Proposed Resolutions: Committee 2, District and Congregational Services (by Pr. Charles Henrickson)

In this series of articles, I am looking at the 106 proposed resolutions put forward by the eight floor committees, as found in “Today’s Business.”

This column considers the resolutions proposed by Floor Committee 2, on District and Congregational Services:

2. DISTRICT AND CONGREGATIONAL SERVICES

2-01: To Continue to Support Children’s Ministry, Family Ministry, School Ministry, Singles Ministry, Stewardship Ministry, and Youth Ministry

This is almost literally a “Mom and Apple Pie” resolution! Who could be against it? Should pass in 30 seconds or less.

2-02: To Assist Congregations and Support Workers in Planning and Implementing “Reduction in Force” Policies

With many institutions downsizing and laying off workers, sometimes our church workers are impacted negatively. Having a RIF policy may help.

2-03: To Appoint Commission to Study Congregational Size, Generations, and Life-Stage Ministries

This one strikes me as goofy and unnecessary. We don’t need a president’s commission on church size. I wonder, and am wary of, what is envisioned to be done with a Blue Ribbon Commission on Really Big Churches (BRCRBC).

2-04: To Encourage Daily Devotions for Individuals and Families

This is one of the best resolutions in the book! Yes, CPH has been turning out some very helpful resources for the devotional life of our people. I heartily endorse this resolution!

2-05: To Commend Theses on Worship and Model Theological Conference on the Theology of Worship

I’m sorry, I can’t support this one. From what I know of the “Theses on Worship,” they fall short of saying enough on the subject and don’t emphasize what needs to be emphasized. Maybe someone can convince me otherwise.

2-06: To Encourage Study of the Lutheran Confessions During Reformation Celebration

Excellent resolution! Would that more of our congregations were engaged in “regular ongoing studies of the Book of Concord”!

2-07: Compensation for Professional Church Workers

I know too many church workers, pastors and teachers, who are woefully underpaid, their salaries nowhere near the district guidelines. I am strongly in favor of this resolution.

2-08: To Respectfully Decline Overtures

The floor committee chose to decline Ovs. 2-17, -18, -19, and -20 from the Convention Workbook (pp. 160-161), all of which commend the outstanding program “Issues, Etc.” But I say we should commend “Issues,” and so I would like to see one or more of these overtures brought forward and passed. (BTW, in the interest of disclosure, I should mention that I wrote Ov. 2-19.)

Next up: Committee 3, Theology and Church Relations.


Comments

Proposed Resolutions: Committee 2, District and Congregational Services (by Pr. Charles Henrickson) — 12 Comments

  1. Pr. Henrickson, maybe you can shed some light on the reason that was given for the declined resolutions commending Issues, Etc. The reason is listed as, “Issues, ect is not an RSO”

    I find this a bit petty. The Lutheran Malaria Initiative is not an RSO, yet it made it into the resolutions?

    Kiley

  2. Kiley Campbell: Pr. Henrickson, maybe you can shed some light on the reason that was given for the declined resolutions commending Issues, Etc. The reason is listed as, “Issues, Etc. is not an RSO.” I find this a bit petty.

    And a bit inconsistent. Look at the “Reason” (TB, p. 61) for declining Ov. 2-17: “BCS in its April 2008 meeting commended Issues, Etc. for its work.” So it was OK for the Board for Communication Services to commend “Issues,” but it’s not OK for the convention to do so?? Huh?

  3. Thanks for doing this. As a lay delegate, this series will be tremendously helpful.

  4. I suspect that 2-01 is a way to affirm the functions of the board for District and Congregational Services, which will be demolished with 8-08. Funny how the Commission on Worship doesn’t make the grade ANYWHERE in the proposal–not even in 2-01. Guess it’s not worth having around anymore . . .

  5. “2-06: To Encourage Study of the Lutheran Confessions During Reformation Celebration”

    The only issue I have with this one is that it seems to limit the encouragement to the Reformation Celebration. The study of the Lutheran Confessions should be ongoing and continual, second only to our study of Holy Scripture.

  6. “2-08: To Respectfully Decline Overtures

    The floor committee chose to decline Ovs. 2-17, -18, -19, and -20 from the Convention Workbook (pp. 160-161), all of which commend the outstanding program “Issues, Etc.” ”

    Other than the overture that criticize the LCMS, how can they justify not commending Issues, Etc.? Is it too Lutheran for them?

  7. @Editor #4
    Editor, [don’t you just love that name!:-)
    There are many congregations in the LCMS who have given up on divine worship and have gone to the ‘let’s have a new form each week,’ style of worship. So why would a department of the LCMS be needed which points to Divine worship–OR–maybe the “NEW” worship committee will push for only contemporary worship as some districts already do for newly beginning congregations. I hearken to the words of C. Peter Wagner–“You people of the LCMS are always 20 years behind. When everyone else is changing, you just start doing what they have already discovered does not really work.”

    So now that those big church growth people are saying they have filled the pews with a lot of people but have made few real Christians–the LCMS has decided it is time to get on the band wagon of going full blown contemporary worship!!! Thus the rather short period of time it took to make a contemporary worship hymnal as opposed to LSB!!

  8. I’ll be the curmudgeon and say I won’t vote for 2-01 on the principle that I don’t see what the national Synod adds in these areas. To me it’s like the Federal Department of Education. If it didn’t exists would children still be educated locally? Yes. If this wasn’t supported at the synodical level would it still get done? Yes.

    Of course, if I’m missing some critical aspect of what Synod add to the mix, please help me get my mind right.

  9. I too am confused by 2-03. Then I looked in the workbook at who submitted the Overture, Trinity, Roselle, IL. I still have to read through the Overture in the Workbook, but I’m confused at what this is supposed to help congregations with.
    Using the same principle of looking in the workbook for 2-05 on the Theses on Worship, one came from the BOD of the Atlantic District and one from the Wyoming District. I think these Theses need to be studied and discussed in our circuit meetings of pastors and lay people. They are a discussion starter and not a discussion finisher.

  10. @Brian Yamabe #8
    Would the ministries to these areas still continue? yes.
    However, take it from someone who has been working without “synod” help in singles ministry – it is a lot more difficult. We at LSA use our IC contacts and District contacts to help us problem solve issues with outreach, speakers, organizational issues, and contacts.

    Volunteers doing singles ministry can sometimes feel isolated in their congregations – by having Distict and National Events and contacts it provides support – a lifeline when you just need a more experienced person to talk to about what you are dealing with. They also may be able to point us to more resources.

    I could go on — but from someone having to do this on their own – it would be great to have “synod” support. Even if right now it is just moral support.

  11. At our pre-conv district gathering I asked about the reasoning behind not commending Issues, etc and the reason given was that Issues was not an RSO, and if we commended Issues, which was not an RSO, then we would also have to commend the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, radio stations that carry The Lutheran Hour, the armed forces, etc, etc, etc, and that commending Issues would open a floodgate of overtures supporting all kinds of other non-RSO’s. What he of course did not mention was that none of those other non-RSO’s was owned and operated by 2 LCMS members who are doing the same job now on their own that they once did on Synod owned radio.

  12. Resolution 2-03 has a first Resolved which states: “That the President of the Synod appoint a commission to research, study, and make recommendations relating to our changing world and to the twenty-first century ministry of churches of differing size…” What? Research, study and make recommendations relating to our changing world? Talk about a broad topic!

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