Friday, March 12, 2010

The ELCA's Down Fall.

I found this statement by Paul Hinlicky over at the Lutheran Forum website:

So from every angle, it appears that the institutional edifice that was the ELCA sooner or later will crumble and collapse. Can that day be hastened? Jim Nestigen has argued that, even short of a status confessionis, all who hold to God’s Word and Luther’s doctrine should redirect their benevolence away from Higgins Road to trustworthy ministries. Is it so?
Word on the street confirms the appeal of Nestigen’s argument. Receipts to the ELCA are said to be down by 30+%; more than one ELCA seminary is in imminent danger of bankruptcy. In my own synod, under the leadership of a sound bishop who thanklessly sought a unity-saving compromise in August, not only was there a significant 2009 shortfall, but proportionate giving to the ELCA has now been cut from 50.6% to 36% (among other budget slashing moves locally) for the coming year. Congregational pledges to the Virginia Synod for 2010 in turn are down a half a million dollars, something like 25%. In an astonishing two-page letter from the Synod appealing for help, the name “ELCA” was named only once, in a curious paragraph telling the long history of the Virginia Synod through its various predecessor bodies. The pitch: no love lost with the ELCA, but that is not really who we are here, locally, anyway. A similar story is being repeated in many other synods. In statu embarassmentionis.

Now, I said all of this was going to happen before it did back in my article of 2005.

From a purely practical standpoint (obviously, my main argument would be that it violates the law of God!), there was no reason for the ELCA to legalize homosexuality. It just made everyone mad and didn't actually change anything. When I was going to an ELCA seminary, there were plenty of gays and lesbians around. They would bring their "best friends" to campus and no one cared, even though it was pretty obvious that they were secretly violating the "Visions and Expectations" paper we had to sign when we entered (isn't it sad that clergy have to be told to obey God's law?).

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