Overture to Specify Inactive Members in Official Publications of the Synod’s Roster

Overture to Specify Inactive Members in Official Publications of the Synod’s Roster

WHEREAS LCMS Bylaw 2.11.2 identifies three different classifications of Inactive Members (Emeritus, Candidate, and Non-Candidate); and

WHEREAS the official publications of the LCMS Roster (e.g., The Lutheran Annual and the LCMS website) do not currently differentiate between the various classifications of Inactive Members; therefore be it

Resolved that in all future official publications of the LCMS Roster (including, but not limited to, The Lutheran Annual and the LCMS website) the classification of Inactive membership shall be indicated for all such Ministers of Religion who are Inactive members on the LCMS roster.


Comments

Overture to Specify Inactive Members in Official Publications of the Synod’s Roster — 13 Comments

  1. If you want to label men, why not go further and list Emeritus (who are frequently quite busy!), Candidates (who are substituting wherever asked until they have a call again) and Non-Candidates (who are, I presume, truly “inactive” as far as ministry is concerned), so everyone looking for a Pastor knows that a given name is “retired”, available or not available?
    To just pigeonhole them all as “inactive” will be one more nail in the Candidates’ coffin. This is as bad an idea as I’ve seen here yet!

    IF I read it correctly! Please tell me I didn’t!

  2. I think the resolution does what you recommend:

    “…the classification of Inactive membership shall be indicated”

    See the first Whereas.

    I agree it’s poorly worded and should say:  “…one of the three classifications of inactive membership shall be appropriately specified for all such…”

    @Helen

  3. To be frank roster status in the LCMS is driven by the IRS tax code; not scripture or common sense. I have to wonder what the implications would be.

  4. @helen #1
    Dear Helen,
    An ordained man stays ordained and eligible until he dies, unless removed. Pastor S… at my Church was emeritus until called and now he is listed as “pastor-assistant”. This is just good order.

  5. @Pastor Prentice #5: “An ordained man stays ordained and eligible until he dies, unless removed.”

    In the Missouri Synod, Bylaw 2.11.2 (a) limits that eligibility of an ordained, but inactive Candidate member to four years, not necessarily “until he dies.”

    After that, according to Bylaw 2.11.2.3, an ordained, but inactive member becomes an inactive Non-Candidate member on the roster for up to eight years, eligible to serve in ministry situations, such as receiving a Divine Call from a congregation, upon approval of his district president and according to guidelines established by the Council of Presidents. According to Bylaw 2.11.2.3 (d), the COP, upon recommendation of the appropriate DP, may extend the inactive Non-Candidate period another eight years.

    Thus an ordained man could be an inactive Candidate/Non-Candidate member on the Missouri Synod roster for up to 20 years.

    And according to Bylaw 2.11.2.1, after the age of 55, or for reasons of total and permanent disability, the ordained person is eligible to become an Emeritus member on the Missouri Synod roster… until he dies.

  6. @Pastor Prentice #6
    @Roger Gallup #4

    Yeah…. Side track… This gets into enough trouble, particularly with the over-abundance of commissioned ministers. Teachers and DCE’s I could deal with, because they do stuff, and at least teaching is mentioned in Ephesians 4. But most of the others stretch credibility. If witnessing is to ALL the priesthood of believers, why have we become lazy, and need to hire this out to a particular person. And if you see how many DCO’s are out there (very few) and many practically none in the pipeline coming out, do we need to keep this “office” that was likely created as a niche for a few special people?

    We really need to get back to a BIBLICAL understanding of what ministry and Ministry is, what the office is, and set up our rules to comply with that. no more man-made stuff that is distracting and may cause problems with the governments. We do not need to dig our own holes. And once we have that settled down some, we should have a better handle on pastoral classification. At least I hope so.

  7. @Pastor Prentice #5

    An ordained man stays ordained and eligible until he dies, unless removed.

    That sentence again requires clarification. Some would say “until removed from the roster”; others think that an errant congregation can [unjustly] “make a man a layman”.
    (Sort of like Cosby’s “I brought you in; I can take you out. Only he was joking, I think.)

    [Calling a removed man a “layman” is not too logical, seeing that his brother Pastors willingly use him for Word and Sacrament ministry during their vacations, if he was not removed for “Lutheran” cause.]

  8. @John Rixe #2

    I agree it’s poorly worded and should say: “…one of the three classifications of inactive membership shall be appropriately specified for all such…”

    I see how you read it, but it would be clear if it was written as you do here, and I agree with Pr. Prentice that the sentence should be in the “Resolved” for absolute emphasis.

  9. @John Rixe #2

    John,

    As the original author of this overture, all I am asking is that either this overture or one similar to it be sent on to the synod convention by multiple congregations from around the synod. If you believe that it can be worded better, great! Submit it with your suggested improvements. The floor committee will do to it what it wants to do to it anyway, so it doesn’t really matter. Just submit the substance to them, in whatever wording you believe to be best.

    Peace,

    Rev. Josh Osbun

  10. Dear BJS Bloggers,

    I think this overture only pertains to the LCMS online directory. It only indicates “no current position” when someone is on Inactive Status.

    The Lutheran Annual for many years has indicated which type of Inactive Status a man/woman is in: EM – emeritus; C[with month and year of inception} – Candidate; NC – [with month and year of inception] – Non-Candidate. Whoever sends in this overture should make the correction before sending it, or else the Floor Committee may just ignore it.

    Seeing as how so many people now use online reference tools instead of printed ones, the overture makes a lot of sense to me. But there may be legal ramifications (Social Security, pension, age discrimination, identity theft, etc.) why that data is not online. There are many scams that target retired and elderly folks, and we really don’t want our online data helping such scammers.

    Yours in Christ, Martin R. Noland

  11. @Martin R. Noland #12

    Dear BJS Bloggers,

    I think this overture only pertains to the LCMS online directory. It only indicates “no current position” when someone is on Inactive Status.

    It seems to indicate “no current position” when the on line directory is not updated in timely fashion, as it should be. E.g., when “RevFisk” first moved to ND; he was listed “no current position” in the LCMS directory, although they had the change of address and other information was available elsewhere.

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