Christianity: A Save What We Can Strategy

The conservative is branches of Catholicism, along with similar branches in Protestantism, are often frustrated that their leadership does not stamp out those parts of the faith the deviate from what conservatives consider to be the orthodoxy of the faith. There is a new book of hand wringing about the Pope’s lack of rigid rules.

Slippages from rigidity by the Pope come to mind. One is lightening up on divorce and remarriage. Another is a bend to accommodate the Communist government in China preventing criticism of required abortions. He refuses to put the hammer down on the German Catholic liberal take on the faith.

Then, the Pope has hinted priests might all be allowed to marry, he made waves with a tolerant attitude toward homosexuality and continued to be a landlord to a gay bathhouse in a complex where clergy are housed.

On the Protestant side several main line branches have embraced gay marriage and gay clergy.

The conservative approach to these matters is, “Let’s (the church) hunt down these sinners and drum them out of our church.”

The Pope’s position is (along with parts of Protestantism), however,  “Look, there are holes in our bucket. It’s draining faster than it’s filling. We can’t keep up. Let’s plug some holes in the bottom and see if we can collect just a bit more incoming. We can’t do this by chasing out everyone we don’t like.”

By refusing to play the ogre, the Pope is trying to save what is left of a declining enterprise.

19 Responses

  1. Catcher

    Jon; Is it just me, or is area voices acting squirrely the last two days? Impossible to navigate.

    Re. “branches of the Catholic Church”, The term more accurate would be “factions”

    Re conservative vs. liberal Protestants; A more accurate explanation is; The liberals have systematically with some success been able to drive the more conservatives away from their original church, forcing them to create their own, more in line with that which was original. In essence the conservatives are the ones that have been “drummed (and yes, shunned) out of their own church. Both by vote, and intimidation.

    don’t know if this will enter.

    1. Catcher 10:18 In essence the conservatives are the ones that have been drummed (and yes, shunned) out of their own church.

      I think this is a misunderstanding of what we might call the rules of engagement. The rules are theology follows current social mores and values. At a point in time, Christianity started out shunning gay people. This did not go back to the beginning of the faith, Jesus said nothing about it, gayness is not spelled out in the Bible. Claims that it is are bogus. At the point in time when the shunning started it reflected the social mores of the majority. The mores of the majority changed and, following the rules that theology reflect current social views, the denominations accepted gays.

      1. Catcher

        @ 12;54; re. “rules of engagement”. Anything that goes against the theological / doctrinal documents of a specific denomination that adheres to them are the line of engagement.

        If a denomination re-writes their documents,to suit popularity issues the “rules of engagement” change. If those denominations have not re-written their documents, they are being dishonest with the documents they say they stand behind, making them meaningless.

        There are denominations that have not re-written their documents, Those institutions, along with membership remain at that line of engagement.

        The “rules of theology” (Your term) is nothing more than a subjective opinion. and more at home in the RCC. “The rules of ecclesiology” would be a more accurate term.

        My ” in essence, the conservatives are the ones that have been drummed (and yes shunned) out of their own church”. Is an accurate definition.
        There were instances where many voted to go along with the progressive members to remain in the same building they and their parents built. Rather than go out and rebuild their own. I have been told by several of them that said that they pinched their nose and went along. Only later to ask themselves; “What have I done?’

        Another observation; A congregation with a progressive pastor in many situations have steered particular congregations towards progressivism that normally wouldn’t have. It is known that a few denominational leaders have systematically pre-planted known progressive pastors to sway the majority.(a political move). A pietistic practice. A practice pre-planned years in advance.

      2. Catcher

        @ 12;54; I must also add; re. pre planning strategy; A couple synods went to the point in the preceeding years to have the particular congregations re-write their constitutions in the ensuing ownership of the church property to go to the progressive side, freezing out the conservatives from the church they and their parents- grand parents built, making it more difficult to leave. The property then became more important to them than their confessions. You mention “strategy”. Some strategy.

        1. Catcher

          PS @ 2;09; re. church property ownership. The result of pre-planning STRATEGY, the Synod wound up owning the property, not the congregation.

        2. Catcher–All replays of southern churches during integration. In those days it was considered noble to defend the “southern way of life “. Now we have the Lutheran way of life

          1. Catcher

            @ 5;21; “Maybe” Nothing definite then. Democrats or Republicans, we have both. Any nationality, Rich or poor, Cream sauce or butter, Don’t corporately mix church and state,
            Pretty hard to define a specific “way of life”.
            All however subscribe to the Book of Concord. Try reading it. Tapperts is the easiest to read.

  2. Retired Major

    It will be hard to nail down a “Lutheran way of Life” other than bland food as there are many different versions of being a Lutheran. I was sought out after worship by the pastor several decades ago when I attended a Missouri Synod worship and took communion. He let me know that I should never do that again because I was the wrong kind of Lutheran.

      1. Catcher

        @ 11;24; re. @ 11;29 “wrong kind”, I suspect you are paraphrasing .A better term would be “Misguided”.
        re. comedy. Jon What you think is comedy just reveals your ignorance of the subject. See my 12;47.

    1. Catcher

      @ 11;29 re; “wrong kind of Lutheran”. There are a couple groups that allow syncretism regarding communion (indifferent as to what communion is. (symbolic, spiritual presence, memorial, etc. ) and open to anyone no matter what they profess. (Presbyterians, UCC, Methodists, Mission Covenant, Baptists. Moravians, etc. Some use grape juice, also coke has been known, leavened bread. and crackers. The ELCA is the largest. body of Lutherans that allow syncretism. If they do, that’s their business, and I respect that The LCMS does not . that’s our business. and others should respect that.

      To be in communion means to be in agreement.. If not in agreement, or indifferent, to what Communion is, No communion. The term is close / closed communion. Both WELS and LCMS practice closed communion. Exceptions can be considered if a visitor first consults with the pastor, and why the desire to receive communion. and is handled on an individual basis.

      Catholics are not welcome to the table due to transubstantiation. They in turn refuse us because we don’t accept transubstantiation.

      There have been times when during a service, non member family visitors would like to go up with family, but communion is not a social event. It is a Sacrament. with those in communion. (agreement)

      All LCMS churches have cards of some form for visitors and members to announce intention before going to communion. One of the lines on the card is “If you are a visitor, and not a member of the LCMS, Please talk to the pastor before attending communion.

      One would think if communion was that important one would know the reasons. If not, why should one care.

      By what you say, I suspect the pastor knew you were (ELCA?) I suspect also you knew this practice before you went up.

      It has also been known that ELCA members have been in attendance to defy and challenge our position knowing full well our position.

  3. Catcher

    @ 12;47; I should also add; We have an ELCA church in our city too. Due to family events, mostly, they have members in attendance in our church, and ours in theirs. They all know our position, and we know theirs. By and large, we have a mutual respect for the other. They don’t attend our communion service, and we don’t attend theirs. It’s not an issue.

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