Great Commentary on the Michele Bachmann Matter from Mollie and from WELS President Schroeder, by Pr. Rossow

Here are two great articles on the Michele Bachmann matter. The first is by our own blogger Mollie Ziegler Hemingway:

http://www.getreligion.org/2011/07/more-breaking-news-from-1537/

The second is from WELS President Mark Schroeder:

http://www.religionnews.com/index.php?/rnstext/guest_commentary_neither_we_nor_michele_bachmann_is_anti-catholic/

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

Great Commentary on the Michele Bachmann Matter from Mollie and from WELS President Schroeder, by Pr. Rossow — 31 Comments

  1. Michelle left for what can only be called a Willow Creek, “decision” style church. What truly confessional Lutheran could do that? I suspect she had no real commitment to Lutheran Confessional Orthodoxy. I truly believe the LCMS to be a heterodox mess with little if no spiritual discipline but I cannot bring myself to become a member of a CG church gone mad.

    I love much of Michelle’s conservative political positions but her judgement, for me, is now in real question. Maybe Perry can provide a more consistent integrity to the office. Could a real confessional Lutheran become president, yes, because a real confessional Lutheran could handle any objections that comes their way and because most non Catholics find the Papacy tyrannical anyway.

  2. I agree, Perry may be the real deal as well.

    Great assessment of the possibility of a confessional Lutheran becoming a president – it gives me hope. Thanks.

    TR

  3. Interesting that the press, which mostly doesn’t give a whit about Christ, should pass judgment on the Lutherans’ “anti-Christ” position. In point of fact, much of the media is in the spirit of anti-Christ.

    Now that Bachmann is no longer a Lutheran, she won’t have to defend the BOC.

    Johannes

  4. I found this very interesting. However, I could still vote for her. She is not afraid to stand up for what is right. It is interesting to note that our congressman is a member of the WELS and supports abortion and such things. Between the two, I would have to go with Bachmann even though she is no longer WELS.

  5. @mames #1
    Maybe Perry can provide a more consistent integrity to the office.

    Perry is a Texan.
    He rewards his friends and removes his “enemies” [perceived. all they have to do is disagree with him] from appointed office, even if they were doing a good job.

    But the synod outside Texas didn’t listen to us either. Deja vu… (sigh)

  6. Oh, yes… Perry’s having an ecumenical prayer affair in August.
    Syncretism, anyone?

  7. @mames #1
    Michelle left for what can only be called a Willow Creek, “decision” style church.
    I’ve never found the name or affiliation of her current congregation, but it sounds like you have. Can you give us the name?

  8. News flash: Senator Paul Simon who died in 2003 was also a member of a Lutheran church body with the word “antichrist” in its confessions!

    But apparently this doesn’t matter. Sen. Simon was consistently pro-abortion throughout his career, voting to spend tax money on abortions at home and overseas. He hosted a conference on RU-486 in order to bring the French abortion pill to the United States. At least two women have died taking it, not to mention the millions of unborn babies.

    I don’t remember Simon ever getting any grief about the “pope is antichrist” business from the media that adored him.

    The real question is how he remained a member in good standing of an LCMS congregation. I guess confessionalism is in the eye of the beholder.

  9. helen :Oh, yes… Perry’s having an ecumenical prayer affair in August.Syncretism, anyone?

    So? Perry possibly is running for POTUS, not for Synodical president.

  10. @Pr. Don Kirchner #12
    So? Perry possibly is running for POTUS, not for Synodical president

    I was right. “Deja vu all over again”

    “The prophets” think their version should control the country.
    It sounds like American uncivil religion.

  11. @Ariel #8

    As a former Texan I would caution my steadfast brothers against citing anything in the Texas Observer as a source authority. Because Texas is a “red” state, people do not realize the radical tradition of “progressive” populism that characterizes the Austin Democrats. This is a magazine which gives out “Molly Awards” for reporting in the tradition of Molly Ivins, the Rachel Maddow of her day. Her screeds against Ronald Reagan were all over the op-ed pages of Texas newspapers in the 80’s, she was a leader of what is known in journalism as “activist journalism”. This is a post-modern approach to news which seeks to effect “social change” through journalism. So rather than the “hard news” approach of objective reporting, accompanied by opinion columns on the editorial page for citizens to consider debates on the issues of the day, the news itself is “advocacy journalism.” Stories and even facts themselves are selected to support an agenda. In the case of the Texas Observer, the agenda is to elect as many “progressives” as possible to public office.

  12. @Phillip #15
    In the case of the Texas Observer, the agenda is to elect as many “progressives” as possible to public office.

    Phillip,
    The “prayer meeting” is still one no Lutheran should be seen at, not least because it’s sponsored by a politician. An opportunist politician… before enough Michiganders came down here to turn the state Republican (except Austin) Rick Perry was a Democrat.
    He chaired Algore’s campaign in Texas but now he doesn’t believe in controlling “greenhouse gas emissions” because it would require his awlbuddies to be more careful of what they spill into the Texas air from their refineries.

    But he’s a member of every “governors’ association” that exists around here, and is or has been chairman of the Republical governors’ association.
    “Deja vu…”

  13. Yes, Helen, the prayer meeting is not one a Lutheran should go to, but since Gov. Perry is not Lutheran it doesn’t bother me.

    As far as Michiganders turning the state red, I respectfully disagree. I was a Democrat in my younger days, doing volunteer work for Democrat Rep. Bob Gammage. Even got to meet Rosalyn Carter in his office – which I thought was pretty cool at the time! But, like Phil Gramm and so many other Texans, the Reagan Revolution brought us into the Republican Party.

    In my Texas days, I went on to be a delegate to the state GOP convention, worked for a GOP state senate candidate (Jess Coffey, also a former Dem), was President of the College Republicans at UNT, and Parliamentarian at the state CR convention. So I got to know a lot of voters and many Texas politicians. For every transplanted Midwesterner I knew in my Texas days that was either a GOP voter or GOP leader, I would say there were at least twice as many native Texans who had switched over – and another who had moved to Texas from another Southern state (like my parents did). So I just don’t buy the Texas Democrat line that “the Yankees turned our state Republican”. Indeed, in the last congressional district I campaigned in, there were more challenges for the GOP side with liberals moving in from California (whose candidate was from Massachusetts!); the natives were pretty much all for the conservative candidate.

    Does this mean that I think Rick Perry is pure or that I’m voting for him? I might vote for him but, no, this simply means what I am saying: 1 – that one needs to view anything in the Texas Observer with a grain of salt. 2 – Evangelicals go to prayer meetings, especially in Southern states, so I’m not surprised that Gov. Perry would participate in such. 3 – Texans of mine and previous generations usually start off as Democrats for historical reasons but then moved into the GOP, first via the Reagan Revolution, the rest via the 1994 Contract with America.

    Speaking of opportunism in politics, there are varying degrees, and often leadership means not necessarily opportunism but accepting the priorities of the team even if that means compromising on one of your issues. (As I told the Brothers at our regional gathering last year, “Harrison will make some decisions you don’t like, but we will serve the church well to put those disagreements into perspective and overlook them for the sake of the greater good of the synod.”) But, yes, sometimes the opportunism is crass. You mentioned Perry being a state chairman for Gore. I believe that was in 1988, when Gore ran as the choice of conservative Dems. Like Gephardt before him, he was even pro-life at the time. And his wife was a crusader against immoral lyrics in pop entertainment. Gore, like all Dems who “go national”, moved far to the Left after that. So it is fair to put Perry’s support for Gore in the proper context. I’d submit that it is Al Gore who has been far more opportunistic than Gov. Perry.

    Again, I’m not endorsing Perry for President, though, like Pastor Rossow, I think he is worth considering should he decide to run. But I do think his actions need to be viewed in the proper context. We shouldn’t expect him to behave like a confessional Lutheran because he is not a Lutheran. And we shouldn’t expect him to always have been a Republican in order not to be considered “opportunistic” because a sizable plurality of Texans have made the same journey Gov. Perry has. And we, like Ronald Reagan, left the Democrat party out of principle, not because of “opportunism”.

    Of course, this thread is about Mollie’s excellent article and Schroeder’s superb statement, so I’ll let you have the last word if you wish so this won’t get too far off topic. 🙂

  14. It isn’t just the WELS that’s under attack as controversial. The media picked on WELS this time just because Michelle B. had a connection to it. ANY Christian church that believes that Jesus is divine, or in the virgin birth, or that Christ is the only way to God, or that He rose from the dead, is considered controversial by the media. It isn’t just your grandfather’s church under attack any more, folks.
    If this is news to you, you need to catch up on the state of our country and world when it comes to the ongoing attack on all Christianity.

  15. @Sue wilson #19

    Excellent point, Sue. It is Christianity. But it is also politics. Some animals are more equal than others. And whether or not you get attacked for your religious beliefs very often depends on who you are and what political agenda you promote.

  16. @Phillip #18
    As far as Michiganders turning the state red, I respectfully disagree.

    I should have put a smiley after that one. 🙂 It derived from my early days here, when Michigan was getting blamed for everything, (but especially for bad driving).

    [I concede that the rural Texan has better road manners, by and large, but I’m not sure Michigan could corrupt the urban variety.]

    I defer to you on the history of Texas politics, since you’ve been paying more attention longer. [I could suggest that all Texans are opportunists, but that would be a slight exaggeration!] 8-^)

  17. I just read the statement from President Schroeder on Bachmann and it is right on with our Lutheran confessions and the Word of God.

  18. Pastor T R: I agree, Perry may be the real deal as well.

    What?

    Well…now that I ‘ve thought about it, his experience as a Texas A&M cheerleader and degree in Ag Science make him a sure contender for POTUS in 2012. I can go for that.

    BS

  19. Apparently, those responding about Michelle Bachman on this site are not aware that women in the WELS church are not allowed to vote on congregational matters. Since we have enjoyed women’s suffrage in this country since 1920, this can certainly be a controversial issue for someone seeking public office. Her choosing to break from such a church makes sense to me.

  20. The way I see it, her issue is not with Lutheran doctrine. Rather, it is about a synodical practice. As a former WELS member, I could see such a scenario waiting to take place. Let’s not turn this into something it isn’t, just to cover a practice within the WELS church that has been held onto like a sacrament.

  21. The (current) position of the LCMS is that member congregations may extend the voters assembly suffrage to women or not, as each decides. There are a number of congregation I know of in which women do not vote in voters assembly.

    In terms of Lutheran doctrine, a decision on women suffrage in the voters assembly is one of Christian liberty for a congregation. Individual Christians are also free to favor or oppose a constitutional amendment to repeal the 19th amendment.

    As for the Bachmanns ending their membership in their WELS congregation (after two years of delinquency), the only alleged reason (“preference issues”) I’ve seen is from someone, who requested not to be identified, who claimed to be (some kind of) an aide with Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign (in some unspecified region of the country), and who communicated in some way (face-to-face, phone, email, voice mail, facebook, letter, note left on the doorstep?) to the Chief Political Correspondent for CBN.

  22. As one who left the WELS synod, I am still a Lutheran. A letter may be written to the congregation expressing intent to give up membership, but WELS mail just keeps on coming.

    I love the way Carl referred to Christian Liberty, as that happens to be the title of one of Martin Luther’s great writings. It could easily be compared in size and content to the Constitution of the United States and Declaration of Independence.

    When women were denied the vote, they were often times denied an education as well. Could it be that women who are not in the habit of voting in their churches also dismiss their constitutional right to vote in our publice elections? That might explain in part how Al Franken was elected to the Senate from Minnesota.

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