Well done, CPH!
Hats off to Concordia Publishing House for the outstanding work it is doing for our Synod and for the church at-large. I just received a copy of Concordia: A Reader’s Edition of the Book of Concord, and from spending just a little time with it so far, I can tell it’s a wonderful resource for pastor and people alike.
The content is excellent, but what makes it a real treasure are all the woodcuts and other artwork that give us a visual explanation of what our confessions teach. I had been anticipating this book, and when it arrived in the mail, I was even more excited to see and read through it.
Our publishing house does a magnificent job of producing quality products that people want to buy. It provides authentic Lutheran materials that remind us of the treasure God has freely given us in His holy Word. From top to bottom, CPH deserves thanks and recognition for its fine work.
Rev. Jeremy D. Loesch
The Synod at its best
I read with interest the letter from Rev. Jack Karch in the July Reporter regarding police and fire chaplaincy.
Thank you, Rev. Karch, for your kind words about the prison-ministry conference held in April. This event typified the Synod at its best, with International Center staff working shoulder-to-shoulder with Southern Illinois District chaplains, pastors, deaconesses, and staff (and with the LWML making it all possible with a generous grant).
Thank you also for commending all those who serve as police and fire chaplains. Unlike institutional chaplains, most LCMS clergy who serve in their communities as volunteer police and fire chaplains have full-time parish responsibilities as well. Your compassion, time, and pastoral care are greatly appreciated.
I agree with your observation that we do not have an effective networking system to get our police and fire chaplains connected for mutual support. However, Synod’s Ministries in Chaplaincy, Pastoral Counseling, and Clinical Education is in the process of changing that.
I am seeking funds to bring our police and fire chaplains together for a time of fellowship and education in the fall of 2006. I know that there are congregations and individuals in the LCMS who would like to contribute to such a conference as one way of expressing appreciation for the dedicated service of our police, fire, and emergency-services chaplains.
As you said in your letter, there are networks through mixed denominational groups. However, I have heard from a number of our chaplains that they would like to get together to learn from one another how our Lutheran confession shapes and informs the care of souls you provide in police and fire chaplaincy. Our beautiful theology can bring truly Good News to the men and women of our country who serve in law enforcement, fire departments, and emergency services.
I encourage all police, fire, and emergency chaplains to contact my office so developing information can be sent to them. I also invite congregations and individuals interested in helping to support this conference with a contribution to contact me at (800) 248-1930, Ext. 1388, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rev. John A. Fale, Director
Ministries in Chaplaincy, Pastoral Counseling,
and Clinical Education
LCMS Health Ministries
It doesn’t matter
I was prompted to write by the July letter from Pastor James Metcalf. First of all, I am a believing Christian. I believe that Jesus Christ died and was raised again for my redemption. To argue about which is more important — whether we believe because of the Bible, or whether we believe in Jesus and therefore believe in the Bible — seems like another manifestation of the chicken-or-egg riddle. Didn’t Jesus (God) give us the Bible so we might know Him who is “the Way, the Truth, and the Life”? How else could we come to Him or know who He is or what He has done for us?
I am not a theologian — just a retired Lutheran schoolteacher and principal. But I firmly believe that all too much time and effort are spent on arguing in our Synod instead of proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Let’s put politics aside and really concentrate on bringing the Gospel of Christ to the lost of this sin-sick world.
Spread the joy
The July Reporter notes that Thrivent Financial for Lutherans gave more than $1.4 million to seven LCMC projects. That’s an average of some $200,000 per project. Wonderful! Maybe some people and foundations could take the hint and, rather than giving, say, $1 million to one place for one project, divide it up among 15 or so small, struggling congregations that need to repair a parsonage, build a preschool, or open up a daycare center.
Sure, in doing so, there would be less prestige involved and probably no headlines; it would be something done quietly between the donors, recipients, and God. If this idea resonates with anyone, I can suggest the names of five or six LCMS parishes that could use some help!
Rev. David A. Graef
Posted July 29, 2005