In my oral report, I will be acknowledging anniversaries, announcing pastoral transitions (retirements and new arrivals), etc.. I will not be reading my written report, which you will find here, We have precious little time as it is. I will take questions. So, I commend to you my written report. Feel free to contact me before or after the assembly should you have a question or desire a longer conversation.
My written report is in two parts. The first part is titled, “Nuts & Bolts,” though that title may be a little misleading. It covers various aspects of the synod’s life and work, and, while we might think of these as nuts and bolts issues, they are not without their philosophical dimensions. If you simply want to know what the synod is doing, read this part.
The second part is an extended essay on the mission of the synod in terms of Lutheran ecclesiology. We gather in this assembly with a primary focus upon this synod’s financial position. I leave it to others in this assembly to explore those questions in depth. I would not be surprised were our conversations in this assembly to turn to questions of synodical viability. Such conversations should not be avoided when appropriate, and the fiscal examination will help this assembly determine appropriateness. Such conversations, however, should not be engaged in apart from our ecclesiology. Some will find the essay uninteresting and unnecessary. Fortunately, we can always skip to the next section of the Pre-Assembly Bulletin of Reports. I should also mention that the essay does not shy away from parenthetical inclusion of the technical terms employed by Lutheran theologians across the centuries. I have, nevertheless, heeded the order of Synod Assembly 2007:
SA07.6.25:That this Assembly admonish Pastor Riegel for the use of entirely too much Latin in his reports and urge him to include translation aids in the future.
While some may argue that there is, in fact, entirely too much Latin in this report, translation is present throughout. I retain the technical terminology for the sake of clarity in what has become a murky topic, especially as we engage in conversation with those outside this synod.