Final Blue Ribbon Proposals Published – One Sample of the Control Proposed and the Manipulation of Ideas Used to Support It, by Pr. Rossow

The final report of the BRTFSG is out. (PDF)   I will need some more time to thoroughly understand it but I thought I would open the discussion with a curious sample. I am sure that the Task Force has good intentions for the LCMS but here is an example of the sort of top down control that they are proposing and the manipulation of ideas to justify it.

The final report proposes that District Presidents nominate the circuit counselors.

Recommendation #3: Restore Circuits to Their Primary Purpose – …Because circuit counselors are the ecclesial extension of district presidents, the task force recommends that circuit counselors be nominated by district presidents in consultation with the respective district praesidium. The circuit forum (with an associate-member vote and a lay vote from each congregation of the circuit) shall elect the circuit counselor…

I can see a lot of good in this if the DP nominates someone who will actually supervise doctrine in the circuit (the chief role of the circuit visitor/counselor and the very reason the synod created circuits in the first place). But take a look at the explanation given for this proposal by the Task Force.

Prior to the 2009 district conventions, the task force believed that, owing to the significance of circuit counselors serving as the ecclesial extension of district presidents, it would recommend that district presidents appoint circuit counselors. However, 52 percent of survey respondents disagreed with that part of the proposal, despite overwhelming support for allowing districts flexibility in determining circuit configuration (only 22 percent disagreed). It was always the task force’s intention that the final recommendations would reflect the voice of the people of the Synod. Consequently, the task force amended the original proposal to return the election of circuit counselors to circuit forums and district conventions, with the district presidents participating through the nominating process. This recommendation is critical to the success of the entire restructuring process. The Synod must restore the effectiveness of its circuits.

So 52% of the respondents dissaprove of the District Presidents appointing the circuit counselor. The Task Force wants the voice of the people to be heard so they rework their proposal to allow the people to vote on whoever the District President nominates. This is not the voice of the people. This is a ballot limited by the District President. Am I off base here? Am I misunderstanding this? This appears to me to be a manipulation of ideas to make it look like everyone wins.  

Speaking of the manipulation of ideas, take a look at the sloppy logic that is used to support this. It reveals their top-down-control agenda.

the task force believed that, owing to the significance of circuit counselors serving as the ecclesial extension of district presidents, it would recommend that district presidents appoint circuit counselors.

If one were to apply this logic consistently then the Synodical President should nominate the District Presidents because the synod established circuits for the same reason it established districts. Districts were established because the Synodical President could not visit all the congregations (how far we have fallen – when was the last time the District President or even the Circuit Counselor visited your congregation?) and as the Task Force reminds us, this is why cirucits were formed, because the District President could not effectively visit all the congregations.  Wouldn’t that be a great synod of the people’s voice where  Synodical Presidents fix the ballot for District Presidents and District Presidents fix the ballot for Circuit Counselors?

It is this same top-down-control that made its way into the ELCA a generation ago that has led to their more efficient ability to choose apostasy over orthodoxy. I am all for efficiency but we must always remember the church is a family and not a business.

More to come, much more to come…

About Pastor Tim Rossow

Rev. Dr. Timothy Rossow is the Director of Development for Lutherans in Africa. He served Bethany Lutheran Church in Naperville, IL as the Sr. Pastor for 22 years (1994-2016) and was Sr. Pastor of Emmanuel Lutheran in Dearborn, MI prior to that. He is the founder of Brothers of John the Steadfast but handed off the Sr. Editor position to Rev. Joshua Scheer in 2015. He currently resides in Ocean Shores WA with his wife Phyllis. He regularly teaches in Africa. He also paints watercolors, reads philosophy and golfs. He is currently represented in two art galleries in the Pacific Northwest. His M Div is from Concordia, St. Louis and he has an MA in philosophy from St. Louis University and a D Min from Concordia, Fort Wayne.

Comments

Final Blue Ribbon Proposals Published – One Sample of the Control Proposed and the Manipulation of Ideas Used to Support It, by Pr. Rossow — 36 Comments

  1. Pastor Rossow,

    There is a problem with ecclesiastical supervision in the LCMS, but it isn’t at the circuit level. The problem with ecclesiastical supervision is at the synodical and district levels.

    Allowing DPs to hand pick their circuit counselors (either by controlling who is nominated, or by direct appointment) will not improve things, and may make matters worse.

    Will the DPs who permit open communion, pentecostal worship forms, the promotion of evolution, the silencing of the laity through programs like TCN, still do so with hand-picked circuit counselors? Of course.

    And, will a Synodical President who allows his DPs permit these things still do so? Of course.

    The real goal of this proposal has nothing to do with improving ecclesiastical supervision. For that we need to elect men willing to defend Lutheran doctrine and practice at all levels.

    TW

  2. “This recommendation is critical to the success of the entire restructuring process. The Synod must restore the effectiveness of its circuits.”

    How is “effectiveness” of a circuit defined? If poorly functioning circuits are a major problem for the synod, that definition/description would seem to be as critical as any recommendation(s) could be.

    I’m a layman, so I’m curious about the experiences of pastors with circuits. Is the fact of their ‘ineffectiveness” a widely held view among LCMS pastors, whether confessional, JFirsters or whatever? Or is this widely accepted as a fact with the only question being what would make them more “effective”?

    Basically, is the debate centered on whether the circuit structure is broken, how to fix it, or what ‘fixed’ (‘effective’) is?

  3. Ahem. It seems to me that the committee took the recommendations of the Synod and changed their proposal.

    Despite what they previously believed was the better thing to do.

    Just saying.

  4. Mark,

    Do you have a problem with math? 52% of people (poorly surveyed, as we have documented ad nauseum here, had they been more properly taught and surveyed it would have been an even higher number) were opposed to this and they decided to do it anyway and try to convince us that it is actually our opinion. Are you so blind as to miss the arrogance here?

    TR

  5. Steve,

    Great question. Let me throw in my two cents. I would say that most pastors would rate their circuits as less than 50% effective by any standard.

    Now to the question of the definition of effectiveness. When you read the entire proposal it is clear that the key for defining all significant terms for the Task Force is whether or not something or someone is “missional.” (I will always put that word in quotes because it is a stupid word that defies definition, just ask Bishop Newton from the CNH district and he will give you umpteen convoluted words of a definition that will leave you scratching your head – and he is considered the expert on this.) They want the circuits more closely tied to the DP’s so that they can make the synod more missional via circuit leadership.

    As Wilken has made it clear above, the primary work of a circuit visitor (that is their former designation before the synod became enamored with psychology in the 50’s and 60’s) is to supervise doctrine. The Task Force gives this task lip service but ranks it well behind the need to be missional.

    So to answer your question, circuits are pretty much ineffective by any definition (they do provide some pastoral comraderie which is nice but could be done via a monthly party). However, as you suggest, we need to define the role of the circuit. The Biblical role of the circuit is to provide a vehicle for local supervision. This is done to about a 3% effectiveness I would assert and with this proposal, it will be done at an even more dismal rate than that because being “missional,” whatever that means, will take an even more prominent role than supervision.

    TR

  6. @Todd Wilken #1

    District presidents are now tentatively called “mission strategists” (CWTIM, p. 19; the “ecclesiastical supervisor” is out of the window?), one of the proposed new names for Synod is: “Lutheran Church in Mission and Service” (CWTIM, p. 47). And the document itself is significantly called “Congregations Walking Together in Mission.”

    When we talk about a synod, about “walking together,” in what does actually our togetherness consist primarily? In joint human action (e.g., “mission and service”)? Of course, I understand, “mission” and “service” can also be referring to God’s mission and service in Christ. But then the title of the document could, and should, more clearly be: “Congregations walking together in Christ.”

    I’ve always thought that our primary union and concord consists in our faith, in what we confess back to God and the world from God’s word — in other words, it consists in agreement on words (such as on the statements of faith gathered in the Book of Concord). The Lutheran position has always been that our life will always lag behind our faith; it would therefore be futile to seek union primarily in life (in what we do).

    This is not to say that we shouldn’t also be united in our action (love, take the example of adhering to uniform, joint forms of prayer and worship — the Second Commandment follows the First (about faith) pretty closely), of course, but our actions should clearly take the backseat to the Lord’s, lest we follow the example of the builders of the tower of Babel who also were united in their great project, even though they probably hated each other’s guts underneath it all because their unity in the faith had already been lost.

    The document seems to have that backwards, at least that’s my impression. And I see, of course, the attempts to include the gospel more explicitly in our constitution. That’s pious but not necessarily helpful or decisive. For the document, theological unity always seems to be a project in the making (p. 49: provide more channels to strive for doctrinal unity). And lest we become gospel reductionists, our unity better be broader than the gospel, narrowly defined.

    Quoting Walther at the end of the document (p. 50), well, that’s great too, but maybe the occasion he was addressing (the forming of the Synodical Conference) was not quite like our situation today. Today, it is questionable whether we all indeed pull at the same yoke. It would be interesting, e.g., to survey the 300 largest congregations that were singled out by the documents as the major contributors to Synod in the numerical sense (p. 28) and see whether the abuses and aberrations mentioned by Rev. Wilken are present in those congregations. If they are found to be present, would it be wise to give more votes (power) to those congregations? Since when is size a weighty argument in the church anyway?

    I guess, what I’m trying to say here is this: structural reforms, good; circuit counselors as extensions of DP’s, acceptable — but the distrust sets in right away when the one necessary thing is lacking: doctrinal unity in God’s word. Without doctrinal unity, you can’t really have doctrinal supervision (or sound structures). And, of course, even that doctrinal unity is never perfect; but the aberration should be limited to exceptional cases that can be dealt with in love and patience. But once that unity is eroded beyond a certain point, it’s pointless to hope for a district president to exercise doctrinal supervision effectively. Even if he wanted to, he couldn’t do it, even with the help of committed circuit counselors. There would be too many ways to evade and obstruct, almost not matter what the structure.

    My 2 cents.

  7. Is that what Mark L meant by “responding to the opinions of the conventions/(delegates, whatever).
    “We’ll rephrase that, but we still want total control.” !?

    If they were using their “total control” to keep LCMS LUTHERAN, disciplining congregations which dismiss their confessional pastors w/o cause, insisting on synodically approved Lutheran worship materials instead of bringing in non Lutheran stuff, putting a called and ordained (educated) Pastor in every pulpit, establishing recognizably LUTHERAN missions……. instead of none of the above, they might have a talking point. Maybe.

  8. Whenever the second table of the commandments is elevated above the first table reorganization of the church (structure) is a necessity. The problem with our present structure is that it was made at a time when our forefathers understood this and had first things first. Our structure is not functioning now because as a church body we are putting man before God, action before faith, feelings before doctrine.

  9. Okay everyone I have a different question. At pastors’ conference today I was told by the DP that the cost of going to the special called meetings in December, January, and February are to be born by the delegate but the Synod will cover room and board. From the President’s letter about this I was under the impression that the delegates were invited–which seem to impy the cost being covered by someone other than the delegate, and that also the DP and selected others from the District would go. So if the delegate has to pay his own cost for going what delegate will be able to attend??? I know I would not want to pay for a trip even if it is just to St. Louis!! Can someone give me some better information????

  10. Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis.

    Current practice: Circuits choose their own Circuit Counselor.
    Desired change: District Presidents appoint CC’s directly.
    “Compromise”: DP’s appoint CC candidates, circuits choose between them.

    But whose *principle* is compromised to a greater extent? The circuit, whose freedom to elect their own leader is severely reduced to two (potentially similar) candidates? Or the Task Force, whose desire to be sure the CC has the imprimatur of the DP is only slightly inconvenienced? The DP may have to live with his second choice, while the vast majority of the circuit’s potential choices are disqualified.

    That’s what they recommend? Fine. The Convention will decide. But to suggest that the Task Force is to be patted on the back for “compromising” this one point in an almost insignificant way? Please.

    The surveys also showed that the Synod doesn’t want extra delegates for larger congregations, but the proposal stands, anyway.

  11. Oh bother. Ug…all I can say is…ug. Oh bother. Pastor Wilken, Messer, Rossow…other Pastor, other Pastor, ahhh….to many to list. Agree, nothing to add but….ug.

  12. Folks,
    This is a bit of a pessimistic way to look at the situation, but what is our course of action if the restructuring is approved at the synodical convention? I’m a planner by trade and want to consider all alternatives after an outcome.

  13. Count ’em. 148 pages of gobbledegook and corporate speak. Shades of the last massive revision (1981) where delegates were completely lost in the pages and pages and pages.
    But never fear, 2010 delegates will have the opportunity to be indoctrinated and coerced(excuse me, informed) of the marvels of this latest travesty at their special meetings this winter. Will those effect any changes? Don’t count on it.
    Steve #13: The real test will come, IF this garbage is accepted by the Convention, when the congregations vote on changes to the Constiution (takes 2/3 of those voting.) Prayerfully, it’ll never get that far.
    Dutch #12: Ugh doesn’t even begin to say it! How about Braaacckk?

  14. califiowan, thanks for the comment. You’re right, prayerfully this won’t pass. There will need to be a lot of prayer in the coming months that God will enlighten and guide the hearts and minds of delegates. P.S. I added my last name so the other Steve and I aren’t confused.

  15. Replacing our Lutheran Confessions with the “official positions” of synod makes structure a matter of overseeing franchises. We were heading to this point before the current administration.

  16. @Steve #13

    What to do if restructuring passes as it is currently being proposed?

    Defund, Divest, and (if necessary) Depart.

    Defund: stop funding synod, and if necessary, district. If district insists on sending a percentage of your congregations offering to synod, reduce funding to zero. If this doesn’t work…
    Divest: Pastors and other church workers find alternative (and I’ve discovered cheaper) health insurance and retirement arrangements. If this doesn’t work…
    Depart: This is a last resort, but it may come to that.

    TW

  17. Steve and Pastor Wilken,

    The other alternative is that we may simply be kicked out after having been relieved of church property by the LCMS, Inc. legal team.

  18. Pastor Sterle (#10),

    As I understand it, the Synod will pick up the tab for the room and board, but it is up to the Districts to decide how they wish to cover the travel expenses. Some may wish to coordinate and organize travel, like they do to the Synodical convention. Others may wish to reimburse mileage for the trip. Others (like your District, apparently) may not be able to afford (or otherwise choose not) to reimburse delegates, so they are left to bear the cost of transportation themselves.

    This decision is up to your District President (and, possibly your District Board of Directors).

    The PPPadre

  19. TR,

    Do you have a problem with math? 52% of people (poorly surveyed, as we have documented ad nauseum here, had they been more properly taught and surveyed it would have been an even higher number) were opposed to this and they decided to do it anyway and try to convince us that it is actually our opinion. Are you so blind as to miss the arrogance here?

    Umm…the proposal of the TF was that the DP would appoint Circuit Counselors. Appoint them to their positions. The local circuit would not have a say in who was appointed.

    People didn’t like that–so now the elections take place at the circuit forum.

    Do you see the distinction? Do you see the change that the TF made because of the feedback?

    I don’t want to go around and around on this for you to admit to this…is there a way we can streamline this process?

  20. Mark,

    There is a change. I did not dispute that. My point is that the change is superficial and even worse it is condescending.

    Here is the change:

    “We wanted to have the DP appoint CCs but you all said you were opposed to that (even though we tried our darndest to get your feedback with as little opportunity as possible for you to actaully think about what we were proposing) so we decided to propose that the DP nominate the CCs and you can choose the guy he nominated so we get our way – the DP determines who the CC will be – and we get to make it look like you actually get to choose the CC and fools like Louderback will buy this and actually support us in this deception.”

    TR

  21. Oh trust me Califiowan,
    I have lots of others adjectives I could have used! Ug is one I tend to use, like Charlie Brown, when Lucy takes the football away? Think that…very loud, very long… “ug”.

  22. If I remember correctly, at the last three Synodical Conventions, sometime during the deliberations one delegate or another would go to the mike and plead “Can’t we all just get along? Can’t we trust one another?” Whereupon there was a resounding round of applause, and the wrangling would continue unabated–and continues to this day.
    The level of mistrust for our synod officials, Boards of Directors, and other synod entities is very disturbing. I’m speaking as one who has a high level of said mistrust. We ought to all be disturbed and concerned.
    Altho not a delegate, I am looking forward to the upcoming caucuses and the convention with a high degree of apprehension, fear, and trembling. Two days is hardly enough time to make the decisions put before the convention regarding structure. It should take a week. Even the most well-informed and erudite delegates will be frazzled, let alone the first-time and inexperienced delegates. The whole business should be dumped into the trash can. We’re playing with fire. It would appear that those in power are oblivious to that fact, or don’t care.

  23. Lemonade out of lemons.

    My initial reaction to the CC election was the same as Pr. Rossow’s – it is a distinction without a difference. But as I look at the actual bylaw wording, there are some positives to the proposal (I am not yet sure that the positives outweigh the negatives, but there are some positives).

    1. Congregations would be gathering in a Forum with the opportunity to discuss the pros and cons of candidates for voting. The current method of nominating does not require (pretty much discourages) congregations from interacting during the nomination process.

    2. Nominations can be made from the floor.

    3. The procedure requires a nominating ballot in the Forum, for which every pastor in the circuit is eligible. The DPs “nomination” seems to be a misnomer. It appears to be more of an endorsement. The plural in the bylaw seems to imply that the DP names more than one pastor for each Circuit. This is a point on which I would like more clarification.

    I am also not entirely sure that, given the deliberative nature of the Circuit Forum, whether ratification by the District Conventions is not an additional layer of bureaucracy that is not needed. When it was congregational voters assemblies doing the nominating, electing at the District Conventions made more sense.

    Still not convinced this is a good idea – thinking through the potential abuses that could take place and such – but there does appear to be more of a change here than at first glance.

  24. It’s not unlike what passes for politics as usual in the heart of the beast (Washington, D.C., that is) e.g. the people have a choice for President — democrat/republican only — which means any meaningful or true choice has been taken away. Then Congress puts together bills so long that no one has time to read them before being asked to vote. In their shoes, I would always vote NO. Come to think of it, I WILL be able to vote NO. Ha!

  25. As I look at it, the changes to 5.2.2 would be perfectly fine if proposed 5.2.2b (Presidential nominations) were removed. It is overly redundant (which is what the BRTFSSG was supposed to remove), is prone to grave abuse, and reflects an erroneous premise.

  26. PPPadre,

    Thanks for the tip to check out the by-laws proposals. I will check it out as I have time.

    TR

  27. This is just…ug. As in UG-ly. No humility, no love filled awe filled fear, no reverence, no basic let alone specific theological norms & gives…more autonomy to congregations? Where is the Trust and/or Faith in the Trinity in this document? Let alone the vacuumous absence of Scripture (as foundation for reccomendations) in this document! Really…we need more wiggle room in the theological & doctrinal arena. YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME. For someone trying to find a congregation, we , to use their term “hearers”, which is intended to mean “seekers”, WE, now must employ the Forrest Gump principle, “LCMS churches are like a box of chocolates, ya never know what your gonna get”, and it is suggested we have MORE of that? Oh, please, saints preserve us, as the Irish say.

    I have been to “confessional” churches, where the sign of the cross was unilaterally made & lead, the bread & wine held, w/Pastor’s back turned, up to the Cross, & waved around in front of it like it makes it more for the doing, (yes, I did ck to make sure I wasn’t sitting in a Catholic Mass). I half expect to hear Latin! Then, on the other side of the ring, we have the happy clappy, full rock band, where speaking in tongues was accepted & encouraged (oh, yes it was) the “do as thou wilt feel” principle applies for liturgy & personal worship & music, where handing out a bottle of water w/a brochure for the church constituted as “Church or personal” missional action. Hello, we really want & need more of that? Freedom in Christ does not mean any of those things!

    Where is the theological, doctrinal, LET ALONE SCRIPTURALLY FOUNDED BASIS for any of what is written here? The implications, of being so open ended, defeats the purpose of why this was “said or spoken” this survey & study were done! Let alone leaves more room for interpretation by authority of office (pick one) and that changes how often?! Institute what you will, & the next down the line will negate it, wow…that sounds familiar…oh yeah, CONGRESS & THE HOUSE IN DC. They are not for Christ, we are supposed to be, folks, or did the imply to change that to?! Christ & His children are to set His standard, not follow the guy who happens to be standing in front of us!

    I can’t believe, it actually proactively stated, it is those who sit in authority or sit in a pew, that “cause the Word of the Lord” to grow (Spirit was uncapitalized, remember your grammar, it speaks volumes when you do that). Hello, I learned back in 1983, it was the Holy Spirit who does that! In a LCMS church, from a LCMS Pastor, I thank the Lord today, that man is Home & not present here in this. Where is that, or what we learn/ed in Conformation, in this waste of paper & my eldery family member’s tithes?

    This has got to be, the worst thing I have read to date, & trust me I read ALOT. Foreign papers, other denom’s confessional sites, reviews of books intended & peddled from St Louis, this takes the theological cake. May the Lord be merciful & slow to anger in this. Our Synod, has aligned itself with we once stood against, they are now playing Russian Roulette w/an automatic & a fully loaded clip.

  28. As I’ve glanced through the proposals I’ve noticed that the survey results are often referenced to show the support for the proposals. I appreciate having the reasoning for the proposals but the statistics are meaningless. It was my understanding that the surveys were done to help the task force to have input from a variety of people who may see things differently and find mistakes and offer possible changes. To use the numbers to show support for them is at least meaningless if not misleading and divisive.

    The numbers are meaningless because all of the people responding were not given the same proposals or the same information. Since the task force changed the wording of the surveys and their presentation from convention to convention, something completely in line with trying to refine them, then the results would not compatible with each other as far as compiling overall statistics. They would be useful for the task force at that time, but meaningless after the proposals are updated. Overall statistics would also be meaningless since the conventions were not conducted in a uniform manner, e.g. discussion before or after the survey. When they were taken before any discussion the results would better describe how convincing the task force was, not actual support for the proposals.

    For a survey to be useful in the manner in which the numbers are used in this final report it would need to use uniform proposals, something only possible now that it is finalized. The survey would also need to have either no additional information given or information for and against them. I imagine when they are voted on in 2010 that delegates will be presented with arguments for and against each resolution. For a survey to be meaningful regarding overall opinions it should be similarly unbiased.

    The survey results might have been good and useful for feedback to the task force regarding the proposals, but their misuse in this document is not helpful.

  29. “it doesn’t matter if we have the right to vote, it matters who COUNTS the votes” Josef Stalin

  30. TR,

    Ah gotcha. I’m never sure if you believe that it is a change, of it is NOT a change, or if it is just a change that you do not hold to be substantial.

    Oh course, in my position, if this does pass, Im sure that you will feel
    differently when you vote against a candidate for circuit counselor that your DP has nominated and he in fact is not elected.

    Then, that will indeed be a substantial change to you.

    BTW, the exAmple of not listening is found in their giving congregations above a certain size additional votes. That is one that they are pushing through.

    Overall though, I tend to think that many posters are right. If you have a good dp, you’ll be happy with what they do–if you don’t like your dp then you won’t be happy.

  31. Mark Louderback :
    Overall though, I tend to think that many posters are right. If you have a good dp, you’ll be happy with what they do–if you don’t like your dp then you won’t be happy.

    I agree and this leads me to believe that the DP will become “The Heart of it All” not the congregation.

  32. Now that the recommendations on Synod Structure and Governance are available it would be a great time to contact your circuit counselor about calling a series of circuit forums.

    Bylaw 5.3.1.b.5 identifies one of the functions of the forum as, “To serve as a setting to review and evaluate programs, plans, and long-range directions of the district and the Synod.”

    Bylaw 3.1.2.2.a says, “Delegates are responsible to the circuits they represent and shall attempt to discover the sentiment of the members thereof.” Take off the “a” from the reference and you find that delegates “shall function as advisory members of the circuit forum.”

    See about calling a forum to discuss the report before your regional gathering. Once it’s complete, call a forum to debrief your delegates and further discuss the details of the proposed changes. Call another forum after everyone has had a chance to study the Workbook a bit. If there’s time, one more when the first issue of Today’s Business is in everyone’s hands.

    Keep the focus on the proposals and overtures and resolutions. Discuss the pluses and minuses of each change. Whoever is elected as president in 2010 and subsequent elections, whatever is approved in constitution and bylaw will be the law of the synod.

    Ask questions: Whoever you hope will be elected, would you be happy if his opponent had the powers granted by these proposals to implement his priorities? What if someone really radical (either left or right) is elected the next time, do the proposed changes to the constitution and bylaws have the necessary checks and balances? Do the proposals strike the right balance between efficiency and “democracy”?

    There’s lots of information to consider. Now’s the time to start working through it, discussing it, getting a good understanding of it with those who are going to represent you at the convention. There’s nothing to fear and much to be gained by open and honest discussion and knowledgeable and prepared delegates.

  33. Now for something totally different. If the DP will appoint, to be ratified by the circuit, the circuit counselor, what is to keep the SP in the future from “appointing” the DP who would be ratified by a district, filled with men who have been “appointed” to their congregations through the three levels of certification for pastors???

  34. @Rev. Roger Sterle #35
    Pr. Sterle,

    I have been saying that since I first saw the proposal for appointing CCs. The exact same logic can get you appointed DPs as well. I hadn’t taken it out to the conclusion of that means appointed pastors, as well.

    I have, in general, not been opposed to an episcopal polity as a general rule. But an episcopal polity is NOT democratic, and when you have an administrative structure that is moving you toward a more episcopal system but keeps telling you it is so that we can have a more democratic say, then I am concerned by their untruthfulness.

    The PPPadre

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.