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Confessional Lutherans, Anglicans draw closer

Comments (15)
  1. Avatar Fred Dissen says:

    Anyone who knows Foley Beach and what he stands for has to feel that the LCMS is blessed by these current developments with the ACNA.

    I’ve witnessed Foley in person too many times to feel otherwise. And I’ve read my Bible too many times to believe I could even remotely be wrong in this matter.

    Fred H. Dissen

  2. Avatar Roger H. Grummer, D.Min. says:

    I find it encouraging that the LCMS and the ACNA have found so much common understanding in their theological and churchly positions. I pray that continued talks might be helpful to both church bodies in the future.

  3. I feel that it is a blessing that the ACNA has some items in common with LCMS, but it seems that with ordination of men only, the Church, Holy Baptism, Holy Communion, Holy Absolution and the role of Christian rulers remaining on the table, that there is really not much common ground yet. The Church, the ministry and the means of grace are the crux of any possible closer fellowship. Nevertheless, a welcome milestone in the dialog.

  4. Avatar David says:

    As an WELS Lutheran I am dismayed that Missouri would ponder fellowship with a denomination that has so many doctrinal differences. WELS suspended fellowship with Missouri in the 60’s because of it’s departure from pure doctrine that even their own spiritual leader Walther would have abhorred. Yet rather than return to a conservative course that would bring it back to a God pleasing dialogue with fellow conservative Lutherans, it chooses instead to chase after denominations that do not even subscribe to the Book of Concord. This is very disappointing, yet I will continue to pray for Missouri to one day to return to its strong position of orthodoxy that it held when it guided a small synod called the WELS into a conservative denomination.

    1. Avatar Aaron says:

      Pr. Harrison is a bulwark of Confessional Lutheranism — he knows what he’s doing.

      The problem is that we’ve neglected ecumenism (which is a very Catholic value) for far too long, letting the liberal church bodies get LARGER than us.

      At least as an LCMS Lutheran… I believe that Confessional Lutheranism has a lot to learn from Anglicans (i.e. The ordered structure, which has been maintained in MOST-if-not-ALL, confessional Lutheran church bodies, outside North America).
      I’m tired of saying “president”, I want to say “bishop”.

  5. Avatar Robert Moehle says:

    Quite interesting. I left a “God as Good Buddy” type church because of the lack of respect for God Himself and ended up going to a Continuing Anglican church, staying with it for many years. Later I became a Missouri Synod Lutheran because of an LCMS church in our small town that someone said – “This is the only church in town that hasn’t become a Baptist church!” It is good tho hear these two streams of thought looking at each other and thinking that some cooperation cpould be possible.

  6. Avatar Tim Z says:

    As a person who was raised in a staunchly devout LCMS home by 2nd generation German immigrants (Grandparents came to America in 1920, after The Treaty of Versailles stripped them of all property). While any Christian dialogue with another denomination is positive, actually discussing “sister Church” status must be view very skeptically; after the 1997 “Deal with the Devil”, and more historicly, what Philip Melecheton did to Lutheranism by allying with the Calvinist following Martin Luther’s death in 1546. I believe the LCMS should take the same spiritual stance, trusting in God Almighty, that Luther did at the Deit of Worms in 1521. We should concord nothing our Lutheran for Fathers complied by inspiration of the Holy Spirt, in the Book of Concord.

  7. Avatar David says:

    I am surprised at the positivity in this report. I grew up in the LCMS and have been around many ACNA churches. It was an ACNA church that introduced me to the book of Common Prayer and I have been using it for my morning and evening prayer ever since. I use the prayers and language of BCP, and mixed it with the hymnody of the LCMS (Because I love the music.) I knew the two churches were somewhat at odds, but always felt they could do well together. With that said, I have enjoyed the 2 and haven’t liked being caught between them. Now that I read this report, it eases the tension and gives me hope.

  8. Avatar Alan Sparks says:

    The ACNA has a large charismatic stream running it, and is a conglomeration of strange independent diocese. I can’t see it lasting myself, still maintains many errors that haunt the ECUSA and are non confessional.

  9. Avatar Eric Rachut, M.D. says:

    Henry VIII was evidently a reader in depth of the Lutheran works and contributed financially to the Lutheran church in Germany. He applied to, and would have been allowed to join, the Schmalkalden League, had he been willing to sign the Augsburg Confession. For political reasons he would not do so. If the Anglicans are able to shed the Calvinism that subsequently crept into their theology and undertake that subscription to the Augsburg Confession and Book of Concord, then an historic error can be corrected.
    WELS could use some improvement also. The FAQ on their website says that the Body and Blood of Christ in Communion are some form of spiritual food, which sounds very much like Zwingli, and they are receptionists. Here is the influence of the Calvinist king of Prussia who wanted to take communion with his Lutheran wife and decreed the Prussian Union – another political imposition on theology.

  10. Avatar L.Day says:

    Is anyone aware that the ACNA allows dioceses to decide if they want to ordain women or not ordain them as pastors? LCMS does not support this and never has. They have also entered into ecumenical relationships with the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic Church and have had discussions with the PC-USA, all non Lutheran bodies and all non Lutheran in doctrine in practice.

    Can we talk with them? Sure! Ecumenical discussions? Of course! Compromise and join simply to have fellowship. No!

  11. Avatar Aaron says:

    I’ve been thinking… As far as the ordered structure is concerned:

    The diaconate is already in place to some degree in a few of our Districts (such as the “Mid-South District”) — and our “English District” already has in place a democratic-episcopal system with a Presiding Bishop serving as District President. So if we just made these district quirks Synod-wide, and made our presidents wear mitres… we’re not that far from the Anglicans as it is.

    (minus the whole apostolic succession thing – because that’s what the Book of Concord is for!!).

    1. Avatar Tim Z. says:

      Aaron, I disagree wholeheartedly. The ACNA’s stated belief/position on the Holy Sacraments is in conflict with the Book of Concord and Luther’s Large and Small Catechisms. I staunchly maintain that the LCMS must not concede one article, one line of the Book of Concord during any discussions with allowing another Church or denomination to patner with us. To do so would disgrace our Lutheran Forefathers who sacrificed everything Earthly 500 years ago to fight the papist and Calvinist to be able to preach the True Gosple of Salvation through Faith Alone.

      1. Avatar Aaron says:

        (ACNA) Anglicans are diverse in their beliefs – they’re a merger church. Some are from the Reformed Episcopal Church… Others from the Anglo-Catholic wing of the ECUSA… The only thing that they aren’t is Liberal.

        Anglo-Catholics are like High Church Lutherans (essentially confessional Lutheran, but Catholic for the sake of Catholic). They confess belief in the real (bodily)-presence and practice all sorts of pre-reformation traditions such as the Adoration of the Host during holy communion. I am willing to work with them… Because we (conservative Christians) are becoming a minority in this country, and we need allies.
        I don’t think (nor should we) have altar and pulpit fellowship, for a LONG TIME… But for the time being, I think (like the article says), that still have A LOT to learn from one another… Because… Whether or not you like to accept it, the LCMS is not perfect, and we can learn from my brothers and sisters in Christ in other church bodies. I love our church body, but we have failed at maintaining the historic polity of the church. Failed. At least the ELCA uses the word “Bishop”. But maybe I’m just too High Church Lutheran. 😉
        And if anything comes out of working with the Anglicans, that should be the top priority.

        Bottom line, confessional Lutherans shouldn’t be allergic to the word “ecumenical” – it recognizes that there is a “Catholic church” that includes other people besides the Missouri Synod.

  12. Avatar Fred H. Dissen says:

    As “somebody” said on Maundy Thursday, “I pray that they may all be one.”

    Please talk about this on the basis of the BIBLE. That is the basis for Christ-pleasing unity. The writings of Synods and Dioceses have obvious limitations. They will all disappear. The Bible won’t. Ever. “Heaven and earth will pass away, but the Word of the Lord endureth forever.”