Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Look Through the Intrepid Yearbook

While waiting for dinner to be served on Friday evening, I discovered my son’s school yearbook for the school year that ended that day. Though I wasn’t at every event and didn’t sit in any classes, the pictures sure did bring back some memories. The smiles of friends made me happy. The picture of defeat in a hard fought basketball game brought pangs of regret.

Today is the first anniversary of the Intrepid Lutherans blog. The many posts of Intrepid Lutheran authors and the comments of our readers serve as our yearbook for this first year. Take some time, won’t you, reviewing our year together.

Admittedly we’ve tried to cover the topics that can divide our family of believers. Worship style is perhaps the most challenging right now. Lay ministry and small group Bible studies are a close second. Proper discipline among us has also taken center stage, especially among WELS pastors when our confessional practices and principles seem to be challenged.

On the other hand, we’ve also tried to cover topics that we have agreed upon in the past: justification, law and gospel, church fellowship, the roles of man and woman.

Through it all, I’ve learned that having a blog in the WELS is more challenging than I ever imagined. As brothers and sisters in the faith, I expected that having a forum for discussing what it means to be a confessional Lutheran in the 21st century would be welcome. Evidently, I was a bit naïve.

I’m told that the only place to properly carry on discussions of theology and practice among us is in pastoral circuit meetings and conferences. District meetings might be proper, also. I agree that having meaningful discussions on the topics we’ve covered would be great in all these venues. Can you imagine having a discussion on worship style in the WELS at this summer’s WELS convention? There wouldn’t seem to be any better place than where lay people and pastors from all twelve WELS districts gather!

It doesn’t seem realistic, though. Local issues remain local issues. They are written in personal e-mails and shared along the WELS grapevine, but very rarely see the light of day in the public. Though we’ve been a bit bloodied at Intrepid Lutherans in our first year, we have high hopes that public discussion among us will still take place on this blog.

As it is in every endeavor in life, we’ve made our share of mistakes in this first year. We may have been too bold where we should’ve treaded lightly. On the other hand, at times we may not have spoken up as loudly as we should have.

We appreciate all those who’ve written private e-mails of concern or praise. We’d rather you hop on board and make your thoughts public. Become part of the discussion. We’re just getting started with our next yearbook.

Pastor Paul Lidtke

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