Just a brief note of appreciation for the Let’s Talk (Lent 1998) issue devoted to the important topic of the mission of our Synod and its congregations. It was interesting to get to know the viewpoints of some key members of our Synod Council.
I wish there had been a clearer statement of the meaning of “mission.” Is it defined by our Synod’s new mission statement, adopted by the 1997 Assembly: Proclaim the Gospel, make disciples, do justice—in Jesus’ Name? If so, then I’d expect at least three articles dealing with these three “mission” goals.
What I especially missed in the Let’s Talk issue on mission was an article on doing justice as a Synod and as a congregation of it. Does doing justice mean correct social position and advocacy? What else?
And what does making disciples mean? Dynamic evangelism and membership growth? Or is it a matter of raising the “faith temperature of the people in your parish,” as Bishop Olsen put it?
Finally, what does proclaiming the Gospel mean? How is it related to our Bishop’s emphasis on “faith development?” Was Fr. Bob Cross’s article “Common Ground: We are Sinners” intended as an example of proclaiming the Gospel on the parish level?
These questions are not meant to offend or criticize the issue co-editors. I offer them as evidence that Let’s Talk has encouraged me to think more deeply about “mission” in our Synod.
Congratulations on the recent issue of Let’s Talk on “Ecumenism and Us.” I agree the vote against the Concordat may have prompted more discussion about the Confessions than approval might have, but miss attention to what the Confessions actually say on bishops and presbyters. Hope you get something from within Chicagoland on this.
Ministerium of Pennsylvania
Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia