Monday, July 18, 2011

Well said, President Schroeder

I'm thankful to President Schroeder and the WELS communications office for this well-stated position regarding the recent media attention over Michele Bachmann's former WELS membership. It is a strong statement of faith.

Because of certain copyright concerns, we've been asked not to copy President Schroeder's op-ed piece here on our blog. Instead, we've been given a permanent link to the piece at the WELS website.


Rev. Paul A. Rydecki said...

I guess we've been "scooped."

Mr. Douglas Lindee said...

Yesterday, Mollie Hemmingway (LCMS) wrote an excellent opinion piece on this very contrived 'conroversy,' entitled More Breaking News from 1537!, which was picked up today by Dr. Gene Veith on his blog, Cranach. She makes the excellent point that this 'anti-Catholic controversy' has been invented by the same journalistic sources that are normally working overtime against Catholicism and its views on abortion, euthanasia, the priesthood, marriage and social norms, suggesting that such criticism is nothing more than journalistic hypocrisy. Veith quotes from Hemminway's article as follows:

"Also, you’re kidding me that Lutheran views on the papacy are controversial. Again, there is no doubt that they were controversial back when Pope Leo X was in power. Where’s the controversy now? Except in the pages of papers that are normally working overtime against Catholicism and its views on abortion, euthanasia, the priesthood, marriage and social norms? And traditional Christian views on homosexuality are now “controversial,” too. How come that never works the other way? You know what word wasn’t used once in that 5500-word hagiography of Dan Savage and his support for consensual adultery that the New York Times Sunday magazine frontpaged two weeks ago? 'Controversial.' . . .

"But the WELS is controversial. Got that? I want everyone to remember that confessional Lutherans are the new dangerous, edgy people. I have so wanted this reputation for so long and I don’t want this opportunity to be missed. We’ve been tarnished as the people of casseroles and you-betcha for too long.

"But who thinks that we’re so edgy? Hard to tell. Here’s how the Post puts it: It has been criticized in part because it holds that the Catholic pope is the Antichrist.

"By whom? By reporter [non-theologian] Joshua Green? By 16th Century Catholics? The passive voice is really inappropriate considering how much this article is built around the claim of a controversy that presumably extends beyond the Washington Post newsroom or liberal blogs that never would have supported Bachmann in any case. I mean, I doubt that lapsed or collapsed Catholics give much of a hoot about it and I’m pretty sure that all of the more regular Mass-going Catholics I know would pick the media over the Lutherans when deciding who’s involved in a coordinated, if not vicious, campaign against their church."

I'll just point out that Molly Hemmingway states: I want everyone to remember that confessional Lutherans are the new dangerous, edgy people.

Guess we're in the in-group, now, folks! How exciting! More importantly, that would make us the new relevant people.

Daniel Gorman said...

President Schroeder's statement was much stronger than the weak and embarassing statement of Director of Communications Joel Hochmuth on the same subject. However, Pres. Schroeder's failed to address a popular misconception regarding the Antichrist and his dominion (i.e., how Pope Benedict exalts "himself above, and opposed himself against Christ because he will not permit Christians to be saved without his power" SA, II).

Papist and even some secular websites are describing the WELS condemnation as one-sided as if the Pope does not condemn to hell each and every member of WELS. The Papal condemnation of WELS Lutherans is not just an historical fact. In drafting the 1999 Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification, the Pope could have lifted the Trent Anathemas against all confessional Lutherans. Instead, the Pope chose to leave in place Trent Anathemas against any Lutheran who rejects the JDDJ formula. LWF Lutherans are saved, not by Christ, but because they have bowed to Papal authority.

"For all his bulls and books are extant, in which he roars like a lion (as the angel in Rev. 12 depicts him, [crying out] that no Christian can be saved unless he obeys him and is subject to him in all things that he wishes, that he says, and that he does. All of which amounts to nothing less than saying: Although you believe in Christ, and have in Him [alone] everything that is necessary to salvation, yet it is nothing and all in vain unless you regard [have and worship] me as your god, and be subject and obedient to me. " SA, II.

Anonymous said...

President Schroeder,
Thank you for your fine words on this subject. I find your words to be well-balanced and informative. If I'm not mistaken, a few years ago when the Pope visited the United Stated, the news media "discovered" a small Lutheran church body which taught the Papacy was the Antichrist. May we use your words the next time the news media "discovers" us?

Scott E. Jungen

Anonymous said...

The Molly Hemmingway essay is great. Though she spoke tongue-in-cheek, Confessional Lutherans are, in fact, edgy and dangerous... to the world. We're more subversive than Che.

A Catholic professor I had in college said that persecution (of a particular group of Christians)is evidence that that group is being faithful to the Word. The Word, she said, faithfully espoused, will, without doubt, bring on hatred from the World. And, she went on, the converse is true: IF a group of Christians is loved or tolerated by the World it is evidence that they are not being faithful to the Word. Christ came to divide, not to Unify. He brings a sword, not peace. Jesus promised persecution.

True Christianity is controversial. It's stupid to go looking for persecution, but when it comes to us we may take it as a sign that our Confession is true to Scripture.

Interesting where that thought goes: Isn't it interesting to see that the errorists in the WELS are erring by attempting to make their churches popular? Contemporary Worship, praise bands, improper outreach methods, etc. all seek to attract people by means other than the Means of Grace.

Maybe this would be a good talking point to Pastors who are tempted to "grow their church" by making the church 'popular'. Reminding our pastors that our message is, in its nature, divisive, might broaden the critique of the "cool church" movement in the WELS.

AP said...

Yes, very well said. Apparently we do still reject the papal system!

Dr. Aaron Palmer

Post a Comment

Comments will be accepted or rejected based on the sound Christian judgment of the moderators.

Since anonymous comments are not allowed on this blog, please sign your full name at the bottom of every comment, unless it already appears in your identity profile.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License