Attention All Former Evangelicals

Attention all former Evangelicals! I am currently enrolled at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis in their doctor of ministry program. With my schooling I am responsible to conduct and write a Major Applied Research Project (i.e. MAP). The MAP is a doctoral level project/thesis for Concordia Seminary.

I have most recently settled on a theme of research and writing. The title of the research project is, “Becoming Lutheran: Exploring the Journey of American Evangelicals Into Confessional Lutheran Thought.”

In connection to this research and writing project I have decided to start a Research Journal Page that will be used as a venue of communication. This Research Journal Page will publicize my progress, research, and findings.  You may want to check the journal page from time to time to follow this study’s progress.

Finally, if you are a former Evangelical who ‘has’ or ‘is’ journeying into Lutheran thought, I am in need of research participants. I currently have 88 participants signed up for this project and am hoping for at least 150. If you are open to being involved in the research project, please contact me by CLICKING HERE.

Thank you for your interest. I covet your prayers and support over the next year as I work on this project.

In Christ,
Pastor Richard

About Pastor Matt Richard

Rev. Dr. Matthew Richard is the pastor at Zion Lutheran Church of Gwinner, ND. He was previously a Senior Pastor in Sidney, Montana, an Associate Pastor of Spiritual Care and Youth Ministries in Williston, North Dakota, and an Associate Pastor of Children and Youth in Rancho Cucamonga, California. He received his undergraduate degree from Minot State University, ND and his M.Div. from Lutheran Brethren Seminary, MN. His doctor of ministry thesis, from Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, MO, was on exploring the journey of American Evangelicals into Confessional Lutheran thought. Pastor Richard is married to Serenity and they have two children. He enjoys fishing, pheasant hunting, watching movies, blogging, golfing, spending time with his family and a good book with a warm latte! To check out more articles by Pastor Matt you can visit his personal blog at:


Attention All Former Evangelicals — 9 Comments

  1. If you’re still building your list of references, I highly recommend The Epistles of Herman Noodix by Frederic Baue and published by Pergola Press. While making you laugh, it also sobers you up. In its own way it’s a great documentation of where all LCMS has been in the last 40 years.

  2. God’s blessings on your research, and I’m sure that they will yield some great insight. Although I was raised among a bunch of evangelical homeschoolers, I belonged to a LCMS church growing up, so I know this struggle.
    If you are looking for perspective, Dr. Russ Moulds (who teaches psychology at Seward) was raised in a non-Christian household but became a Christian through some Baptists. But he ultimately decided to join a Lutheran church.

  3. @Thomas #3

    Hey Thomas. Believe it or not, that has been one of the most difficult parts of this study.

    At this point in defining American Evangelicalism, I will be thinking of it as the current national-cultural form of American Christianity. I also will be leaning upon the insights of Carl R. Trueman’s book/essay, “The Real Scandal of the Evangelical Mind.” In this small gem, Trueman appeals to David Bebbington, as well as his own insights, to share that Evangelicals lack an official denomination, are focused on the primacy of experience, are very minimal on doctrine, uphold conversionism and embrace activism, that is, the living out of the Gospel. While this is a good starting definition, Trueman goes on to share that Evangelicalism has blurred boundary lines thus making it difficult to clearly define and study it. In other words, Evangelicalism is often better defined by its ethos rather than its theological convictions. Furthermore, I will be relying upon Harold Senkbeil’s description of Evangelicalism as laid forth in his book, Sanctification: Christ in Action.

  4. I grew up ELCA not really knowing what Lutheranism really was. just as bad as American evangelicalism – in my humble opinion.

  5. Pastor Richard,
    Do you want Pastor/seminarians only, or lay people as well?

    I know some of those…

    [No, not me, I grew up in the old ALC when it was more Lutheran than some of the LCMS I’ve been through since [my present congregation excepted]. 🙂

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