Rev Matt Harrison’s Address to Convention Following Election

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If one member suffers, all suffer together. If one rejoices, all rejoice together. Right now there are many rejoicing and there are many suffering. Luther says when you’re walking along and you strike your little toe on a chair or a table, a table leg, what happens is the whole body bends over, the face grimaces and grabs that little toe. And there’s no use saying “that’s just a little toe,” because the whole body suffers.

This I realize is a tumultuous change in the life of our Synod. I wish to thank President Kieschnick for his heart for evangelism, and his deep desire to move this Synod forward. Many are suffering, and it will be very challenging times to work together.

I wish to inform you that you have kept your perfect record of electing sinners as presidents of the Missouri Synod. [applause] I guarantee you I will sin and fail. I will fall short. I will sin against you. I wish also to say, that right now I forgive all who have in any way have sinned against me or anybody else, and plead your forgiveness for anything that I said or did that offended you. I beg of you your prayers, I beg of you your daily prayers and intercession. These are challenging times. I promise you that I will be as straight with you as I possibly can, to the best of my ability, guided by the Spirit of God. I pledge to you that I will not coerce you. I will do my best by the Word of Christ to lead with a generous Gospel of Jesus Christ, which forgives us all of our sins, and motivates us to love and care for our neighbor in mercy and compassion. And I will work as hard as I possibly can for unity around the clear and compelling Word of God and nothing else.

I wish to just introduce my dear wife to you, Kathy. Please Kathy, would you stand. [applause]

I’m so impressed by you at this convention, how you have borne with one another, been patient, asked for forgiveness. This is the greatest privilege and honor of one’s life to stand before this body in this fashion. I could never imagine it. And I pray the Lord will bless you in the days to come to work for unity and love and compassion, that the Gospel of Christ may go forth from all of us, in every single place, everywhere around the world, that many may know, many many more may know, the Gospel of Jesus for eternal life. The Lord be with you. [“And also with you.” Applause.]

About Norm Fisher

Norm was raised in the UCC in Connecticut, and like many fell away from the church after high school. With this background he saw it primarily as a service organization. On the miracle of his first child he came back to the church. On moving to Texas a few years later he found a home in Lutheranism when he was invited to a confessional church a half-hour away by our new neighbors.

He is one of those people who found a like mind in computers while in Middle School and has been programming ever since. He's responsible for many websites, including the Book of Concord, LCMSsermons.com, and several other sites.

He has served the church in various positions, including financial secretary, sunday school teacher, elder, PTF board member, and choir member.

More of his work can be found at KNFA.net.

Comments

Rev Matt Harrison’s Address to Convention Following Election — 16 Comments

  1. Thanks Norm, for posting this. The sun seems just a wee bit brighter this morning.
    President Harrison has my most ardent prayers. The task is set and the direction is now clear. Now folks, the work begins.

    Give thanks to the Lord, He is good, and His Mercy endureth forever! 1 Chronicles 16:34

  2. I haven’t had the time or courage to read thru all of the BRTF stuff that was passed. I think it is ironic that the massive structure changes that Pres. Kieschnick initiated and shepherded into reality will be administered not by him, but by Rev. Harrison. I’m sure it’s a bitter defeat for Pres. Kieschnick, and although I disagreed with him on so many issues, I cannot but feel a strong sense of empathy for him right now.

    How President Harrison governs and administers this new structure will reveal to us the kind of man he is. We should not expect miracles, nor is it realistic to think that he will issue an encyclical “ex cathedra” banning contemporary worship, or any other such odiousities that some fear. But I think I can safely predict how he will go about the work of the Lord in the House of His (and our) Fathers:

    Our new president is a pastor at heart, and we can reasonably expect that he will govern pastorally, as Walther did.
    He is an able administrator, and we can expect that he will use that gift wisely in the weeks and months and years to come.
    He is a man of the Word, and we can expect that his every move will be bathed in prayer and God’s Word.

    What more could we ask?

    Johannes (soli Deo gloria!)

  3. What I love about this guy is the humility. I can’t imagine any Lutheran Church-body leader of recent memory getting up there saying that he’s a sinner right off the bat. You’ve got to love this guy. We should all be praying for him in the coming months.

  4. For the election of Pr. Matthew Harrison as our new President –
    I thank the Lord.
    For the election of the Vice-Presidents, one through five –
    I thank the Lord.
    For the serve rendered by our current Synodical President Kieschnick –
    I thank the Lord.
    For the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod and its future –
    I thank the Lord.
    For the Word of God and the understanding of our Confessions –
    I thank the Lord.
    For the return to the work of the Brothers of John the Steadfast in our homes, our congregations and with all our brothers and sisters of the LC-MS –
    I thank the Lord.
    Peace,
    Dennis

  5. Quote: “Luther says when you’re walking along and you strike your little toe on a chair or a table, a table leg, what happens is the whole body bends over, the face grimaces and grabs that little toe. And there’s no use saying “that’s just a little toe,” because the whole body suffers.”

    I think our new Pres.-elect was referring to LW 69:78, in the new series of Luther’s Works (CPH). Great stuff!

  6. Let your gentleness be known to all. Praise the Lord! Matt demonstates a gentleness and humility that is refreshing in this day and age. May Gopd bless him with many years of faithful service.

  7. Let your gentleness be known to all. Praise the Lord! Matt demonstates a gentleness and humility that is refreshing in this day and age. May God bless him with many years of faithful service.

  8. I have seen (Presiding) Bishop Hanson’s response to Pastor Harrison’s election to LCMS Synodical President. Having read this response from the ELCA, I am curious if any formal response has been made / published from the Evangelical Lutheran Synod (ELS [Mankato, MN]), the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS), or the Church of the Lutheran Confession (CLC). I would think they would have something to say to this appointment of Pastor Matt Harrison in the LCMS.

    ELCA response:
    http://www.elca.org/Who-We-Are/Our-Three-Expressions/Churchwide-Organization/Communication-Services/News/Releases.aspx?a=4577

  9. Norm, is it possible to download a copy of this video so I can share it with some people. Being able to burn a CD would be handy.

    michael

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