Sunday, November 7, 2010

Airing our Dirty Laundry

Lately pastors in my synod have taken to handing over correspondence between their church, themselves and the bishop and spreading their version of confidential meetings with the bishop all over the internet.    This is because they believe they are victims of our big bad bully of a bishop, Steven Ullestad. Here is what I'm talking about.  Bishop Suspends Zions Pastors

Rather odd that these are the same group that want to restore LAW to it's rightful place and tone down all the grace stuff.  Except of course when THEY are the ones who are being asked to JUST FOLLOW THE DAMNED RULES already.

If you are an ELCA pastor, you can't serve another denomination without permission.  That includes LCMC and NALC.  "But but but!" They stutter.  "Nobody worried about the rules when there were gay pastors not following Visions and Expectations.

Well actually, there were.  Quite a few pastors and churches were disciplined.  And I know that the bishop who is doing the disciplining now, WOULD have been disciplined pastors and congregations had he occasion to in his synod.  I have heard him say he thought bishops who did not should have.  But he respected the reasoning of those who did not.

I just think it is unseemly to be sending letters the bishop wrote to YOU PERSONALLY to newspapers. But of course that is the way of this reality TV culture.  Invite everyone into your business to make judgments and take sides without a) having all the facts  b) any right whatsoever to make a judgment on the matter.

Anyway I trust our bishop.  And feel really bad he has to put up with this crap.  And am very proud that he is taking the high road and not engaging on the same level. 

And if these are the kinds of people who are leaving the ELCA -- sorry but good riddance.


  1. Fascinating. Didn't know. Bunch of whiners.

    A pastor in our synod engaged in a long -- loooong -- correspondence with our former bishop, basically begging the guy to discipline gay pastors, and accusing him of not being catholic enough, which in our synod, well, them's fightin' words. Then he put it all on his parish website. But I think he did it with the bishop's approval, since they both felt that they had said something worth hearing. I read as much as I could without agreeing.

  2. Come to think of it, now those guys can have their own "Extraordinary Candidacy Program." It will be called the NALC.

  3. I wish more of our members would be of the same mind as our bishop when he says, “I’m one who believes you stay and help the family.”

  4. So much awful stuff going on everywhere...I just can't understand that people are acting so poorly and that they often get away with it...sorry about your bishop.

  5. Hi Joelle,

    This issue again demonstrates that, once again, all decency, maturity and wisdom has flown out the window under the guise of: "I think I'm right and to hell with the rest of you."

    This exists not only in the church, but obviously in politics and the media. It's as if there was this massive mind switch, and the bodies of accomplished individuals were taken over by the immature minds of junior high youth.

    I cannot believe that people who have advanced education behave in a way that not only reveals them to be petty and evil-spirited, but also drags the church and congregations through the mud of their indolent self-righteousness.

    We were not ordained to be pastors in our own endeavors, but pastors to the CHurch; we have to put away our individual prejudices and desires, and work for the good of the whole church, submitting to the HOly Spirit. It is getting ridiculous out there!

    Hope all is well with you, JOelle.

  6. Amen, Sister in Christ! I have no issue with any pastor taking the stand that they have. That is certainly their privilege. I do, however, take issue with the whole "if you don't do what I say, I'm going to take my toys and leave" mentality...especially when the folks in question don't actually leave. Geez, if you have enough of an issue with the denominational policy that you'd go so far as to join another, why would you even want to maintain your status in the original one?