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Letter to LCC Congregational Pastors on Restructuring Matters

August 31, 2018 No Comment

31 August 2018

TO: Pastors, Deacons and Congregations of Lutheran Church—Canada
FROM: Rev. Timothy Teuscher, President, Lutheran Church—Canada
RE: Restructuring Matters

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

In our daily devotions over the past few months here at the synod office, we have been reading through the book of Acts – not only what Jesus continued to do and to teach by the Spirit through the apostles after His ascension into heaven, but what He continues to do and to teach by the Spirit in His church even today. One of the common refrains that we come across in the book of Acts is this: “And the word of God continued to increase” (Acts 6:7). And again: “But the word of God increased and multiplied” (Acts 12:24). And further: “So the word of the Lord continue to increase and prevail mightily” (Acts 19:20).

In addition, one of the constant exhortations of Paul in his letters to those churches mentioned in the books of Acts that were established by the Spirit through his missionary work has to do with the Word of God. So, for instance, he writes to the church in Colossae: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God” (Colossians 3:16).

Why this constant, repetitious emphasis on hearing, learning, teaching, and singing the Word of God? Paul answers that question in these familiar words: “The sacred writings are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:15-17).

I mention all this, not only in light of the renewed activity in many of our congregations following the summer months when Bible Class and Sunday School and Catechism Class resume, but also in light of the restructuring of our synod. After all, and not to mitigate all the factors and unresolved issues that went into this decision, the primary reason for the adoption of a new synodical structure at last fall’s LCC Convention was to channel and direct more of our personnel and financial resources and efforts to this – that the Word of Christ may dwell in us richly and through us to others. To be sure, there are many “nuts and bolts” matters that are being and will need to be addressed when it comes to the restructuring of our synod. You can read about some of these on our synod’s website. Just click on the box in the upper right corner of the home page entitled “Together in Mission and Ministry.” More information on this transition into a new way of doing things will also be shared at the upcoming final conventions of our three districts.

At the end of the day, however, it is not restructuring matters that should be our chief concern and be occupying our time; but rather this – “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.” So Martin Luther reminds all of us: “The only mark of the Christian church is following and obeying the Word. When that is gone, let men boast as much as they please: ‘Church! Church!’ There is nothing to their boasting anyway. Therefore you should say: Do the people have the Word of God there? And do they accept it too? For wherever one hears the Word of God, there is the church of God, even though it be in a cow stable, the place where Christ was born.

In the precious name of the Word who became flesh, our dear Lord Jesus Christ,

Rev. Timothy Teuscher
President, Lutheran Church—Canada