Great Stuff Found on the Web — Why non-Liturgical Worship Cannot be Lutheran

Found over on Pastor Riley’s blog, The First Premise, an article written by Dr. Jack Kilcrease:

 

I would put forth the following reasons why contemporary worship is inconsistent with Scripture and Confessions:

1. It promotes a false view of evangelism: Let’s start by asking the question, why does anyone adopt contemporary worship? I would bet you 9 times out of 10 it’s not because the 80 year German grandmas in your congregation can’t bear to go to church one more Sunday without hearing an Boston or Eagles concert instead of the liturgy. It’s always for the sake of evangelism (at least in the LCMS). The argument goes that the young folks (and I remember this argument, because I was one of them not very long ago) can’t relate to the liturgy and in order to keep them we’ve got to relate to them through rock music. Usually this is accompanied with some sort of threat by the part of someone in the congregation that if we don’t adopt this, then people will end up in Hell.

The first problem is that it actually never works. Often times congregations will literally lose people when they do this or their decline will persist. My parents’ old church in Des Moines was an example. They made the 11:00 service the rock concert service in order to draw in the young families from the school or to keep them. When they started they had 120 kids going to the school. After 5 years of contemporary worship, they had 80.

In a sense, just on the basis of marketing, Lutheran shouldn’t try to adopt these practices because they don’t work for us. The Baptists will always do them better than us and if we send the message that we’re no different than the Baptists, then why choose us over them? Secondly, you basically end up alienating people who are already loyal Lutherans – like my parents. Although faith is not a choice, where I go to church is a decision “below me” as Luther would put it.

The second point is that all this ultimately assumes an anthropology that we don’t possess. Namely, that people are rational and autonomous beings who can “make their decision for Jesus.” This was the whole premise of Revivalism, which comes out of Pietism. Since the Spirit doesn’t effectively work faith through the mere proclamation of Word and sacrament, then you’ve got to somehow supplement it with a dog-and-pony show. Ultimately, it’s about marketing. How can we influence people to make this decision? That’s one of the reasons why all the televangelists end up getting in trouble. If the premise is that you have to manipulate people to get them to do the right thing (believe in Jesus), then you’ll be tempted to manipulate them to do other things as well once you have that power over them.

Ultimately then, the move to contemporary worship is based on a desire for evangelism that contradicts the Confessional Lutheran concept of grace and free will. God predestines the elect and causes them to have faith through the Word and the sacraments. There is a set number of the elect. If we adopt contemporary worship, there will be the same number of people in heaven as there would be if we didn’t. Hence, we should simply proclaim the Word and not worry about manipulating people into “making their decision for Jesus”

2. It promotes a false anthropology: Let’s expand on the point I made earlier about the false concept of human powers after the Fall. Contemporary worship also promotes an idea that is common in the Mainline right now as well. The idea that practice makes perfect. In other words, by doing exciting, emotional worship, it will form us into a Christian community and make us better Christians. This is one of the reasons why Pastors in these congregations are thought of as “leaders” and not as “Ministers of the Word,” that is, pastoral healers. “Leaders” direct us somewhere and therefore get us to do something. “Minister of the Word” gives us the goods of Christ’s benefits which we receive passively.

In this contemporary scheme, the Pastor brings in the new worship program. It forms peoples emotions to be “on fire for God.” Then he gives a kind of moralizing message so that they’ll “effect real change in their community” or something. In other words, specific practices create faith and promote morals. By doing them, we become something.

Part of this is a bad doctrine of creation. The idea here is that we create ourselves by our actions. This makes us God and is in fact what the serpent promised in the garden of Eden – “eat this and become God.” Also, bear in mind, this is precisely the idea that Luther rejected in Aristotle and the via moderna when he started the Reformation. We are God’s objects through proclamation. He speaks us into existence as justified sinners via Word and Sacrament. We do not create ourselves by our actions.

3. It moves in the wrong direction!: Contemporary worship is praise worship. Praise worship moves the wrong direction. It moves from us to God. We read the silly and repetitive verses off the projector. We ascend by our praises to God. We move to God, God does not move to us.

The structure of liturgical worship is to opposite. It moves from God to us and back again. In Genesis 1, God speaks forth creation and therefore creation glorifies God in return. God’s initiative prompts the return of praise. In liturgical worship, the Pastor speaks the words of grace and therefore frees the congregation to praise God. This back and forth is part of the structure of creation and new creation, as Revelation 4-5 suggest.

4. Non-liturgical worship is a break with the biblical and ecumenical heritage of the Lutheran Church: The Old Testament Church had liturgical worship. All churches had liturgical worship until the 17th century the “Holy Fairs” began to emerge in Northern Ireland and Scotland. These evolved into the American camp meetings and the modern church-growth style worship settings of modern Evangelicals.

The Formula of Concord states that we should not abandon any of the traditions of the Church unless they contradict the Scriptures. This is partially because they help maintain continuity with the Church-catholic (which is important if we don’t want to be a sect), but also because they teach the faith even when we have faithless teachers.

A good example of this is during the Arian controversy. In spite of the fact that Arius and some other Bishops were teaching the faith incorrectly, a great many of the laity were still saved by the fact that the liturgy contained true expositions of the faith. Liturgy saves us from unskilled or heretical pastors and teachers. It promotes and preserves the faith.

Free-form worship can’t do this because it is subject to the whim of any given church-leader that comes along. Instead of teaching the faith, it seeks to promote a sub-cognitive faith based on meaningless formulas that are repeated over and over again. It seeks to promote emotions that will manipulate people into doing things, not create real faith, which always integrates the total person, intellect and emotions. This is one of the reasons why when they do surveys in churches that have non-liturgical worship and church-growth techniques they without fail can’t even correctly explain the Apostles Creed.

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

Great Stuff Found on the Web — Why non-Liturgical Worship Cannot be Lutheran — 83 Comments

  1. Miguel,

    “My experience is that the CCM proponents are always the ones making the “taste” argument, as if there were no substantive difference.”

    I agree.

    “Ken Hull, Chair of the Music Department and Director of the Church Music and Worship specialization at the University of Waterloo (Canada) recently asserted: “Music does carry meaning, not just by virtue of the personal or collective associations we make with it, but primarily in its sounds and structure. When combined with words, music colours and shapes how we understand a test. When it stands alone, its gestures and contours still carry an expressive potential that is capable of cultural and theological interpretation. Issues around music in worship are not fundamental about style but about meaning.” See “The Challenge of the Praise Chorus,” in Liturgy Canada XI, No. 4 (Michaelmas 2007), Cf. p. 3 f.”

    Footnote from my pastor’s paper on CCM, which Scott Diekmann has now linked to:

    http://stand-firm.blogspot.com/2012/10/cataphatic-mysticism.html

    +Nathan

  2. On a lighter note, I avoid alchohol completely but not for religious reasons. I am very happy that some .people can enjoy a drink and not go crazy. Alchohol should not be served to Native Americans or red haired people of Irish descent.

    My congregation uses wine but also has a little section which is grape juice only. I accidently got a little cup with real wine. It was so jarring and unexpected that I almost spit it out.

    But it caused no harm. Theologically I think real wine should be used but i think dipping the bread in the wine is safe enough for those who can’t handle alchohol. Just my opinion

  3. PS, Liturgy all the way, but we should exercise forebearance toward our churches which use COW. In time they will realize that it does not produce sound Christians and will jettison it. Decades ago the charismatic movement invaded Lutheran churches. I think it has died out thank goodness.

  4. @Mark Louderback #46
    Only 20? Shoot, Mary had Jesus and his brother by then…
    Like those other crazy traditionalist Lutherans, I believe in the semper virgo. 😉

    Those are really the only points I bring up.
    I meant a good point in my favor, but this is noted. I must say you’ve thought through this a lot better than most ccm advocates I’ve met (certainly better than those who say “worship should be more spontaneous!”)

    Well, see “most effective” is fraught with peril. There is no “most effective” way. God saves. So, even if you do stuff crappy, it doesn’t matter.
    But out of love, there is a more loving way. I think for some, CoWo is a more loving way.

    I think “most effective” can still be used, though I agree it needs to be defined better than “Can God save someone through this?” Here’s how I would define it. “Most effective” worship is worship that does not contain compromising doctrine and practice. As all worship is based on a tradition of some sort, worship should be based on a tradition that emphasizes the means of grace. Most effective worship is worship that exalts Christ (it’s quite telling that the most popular ccm songs in the LCMS use the word “I” far more than the word “Christ”). Effective worship also does not promote a false ecumenism (for example, using pentecostal music in church can and often does communicate that pentecostal forms are ok; it did to me at least). And it’s more loving not to give people what they want, but what they need. It’s been said before, but it bears repeating: the seeker-sensitive Christian needs to realize that there is one Seeker, Christ Jesus. He seeks and saves the lost, so if we need to be sensitive to anyone, it’s Him.

    So I would say the reason people like CoWo is because it stirs the emotions, not because it’s a vehicle to deliver Christ’s gifts.
    I guess for me, this does not ring true. Ditto for much of the paragraph.

    For you, who have been catechized, no doubt you look to worship, whether contemporary or traditional, to deliver Christ’s gifts to you, and thanks be to God for that. I’m talking about the “Unchurched/NonLutheran Harry and Mary” we all love talking about. I doubt they love CCM because it delivers Christ’s gifts to them. If they prefer CCM over traditional liturgy, it’s probably because CCM stirs the emotions, and giving them what they want perpetuates the illusion that this is what worship is all about. Do we want that, even if we’re “slipping some Lutheranism” into the mix? A spoonful of sugar may make the medicine go down… but it’s still not a good idea if the patient has diabetes.

    No, more like the exception that proves the rule.

    I have yet to learn from my (admittedly meager) study of formal logic that exceptions ever prove a rule. Either musical style is entirely neutral, in which case we can use rap and metal in worship appropriately, or it’s not neutral, in which case we can see musical styles on a sliding scale of “worst” (probably theramin music :p ) to best (in my opinion, the best of Lutheran liturgy and hymnody). You can’t just say rap is bad for worship and then say musical styles are neutral. Exceptions do not prove rules. “All A are B” and “Some A are not B” cannot be held true simultaneously, unless God Himself makes two statements in this form in His Word.

    My point is you can’t say this and also say “I reject counting noses.”
    Because I just don’t think this statement is true.

    I can argue that your premise is false even as I claim it to be irrelevant. So yes, I can say “Counting noses is irrelevant” and also say, “CCM does not draw and keep noses.” This does not directly strengthen my argument, but it does weaken the argument of those who use that premise. And if contemporary worship were really retaining members, why is our synod bleeding members from every pore? Again, in my view counting noses is irrelevant, but the “change and you’ll get more youth” argument rings hollow even if it were relevant.

    I don’t think it is quite the distinction that you make it to be though. Do we teach the Estonian German or do we proclaim the Gospel to them in Estonian? What do we expect them to learn and know?

    We expect them to know language, not necessarily culture. In our multicultural world, people are used to dealing with culture shock, and do not get easily offended at it. It amazes me that Mormons and Muslims have no “worship” wars, sticking to their traditional worship, and they’re growing. And then the CCM advocate turns around and says in order to grow, we have to accommodate. Again, irrelevant, but I want to bring home just how false this argument is. As for being too loving to expect people to get liturgy — If people are willing to have Mormon missionaries confiscate their coffee maker (I think we can all agree that’s a crime against humanity), or if they’re willing to pray five times a day to a god who speaks only Arabic, why is it so burdensome for them to learn an hour’s worth of liturgy for their own good?

    Well, obviously you start out with the picture books right? As opposed to saying “Let’s start with chapter books.”
    I think that in this day and age, society lacks the teaching of Scripture that previous generations had. We need to adapt to this.

    This is the responsibility of catechesis, not worship style. And even if it were the responsibility of worship style, obviously the goal would be to move the people from “picture books” to “chapter books” eventually. Does your church have an intentional plan to move people from the contemporary service to something deeper?

    As a final note, I have no problem with meeting people where they are and explaining the liturgy. I brought a friend to church one time. Her only experience with liturgy was what she saw in movies, and that she had attended a Catholic wedding once. I took the time to explain to her what the liturgy was about. I didn’t apologize for it. She was interested. We went to church and I explained closed communion to her, talking about the Real Presence and Manducatio Indignorum and their Scriptural basis. Again, without apology. She wasn’t offended. She actually said that since she didn’t believe in the Real Presence, she couldn’t in good conscience commune with us. After worship, what was her response? “Let’s do this again sometime.”

    You say educating people about the liturgy takes time. But in my opinion, it’s time well spent.

  5. @Mark Louderback #42

    Why then is a might fortress re-written?

    That is not syncopation. The original melody is older then bar lines, the rhythmic unit by which we define syncopation. It sounds syncopated to the modern ear, but at the time it was very accessible to laity in the congregation, hence its popularity. Today, it doesn’t sound very syncopated if it isn’t incredibly rushed. Keep in mind, the re-writer of the melody was Bach. As rhythmic measurements and notation became standardized, it was very common for rhythmic chorale melodies to have non-rhythmic alternates. The originals are not hard to sing unless played fast.

    I think U2 is pretty easy to sing…

    Of course you do. It’s a product of your generation and culture. But the point is that many CCM artists have argued that if somebody likes your song they are going to sing it regardless of accessibility. The idea is that “they’re my fans, so of course they’ll like it.” The problem is, this music is being forced on the church as a whole, where there are many non-fans. It’s targeted towards niche market demographics, and then being extolled as what’s best for the whole church.

    I tend to think that people go by basic market instincts.

    I agree. Which is why CCM artists write for record sales and air play. They know that if they get those two, evangelical congregations are guaranteed to use their songs, because their leaders are too often musically illiterate and not considering whether or not it facilitates participation. Talk to their music leaders: “That sounds cool! Let’s use it!” That’s as deep as the reflection tends to go.

    We must not be completely black and white about all CCM being the spawn of Satan, but I wish churches heralding the genre would be selective and use moderation. I get using a tune by the Getty’s, Eric Wyse, or Twila Paris. Even Marty Haugen and S. Starke are technically “contemporary.” But we should lean towards poetry written by pastoral theologians, not jingles written by rock stars.

  6. @Jeff #3
    Decades ago the charismatic movement invaded Lutheran churches. I think it has died out thank goodness.

    Not entirely. It morphs. 🙁
    Labyrinths may be the latest “new thing”… (borrowed from paganism).
    Some faith healing is still around.

  7. @NathanG92 #4
    It amazes me that [ ] Muslims have no “worship” wars, sticking to their traditional worship,… [Mormons omitted for the moment….]

    You don’t think so!? What you mean is that they don’t discuss it. Their Imams issue death sentences instead.

    A great deal of the carnage in Irag was caused by the historic feud between the Sunnis and the Shiites, (and both against the Christians). There are muslims in Afghanistan and then there are the Taliban, also muslims, of a radical sort, busily killing each other (and us when we get in the way).

    Kurds are muslim, as far as I know, and yet both Iraq & Turkey want no part of them.

  8. I have yet to see the “missional” LCMS pastors and the LCMS district presidents explain why the Church Growth Movement (TCN, Willow Creek, Saddleback, etc.) have failed to attract millions of young people to Lutheranism. Look at the data. Even when the liturgy is replaced by contemporary praise bands, church attendance continues to decline. Why continue to spend money on programs that fail to achieve the desired result.

    @Nathan #1
    Nathan,

    Are increasing numbers of young people getting turned off by the big box seeker-churches? Are mega-churches shrinking in size as a result? I would love to see data and read testimonies that support this.

  9. Lumpenkönig :
    Are increasing numbers of young people getting turned off by the big box seeker-churches? Are mega-churches shrinking in size as a result? I would love to see data and read testimonies that support this.

    Crystal Cathedral. How did that turn out? After the departure of The Leader, things went downhill fast. An overreliance on the cult of personality. Not all are gifted speakers, not all praise bands are great. If all you can build on is a marketing ploy, what happens when a change occurs? Where is your faith anchored? These mega-churches have a life cycle, too. they are not timeless. Only God and His Word is timeless. I would rather have my hope secured to that than on the itching ears of A (singular) generation “feels” is neat.

  10. @Mark Louderback #50
    Perhaps. Perhaps we can say the same for each and every worship format. I am not saying that you or anyone else advocate this, but isn’t the logical end of “perhaps perhaps” that we should each worship by what is inspiring in our own eyes? It has been my experience that when a person is in deep anguish and distress and looking for help and comfort that it often comes from hearing/speaking words/hymns from the liturgy and not from whatever is or was generally popular/inspiring for their age group.

  11. ***Bunny trail alert***

    @NathanG92,

    Twenty years old, huh?

    What are you doing/studying now?

    +Nathan

  12. @Mark Louderback #44
    In regards to the Lord’s Supper, it is the Lord’s Supper and not my supper. And as such I have been taught and believe we do not have the freedom to, as my friend puts it, change the menu. Meaning add to or take from how it was instituted by Christ. It seems to me that substituting grape juice or whatever for grape wine does both, add to and take away. So can we modify the element(s) in some way to accommodate individuals? If we think yes as long as we keep the main substance then, speaking only of the wine, how can we modify it? Dilution seems to be about the only way. I guess anything could be used as the diluting agent although water and grape juice seems to be the most reasonable and common. So now the question is about how much can the wine be diluted? Or at what point does it become not wine diluted with (whatever) but becomes (whatever) diluted with wine and so the element is lost and something else added? I say at the point where the wine becomes or is in fact the diluting agent. I personally haven’t ever met anyone who could not accept or tolerate an individual cup that contains one more drop of wine than the diluting agent without ill effects. As far as water v.s. grape juice as the diluting agent, the grape juice seems to bring on confusion and/or doubt. What are your thoughts?

  13. Pastor Ted Crandall :

    Miguel :But we should lean towards poetry written by pastoral theologians, not jingles written by rock stars.

    (worth repeating)

    The Roman Catholic church had its share of non-biblical gimmicks, such as saints, relics, purgatory, worship of Mary, etc. The 21st century non-denominational church has its share of non-biblical “over the top” gimmicks, many of which are critiqued by Chris Rosborough.

    Most LCMS (virtually all?) proponents of contemporary worship have never set foot in a seeker-sensitive, non-denominational church. If they did, would they still be big fans of contemporary worship?

    http://www.alittleleaven.com

  14. @Lumpenkönig #14

    Most LCMS (virtually all?) proponents of contemporary worship have never set foot in a seeker-sensitive, non-denominational church.

    Then where are they getting all these crazy ideas? I’ve seen them visit these places and come back “on fire.” They drool over their celebrities and strategize lame imitations of their methods. Bad ideas come from somewhere, and these didn’t just drop out of the sky into their heads at random.

    However, I’d say a visit to the kind of extremes in Rosborough’s museum could be just what the doctor ordered. Sort of pictures the “end game” of those methods.

  15. are the 35 the main problems in the LCMS-lack of leadership? do some of the 35-too many go with the world and not Scripture and the Confessions? Pull back the money from these people and give the gifts to the Lord for the faithful district who clean up spiritual problems and assist faithful pastors in the trenches instead of blackballing them- who lose all for Truth of doctrine and practice.It is a disgrace to snub or ignore the faithful pastors and their families.Send the money to missions directly or the faithful districts without the church growth,etc elements and we will bring glory to HIM and save more souls. do dp threaten faithful Lutheran servants?

  16. One thing I always wonder. We here, always focus on the outward. Music, Liturgy, Divine Service, regarding this subject.

    What about how issues of a shepherd, when it involves sheep & the issues that involve, hurt, & harm, them that the world enjoys?

    How does the Office, differ when it comes to wise, foundational, & loving counsel, when the issues of a sheep’s life differ between the two?

    Yes, I do know, how they do. I need to know an answer pertaining to the Confessional vs the andere.
    The non liturgical vs the liturgical matters across the board. Right down to the privacy of the Office.
    Debating outward is easy, looking & debating the inward, as we all are, Lutheran, seems so very not. Why?

  17. please share with us dp responsibilities re: doctrine and practice in the local congregation?

  18. @Jason #9
    I too, have left town for a couple of days to attend a workshop, paid for by my employer. No matter what your occupation, a professional workshop can be fun and inspiring — especially if the workshop is held off-site. Who wouldn’t want to attend a conference to enjoy the food, the ideas, and the opportunity to network with colleagues.

    If only the Evangelical seminaries had a shelf life! Crystal Cathedral may be no more, but non-denominational seminaries where LCMS pastors and administrators go for advanced training (degrees, workshops, seminars) are doing quite well. I understand Fulller Seminary is still a popular place among LCMS clergy……….

  19. Miguel :
    @Lumpenkönig #14

    Most LCMS (virtually all?) proponents of contemporary worship have never set foot in a seeker-sensitive, non-denominational church.

    Then where are they getting all these crazy ideas? I’ve seen them visit these places and come back “on fire.” They drool over their celebrities and strategize lame imitations of their methods. Bad ideas come from somewhere, and these didn’t just drop out of the sky into their heads at random.
    However, I’d say a visit to the kind of extremes in Rosborough’s museum could be just what the doctor ordered. Sort of pictures the “end game” of those methods.

    Aha! So now you see the “end game.” Mega-churches are trying to be “spiritual” without having to be “religious.” The theology promoted by Church Growth is a trojan horse.

    It is not enough to replace the altar and the cross with a large stage. This clip is from an actual church service:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2cGLqSwaxk&list=UUGG5JJP4ub8Bniyk5B5C1xw&index=17&feature=plcp

  20. Pastor Louderback,

    I went to your church’s Facebook page and it is even less obviously Lutheran than your webpage. https://www.facebook.com/ShareChristArlington?ref=ts What was I supposed to see there that I missed? Do you intentionally keep your distance from your district and synod and all things LCMS, or is it simply an oversight? If I was looking for an LCMS church in your neighborhood, by viewing your Facebook and web pages, I would not know you are LCMS. Then again, I might be blind. Help me out here.

  21. Robert #21

    On Pastor L.’s Facebook page, down a ways, is a message about confirmation. If you hit “more” on that post, you’ll see something about the Missouri Synod.

  22. @Lumpenkönig #24

    Well, we know which of the two is trying to be more “relevant”. @Kathy #22, I scanned it again and I didn’t see the message about confirmation. My previous questions still stand. A question for everyone, If Jesus returned today, how many of the Elect would he fail to gather in because we didn’t give them the ‘liver-quiver’ from CoWo?

  23. Robert, on the Facebook page, September 28 entry about a new confirmation class. Read the entire message, hit “see more.” Just checked…it’s still there.

  24. @Kathy L. M. #26
    I found it! Thanks, Kathy. I quote:

    “We will starting a new confirmation class soon. Confirmation is a two year program for preteens starting in the seventh grade and finishing with a public confirmation of your faith at the end of their eighth grade year. The class is a study of the Lutheran faith, as it pertains to the Law and Gospel, laid out in Martin Luther’s small Catechism. If your child is older than this they are still welcome to attend. Completion of a Confirmation class is recommended before joining a Lutheran church in the Missouri synod….”

    I did remove the contact information from this post….but Kathy has sharp eyes. She located a mention of the Missouri Synod. I was unable to.

  25. @Robert #27
    Thanks. I was actually curious since our first LCMS church from the ’90s was a contemporary mission church. I look back now and think, “What was I thinking?” It’s like the veil has been lifted!

    I was also curious about the confirmation class since son #3’s class is being taught by one of the mothers and not the interim pastor. Son #1’s teacher was a fairly new (2 year) Christian. Looks like the contact info that you removed was for someone other than the pastor, so I wonder who is teaching that class.

  26. @robert hoffman #21
    Do you [Pr. L.] intentionally keep your distance from your district and synod and all things LCMS, or is it simply an oversight? If I was looking for an LCMS church in your neighborhood, by viewing your Facebook and web pages, I would not know you are LCMS.

    Pastor L. was gung-ho for the Violet Vatican only a few years ago.
    Has his District office improved recently, as well as the IC!?

    If so, give God the glory!

  27. @helen #29
    Just an “out-of-the-loop” lay-person asking…can you explain “Violet Vatican” and “IC?” How does this figure in with contemporary worship?

  28. @Kathy L. M. #31

    I’m sorry, Kathy! I was trying to say politely that Pr. L was much more enthusiastic about the previous synodical presidency, which encouraged his “CoWo” worship practices, as well as a lot of other activities which involved non Lutheran leaders, and connections with Willowcreek & Fuller Seminary (non Lutheran).
    [Texas District was a member of the Willowcreek association under DP Kieschnick, previous to his reign as SP, which may be why this is more familiar to a Texan. Our confessional pastors have endured a great deal; some have not survived and the “desert years” are not over yet, IMO.]

    “Purple Palace” or “Violet Vatican” were descriptions of the Synodical headquarters in St Louis, which I picked up in the last decade or so on Lutheran lists, including this one. “IC” is the International Center, which I believe is its proper name.
    Hope that helps!

  29. be aware-This Far By Faith and Orange Urban Hymnbook used in some LCMS churches and districts? Is this what it means to be Lutheran? Walk the walk as you talk the talk leaders of the leadership role—to the Savior’s truth and glory!

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