Tuesday, June 13, 2017
In February, I shared how I felt about the decision to eliminate the office of Deacon in the LCMS and how it hurt me as one that would be removed. I haven't posted an update to this since then, waiting to see how it would all turn out and if the men in charge of the program's demise would be wise enough to do it in a Godly manner. So, I ll now share it with you as my own personal trek is complete.
This week I told my pastor and another pastor in my circuit that I would not be pursuing an option that was open to me as a certified deacon. At the last minute, they invented an option for some of the 250 men that were left out of the equation of possibilities for ordination to become "roaming" serving pastors. Kind of like a circuit rider of old, these men would fill pulpits when necessary, but be called or attached to one single congregation without any financial commitment. I struggled with that. It was an attempt to come up with something that they shouldn't have. It made it look like they were grasping and the only one it made look bad was the deacon wanting to serve. But, I digress.
What I talked about last time was how I felt and now that it is done for me, I will address that again. Ever have someone make a commitment to you if you did as they asked? If they broke that "deal" how did you feel? Were you mad? Did you demand that they live up to the deal? In this world, that would only be right. Even more so in the world of the church a commitment should be honored. A spiritual commitment is a much bigger deal, for it is with a brother in Christ you will have to live with for eternity. So if a brother renigs on a commitment that you have invested 20 years into, how do you react? Even if he feels you are not adequate is it the fault of the the one being dumped that that is the situation? Did they train themselves or was it the one that trained them? But more seriously, it is not about training nor the competency, it is about the original commitment. One does not break oaths with fellow brethren if the demands have all been met. If it happens on a Synodical level, it is a sin. It is a grevious sin.
Why? Not only does it remove ministry, but it destroys people. If one's own church does this to you, what will it do to others? New believers? Old brethren? Can it be trusted? Will it destroy more because it feels it is right? Is it right- to a fault? Most assuredly, it is.
There was not enough thought put into this process of destruction. There was not enough thought put into the synodical vote. Shame on them. Each and every man should be talked to about future ministry on a individual level. Then, each and every man should be apologized to and begged for forgiveness.
But, I'm just a layman that knows nothing...