Congratulations to those receiving calls!

GodCallingThis week many men who have been going through training to become pastors will receive the final answer that indeed they will be pastors – their first Divine Call.  It is a good week for the Church.  A couple suggestions for our readers:

Pray for the men who are receiving calls.  Pray most of all for their faithfulness to Scripture and the Lutheran Confessions to which they will make their vows at ordination.

Pray for their wives (if they have them).  A father in the faith once told me that the pastor’s wife has to be the most sanctified person in the pews.  She has to listen to her husband (a man she knows the failings and faults of very well) preach and teach God’s Word.  More than that she will likely leave all of her support mechanism to follow with her husband’s calling.

Pray for their children (if they have them).  Preachers kids are the but of all kinds of ecclesiastical jokes, but seriously they need our prayers.

Pray for their congregations.  Pray that they would receive their new pastors in honor, love, and support.  Pray that they would receive their ministry with glad hearts.  Pray that they would help keep their pastor faithful in all gentleness and humility.

Rejoice.  Laborers are being sent into the fields.  Jesus is being faithful to His Word.

 

About Pastor Joshua Scheer

Pastor Joshua Scheer is the Senior Pastor of Our Savior Lutheran Church in Cheyenne, Wyoming. He is also the Editor-in-chief of Brothers of John the Steadfast. He oversees all of the work done by Steadfast Lutherans. He is a regular host of Concord Matters on KFUO. Pastor Scheer and his lovely wife Holly (who writes and manages the Katie Luther Sisters) have four children and enjoy living in Wyoming.

Comments

Congratulations to those receiving calls! — 15 Comments

  1. May the power of the Gospel rest upon all whom hear the Word and preach the Word. “how shall they hear without a preacher”.

  2. What I would like to know, is as a parent, when my child visits, a Sem, & they are told, that Shepherds are lacking, when the real numbers on paper, speak differently?

  3. They’re not really lacking. Many congregations won’t call a pastor these days, even though a regular Call is a requirement for Synod membership.

  4. @Tim Schenks #4

    I think you may be misinformed (a bit on this).

    In order to become a chartered congregation, you need a pastor.

    OK, now what “type” of pastor? Full time classic, part time retired, worker/priest (not SMP). But in the end, the call, unless vacant and searching must be filled. In that case, a Reverend serves, albeit not the pastor. Trust me, I got busted on this one.

  5. Pr. Prentice,

    My reply had nothing to do with founding a new congregation, but I’m pretty sure that a bunch of laymen could incorporate themselves as a congregation, join the Synod, then call a pastor. Congregations have to be a member of Synod before they can call a pastor.

    My reply said that many congregations do not call pastors. They remain in a vacancy because they do not want to pay or do not have the funds to pay a pastor. The congregations remain in a vacancy status for years — Districts list them as “Not Calling But Still Being Served.” Those are hirelings.

    I stated that the Synod requires a regular (rightly-ordered) call as a condition of membership. Many congregations are not calling pastors at all — they hire retired or candidate pastors to fill in temporarily. That is not a regular call.

  6. @Tim Schenks #6

    You are so wrong on that. There IS NOT distinction on pay grade to what is a pastor and his call.

    Yes, if the Church decides not to issue the call, then they are vacant and “served” by a reverend. Oh, we have intentional interims, etc. (not sure what that is to this day?)

    Now if you call an ordained man serving a hireling, so be it.

    OK, they refrain from issuing the call, but money is not the key.

  7. Pr. Prentice,

    I’m not sure what you’re talking about re: pay grades.

    Intentional Interim Ministers are ordained ministers who have received special training in their District to help problem congregations deal with their problems before the District President will let them call a new pastor. They are hired/contracted for a short interval, thus do not receive a Divine Call from that congregation.

    The huge number of vacant congregations in the LCMS is all about money.

  8. Dutch,
    The myth of not enough pastors is one way the seminaries recruit students. There has not been a shortage of pastors for decades. If you look on the CRM list you will see a glut of pastors who could and would serve. (I am not saying all CRM are fit for ministry but a vast majority are.) The so called pastoral shortage has been a great way to sell SMP, Delto, lay ministers, etc. Also as stated above a number of congregations are trying to get by on the cheap. Why hire a regular pastor when…we can get a vacancy pastor or SMP or retired pastor or a bi-vocational pastor? It is true that are some congregations that truly cannot afford a regular but there are also many who could afford one but play the “we don’t have any money” card.

  9. @Tim Schenks #6

    I am not a hireling. I began serving another congregation, yes another Call, couple of years ago. Worship attendance is about ten; two are of employment age. This congregation needs Word and Sacrament delivered to them. I provide them the pastoral service they need because they cannot afford a full-time Pastor. The Texas District made sure that I received a Call from them. AC XIV is followed.

  10. Our dual-parish is in the calling process. As the prospects for calling a graduate were deemed slim we have chosen to pursue a delayed vicarage candidate at this time. We await the revealing of the Lord’s choice for us.

  11. IMHO, its inexcusable that anyone in a leadership position in the LCMS is still throwing out the “pastor shortage”, as a reason for young men entering the Seminary. I heard that over 25 years ago, and ended up starting in 1990 at. Ft. Wayne. Fast forward to spring 1992. 32 men were left without calls and it took a lot of scrambling for the next 6 months or so to find calls for all these men. I’ve watch the situation for many years since. Some years, 10 or so men have hit graduation without calls. One year recently, they were so short, some men were given calls, but the assignment was to start their own church with no help from the dist. Other times, they’ve told men soon to graduate, that they might have to accept a worker/priest call.

    The bottom line is that the number of clergy on the roster continues to climb. Even in west Texas, there are pastors available to serve small congregations that cannot or will not pay a full time pastor. The only thing I can do is to educate people so that they aren’t fooled by misinformation.

  12. To all,
    And finally, blessings to all the men (and ladies as Deaconesses) who enter the service of the Lord. May your days be blessed.

    I and I hope all the Churches corporate will pray for you, I will make sure we do so this week, and I think I need to make sure we keep praying for all people that serve weekly.

    It will be a joyous time, and also a terrible time; no one I hope said it would be easy. But the Lord called you and will provide, perhaps you don’t see it all the time. He IS THERE!

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