Great? Stuff — New ELCA Bishop

August 15th, 2013 Post by

Found on ReligionNews.com:

 

Elizabeth Eaton was elected presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Photo courtesy ELCA News Service

Elizabeth Eaton was elected presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Photo courtesy ELCA News Service

(RNS) The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America on Wednesday (Aug. 14) elected the Rev. Elizabeth Eaton as the denomination’s first female presiding bishop. Eaton received 600 votes against incumbent Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson, who received 287.

Eaton, the current ELCA bishop of the Cleveland-based Northeast Ohio Synod, is married to the Rev. Conrad Selnick, an Episcopal priest. Like Hanson, she is considered a moderate who supported the denomination’s decision to allow partnered gay clergy while allowing room for churches to disagree, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

A native of Cleveland, she received a master of divinity degree from Harvard Divinity School.

Elizabeth Eaton was elected presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Elizabeth Eaton was elected presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Photo courtesy ELCA News Service

“We are a church that is overwhelmingly European in a culture that is increasingly pluralistic,” Eaton told the ELCA Churchwide Assembly in Pittsburgh shortly after the election.

 

(clipped) for more, see ReligionNews.com


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  1. Didaskalos
    August 24th, 2013 at 05:59 | #1

    helen :
    @Abby #46
    @Didaskalos #45
    “I marvel when I see anyone of George’s stature and moral probity teaching in an Ivy League university!”
    I thought of that too!

    Where could he be needed more?

    Where could Robert George also be needed? How about at a convocation of ELCA pastors and bishops?
    [ http://juicyecumenism.com/2013/08/23/lutherans-gone-wild-god-gays-and-gender-in-the-elca-part-i/ — “Lutherans Gone Wild: God, Gays, and Gender in the ELCA, Part 1 ]

    I have the feeling Al Mohler would also welcome an opportunity to address the Bible-bereft ELCA clerics:

    http://www.bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?ID=40944 — “Don’t Just Stand There: Say Something: The Sin of Silence in a Time of Trouble”

    “. . . Mohler preached from Ezekiel 3:16-27, in which God gives the prophet responsibility for those to whom God calls him to speak. In the passage, God says to Ezekiel, “If I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, in order to save his life, that wicked person shall die for his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand.”

    Mohler asserted that the message God gave to Ezekiel is as applicable today as it was for the ancient prophet.

    “The portrait given to Ezekiel is [one] we must hear and we must heed and we must own for our own time,” Mohler said. . . .

    Our task is not theological speculation; we are not called to doctrinal creativity; we are not summoned to invent a message; we neither market nor test this message, nor modify it. We receive it. And as we receive it, so we preach,” Mohler said. [ emphasis mine ]

    But preaching God’s Word is often unpopular, he reminded the seminarians.

    “The increasingly secular culture of the West, and specifically the United States, is poised to present the seriously Christian minister with serious challenges. And challenges bring temptations. One of the greatest temptations is for us to remain silent,” Mohler said.

    We are tempted to speak in terms that will be better received, we believe, than the terms of the Gospel that Scripture require. We are tempted to lower our voice when we should raise it, and to raise our voice when it should be lowered. The truth dies a thousand deaths of equivocation and is buried in a grave of evasion,” he said. [emphasis mine]

    Even so, ministers cannot avoid trouble, Mohler said. “We will be in trouble with someone. So let us choose this day those with whom we will have trouble. The world says, ‘Remain silent,’ and God says, ‘Speak.'” . . .

  2. August 24th, 2013 at 06:32 | #2

    Charles Austin :This (along with that “Casablanca” quote over on that other site) is the best thing I’ve seen you post in either forum.

    I’m getting a warm fuzzy! :)

    (For those not familiar with ALPB, he and I are usually at opposite poles there.)

    And just for the record, Brother Austin, although I’m convinced you often lead the flock away from the Word of God, I’m also convinced it’s an honest mistake and that you do love them and want what’s best for them. It’s a “felicitous inconsistency” kind of thing…

  3. August 24th, 2013 at 10:40 | #3

    @Pastor Ted Crandall #2

    I believe something on the order of Matthew 18:6 is the appropriate response to those who “lead the flock away from the Word of God”.

    Isn’t a “felicitous inconsistency” that despite the false teachings pushed on them some still believe the truth?

  4. Jim Hamilton
    August 24th, 2013 at 10:45 | #4

    @Charles Austin #37

    I realize this question was addressed to Pastor Ted, but I’m going to offer a response anyway. Scripture forbids women to serve as pastors, therefore a woman cannot be ordained as a pastor. So-called “ordination” of women by a human organization like the ELCA doesn’t alter God’s prohibition and cannot create female pastors. Essentially, female “pastors” only exist in the imagination of heterodox people who have rejected God’s Word. Therefore, if I met a female “pastor” I would be polite and respectful but I certainly wouldn’t pretend that she is something that she clearly cannot be. God’s Word aways trumps the heterodoxy of human organizations.

  5. Charles Austin
    August 24th, 2013 at 10:56 | #5

    So what do you do, Mr. Hamilton, when you meet a woman whose “heterodox” organization has ordained her? Do you refuse to use her title, refuse to refer to her as pastor or “the Rev.”, refuse to do anything that acknowledges her standing in her own denomination?
    And do you tell her, “Lady, you are not a pastor, in spite of what your heterodox organization says about you!”?

  6. Jim Hamilton
    August 24th, 2013 at 11:06 | #6

    @Charles Austin #5

    In such a situation I would seek to avoid giving offense, but woman can’t be pastors, no matter what the ELCA thinks, so I couldn’t call her “pastor.” She isn’t one. God’s Word forbids it.

  7. Jim Hamilton
    August 24th, 2013 at 11:11 | #7

    @Charles Austin #5

    It’s similar to the situation where liberal church bodies “marry” gays. There is no actual marriage, regardless of what the erring church body says. Two dudes can’t be married. It’s impossible. God’s Word forbids it.

  8. August 24th, 2013 at 11:39 | #8

    Jim Pierce :@Pastor Ted Crandall #2
    I believe something on the order of Matthew 18:6 is the appropriate response to those who “lead the flock away from the Word of God”.
    Isn’t a “felicitous inconsistency” that despite the false teachings pushed on them some still believe the truth?

    I believe Pieper was referring to our human capacity to believe two contradictory things at the same time. Logically, some of Brother Austin’s beliefs contradict the Gospel, but in our conversations he has convinced me that he illogically does in fact believe the Gospel, in addition to the contradictory beliefs. In other words, he’s a heterodox Christian, not a pagan unbeliever. Mingling false teachings with the Gospel is a very dangerous game, since the believer could come to realize the inconsistency — and end up clinging to the false teaching and denying the Gospel.

    My point was that Brother Austin is not wickedly, intentionally leading anyone astray. He is himself deceived and teaching only what he sincerely believes, but yes, anyone who teaches such false beliefs to others does run the risk of Matthew 18:6 applying…

  9. August 24th, 2013 at 11:49 | #9

    @Pastor Ted Crandall #8

    Thank you for your response, Pr. Crandall. A point to consider is that a false teacher doesn’t think they’re intentionally leading anyone astray. In my experience, false teachers don’t see themselves as teaching false doctrine, but they sincerely believe they are teaching the truth. You know the saying about “good intentions.” Pr. Austin needs the severity of the law until a time he repents and removes himself from the false teachings of the ELCA. If he is in fact repentant, and doesn’t teach “the little ones” that homosexuality is not a sin, and he teaches that the Scriptures are the Holy, inerrant, Word of God, and that women should not be pastors, etc., then he should be encouraged to leave the ELCA as quickly as humanly possible.

    I am off to enjoy the sunshine for the day. I hope you have a great weekend.

  10. Mrs. Hume
    August 24th, 2013 at 14:35 | #10

    @Didaskalos #1

    Great comment!!!

    Woo Hooo!!! Oh yeah!!! Amen!!!

  11. helen
    August 24th, 2013 at 15:41 | #11

    @Didaskalos #1

    helen :
    @Abby #46
    @Didaskalos #45
    “I marvel when I see anyone of George’s stature and moral probity teaching in an Ivy League university!”
    I thought of that too!
    Where could he be needed more?
    Where could Robert George also be needed? How about at a convocation of ELCA pastors and bishops?

    Someone in the Ivy League university might listen to him!

  12. Jais H. Tinglund
    August 24th, 2013 at 16:20 | #12

    @Jim Pierce #9

    Jim Pierce :
    A point to consider is that a false teacher doesn’t think they’re intentionally leading anyone astray. In my experience, false teachers don’t see themselves as teaching false doctrine, but they sincerely believe they are teaching the truth.

    A worthwhile observation. It really should go without saying that we cannot expect those who do not believe as we do to do as we do and preach as we preach and teach as we teach. And at a certain level, we can hardly blame them for saying what they believe to be true. Most certainly, if we insist on talking to them (or screaming at them), whether verbally or in written form, as if convinced that they only say what they say in a deliberate effort to be evil, we are not very likely to convince them that they are wrong and evil, whereas we are good and right, and we are the ones in touch with the love of God; If it is really that we are trying to accomplish.
    Nor is such hateful communication very likely to convince them that we are the most qualified communicators of the love of God, and therefore they should expect to learn from us what love is, and Christian behaviour.
    It is really just common sense. It really should go without saying. Strangely enough, though, visiting this forum might leave one with the impression that what should go without saying really should be said more often …

  13. Mrs. Hume
    August 24th, 2013 at 18:08 | #13

    @Jais H. Tinglund #12

    Disagreement and explanation of that disagreement is not hateful. If you fully expect those on one side to state what they believe, then there is no reason to be surprised when those on the opposing side state theirs. Just because someone sharply criticizes another doesn’t mean he is screaming or being hateful. Pastor Harrison has agreed that the ELCA has slid into apostasy, so it can’t be a surprise to anyone when others in the LCMS also agree and state their reasons. This is not hateful. As noted above, silence is worse.

    As for ELCA clergy especially the older ones who fully accept the current positions, they are innovators. That is, they are taking new doctrinal positions never before taken. An older clergyman who was ordained in 1970 grew up and was instructed and confirmed before any of these positions had gained acceptance knows this stuff is new. He is a party to promoting such doctrinal innovations among those to whom they are quite foreign. His is not like the young RC priest or SBC Baptist minister who is following the tradition handed to him. While all may suffer from error, there is a great distinction between departing from the doctrines one was taught stand there clearly in the text and simply repeating the errors one learned early in life. Those who participate in creating new doctrine know they are doing it. They know they are not passing on the faith they were taught. They cannot hide behind mom and dad or their childhood pastor, because they know none of them taught these false things.

  14. Jais Tinglund
    August 24th, 2013 at 18:44 | #14

    Absolutely correct. Neiter disagreement, nor discussion, nor correction of error must necessarily involve screaming. In fact, neither should.

  15. Mrs. Hume
    August 24th, 2013 at 20:13 | #15

    Strangely enough, though, visiting this forum might leave one with the impression that what should go without saying really should be said more often …

    I don’t agree with this statement either in content or form. It paints with a broad brush insulting everyone and no one. The most offensive never think anyone is referring to them, and those who have not been offensive are lumped in with them.

    As for screaming, no one has been screaming, so why bring it up?

    Those willing to hear truth will be as persuaded by those who rebuke them sharply as by those who do it gently, because they are already willing to consider that they may be wrong. Those who already doubt God’s clear word and who are overly confident in recent doctrinal innovations will not be persuaded by any approach. You overestimate the power of polite persuasion. Polite persuasion did not prevail in LCA, ALC, Seminex, or ELCA seminaries. Rather, the corrupt clergy corrupted the young seminarians with their innovations of false doctrines. False teachers are dangerous.

    No screaming here. Just telling the truth.

  16. Jais H. Tinglund
    August 24th, 2013 at 20:37 | #16

    @Mrs. Hume #15

    Mrs. Hume :

    You overestimate the power of polite persuasion.

    Not at all.
    But I would not be surprised if some would find me to underestimate the propriety of the opposite.

  17. Mrs. Hume
    August 24th, 2013 at 20:55 | #17

    @Jais H. Tinglund #16

    Fine, I agree.

    Honestly, I think you are evasive. If you think someone was rude, you can tell that individual, but these oblique insinuations that the entire forum has the appearance of impropriety are also offensive. You could be a little more forthright, if you don’t mind.

    As for screaming, no one has been screaming, so why bring it up?

  18. Jais H. Tinglund
    August 24th, 2013 at 21:30 | #18

    @Mrs. Hume #17
    I am not insinuating that the entire forum has the appearance of impropriety. I am insinuating that improprieties occur.
    And I think a general encouragement is appropriate, without singling anybody out in particular, that everybody would think twice before they post anything. Those whose practice it already is, I think it appropriate to commend and encourage to keep it up; those for whom it is a temptation to respond immediately out of anger and annoyance, without giving it the appropriate thought (and that would include my humble self), I think it appropriate to encourage to fight that temptation.
    I think it is good policy for all of us to think through, not only what our postings are likely to accomplish, but also what they are intended to accomplish, whether or not they are something we will later be ashamed of or embarrassed by, or something we should be ashamed of or embarrassed by. I have been there and done that.

  19. Mrs. Hume
    August 24th, 2013 at 23:03 | #19

    I am insinuating that improprieties occur.

    How?

    Anyway, the call for decorum on such an incredibly tame public forum is rather puzzling.

    Have you ever read the comments on the CNN site? That is a forum were improprieties occur.

  20. August 25th, 2013 at 05:28 | #20

    @Mrs. Hume #13
    I’m not so sure that an “older clergyman who was ordained in 1970 grew up and was instructed and confirmed before any of these positions had gained acceptance knows this stuff is new.” Seminex came to a head with the walk-out in 1973, but the false teachers had helped form a generation or two of pastors before they left. Brother Austin may very well himself have been deceived during his formative period by his professor/pastors.

  21. Jason
    August 25th, 2013 at 05:51 | #21

    @Jais H. Tinglund #12

    Jais, Go over to ALPB and read for a little while. http://www.alpb.org/forum/index.php

    I was thinking of linking to Charles Austin’s posts, but out of context, they don’t seem as bad, although enough of them contain the snark he is so famous for. But to really get a flavor, follow some of the threads for a couple of days. Then you can better understand how he needles practically everybody in his negative, putdown kind of way. I lurk there and read around 95% of everything that gets posted. Pastor Ted Crandall posts over there (deserves sainthood for it) and can easily tell you the rough and tumble of that site.

    Plain and simple, Charles fully admits, even brags, about his denomination and how right it is and its decisions are. So if the since e_ca is apostate, quite frankly, so is Charles. Some of us are quick to the chase, because a few of us have seen the volume of false teaching. (I have read ALPB daily for 4 years now) So some of us are marking out this false teaching for others to avoid. And for people so settled in their sins (in THOUGHT, WORD and deed), only the Law shall be given. Otherwise the Gospel will be pearls cast before swine.

    Once this site never deleted anything. Lately moderation has been happening. It will help us focus on topic, and will remove personal inappropriateness. But sometimes it is good to not censor these comments, just to show how bad (or evil) some people think and post. I am sure BJS is still upholding its end, to teach Biblical and Confessional truths, and promote a healthy and God-pleasing worldview. (oops, there’s a missional word…) The moderators have a tough job.

  22. Didaskalos
    August 25th, 2013 at 06:26 | #22

    Mrs. Hume :

    Strangely enough, though, visiting this forum might leave one with the impression that what should go without saying really should be said more often …

    I don’t agree with this statement either in content or form. It paints with a broad brush insulting everyone and no one. The most offensive never think anyone is referring to them, and those who have not been offensive are lumped in with them.
    As for screaming, no one has been screaming, so why bring it up?
    Those willing to hear truth will be as persuaded by those who rebuke them sharply as by those who do it gently, because they are already willing to consider that they may be wrong. Those who already doubt God’s clear word and who are overly confident in recent doctrinal innovations will not be persuaded by any approach. You overestimate the power of polite persuasion. Polite persuasion did not prevail in LCA, ALC, Seminex, or ELCA seminaries. Rather, the corrupt clergy corrupted the young seminarians with their innovations of false doctrines. False teachers are dangerous.
    No screaming here. Just telling the truth.

    How, I wonder, would the notably forthright Martin Luther be received today on Internet discussion forums? Brother Martin didn’t brook genially the soul-destroying teachings of clerics or churches that were feeding their parishioners stones instead of bread and pointing them toward damnation instead of salvation.

    “. . . Here then we have these two, the faith and the Gospel, that these and nothing else are to be preached throughout Christendom. Let us now see who are to be the preachers and who the learners. The preachers are to be angels, that is, God’s messengers, who are to lead a heavenly life, are to be constantly engaged with God’s Word that they under no circumstances preach the doctrines of men. It is a most incongruous thing thing to be God’s messenger and not to further God’s message. Angelus means a messenger, and Luke calls him God’s messenger (Angelus Domini). The message also is of more importance than the messenger’s life. If he leads a wicked life, he only injures himself, but if he brings a false message in the place of God’s message, he leads astray and injures every one that hears him, and causes idolatry among the people in that they accept lies for the truth, honor men instead of God, and pray to the devil instead of God.

    “There is no more terrible plague, misfortune or cause for distress upon earth than a preacher who does not preach God’s Word; of whom, alas, the world today is full, and yet they think they are pious and do good when indeed their whole work is nothing but murdering souls, blaspheming God and setting up idolatry, so that it would be much better for them if they were robbers, murderers, and the worst scoundrels, for then they would know that they are doing wickedly. But now they go along under spiritual names and show . . . and are at the same time ravening wolves in sheeps’ clothing, and it would be well if no one ever heard their preaching.”

    Christmas Day Sermon [Sermons of Martin Luther, Volume 1: Sermons on Gospel Texts for Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany. (Baker House, 1983) 153-4.]

  23. Didaskalos
    August 25th, 2013 at 06:31 | #23

    helen :
    @Didaskalos #1

    helen :
    @Abby #46
    @Didaskalos #45
    “I marvel when I see anyone of George’s stature and moral probity teaching in an Ivy League university!”
    I thought of that too!
    Where could he be needed more?
    Where could Robert George also be needed? How about at a convocation of ELCA pastors and bishops?

    Someone in the Ivy League university might listen to him!

    A myriad of former ELCA members have listened to truth tellers like him.

    http://www.exposingtheelca.com/1/post/2013/08/elca-membership-and-congregational-losses-for-2012.html — ELCA Membership and Congregational Losses for 2012 [and previous years]

  24. helen
    August 25th, 2013 at 15:10 | #24

    @Mrs. Hume #13
    An older clergyman who was ordained in 1970 grew up and was instructed and confirmed before any of these positions had gained acceptance knows this stuff is new.

    He may have been instructed and confirmed properly in the midwest; the LCA was already rotten with this stuff and it was in all the seminaries, but the men were told not to upset their congregations with their disbelief in whole chunks of the Bible. I heard some of it that long ago from an elca pastor in the family.

    The midwest colleges went bad, theologically, in the 60’s; seminarians went East to school and came back with false doctrine to teach religion. My college was Lutheran till then; now it only has the name and a statue.

  25. helen
    August 25th, 2013 at 15:22 | #25

    @Jason #21
    But sometimes it is good to not censor these comments, just to show how bad (or evil) some people think and post.

    I don’t think it takes nearly as big a dose of Charles Austin or Matthew Becker as we have gotten here to see what they are made of and I wish the moderators would say, “Enough already!”
    Anybody who wants to wallow in it can got to ALPB. Spare the rest of us.

    A small dirty diaper smells up the house as well as a big one, if it isn’t changed.

  26. banned
    August 25th, 2013 at 17:08 | #26

    Troll comment removed; author has been banned.

  27. August 25th, 2013 at 18:06 | #27

    Jason :
    Pastor Ted Crandall posts over there (deserves sainthood for it) and can easily tell you the rough and tumble of that site.
    Plain and simple, Charles fully admits, even brags, about his denomination and how right it is and its decisions are. So if the since e_ca is apostate, quite frankly, so is Charles.

    Thank you, Jason. I have enough of the Old Adam in me that I enjoy sticking it to the false teachers (especially those in the LCMS) and my motives are not always pure, but I’ll agree that often spending time at ALPB is like mucking out a long-neglected stall. :)

    Regarding Charles being apostate, even if he personally has fallen from faith, then “let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.” (Matthew 18:17) I used to think Jesus was saying they can just go straight to hell and was encouraging us to avoid them like the plague. I’ve come to realize we should treat the Gentiles and tax collectors as mission prospects — and we should be extremely careful that their influence on us is not stronger than ours on them…

    That said, I think we can disagree on when it is time to apply Titus 3:10: “As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him…”

  28. Jason
    August 25th, 2013 at 18:07 | #28

    @banned #26

    THANK YOU!!!!!!

  29. August 25th, 2013 at 18:10 | #29

    I should add that ALPB does have some very faithful Lutherans among its regulars, folks like Pastor Peter Speckhard and Chaplain (Admiral) Dan Gard. They deserve sainthood!

  30. Didaskalos
    August 26th, 2013 at 06:06 | #30

    helen :
    @Mrs. Hume #13
    An older clergyman who was ordained in 1970 grew up and was instructed and confirmed before any of these positions had gained acceptance knows this stuff is new.
    He may have been instructed and confirmed properly in the midwest; the LCA was already rotten with this stuff and it was in all the seminaries, but the men were told not to upset their congregations with their disbelief in whole chunks of the Bible. I heard some of it that long ago from an elca pastor in the family.
    The midwest colleges went bad, theologically, in the 60′s; seminarians went East to school and came back with false doctrine to teach religion. My college was Lutheran till then; now it only has the name and a statue.

    With the election of homosexual activist William Chris Boerger as its secretary, the ELCA is cementing its identity as the All Gay, All the Time Ersatz Lutheran Church in America.

    Promoting homosexual marriage before a Washington state senate committee in January 2012, then-ELCA Bishop Boerger said, “. . . The reality is, the Lutheran church has always held that it is the state that defines what marriage is; it’s the church that then blesses people who enter into that relationship. We have now stated our desire to bless those who are publicly accountable in lifelong, monogamous, same-gender relationships. We can’t call it marriage, you can . . . we ask for that freedom.” (see here, beginning at the 1:12:20 mark: http://tvw.org/index.php?option=com_tvwplayer&eventID=2012010157 0

    One breathless admirer said of Bishop Boerger at a retirement party/roast: “Jan Nesse said that in this unique time to be the church she and the Bishop had more talks about sex than in all the years she taught sex education.”

    http://www.exposingtheelca.com/1/post/2013/08/radical-activist-elected-to-second-highest-elca-leadership-position.html — “Radical Activist Elected to Second Highest ELCA Leadership Position”

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