Proposed Resolutions: Committee 4, Administration and Finance (by Pr. Charles Henrickson)

We’re looking at the 106 proposed resolutions from the eight floor committees, as found in “Today’s Business.” Here are the resolutions proposed by Floor Committee 4, Administration and Finance:

4. ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE

4-01: To Lead Districts and Synod in a Stewardship Renaissance

I don’t see any big problems with this resolution, as written. It will depend on how it is done, of course.

4-02: To Address Corporate Synod’s Financial Crisis

No, I do not want to revisit the recommendations of the BRTF for Funding the Mission. There were too many problems with them (e.g., membership fees, more votes for larger congregations).

4-03: To Broadly Communicate the Statement of Financial Position of LCMS

Fine, communicate away. Only don’t hammer people over the head. And be sure to tell us how much money the bureaucracy is wasting on dumb Ablaze! grants, for instance.

4-04: To Study Higher Education System and Bring an Action Plan to the 2013 LCMS Convention

Developing a plan to help church work students deal with educational debt could be a good thing.

4-05: To Revise Convention Election Process

I don’t have a problem with changing the bylaw to allow more than one BOD member from a given district.

4-06: To Amend and Restate the Articles of Incorporation

This resolution would make changes to the Constitution and Bylaws based on the passage of the BRTFSSG recommendations. Since I hope most all of the restructuring proposals are defeated, I am against this resolution also.

4-07: To Amend Bylaws re Convention Preparations

This would move up the schedule of deadlines before the convention, which could be OK. But it would reduce the number of print copies of the Convention Workbook, etc., which would further distance congregations from knowledge of and involvement in synodical affairs. It also would change the number of candidates for the praesidium, tied into the restructuring proposals. So I am against this resolution.

4-08: To Improve Procedure for Establishing Synod Convention Times and Locations

Should the convention times and locations be set by the president and BOD, instead of by the convention? No. This is another example of taking power away from the synod in convention and giving it to the president.

4-09: To Amend Bylaw 3.1.7 re Convention Committees

This change in language regarding the president’s appointment of floor committees doesn’t really change what happens, so I don’t have a problem with it, but I also don’t see why it’s necessary.

4-10: To Return LCEF Bylaw 3.6.4.4 to Pre-2004 Wording

This is “eyes-glaze-over” stuff. Unless somebody shows me a problem with it, I have no objection to this resolution.

4-11: To Provide Definition for Term “Operating Board”

I don’t see a problem with including this definition in the Handbook.

4-12: To Clarify Definition of “Governing Board”

I don’t have a problem with this one, either. Of course, if the restructuring proposals pass, the program boards would be changed drastically.

4-13: To Change Auxiliary Terminology

Why would an auxiliary (LLL, LWML) want to change “president” to “chief elected officer”? I have no idea. It seems silly but harmless.

4-14: To Amend Bylaw 1.5.3 re Agency Meeting

More conference calls, to save money? We have the technology.

4-15: To Change Composition of Commission on Ministerial Growth and Support

This would reduce the number of members on this commission. Sounds OK.

4-16: To Respectfully Decline Overtures

Perhaps we should consider the overture submitted by the Board for Human Care Ministries, Ov. 4-23, “To Allocate Investment Earnings Back to Human Care” (Convention Workbook, p. 187). This would address the problem of the synod using the interest from gifts to WRHC, instead of letting that money stay with Human Care.

Next up: Committee 5, Seminary and University Education.


Comments

Proposed Resolutions: Committee 4, Administration and Finance (by Pr. Charles Henrickson) — 7 Comments

  1. I have not read 4-01, but it sounds like a “stealth resolution” similar to the “Revitalize” resolution 1-01A, that led off the 2007 convention. That resolution, you may recall, was in reality, a pitch for the odious “Transforming Congregations Network” which, as Scott Diekmann has observed, is spreading like kudzu in the LCMS. I suspect something like “Faith Aflame 360” is lurking behind this resolution. You can check that program out on the LCMS website–it’s a five year program. “It’s not about money,” they tell us. Uh-huh.

    ‘Nuff said.

    Johannes (“Just say ‘no’!”)

  2. With respect to 4-10 thru 4-15, they look harmless enough, but why these changes? There better be a darned good reason to make the change, otherwise I’m wondering, “More stealth?”

    What, for instance, is the possible raitonale for changing “President” to “Chief Elected Officer?” Seems like much ado about nothiing, and if it ain’t broke, why try to fix it?

    j

  3. “4-01: To Lead Districts and Synod in a Stewardship Renaissance

    I don’t see any big problems with this resolution, as written. It will depend on how it is done, of course.”

    Pastor Henrickson, that is the key: “…how it is done…”

    According to the resolution, the congregations are “…encouraged to search the Scriptures for all stewardship examples…” “…study biblically based stewardship principles…” “…each district president lead…in a stewardship renaissance…”

    This is outcome based teaching and preaching. We need the “whole counsel of God,” not just an emphasis on one aspect of God’s Word–to serve our own ends, which is to raise $$$ for LCMS, Inc.

    Give the people the Sacraments and teach God’s Word in ALL its truth and purity and don’t base teaching and preaching on what WE want.

    I am not a delegate, but I still vote “NO” on this one!

    Ginny Valleau

  4. 4-16: To Respectfully Decline Overtures

    Following is one of the declined overtures (#4-10 from Peace, Fort Atkinson, WI):

    Overture 4-10 Curb Synod’s Finances

    Whereas, A statistical table titled “Two Decades of Change” on page 765 of the 2010 Lutheran Annual reports that in 2008, the LCMS had 701 clergymen on its roster not serving congregations as pastor but “Serving Synod, Districts and others”; and

    Whereas, At least some of the church officials are receiving a salary several times that of the average pastor; and

    Whereas, The high salary of many LCMS officials and executives is hurting contributions to the LCMS for mission work, causing a rapid decline in the number of full-time missionaries now being sent by the LCMS to lands foreign and domestic; therefore be it

    Resolved, That the 2010 LCMS convention declare that all fulltime district presidents of the LCMS return to the parish ministry and become part-time presidents; and be it further

    Resolved, That duties now assigned to the Council Of Presidents under the Bylaws be assigned to alternate bodies of the Synod or entirely dispensed with; and be it further

    Resolved, That the 2010 LCMS convention declare that there be fewer full-time executives in our national LCMS headquarters and district offices; and be it finally

    Resolved, That the moneys saved by these actions be used for foreign missions and mission starts in all districts.

    ===================

    The reason given for declining this overture: “Provides no Rationale or Steps for Implementation.”

    To me, it looks rational and easy to implement.

    Ginny Valleau

  5. @Ginny Valleau #4

    According to the resolution, as Ginny quotes it, congregations are “…encouraged to search the Scriptures for all stewardship examples…” “…study biblically based stewardship principles…” “…each district president lead…in a stewardship renaissance…”

    “Faith Aflame”, one of the LCMS’ stewardship programs used “The Prodigal Father,” Luke 15:11-32 as a parable demonstrating (are you ready?) STEWARDSHIP. “What stewardship principles did the father demonstrate?” “What was the younger son’s stewardship attitude?” These are a couple of questions from that study.

    How about this “stewardship” verse: Hebrews 4:13. I invite the readers to check the context of this verse and tell me what this has to do with stewardship!

    Like Ginny, I am not a delegate, but I’d vote “no” on this one–I have no doubt that this is a stealth resolution, as I said above in #1.

    Johannes (eisogesically challenged)

  6. RE: 4-01. The one problem is that it sounds like it is requiring the DP’s to *be successful* in their efforts at a “stewardship rennaisance” in their districts. That’s a tall order! 🙂

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