LPC has left a new comment on your post "Reviewing the Stephan Book. The Deception Continue...":
Just my opinion, I am yet to find an LC-MS scholar I can look up to.
Goodness me this reviewer's review concentrates on the petty and trivial. If you are going to review, go to the heart of the most crucial thesis of this book and critique that!.
My unimpression of LC-MS scholarship continues to grow each day.
That is one set of scholars I do not want to study from.
GJ - The LCMS is full of various factions, each one shunning the others. But they do agree on one thing - the immaculate conception of C. F. W. Walther, a university graduate who was the greatest theologian ever.
Zion on the Mississippi is a difficult book, typical of a dissertation. No doctoral student wants to give up a precious note-card, so every fact gets raked into the thesis. For most people, the dissertation is the first and last book written, so the self-editing process is not mature. Moreover, every advisor has his axe to grind, so various threads have to be followed to satisfy them.
Nevertheless, Zion is a Fibbermagee Closet of historical information (except for Kuehn's first name). For weeks I went over various parts of it, where the the facts contradict the official mythology of The Great Walther - as he is called, in all seriousness.
My Judaism teacher at Notre Dame taught me a lot about historical skepticism. He would recite a truism that we all learned, followed by evidence that destroyed that supposed fact. I was intrigued by the mob action and what really happened. Zion gives most of the details and shows how devious and dishonest Walther was, even though the book is gentle with all the characters.
The SynConference is drowning in its own mythology. Although the leaders live off Thrivent loot and constantly work with ELCA, they continue their Pietistic holier-than-thou claims, down to SP Schroeder and convicted sex offender Joel Hochmuth issuing a condemnation of ELCA for its homosexual agenda. Hochmuth's conviction, according to Google Alerts, began to be picked up by various gay bloggers who guffawed over the gay-hating sect having an child sex offender arrest at headquarters.
|The Walther Shrine in St. Louis.|
To be true to the SynConference mythology, one must recite the Pietistic catechism each time someone mentions an author not on the LCMS bus. That keeps the poorly educated members and pastors from getting involved in the serious study of other Lutheran theologians: Krauth, Schmauk, Reu, Loy, Lenski.
To prove my point, the Appleton crew plagiarizes non-Lutherans while denouncing Lutheran authors. Lenski seems to send them into status epilepticus. No one would guess from their eructations that Lenski is a long-time favorite in the LCMS, WELS, ELS, and The ALC. But they will transform their community with the insights of Methodist Craig Groeschel and Babtist gay activist Andy Stanley.
As someone said of their favorite, Jeff Gunn, "No one would know it was a Lutheran church." In fact, a faithful couple said that about all the WELS congregations in Florida. When I repeated that to the DP, he was angry...at me.
Critical thinking is the first victim of the Goody Two-Shoes mentality.
|The Great Walther|
Pastor emeritus Nathan Bickel has left a new comment on your post "The Goody Two-Shoes Synod - LCMS.Polishing the Mar...":
As pleasant of personality as Professor Cameron MacKenzie possessed during my seminary days, he never did strike me as one going beyond enjoying the comfort of a critic's arm-chair.
In the one class I remember having him in, the textbook used, was the rubber stamped official Concordia Publishing House c. 1964 – Moving Frontiers - Readings in the History of The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod; edited by Carl S. Meyer. That book, I think insulated C.F. Walther and more or less absolved him from the scandal ridden Lutheran Church Missouri Synod past. Reference was made to Stephan but glossed over his significance and sin.
As "critical" as MacKenzie may be of historical books referencing Missouri Synod's scandal ridden history, I believe that he easily ignores history's basic discipline, - that being, to learn from it. I don't witness McKenzie recommending or encouraging what rank in file non historians recently encouraged and promulgated by their recent protests. At least they and the secular (non Christian) school of higher learning got it right. They connected the necessary and important dots, and removed the Penn State idol statute. Will Missouri Synod ever catch on; connect the dots and also remove their idol icon champion and distance itself from his shrine?
Nathan M. Bickel
GJ - Pastor Bickel, your comments are worth highlighting. I met Cameron once and talked to him a bit. He went out of his way to be friendly.
|Is this the chalice stolen from Stephan?|
I am not casting aspersions on his work. It is just too easy within Missouri to reject anything mildly critical of that era. I am all too familiar with the outraged response to P. Stephan's book. There are many court documents to discuss in that book.