique that the Southeastern District President sent out in response to the synod convention. He notes that many were shocked at the elections and he pledges his support to the new Harrison leadership team. July 21, 2010   Dear Partners in Mission:   Greetings to you in the name of Jesus Christ, the Lord of the Church!   “Regular” is the term that appears in the title of national conventions of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. From what most of us have already witnessed or heard, the one just completed in Houston was anything but a “regular convention.”     More…

The Benke Case and American Civil Religion, By Martin R. Noland

Now that the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod has a new president, it can discuss the Benke case with less heat and more light. Maybe. At least the discussion is no longer REALLY about the next election. The “Benke case,” for those who don’t know, refers to the participation of Atlantic District President David Benke in the “Prayer for America” at Yankee Stadium on September 23, 2001. LCMS President Gerald Kieschnick gave Benke permission to participate in that event, which would otherwise be considered a “syncretistic” act under LCMS Constitution Article VI.2. Persons who believed that Benke violated the synod’s constitution brought   More…

10 Minutes with President-elect Matt Harrison

July 23rd, 2010 25 comments

Religion News Service (which is a wire service focused on religion news) is running a Q&A with Rev. Matt Harrison. Here’s a snippet: Q: The Missouri Synod is known as a conservative denomination, but some have said it or its leadership were not conservative enough. Do you agree? A: I think the challenge we have to face internally is the proper approach to meeting culture and accommodating culture. Obviously we have to take a very ancient New Testament message and bring it into a fast-paced and ever-changing post-modern world. I think some thought the essence of Lutheranism was, at times,   More…

Another Liturgical VBS – Singing the Catechism in Worden, Illinois, by Pr. Rossow

July 22nd, 2010 5 comments

Last week we told you about the liturgical VBS in Naperville. Attached is a video of the children of Trinity Lutheran Church in Worden, Illinois, singing the catechism. They are singing Titus 3:5-6 from the Baptism section of “Sing the Faith.” We thank Rebekah Curtis, wife of Pastor Heath Curtis for providing the video. The catechism songs are a good example of being historic and timely. The text is nothing more than the text of the catechism and they are set to sometimes lively music and sometimes more serious sounds depending on the text. They are available from Concordia Publishing House   More…