More on ‘institutional separation and functional interaction’ — & 1985 WaPo article on civil religion

Issues in Religious Liberty: Hearing Before the Subcommittee on the Constitution of the Committee on the Judiciary on Oversight on the State of Religious Liberty in America Today, United States Senate, 98th Congress, 2nd Session, June 26, 1984. https://books.google.com/books?id=jPJcI9Qeh4cC&source=gbs_navlinks_s

Hearing was called by Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, in response to

[p. 120:]

Continue reading “More on ‘institutional separation and functional interaction’ — & 1985 WaPo article on civil religion”

Notes and excerpts — ‘How Our Lady of Guadalupe Became Lutheran: Latin American Migration and Religious Change’

Luisa Feline Freier, “How Our Lady of Guadalupe Became Lutheran: Latin American Migration and Religious Change,” Migraciones internationales [Tijuana] 5.2 (July-Dec. 2009) http://www.scielo.org.mx/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1665-89062009000200006 Continue reading “Notes and excerpts — ‘How Our Lady of Guadalupe Became Lutheran: Latin American Migration and Religious Change’”

Paul Andersen’s 1850 letter to American Home Missionary Society — ‘ungodly professors’ take warning (!)

Conrad Bergendoff, ed. “Reports to the American Home Missionary Society, 1849-1856,” 35-84. Augustana Historical Society Publications, Vol. 5. Rock Island: Augustana Historical Society, 1935.

VERBATIM EXCERPTS:

[35] In 1848 Paul Andersen, a Norwegian student, succeeded in organizing a number of Chicago Norwegians into a Lutheran congregation. Andersen secured ordination from the Franckean Synod (N.Y.) and for a while belonged to this Synod. the American Home Missionary Society granted him a subsidy and required in return a quarterly and annual report concerning his activities. … [IN AUG SYN ARCHIVES]

… These reports give a graphic picture of conditions during this period in Chicago. The firs Swedish Lutheran immigrants also joined this church and were ministered to by its pastor, prior to the organization of a Swedish congregation and the coming of Erland Carlsson.

***

Continue reading “Paul Andersen’s 1850 letter to American Home Missionary Society — ‘ungodly professors’ take warning (!)”

Lake View Lutheran Church, Chicago

“Our History,” Lake View Lutheran Church, 835 W. Addison St., Chicago [(c) 2019] http://www.lakeviewlutheran.com/about.html.

Lake View Lutheran can trace its origin to a Scandinavian Lutheran mission was in operation by 1843, with some information leading us to believe it was as early as 1834.

The Scandinavian Lutheran mission began construction on a building on Superior Street, between LaSalle & Wells. The nearly-completed structure was destroyed by a wind storm and the congregation lacked funds to start it over. In distress, they called to theological student Paul Anderson (for whom Andersonville is named) for aid. Anderson helped the congregation formally organize as the Scandinavian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Chicago on January 6, 1848. While the Superior Street church resumed construction, the congregation met first in the Bethel Chapel on Kinzie Street (between Franklin and Kingsbury Streets). In addition to Anderson’s leadership, Scandinavian Evangelical Lutheran’s formation was also assisted by a grant from the Lutheran Church’s local Missouri Synod and its pastor, Rev. C.A.T. Selle, was interested in work among the Scandinavian immigrants in the city

Records show services and Sunday School were conducted in English in 1848. In 1852, a group of Swedish immigrants, stranded in Chicago, were aided by Pastor Anderson. They chose to remain in Chicago and and the congregation helped them organize a Swedish Lutheran Church. For a time the two congregations worshiped jointly, but ultimately the Swedes bought the property on Superior Street from the Norwegians in 1855.

Dedicated in 1855 on the corner of Erie and Franklin Streets, the new church was home to the newly-named Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Chicago and was nearly destroyed in the Chicago Fire of 1871.

After the fire, many Scandinavians had relocated throughout Chicago, especially to the North and West Sides. This informed the congregation’s decision to move to the North Side. Members on the South Side were encouraged to join Our Savior Lutheran.

<hr>

“Worship: Lutheran,” LakeView Historical Chronicles, May 31, 2011 https://www.lakeviewhistoricalchronicles.org/2011/05/worship-lutheran.html.

Lake View Lutheran Church835 W Addison Street

and before that it was …

First Norwegian Lutheran Kenmore & Roscoe
the oldest congregation in Lake View

clips (look like copies made from microfilm)

Esbjörn

“Old Norwegian Church Plans 95th Birthday,” Chicago Tribune, Feb. 7, 1943 …

and later clips from 1952 (104th anniversary) and 1961 when it moved to Addison.

(it’s a few blocks east of Wrigley Field)

Notes: Walther and Schmucker on church and state

 James D. Heiser, “The Church-State Relationship and Augustana XVI in the Writings of C.F.W. Walther and S. S. Schmucker,” Logia, 5.2 (Easter 1996) 5-13. https://www.academia.edu/6854367/The_Church-State_Relationship_and_Augustana_XVI_in_the_Writings_of_C._F._W._Walther_and_S._S._Schmucker?fbclid=IwAR2BpwQZYjRkfOeytXur5sQH7dTLYh1t5W5NXAiVglrs3ziJnRqxiVbl04U 

[Bio note: The Rt. Rev. James D. Heiser is the Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America and Pastor of Salem Lutheran Church (Malone, Texas). He teaches on the faculty of St. Ignatius Lutheran Theological Seminary and is Dean of Missions for the Augustana Ministerium. He also serves on the Board of Directors of The Mars Society.]

Excerpt from p. 6-7:

The value of American religious freedom for maintaining aright relationship between church and state is a common themein Walther’s sermons. Walther observed during his Fourth of July address in 1853:

State and church, the civic and religious life are here separatedfrom one another in such a way that the state does not inquirehow its citizens come to God or what they trust for their sal-vation….I maintain that this religious freedom is one of thebrightest stars in the banner of our new fatherland….As the church cannot be a state, so also the state cannot bea church. A state is certainly not an institution of God by which its citizens are to be led toeternallife.9

Again:

What then is the most glorious, the greatest, yes, the only thing that the state can grant the true religion? Not privi-leges, butliberty;not government regulations which enforcebeliefs of religion, but freedomof religion to proclaim these doctrines to the whole world; not the protection andspreading of religion with temporal power, but freedom of religion to defend itself and to reach out with the weapon of  the persuasive word. 10

Schmucker also believed in a clear division between the twokingdoms, with Christians owing allegiance to the ecclesiasticaland civil authorities. This focus was reflected in early ecumenicalworks such as his Fraternal Appeal to the American Churches . Schmucker’s proposed “United Protestant Confession” appendedto this Fraternal Appeal addressed the Christian’s relationship tocivil government in its tenth article:

God the supreme Lord and king of all the world, hathordained civil magistrates to be under him, over the people,for his own glory and the public good; and to this end hath armed them with power, for the defense and encouragementof them that do good, and for the punishment of evil-doers.The power of the civil magistrate extendeth to all men, aswell clergy as laity in things temporal; but hath no authority in things purely spiritual. Christians ought to yield obedi-ence to civil officers and laws of the land: unless they should command something sinful; in which case it is a duty toobey God rather than man. 12

Although the precise terminology is not the same, it can beseen that this article contains much in common with Article XVIof the Augsburg Confession. The chapter entitled “Of PoliticalAffairs” in Schmucker’sLu


Excerpt from p. 7:

Athough the confessional approach expressed in Schmucker’sElements of Popular Theology andLutheran Manual might appearsimilar to that of Walther, the author’s views express a clear distinc-tion between himself and the Saxon emigrant theologian. This dif

ference is clearly delineated in Schmucker’s willingness to esteem one form of government as more pleasing to God than another.Although Schmucker stated, “The Confessors do not pronounceany particular kind of government of divine origin,” he went on todeclare that the “Democratic or Republican form of government … is doubtless the most perfect form of government, as it secures inthe highest degree the rights and happiness of all its citizens. Of thisfact the history of our own favored country affords demonstrativeproof.”Schmucker even proposed that “had the divine Saviorprescribed any form, it doubtless would have been the republican;for such is essentially the form of government which he gave to hischurch ….”When Schmucker cited “our illustrious fathers” hequoted the Declaration of Independence, not Luther or theLutheran fathers of the Age of Orthodoxy!

***

One can see a tension in Schmucker’s thought. Althoughadmitting God did not establish a particular form of govern-ment, nevertheless he dismissed the “passive obedience” given tokings as an “absurd doctrine” and told the reader, in essence,that the American form of government really is the way Jesuswould want it do

***

Walther’s views on this matter, however, were quite different.For Walther, it was not the pastor’s place to establish God’s atti-tude toward any particular form of government. As Waltherobserved in his “Fourth of July Address”:

If now you should desire that I blend my voice in the accus-tomed fashion of those who appear before the citizens of [p8]  this land on this day; that is to say, should you expect of methat I present a eulogy on the ingenuity of man which haserected the astounding, great, glorious, and richly blessededifice of this republic, then you would, of course, soon bedisappointed in me.

I am a Christian! … as a Christian I could never be apriest who would lay the offerings of praise and thanksgiv-ing on altars erected to mortal men …

You would still less expect of me that I should point outthe advantage of our republican constitution over themonarchies of our former fatherland … . You know that Iam a theologian, a preacher of religion, a servant of thechurch. In considering this union of States today, I am natu-rally going todo so in relation to religion, to Christianity, tothe church. 22

***

The alleged link between the Reformation and civil liberties ismaintained throughout Schmucker’s writings. In hisDiscourse in Co mmemoration of the Glorious Reforma tion of the Sixteenth Cen-tur  y Schmucker pronounced American civil liberties to beamong the fruits of Protestantism: “Such was the glorious Refor-mation of the sixteenth century … . The fruits, both civil andreligious, of this Revolution, we, in these United States, mostrichly enjoy.” Roman Catholicism’s “v ery essence is an admix-ture ofcivil and religious despotism.” 30

The last feature of the Reformation to which we shall advertis, that it has delivered the civil government of the countrieswhich embraced it, from papal tyranny, and has given a new impulse to civil liberty, which has been felt throughout theChristian world.

Since the relative tendencies of Protestantism and Popery have been fully developed and attentively studied, no fact inthe philosophy of history is more fully established than thatthe former is intimately allied to civil liberty; and the latterto civil despotism. 31

How much, how incalculably much the Protestant nationshave gained by the Reformation, is demonstrated by theirmanifest and striking superiority to their Catholic neighboursin every thing relating to civil rights and liberty, to internalimprovements, to domestic purity and happiness ... 32 ***

[Extended discussion of the right of rebellion and in the US Civil War, — Schmucker sided with the Union, Walther with the Confederacy … and each found theological justification.]

Excerpt from p. 12:

Throughout a survey of Schmucker’s work one is struck by his adoption of the Weltanschauung of nineteenth-century American liberalism. A great proportion of the treatment of political affairs inElements of Popular Theology is applicableonly within the immediate setting of his generation’s debateover the intent of the United States Constitution and the Decla-ration of Independence. The result of this approach is that suchmaterials rapidly lose their value outside of their immediate cul-tural and historical context. By narrowing his vision of theReformers to the narrow context of the American republic,Schmucker lost his ability to address himself to the churchcatholic. This may be considered a symptom of Schmucker’sgreater failure to equal Walther’s success in “building a vitalLutheranism on American soil in accord with the demands of the particular situation here”—his f ocus was simply too nar-row to meet the “ecumenical task.”

Walther, however, by consciously repristinating aspects of theteachings of Luther and the Lutheran Confessions concerningthe church-state relationship, particularly the emphasis on theauthority of the state,aligned himself with a strain of teachingdeeply rooted in the Lutheran dogmatic tradition. Walther’s exe-gesis of certain key passages (such as Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2)and his ability to explain the teachings of the Lutheran symbolswithin the American context allow Lutherans easier access totheir church’s traditions, whereas Schmucker’s views on a widevariety of issues simply stray too far from the historic Lutheran norm.

 

 

Notes — Luther quote on Anabaptists

Luther Screen Shot 2019-08-23 at 4.51.57 PM.png

Screen shot Aug. 23, 2019. I am unable to find the original, am copying it here from the ELCA discussion group on Facebook, permalink immediately below, for research purposes.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/387419187942396/permalink/3255864907764462/

The meme was posted Thursday, Aug. 22. Several commenters asked the source, and at least two of us posted citations and other information. My screen shots from a 19th-century history of the Reformation appear below, along with one in 1957 from the Concordia edition of Luther’s works. Full citation at:

Volume 22, “Sermons on the Gospel of St. John Chapters 1-4” Page 55. https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Luther%27s_works

luther john quote works  2019-08-23 at 2.40.58 PM.png

xxx

My comment to the FB thread was as follows: “I tracked it down in Google Books in a 19th-century “History of the Great Reformation of the Sixteenth Century” by Jean Henri Merle d’Aubigné. The context seems to be the Peasants’ Revolt of the 1520s. (I’ll attach a screengrab.) But a cite from Luther’s Works would be better.”

[CITE: Jean Henri Merle d’Aubigné, History of the Great Reformation of the Sixteenth Century in Germany, Switzerland, etc. Philadelphia: James M. Campbell & Co., 1844. Google Books.

luther john1 2019-08-23 at 4.13.28 PM.png

xxx

luther john1 notes 2019-08-23 at 8.04.33 AM.png


Matthew Barrett, “Luther’s neglected sermons on John’s Gospel,” Credo Oct. 4, 2017 https://credomag.com/2017/10/luthers-neglected-sermons-on-johns-gospel-matthew-barrett/

A brief word about the history of these sermons (and here I am following Pelikan, who elaborates upon the history more than I will). Johannes Bugenhagen (1485-1558) occupied the pulpit as the parish pastor in Wittenberg (it’s hard for 21st century American readers to understand, but some towns had but one or two pulpits). Luther was called upon to step in and preach in Bugenhagen’s absence. Invited by King Christian III himself, Bugenhagen was off to Denmark in 1537 where he would assist with church reform.

The timing was anything but ideal. Suffering from various illnesses, Luther’s body was flirting with death itself. It was a scary time for Luther’s disciples. Yet Luther was unbelievably resilient, surviving the sickness, only to return to the study to prepare sermons for Saturdays and Sundays. We read in a July 5th, 1537, letter to Bugenhagen: “I have begun to preach and lecture once more; in fact, yesterday I preached in your place. …Christ lives; and we are Christs—with and without the apostrophe (Christi sumus in nominative et genitivo).

The task would prove more challenging than Luther imagined. Not only did each week demand multiple services and sermons but Luther’s body had not recovered entirely. Instead, illness revisited, making preaching a demanding task. “I am so overloaded with tasks and so troubled with sicknesses that I have often been compelled, and still am, to leave my duties unperformed.”


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Henri_Merle_d%27Aubign%C3%A9

The first portion of Merle d’Aubigné’s Histoire de la Reformation – History of the Reformation of the Sixteenth Century – which was devoted to the earlier period of the movement in Germany, i.e., Martin Luther’s time, at once earned a foremost place among modern French ecclesiastical historians, and was translated into most European languages. The second portion, The History of the Reformation in Europe in the Time of Calvin, dealing with reform in the French reformer’s sphere, exhaustively treats the subject with the same scholarship as the earlier work, but the second volume did not meet with the same success.

Preliminary notes on faith, hope and trust in the ER: Insights from a Lutheran college textbook and a Swedish-English dictionary

DRAFT NOTES for a journal I hope to write when things settle down a little and I get time. My wife was taken to the ER at St. John’s Hospital in Springfield Wednesday night, and I found some thoughts in a book I took with me — more or less by accident — that crystalized some of the ideas I’ve been wrestling with, especially about intercessory prayer and whether a personal God exists to whom such prayers can be addressed. It took me in an unexpected direction, and I’ve posted the notes to this blog so I can send my spiritual director a link. Debi was pretty ill, and it’s been quite a rodeo, so I didn’t have time to write. But I’ll have a lot to talk about Monday at our next spiritual direction meeting.

D R A F T OF THE LEDE, OR INTRO, TO THE JOURNAL I HAVEN’T GOTTEN AROUND TO WRITING YET. THE EPIGRAPH COMES FROM A SWEDISH-ENGLISH DICTIONARY, WITH A DEFINITION OF BELIEF, FAITH AND TRUST — THE SAME WORD [“TRO”] IN SWEDISH — AND A QUOTATION FROM THE PASSAGE IN ST. PAUL’S LETTER TO THE CORINTHIANS ABOUT “FAITH, HOPE AND CHARITY”:

Tro 1. belief; faith; trust; tro, hopp och kärlek = faith, hope and love [charity]; den kristna tro = the Christian faith …” Engelsk-Svensk — Svensk-Engelsk Ordbok (Stockholm: Bonnier, 1997), p. 405.

Believe me, none of this was planned. When the ambulance came for Debi, I figured we’d have a good long wait in the Emergency Room. So I grabbed the nearest book in order to have something, anything, to read. It turned out to be Bradley Houston’s A Graceful Life: Lutheran Spirituality for Today (Minneapolis: Augsburg, 2000). Houston is a religion professor at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, and it reads like an undergraduate text or collateral reading book.

It turned out to be an inspired choice.

… AND THAT’S AS FAR AS I GOT WHEN I STARTED THIS DRAFT SOMETIME FRIDAY. VERBATIM EXCERPTS FOLLOW FROM BRADLEY HOUSTON’S BOOK [THE TYPOS ARE MINE, FROM TRANSCRIBING IT LATE SATURDAY WHEN I GOT HOME FROM THE HOSPITAL]:

Faith is trust in the present Christ, loving him, seeking from him all that is best. This notion of Christ present is often hard to grasp. A great many Christians think of Jesus mainly as someone who long ago set and example and paid a price for their sins. In such an understanding, Christ accomplished mighty things in the past and now dwells in heaven. Such a Christ Feels rather distant. But for Luther, Jesus Christ is alive and very much present in and with the believer. Luther had a powerful sense of living day by day in the intimate companionship of Christ. (49)

* * *

Why does God not quickly deliver us from suffering? The fact that God did not spare Jesus from the cross tells us something very significant about the way God works. It is not God’s highest goal to each of us live a long, carefree life. God is more concerned in fashioning people who have deep faith in God and love for one another. These are the primary characteristics of Jesus, and it is God/s goal to conform us to Christ. According to Christian beliefs, this goal is ultimately what is best for us. … 53

Luther says that if we look carefully at the cross of Jesus, then we discover a different God, one who is most deeply revealed in weakness, suffering, and death. … In the end, to be sure, God does overcome evil in the resurrection of Jesus. But the path to the glory of resurrection is through suffering. Since God dealt that way with Jesus, we should not expect anything different. God will not shield us from all sorrow and pain; at some points in our lives, we will have to endure them. … God may not bring us deliverance from trouble, but will share the trouble with us. … (69-70)

In summary, we can say that the central reality of relying upon the word of God is the personal relationship of trusting in Jesus Christ. Both law and gospel point to this center and especially to the cross of Jesus that helps us trust in God even in the midst of suffering. (70)

[AS I HAVE DONE HISTORICAL RESEARCH ON THE OLD SWEDISH-AMERICAN AUGUSTANA LUTHERAN SYNOD, I HAVE BEEN STRUCK BY THE WAY SWEDES (AND GERMANS) USE THE SAME WORD FOR FAITH, BELIEF AND TRUST. HENCE THE EPIGRAPH WITH THE QUOTATION FROM A SWEDISH-ENGLISH DICTIONARY (ORDBOK) ABOVE. HOUSTON GAVE ME A WAY TO MAKE THAT CONNECTION IN MY OWN THEOLOGIZING. ESPECIALLY IN LIGHT OF WHAT HE SAYS ABOUT SUFFERING.

[WHAT WAS ENTIRELY UNEXPECTED: HOUSTON MAKES THE CONNECTION BETWEEN FAITH AND TRUST IN THE CONTEXT OF LUTHER’S “THEOLOGY OF THE CROSS,” A CONCEPT I HAVE MORE-OR-LESS IGNORED UP TILL NOW BECAUSE THE EXPLANATIONS I’VE SEEN OF IT GET VERY DEEP INTO 16TH-CENTURY ISSUE(S) OF JUSTIFICATION. WIKIPEDIA EXPLAINS THE CONVENTIONAL WISDOM IN THE EXCERPT BELOW.]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theology_of_the_Cross

The theology of the Cross (Latin: Theologia Crucis,[1] German: Kreuzestheologie[2][3][4]) or staurology[5] (from Greek stauros: cross, and -logy: “the study of”)[6] is a term coined by the theologian Martin Luther[1] to refer to theology that posits the cross as the only source of knowledge concerning who God is and how God saves. It is contrasted with the Theology of Glory[1] (theologia gloriae),[1] which places greater emphasis on human abilities and human reason.

The term theologia crucis was used very rarely by Luther. He first used the term, and explicitly defined it in contrast to the theology of glory, in the Heidelberg Disputation of 1518. During this debate, he represented the Augustinians and presented his theses that later came to define the Reformation movement.

[Wikipedia lists 28 theses, i.e. academic debating points, that were argued at Heidelberg. All, as far as I can tell, deal with Luther’s concept of justification by grace through faith. The Wikipedia page continues:]

According to Luther, the theologian of the cross preaches what seems foolish to the world (1 Cor. 1:18). In particular, the theologian of the cross preaches that (1) humans can in no way earn righteousness, (2) humans cannot add to or increase the righteousness of the cross, and (3) any righteousness given to humanity comes from outside of us (extra nos).

HANSON’S BOOK ON LUTHERAN SPIRITUALITY GOES INTO THE ISSUE OF JUSTIFICATION BY GRACE IN DETAIL — YOU CAN’T WRITE MUCH ABOUT LUTHERANS WITHOUT IT — BUT THE PASSAGES I READ ABOUT LUTHER’S “THEOLOGY OF THE CROSS” IN THE EMERGENCY ROOM AT ST. JOHN’S TOOK WHAT HAD BEEN TO ME AN ABSTRACT 16TH-CENTURY CONCEPT AND APPLIED IT TO REAL LIFE, AT LEAST AS I HAVE LIVED IT. HE TOOK IT DOWN TO WHERE THE RUBBER HITS THE ROAD, AND I COULDN’T HAVE READ IT IN A BETTER PLACE AT A BETTER TIME.