Thursday, October 23, 2008

Church and Change funding


the cross that doesn't

Anonymous said...

Who foots the bill for C&C, is it independent or supported by synod money?



Board of Directors- Select a name to read a Bio:

Pastor Ron Ash Chairman

Jeff Davis Vice Chairman

Sarah Owens Secretary

Barry Spencer

Caleb Cordes

Pastor Bruce Becker

Pastor John Huebner

James Skorzewski

Innovation in methodology is yesterday's news in the WELS. Pastors, teachers, synod administrators, worker training leaders, home and world missionaries, worship leaders, computer buffs, and countless local laymen and laywomen, have been tweaking (and/or radically changing) ministry methods for years. In every WELS generation God has raised up men and women, for reasons known only to Him, who are interested in pushing the envelope of "gospel delivery systems." And this, long before concepts like "English" or "radio ministry" or "Parish Assistance," or "paradigm" or "long distance learning" entered WELS thinking or culture.
Where do you get these radical ministry methods... This is where the 2008 Exponential Conference was held. This is where your WELS pastors went to soak in these radical ideas. Who do you think paid for this trip?

They must have their own budget. Although I'm sure you will notice that over the years many Synod sponsored grants have been and are given to the innovative thinkers in the WELS
Anonymous said...
Church and Change is not a part of the synod structure and doesn't receive synod funding.
October 23, 2008 11:20 AM


Anonymous said...

I remember that last year there was a link on the WELS official website that allowed registration for the Church and Change Conference. (I am sure they would not provide a link to something they did not approve).
Hopefully they will not supply that link for the November, 2009 conference.
It did appear to have synodical backing last year. Also men in WELS leadership positions were and still are a part of Church and Change. These are people we lay people look up to for guidance in our spiritual lives. When the leaders lead us in this does not take a rocket scientist to figure it out. If it walks like a duck.......

Anonymous said...

From and other internet research, it appears that local congregations support C&C conferences and they get grants from places like Thrivent (besides charging for their conferences), is that correct? They meet once a year? And, also, there is some connection/accountability with DPs, COP and/or Parish Services? C&C is made up of WELS pastors and like-minded participants, so besides promoting CG methods, what influence do they have on the synod (apart from within local congregations and supportive ministry)?


Anonymous said...

PER: Bruce Becker, Administrator
WELS Parish Services (also a member of the Board of Directors for Church and Change)

Church and Change is a grassroots organization comprised of WELS pastors, teachers, staff ministers, and lay people. Through its conferences, participants learn from one another, share ministry ideas, and explore new ways to bring the changeless gospel of Jesus Christ to a ever-changing world. It provides a rare opportunity in our circles for called workers and lay people from various districts to get together to talk about gospel ministry. Church and Change, in its organizing documents, has a stated desire to be connected directly to WELS synodical ministry through the Board for Parish Services. When hosting conferences, the Church and Change chairman apprises the district president of the district in which the event will be held. The organization also follows the guidelines established by the WELS Conference of Presidents for publicizing and hosting such events. In short, Church and Change is accountable to WELS on several different levels.

Anonymous said...

here's my 2 cents worth...
anyone who's a member of c&c should remove themselves from the WELS membership list. start your own touchy feely church and rock on. leave the rest of us alone. i designate my church offerings go specifically to anything but the general fund. they're not going to send a penny of my offering up there to milwaukee to dole out back to this kind of nonsense. it's a church within a church. time to cut 'em loose. if the synod uppity-ups can't do that, i'll cut myself loose after 59 years of active WELS membership. it ain't what it used to be and as far as i can tell, those we've put in charge don't really care.

Anonymous said...

Thank-you for saying that, Anonymous of 2:30 PM.

I agree with you about the offerings and it is the same in my household. I wish it was not so but I cannot support this stuff with a clear conscience.

I am being patient (so far) and hope this clears up but I have started my letter of resignation and will need to submit it if something cannot be done about the Church and Change group and all the stuff they are doing to "unLutheranize" WELS. I don't understand why they want to be part of WELS.

I came into WELS as an adult, was instructed and confirmed. I thought I had found a church and first learned of my salvation. I am so very very confused and upset with all that is happening. This is not how I was instructed that WELS' believes. I'm not even sure of my salvation anymore. The Church and Change group is leading me to view church and the instuctions I had as if it was all a big joke. I took the pastor instructing me as serious. This is very painful because now I need to look for a new church and I don't even know where to start looking.

Anonymous said...

Dear anonymous of 3:42:

While the concerns about C&C are real and justified, I believe that the information and discussion on this blog can give an overstated impression as to the importance and influence of this somewhat inocnsequential group. The group is not supported by synod dollars. It has a self-appointed board of six or seven people. They hold a conference every two years, attended by about 200 people (many of them lay people). In general, the vast majority of pastors in the synod do not and would not participate in what they have to offer. I would suggest that you talk to your pastor and other pastors you know before you make any quick decisions.

While discussions such as this can be helpful in identifying problems, it is really disturbing to that the unrestrained (and sometimes unfactual) talk is really harming individuals in their faith and causing them to question the sincerity of the pastor who instructed them in the Word and to doubt salvation itself. Perhaps in seeing the hurt and reaction of anonymous 3:42, commenters should weigh their words more carefully. By seeking to solve a problem, you may be creating greater ones.

Anonymous said...

Thank you 2:30pm also,

I believe that I will also start giving my offerings to my church's designated funds until these slippery mission grants are monitored more closely.


I would start by talking to your pastor to see his take on the situation. Invite him to look at this blog. Ask him what his position is on Church and Change and pastors sitting at the feet of Baptists experts.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:42 - when you doubt your salvation, remember your baptism. It, as well as faith, are gifts from God, and not our works. So our confidence is in Christ and not in ourselves, our pastor, church or synod. Our confidence is in Christ - the Word, found in scripture and sacrament. That's a blessing of truth expressed so clearly in the Lutheran faith. It's one of many things that make the battle worth it.

Anon 4:06 - Certainly sound advice, but this blog has been useful to some to educate, inspire further study, inform and alert us of things going on that are not being discussed within our various local circles. That's not to condone all posts - it is the nature of the medium - but the blogging world has served some of us as a blessing who have very few options within the Lutheran world. It requires discernment, yes, but silence or apathy isn't the answer.

My thoughts.

Anonymous said...

Blogging also inadvertently creates hysteria and this is what I see happening in regards to C&C. Many readers take the opinion of a few bloggers as fact, when in reality it is just that - an opinion.

I have regular dealings with many of those involved in C&C. My pastor has also attended their conference. None of them have separated themselves from our WELS in their actions or their beliefs. I have no doubt of their Lutheranism. I have no doubt of their abidance to God's truth.

C&C doesn't seek to abolish our Lutheranism. It encourages additions to it, in the manner in which we present God's true and saving grace. C&C recognizes there are many people in the world that are unfamiliar with our Lutheran traditions and who may be more comfortable in other ways of worshipping. Should these people be deprived of the true gospel, just because they don't conform to our ways? Is that how Jesus carried out his ministry? Is that how WELS missionaries do their work in foreign lands? I don't think so.

Remember, many of our traditions are just that. Traditions. Habits. They are not specifically instructed to us in God's word (and for those of you who continuously distort people's sentences, I am not confusing our traditions with the true gospel - I'm referring to adiophoras such as the liturgical order of service).

Our traditions just happen to be those which Martin Luther established in his day, and were furthered by our German forefathers. Had he lived in today's world, he may have done things differently.

As long as our churches follow the true gospel, why can't we offer BOTH traditional and new ideas? Have any of our WELS churches completely abandoned the liturgical service when they started a contemporary? As far as I know, they offer both.

Please stop disparaging the C&C unless you have fully studied it, attended their conferences and THEN have found them to be the awful things you say they are. I suspect you will not find that.

I do support C&C, both in my prayers and my givings.

Anonymous said...

Well, I have mis-givings about C and C. They tried to stay under the radar for a long time. As soon as this blog exposed the Church and Change invite to that Dunker Stetzer, the C and C began filling their catapaults with mud and firing away. The Confessions are not a tradition. Lutheran doctrine is not a tradition. We follow Lutheran doctrine because it is faithful to the plain meaning of the canonical Scriptures. The non-Lutherans make fun of Biblical, Lutheran doctrine. That is their tradition. Lie down with Baptists, get up with headaches.

Anonymous said...

Never step outside of our safe Lutheran confines---never reach out with the gospel to those who need it.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:32 states the Lutheran faith does not preach the gospel to those who need it. Wow. That sums it up, doesn't it?