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

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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…

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.


Somebody has a Favorite New Name for the LCMS, by Pr. Rossow — 75 Comments

  1. Having attended the So. Cal. Conference for delegates on the BRTFSSG, I have a couple of observations about this…

    1) When the subject of the name change came up in discussion, one of the reasons given for making it more broad was that “people just don’t know what a Synod is” and “some think we are a church in Missouri.” In the pursuing comments on some of the proposed names, it was noted that such a name as Lutheran Church USA would be too limiting… giving the impression that we are not involved in world wide ministry. So it seems rather odd to me that we would be “reserving” it as a domain name.

    2) I think the domain: might be available. Then we could be known as EIEIO.

  2. It’s not uncommon for a website to secure alternate domain names for their site for reasons other than a name change, such as some already mentioned. As skeptical as I am of current leadership, I see this as simply prudent website management and circumstantial evidence at worst.

  3. I just skimmed the previous e-mails, so apologies if this was previously posted . . .

    I just tried to access the website, but now all the LCMS pages no longer appear — merely a “placeholder” stating that the “domain has been reserved.”

    Someone cares.

  4. As Rev. Brondos pointed out, someone is reading this (or the other blogs that have pointed this out) and the concern moved them enough to deactivate the address.

    Whoever you are, if you want to contact me directly I have a whole laundry list of things you could address (e.g. the gay activisit music director, signatures at River Forest in support of a terror bomber, Muslim sensitive worship at Concordia Portland, Blue Ribbon proposal #18, etc.) or you could just read the last year and a half of posts here and make your own list and start on it. 🙂


  5. If they want to change and you cannot get the rights to the name LCMS..go To Lutheran Church Mo. Synod, Ohio and other States….little lenghthy but it will be and EYE OPENER. Money yes it will cost and that again is change just like it was from the sign on Clayton Rd.. Went from CBC to Concordia Seminary then to.. Washington University and still waiting for the next change . But like it is stated is that all…..they have to do is this…this isn’t mission work !! Nuff said

  6. Marcus,

    I think you’re right.

    The name change we should be focusing on for next couple months the change from “Kieschnick” to “Harrison.”


  7. Rex,

    You wrote, “one of the reasons given for making it more broad was that “people just don’t know what a Synod is” “

    How true, especially the current administration.


  8. Pastor Tim Rossow :As Rev. Brondos pointed out, someone is reading this (or the other blogs that have pointed this out) and the concern moved them enough to deactivate the address.

    It’s possible that they’re reading the emails that were sent to Becky Cummings. I recieved the same form letter from her today after emailing her Wednesday night. Note that at the end of the message, she wrote “To avoid further confusion, we are working to ensure this will no longer be the case.”

  9. The whole premise behind changing the name of the LCMS is ridiculous. At our district convention, it was explained that some Lutheran church bodies (especially in foreign countries) may not understand that “the Missouri Synod” covers the whole United States. Likewise, it was also mentioned that changing our name would help with missions, because that way people would know who we are better. (How this would work, I’m not sure. But I do recall hearing this assertion).

    But think about it. If a man wanted to be known by people in his community but was not well known, he wouldn’t go to the courthouse and legally change his name. He would go and introduce himself to other people.

    Also, if other Lutheran church bodies from other countries are having trouble understanding that the LCMS is a larger church body than just the state of Missouri, why can’t we just explain who we are? If a visitor from a foreign country came to America, we wouldn’t change the names of what we call things if he didn’t understand them. We would communicate with him so he would understand.

    I agree completely that changing the synod’s name will cause unneccessary expenses and expenditures of time. In addition to changing the synodical logo on signs and printed resources, individual congregational constitutions will also have to be changed so that they say they belong to the newly named synod, and not the LCMS.

    As for all who suggest that it makes decent business sense to buy extra domain names, I can agree to a point. But the LCMS is not meant to be a business, no matter how much it may also have to operate in the kingdom of the left. And even if it does make some business sense, it still is pretty arrogant for the powers that be to do this, before we even vote if we want to have a name change or not. If we change our name, I think all of the congregations of the LCMS should have a say in what it is, and not just those at the convention, or those administrators who happen to work at the International Center.

    In Christ,
    Rev. Robert Mayes
    Fullerton, NE

  10. Wish I had thought of it. I might have been able to get some of that Fan into Flame cash.

  11. A name change would be a perfect time for those who hold the Missouri doctrine to lay claim to the existing name. This would correctly divide the two existing synods.

  12. I was pointed to this site by my father. There are some assumptions and technical things made that I’d like to correct. I’m not sure they matter but it may help contextually. By way of brief introduction, I have been a webmaster and domain broker for over 10 years so I am fully aware of the laws and rules governing domain names.

    “I think we would all understand that it is certainly not outrageous for them to purchase all sorts of domain names that are similar to and even those that might potentially be used, so as to not endure greater costs after the fact.”

    It is not outrageous. In fact it is often called “defensive registration”. The Dem and Republican parties both register thousands of domains for an election not knowing which they may finally use.
    However if this is as controversial as it seems LCMS should NOT be the one making a call to make this registration. In fact it shows a great deal of favoritism toward that name, as most people seem to be pointing out. If there was no decision made, someone close to the “side” that wishes to push for this name change should have made the purchase.

    “It is common in the industry to also find a place to point such domains, rather than run the risk of losing the rights to them by your inactivity.”

    Yes it is common to point domains somewhere, but on a controversial subject matter the webmaster could easily have made the domain resolve nowhere rather than a redirect.

    You are incorrect on the last point. You would never lose rights for inactivity.

    “So unless LC–MS starts using and defending the mark “The Lutheran Church USA” apart from the domain name, the likelyhood of being able to hold the domain name if challenged is in some doubt.”

    Again, this is incorrect. A domain name is not a trademark and owning a domain name requires no “use” to defend ownership. A trademark does have this requirement. There is no trademark currently listed at the site for The Lutheran Church USA or anything similar that I could find.

    The only challenge that the LCMS could fall under is by way of the UDRP (uniform domain resolution policy), whereby a challenge to the registration could occur. The challenger would have to prove that they had a legitimate right to the domain and that the LCMS was acting in bad faith (clearly some would argue this point 🙂 If the LCMS had not engaged in the defensive registration, this is how they would get the domain name if it had been registered by someone else. This arbitration process costs around $1500.

    Sorry to be a first time post and geek out on you all but this is “my thing”
    IMHO the LCMS should not purchase defensive registrations until they are necessary to the mission of the Church.

  13. Speaking of new names, what’s with this MoSyn term they use for LCMS in the St. Louis Post Dispatch?

  14. Synod of Evangelical Lutheran Churches. Best name for a Confessional Lutheran Synod. The current holders of that particular name (not the Siberians) are happy to share it with the entire LCMS.

  15. Name, shmame. Although the name is important, what matters most is that the essence of the LCMS is being “transformed”, and has been undergoing this transformation for a long time. Following the thread on the situation at Concordia Ann Arbor reveals this in stark reality. This is not news of course, especially on BJS. But–

    We have forgotten who we are.

    Johannes (same old name–my grandfather’s)

  16. @Johannes #30
    Why limit it to the LC-USA Why not the World Wide Lutheran Church. If we need to appeal to a larger demographic, why not go REALLY BIG! It seems more in keeping with the ambitions at the Purple Palace anyway.

  17. The Lutheran Church USA . . . . . . . . looks like Smucker might well get his American Church after all.

  18. @Adam #63

    > You would never lose rights for inactivity.

    I didn’t mean to confuse trademark and domain registration. I remember the days before UDRP (registered my first domain around 1994) when it was even easier to get a very common name. But since rule changes after a lot of domain squatting and high profile cases, if you register but do not go by that name, an organization going by that name can successfullly challenge you – as you point out in very good detail.

    Thank you very much for your correction. Please feel free to correct me again!

  19. @Mollie #55

    > check out all the other domain names Synod, Inc. has registered

    Mollie – these are only the names that are “pointing” to those three networks.

    The synod could have registered any number of domains that are currently parked or are actually live on other networks.

    FWIW –, and others are for sale.

  20. I would support such a name change. I will be the first to recognize that names mean things and its more than just nostalgia. I was not raised in the LCMS so I do not have any emotional attatchment to the name – I’m not even German – so part of me wants to defer to those who’s families have been here for generations. That being said let me offer two anecdotal reasons for support of a synodical name change. Before I became a Lutheran my wife and I were looking for a preschool for our son. There was a Lutheran church nearby with no indication of which synod it belonged to on it’s sign. When I inquired as to whether they were Missouri or ELCA and they answered LCMS. I assumed that since the one included the word “Evangelical” in their title that LCMS must se the more liberal (I know better now). It is very confusing to outsiders. A few years later I was telling a Methodist friend about joining the LCMS and he thought we were pentecostls! When I asked why, he said he thought that since Missouri was home to the Ozarks that the church must be a bunch of snake-handling, tongue-speaking hillbillies! And he was a life-long Christian. The cost issue is really the only reason I would be hesitant, but I still believe it would be better in the long run.

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