Sunday, April 23, 2006

Three Sacraments

The Lutheran Church has always had three sacraments while claiming only two.

There are, as every person ever confirmed in the Lutheran Church knows, Baptism and Holy Communion. These we announce. These we teach.

But the third Sacrament we hide and pretend it isn’t there. If asked we say it isn’t a sacrament. That’s what we say. But the practice is different.

What is this hidden sacrament ? Why ordination of course. This is the sacrament that makes the other two possible. This is what gives the pastor the magic.

Now we Lutherans have covered this with talk of good order. The pastor is the one with the seminary training. So to see to it that things are done right he alone without a special dispensation from a Bishop or an emergency can handle the sacraments.

Now if a seminary trained man or woman was not ordained they couldn’t be a pastor. Without the ordination the seminary training means nothing. What makes a man or woman a pastor is the ordination, the magic act.

The good order argument is and always has been a sham. If it were the truth then a congregation could appoint somebody to keep track of the baptisms and set guidelines for the act. That would be good order. It would need no ordination and no Bishop.

We used to have 3 sacraments but now we have 3 1/2 . In addition to ordination we have supper ordination. That’s where a man ceases to be a pastor and becomes a Bishop. It requires an Episcopal Bishop to make it work. No Episcopal Bishop no magic.

So powerful is this magic that the Bishop can now appoint people to do the sacraments who are not ordained. It is okay because the super ordained person said it was okay.

So the next time an ELCA Lutheran tells you we have two sacraments just smile because you know the truth.

Three Sacraments

The Lutheran Church has always had three sacraments while claiming only two.

There are, as every person ever confirmed in the Lutheran Church knows, Baptism and Holy Communion. These we announce. These we teach.

But the third Sacrament we hide and pretend it isn’t there. If asked we say it isn’t a sacrament. That’s what we say. But the practice is different.

What is this hidden sacrament ? Why ordination of course. This is the sacrament that makes the other two possible. This is what gives the pastor the magic.

Now we Lutherans have covered this with talk of good order. The pastor is the one with the seminary training. So to see to it that things are done right he alone without a special dispensation from a Bishop or an emergency can handle the sacraments.

Now if a seminary trained man or woman was not ordained they couldn’t be a pastor. Without the ordination the seminary training means nothing. What makes a man or woman a pastor is the ordination, the magic act.

The good order argument is and always has been a sham. If it were the truth then a congregation could appoint somebody to keep track of the baptisms and set guidelines for the act. That would be good order. It would need no ordination and no Bishop.

We used to have 3 sacraments but now we have 3 1/2 . In addition to ordination we have supper ordination. That’s where a man ceases to be a pastor and becomes a Bishop. It requires an Episcopal Bishop to make it work. No Episcopal Bishop no magic.

So powerful is this magic that the Bishop can now appoint people to do the sacraments who are not ordained. It is okay because the super ordained person said it was okay.

So the next time an ELCA Lutheran tells you we have two sacraments just smile because you know the truth.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Fire the Teacher

I see where some school teacher has been suspended for subjecting his class to a twenty minute diatribe on how Bush is like Hitler.

They should have fired him

I know the liberals are going to be screaming freedom of speech.

They wouldn't scream that if he gave a twenty minute diatribe on how important Jesus was in his life.

They would be screaming fire him and the right would be screaming free speech.

I say I don't care if its Bush as Hitler or Jesus as friend. Fire the guy .

Why?

Because he is supposed to be teaching geography.

That's what he is getting paid for.

If during lunch hour he wants to give his personal views on life then I say let him.

But in class that's not what he's paid to do.

No wonder our kids don't know where Iran is or Honduras.

Their geography teacher thinks he's teaching social studies.

When I came back from Honduras when I was working on my Doctor's degree I asked my confirmation class where Honduras was.

Not one of the eleven kids had the slightest idea.

Then I asked what the capital of Michigan was and where it was located .

Four hands went up. Two thought it was Detroit.

The other two had the capital right and knew it was " below the bridge".

Fire the guy.

Lets hire teachers that teach the subject we pay them for.

When I taught math I didn't like the then President.

My math class never knew it because I was paid to teach them math and I did.

Fire the teacher.

Fire all the buddy , buddy. I want you to like me. Lets ignore the subject teachers.

Hire teachers that teach what they are paid to teach.

Pray for our educational system. And pray hard.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

A word from the Bishop

I just received a letter from my Bishop. Along with the stuff that congregations never pay any attention to , like how much to pay a guest preacher, he puts this note.

" Lay Preachers are not authorized to preside at Holy Communion unless authorization is received in advance from Bishop ....."

This would seem to mean that a congregation can let anybody stand in the pulpit and preach the Word but only those authorized by the Bishop can handle the Sacrament.
That makes the Sacrament more important than the Word. Not really a Lutheran concept but he's the Bishop and he knows what it is to be really Lutheran.

He never tells us on what basis does he give this magical authorization. Does he give an exam. Do they have to write a paper on the nature and meaning of communion in the church?

I think some church leaders would have a rough time with that one.

Does he go with some kind of Holy Spirit inspired gut feeling.
He does have that second ordination with the laying on of hands of the Episcopal Bishop.
Is it mystical Bishop magic.

Is it based on congregational need. Is there ever a Sunday when people in a congregation don't need communion?

Why don't those who preach have to submit a written sermon to the Bishop's office in advance.

Is this done to protect the magical powers given to the Pastor in ordination from usurpation by the lay person.

What are the penalties for not complying ?

Who has to pay the penalty.

Lets see it could be the congregation . They let that person handle the magic elements without the Bishop's approval. Does he cite them in a missive as a bad congregation. Does he take away the congregations' voting privilege at convention. Does he forbid them to send in benevolence. No he doesn't want the congregation angry that might hurt the budget.

Does he sock it to the lay preacher? How. Well he can keep him off of the list of approved lay preachers. Since most lay preachers that aren't authorized to do communion aren't on that list any way that would be an idle threat.

How about the Pastor who has gone away on vacation. Can't the Bishop go after him. Sure but you have to remember that the pastor is the one that drives the parish to pay the benevolence the Bishop needs to meet the budget. So it isn't likely he will do anything to the Pastor.
Besides what could he do. Take away his voting privilege. Wow what a threat. He could threaten to never give the Pastor another call. An empty threat because there are congregations who pay no attention to the Bishop when it comes to a call.

So what the Bishop can do is pull himself up to the full status of his office. Demand that they give him the new power he has assumed and send out letters.

Pray for the Church and pray hard.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Bishops Revisited

I just finished reading a blog that detailed a huge number of Catholic dioceses in which the Bishop hid Priests that were pedophiles .
They moved them from parish to parish. They even left them work with children.

Before you think this is an attack on Catholics let me assure you it isn’t. This diatribe is about the historic office of the Bishop.

I have first hand knowledge of a Lutheran Bishop who was just as bad. A pastor discovered that a neighboring pastor was having sex with a conformant (a girl). He called the Bishop and the Bishop said he would act on it. Two months later when the Bishop had done nothing and the pastor was still taking the girl to bed. Our concerned pastor called the sheriff who did take action , quickly.

For this act of concern for a young girl the telling pastor got a call from the Bishop . He was told that because of his “unchurchman like conduct he would never get another call in that Synod”.. That was before Lutheran Bishops had grabbed control of the call process so the threat meant nothing. It does however give you the mind set of a Lutheran Bishop.

I know of other examples where Lutheran Bishops ignored or protected pedophiles.
They used to protect pastor’s that were sleeping around as well. The church had rules but the bishops never enforced them . It was for the good of the church that they not call attention to the problem.

All of that changed when people began to sue. Then the Lutheran Bishops called all the pastors together and read them the rules. Now the rules weren't drawn up by the theologians of the church but the lawyers. They weren't to promote morality but to prevent lawsuits. In effect they said. If you want to bonk somebody make sure that they aren’t part of your parish and that they don’t know you are a pastor.

You see the problem is not a particular church but the office of the Historic Bishopric. When a good person becomes a bishop everything changes. He or she loses the ability to think for themselves and becomes part of church group think. The primary rule is the greater church above every thing else.

Oh there have been Bishops in the history of the church that stood for truth but they were often martyred by the Church for the good of the church.

Because of the historic nature of the office of Bishop we need to get rid of it. It is after all not essential to the faith.

If a new church emerges from the present struggles in the ELCA let us hope it won’t have bishops. It could do without a national church as well.

Pray for the Church. Pray hard.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

A political Idiot

I have always supported the President. I know that most of what the left wing blogs say about him simply isn't true. He is not a fascist. He is not trying to take away my freedom. He is not evil incarnate.

Having said that let me say that my President is a political moron. Over and over he does the thing that gives the political left a chance to jump on him. The question isn't was his action right . The question is did his action make sense politically.

Let's take the Cindy what's her name thing. A politically wise President would have directed that if she showed up wearing anything at all she should be given a front row seat and treated like royalty. That would have taken the wind out of her sails. Then, if after being treated so nicely, she lived up to her usual activity , the President would have been seen as compassionate and kind and going the extra mile. But instead he does nothing and the brainless capital police arrest her. She was in heaven and the President who really had nothing to do with the incident looked bad. I tell you George is a political moron.

Now he has done it again. Ignore the fact that the company that wants to buy the British company that runs American ports already controls most of the ports in the world. Which means they can send those nasty Arab things to this country any time they want. Ignore the fact that when they begin to run the ports nothing will change. Ignore the real world.
In the political world this is a politically stupid thing to do. When the Republicans in Congress who understand politics said they would help to get a bill passed to stop it ( they understand political reality is more important than reality) our political moron says he will veto it.
Hey, George! This company is run by Arabs. Wake up. No matter what the Democrats say about treating Arabs fairly they know that most Americans don't like Arabs. They like Danish flags. So they will join the rest of the Arab hating population and denounce you. They will make political gain. Lots and lots of political gain.
Please my President put aside what is right. Put aside reality. Act like a politician for once in your life. Have a change of heart. Announce that you are having the justice department investigate the company. Stall. Call for some committee to look into the problems. Do something, anything that is politically correct.
You may be a good man but if you don't stop being a political moron your ratings will go down to 10% and they will all be Arabs.
Wake up. Dump reality. You still have time.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

I am an intolerant SOB

A nice lady who read my comment on another blog pointed out quite correctly that I am an intolerant Christian S.O.B. I do not want you to fall into the same trap so I am going to explain to you what an intolerant Christian is.

If a Christian group becomes the majority in a country and gets a law passed that would jail a person or have him or her killed for converting Christians that would be intolerant.

If a Christian group is a majority in a country and gets a law passed that if your Christian and you convert to something else like Hindu or Muslim you can be arrested and killed. That's intolerant.

If your the Pastor of a large Christian Church and you tell your people that Jesus would be very happy if you burned down or blew up any mosques, temples, or shrines in your town that would be intolerant.

If you were the Pastor of a large Christian Church and you told your members that if they blew themselves up and managed to kill some Muslims in the process Jesus would have a special place for them in heaven that would be intolerant.

If you were the Pastor of a large Christian Church and you offer a million dollars and a car to anybody who would blow up or otherwise kill the cartoonist who did a mean cartoon making fun of Jesus. That would be intolerant.

If you were the Pastor of a large Christian Church and you sent pictures of that cartoon to Christians in France and they rioted and burned the American flag before passing the cartoons on to Germany and Italy who did the same and threw in the burning of an embassy for good measure. That would be intolerant.

If you were a Christian editor of a large Christian newspaper and you called for cartoonists to draw pictures making fun of the Holocaust. That would be intolerant.

If you were a Pastor who knew of a group that wasn't Christian and called attention to their doing all those things. That would be intolerant.

It would be intolerant because when they do them it isn't intolerant. Its just their religion. One has to learn to be tolerant of the other person's religion. I am such a slow learner.
Pray for the world and pray hard.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Pity the Vice President

I have had it with media and I have had it with Republican and Democrats who are demanding that the Vice President come out and talk about the shooting of his friend.
They act as if he had some kind of constitutional requirement to give them all the gory details. Well he doesn't. He is not obligated to tell you a thing about what happened on his day off.
Now if he was hunting with a foreign dignitary and shot him that would be a different matter. That would affect international relations. It could , and would, be investigated by one of those congressional committees that investigate a lot and accomplish nothing.
Nothing that happened here will affect domestic policy. It won't affect foreign policy. The worse that can happen is that the Republican party will get less money since he shot a Republican fund raiser. Definitely not a cause for national concern.
When did the idea arise that we are required to open our lives to the news media?
I thought it was the job of the news media to search out the facts. We aren't required to do their job for them. Now they sit around and whine. Hey sneak somebody into the hospital or go grill the lady at the ranch. Get every gory detail you can but you can't expect the Vice President to give them to you.
The news media are in their " Aside from that Mrs. Lincoln what did you think of the play" mode. They want answers because they think it's their right no matter who gets hurt or how stupid their response is. Well dig for the answers you lazy beggars.
When you get them they won't help Mr. & Mrs. average American one little bit.
Every year in Upper Michigan during our multiple hunting seasons some poor hunter gets shot by a friend or neighbor. Nobody expects the friend who is feeling horrible over what has happened to march into the TV station and describe in detail what happened. Why? Because we are smart enough to know that aside from the morbidly curious among us nobody really needs that information.
So do your job and stop asking the Vice President to do it for you. Leave him alone he feels bad enough already. It was his friend he shot after all. Go find a crooked politician or something that affects the nations future.
Leave the poor guy alone.
Pray for the Vice President and pray extra hard for the media.