Monday, June 16, 2008

The Use of Authority and the Abuse of Power in the Missouri Synod

This paper was originally presented by Rev. Robin Fish at the 1997 Lutheran Free Conference of Minnesota North and Minnesota South Confessional Lutherans. It is also available at the Confessional Lutheran web page. Republished with permission.

The Use of Authority and the Abuse of Power in the Missouri Synod

My topic is both too big and too small for the purposes we have set before us today. I did not know that until I began to study and research. I am charged with the task of "setting the table" for you this morning. In that regard, I think Walther and Stephan are good figures to look at, if you don't look too closely. They can be used to illustrate the issues of power and authority. The topic is too big, since both Walther and Stephan, and the issues of abuse of power and the use of authority are capable of tying us up for days. And I have just 50 minutes to make sense of it all and make it make sense to you.

I discovered that you cannot say anything on any of these topics, however innocuous it may seem to you, without raising the ire of someone. So, I promise to irritate some. I hope I can also enlighten you. My topic is the Use of Authority and the Abuse of Power in the Missouri Synod. I don't want to be exhaustive, I just want to set you up for the speakers that follow me. The issue which seems to dominate in every discussion of Synodical polity or congregational practice today is the issue of power or authority. It comes up in questions like, "How can they do that?", or "Why do they let that go on?", or, in its less frequently asked form, "What are we going to do about it?"

Let's start with some definitions. First, to be honest, power and authority are practically synonymous. People often use them interchangeably. For our purposes today, we want to distinguish between them. Authority is the right and warrant to take an action, or to exercise leadership, or to give commands. Authority almost always is given or bestowed, and comes from outside an individual. The authority of a military officer comes, for example, not from his person, but from his rank, and from the military organization which bestowed such rank and authority on him. A pastor's authority is the Word of God. When he steps away from the Word of God he is just like anyone else -- you may love him and listen to him even when he is not making any sense, but his authority ends with the Word of God. Our Synod's authority is derived from the congregations of the Synod, and limited by the Synod by constitution and convention.

Power is something else, for our purposes today. Power is simply the ability to do something or get something done. It involves the possession of control or command over others, or influence over other people, things, materials, resources, or situations. I can see the wheels turning in some of your minds, but these words actually came out of a dictionary. Their application did not form the definitions. Things as well as people can possess power, according to the Bible - the resurrection, Scriptures, death, darkness, and the Gospel, to name a few, as well as Jesus, God, and those to whom He gives power.

As you can see, you can have both power and authority, or you can have power without any real authority, and you can have authority (the right to give commands) without any real power (the ability to make someone obey). In the Bible, the authority to do something usually dealt with commands -- Jesus could command evil spirits, He could teach with authority, He had the authority to forgive sins. It is interesting to note that authority can be questioned. "By what authority do you do these things?" Authority may not give you an answer, but at least it can be questioned, and it can take the time to consider the question.

Power cannot be questioned. It simply runs you over. It cannot take the time to consider its legitimacy or rights -- it simply IS. It does what it can, and what it cannot do, it simply lacks the power to get done. Power and authority are often paired in the Bible, but when they are contrasted, which only happens in Luke 10:19, authority is given over power.

In our circles, the debate is about authority over against power. A great deal is happening around us that simply should not be happening. Pastors are being forced from office without any just cause, over twenty-nine in one district in the last nine years alone. That indicates that power is being exercised without any proper authority to do so. On the other hand, some pastors preach false doctrine. Others empty the worship and teaching of the Church of all content - avoiding both explicit Law and clear and comforting Gospel as well. These are the exercise of power without authority to do so.

The call process is being manipulated, as a recent decision from the Commission on Constitutional Matters reflects. A decision was recently handed down that District Presidents did not have the authority to remove names from potential call lists submitted by congregations in the course of the call process. The existence of the ruling suggests that such a thing is happening. Evidence could be presented, with documentation, that this has been happening for over a decade, and it continues to happen even after the CCM ruling. In one district, the district's board of directors took upon themselves the power to disregard their own constitution and bylaws. The fact that the authority to act did not exist, and the limitations of authority to act in the manner they did were disregarded speaks of power without authority. There also was no one with either power or authority to intervene or correct the situation.

It is apparent that the two -- power and authority -- have become confused in the minds of many. Some appear to believe that if one possesses the power to act, they also possess the authority. This concept is clearly denied by Scripture, and civil law, and even common sense. Each of us possesses the power to do things which are illicit, things for which we have no right or authority. That is what morality is all about. We possess the power to steal, to gossip, to commit adultery or to murder. No one possesses the authority to do these things. We have no moral authority, that is, authority from God. And if we exclude issues in which our society is itself in rebellion against God, such as abortion, homosexuality, and no-fault divorce, we have no legal authority to do these things either.

Since this is our one hundred and fiftieth anniversary year in our Synod, it seems appropriate to examine the issues of power and authority by looking at our history. Martin Stephan and C.F.W. Walther provide us with a striking contrast. For most of his ministry Martin Stephan could call Pastor Ferdinand (as Walther was known in his younger days) a solid supporter. This demonstrates the principle that no one is right all of the time. Walther made his mistakes as a young pastor, too.

Walther and Stephan provide us with the contrast as we compare the mature Walther with the mature Stephan. Martin Stephan has become the symbol in our circles for an extreme form of Episcopal church polity, with absolute power in the hands of one man. This, in fact, has been called "Stephanism." Walther was forced by circumstances to find another way, and he found it in his study of Scripture and Luther and the Confessions. He built his ministry and his reputation on the understanding of authority he derived from Scriptures and the Reformation. His understanding of the nature of Church and ministry guided the development of our Synodical polity. Where Stephan exercised power and watched his authority fade away, Walther began with absolutely no power, and by the authority of the Word of God became the most influential man in his Synod, and earned the reputation of being the greatest American Lutheran theologian of his or any other time.

Martin Stephan, and "Stephanism"

Martin Stephan was a man of unique stature in history. He was inadequately trained and formally unqualified for the office of the Ministry into which he came practically without formal certification by those who held that authority. He then received a call to Dresden to a congregation that sat in the seam of the authorities of the day. He was hostile to authority in general, by nature, and though less than formally certified, he was bright and gifted and had trained himself well in Historic Lutheranism and human behavior.

The church scene in which he served was not unlike today. Many of those in positions of authority had no great love for faithfulness or orthodoxy. Primarily, they wanted things to go along peacefully, and making waves was a sure way to make trouble for yourself. Martin Stephan liked to make waves, so he was constantly drawing the unwelcome attention of the authorities, both religious and secular -- remember, the state ran the church in Europe. Much of what Pastor Stephan did that got him into trouble would be unremarkable today, but in the nineteenth century in Europe it was very much the scandal.

Because Martin Stephan was a forthright preacher of the Word of God in a church in which that was less than common, many faithful Lutherans gathered around him to hear his preaching and to be Lutheran in a church that officially refused to see the difference between Lutheran and Protestant. The authority that he exercised was the authority of the Word of God, at least at first. His boldness and forthright confession of the Law and the Gospel in a time wracked by the excessive guilt mongering of pietism and the callous indifference and unbelief of rationalism was startling - and refreshing - and drew both pastors and laymen to hear and to be refreshed by the bold proclamation of the faith.

In time, as his legal problems increased, Pastor Stephan began to believe that emigration was the only hope for peace in his ministry, and the preservation of the truth in the world. His popularity began innocently enough but then he began to use his popularity to manipulate people and events for his own protection and advantage. He styled himself as the keeper of the truth and the only faithful one left. Historians uniformly describe a "slow, but deliberate, development whereby he [Stephan] created an atmosphere according to which he was the only true leader, thus escalating himself still higher in influence and power over those who followed him." *1

His influence began to rest in his person rather than in the authority of his message, and it ultimately led to the sort of raw abuse of power that we described at the beginning of this paper. Forster, in his book, Zion on the Mississippi, described it in these words, "Any criticism of or opposition to the Dresden Pastor was condemned in the harshest terms. Stephan became an oracle, and all who disagreed with him, or with whom he disagreed, were wrong. Since Stephan disagreed with almost everyone, the simple conclusion was that all other views represented in the Church were false; only Stephanism was right. In fact, the claim was finally made not only that Stephanism was the only right church, but that it alone was a church." *2

It happened then as it we often see it happen today. Power, the ability to make things happen, twists and perverts the one who lives by it. Stephan became a tyrant. "Gradually he assumed the role of a master whose commands were to be obeyed without question. . . ." He demanded absolute obedience not just in matters religious but even in business affairs, and he made "free use" of the common treasury for his personal comfort, living on a very expensive scale. *3

Today we see many District Presidents exercising the same sort of power, without Scriptural warrant. Pastors are placed on reserve status, suspended and even expelled without cause. Pastors in the parish are forced into unwanted and unneeded psychological counseling by the manipulation of the President. Seminarians are required to take batteries of psychological tests to determine their "fitness" for the ministry on grounds other than theological, and frequently required to undergo counseling before being permitted to even train for the ministry. What was once decided on the basis of theological fitness and the faculty's observation of the student who sat before them for years, is now decided by the computerized analysis of their response to standardized psychological tests and the opinion of psychological counselors after a few hours of conversation.

Stephan was responding to attacks. The civil authorities in Dresden were apparently out to get Pastor Stephan. He responded by tightening his control over his followers. The threats perceived by modern leaders are probably just as intimidating to them, and likely flow from the same inability to admit error and the unwillingness of many in positions of power to do things as either the Word of God or the Constitution and by-law of the Synod or districts instruct. The result is the exercise of power without any real authority to do so. Although in many cases the officials have the influence to restructure the rules to give themselves the trappings of authority to validate their behavior. I know of at least one pastor was placed on restricted status by his District President three years before the constitution of the Synod was altered by convention to create such a status. Obviously this was before the authority to placed anyone on such restricted status could possibly have existed. This was the exercise of power -- the abuse of power -- just as when Stephan coerced his followers into signing the oath of subjection. He did it because he could.

"But our Synod is a democracy!", you say. "Conventions asked for these changes." This is, of course, the pious fiction under which we have all agreed to live. Anyone who has attended a convention of our Synod recently can tell you how little power is actually left to the convention. And that power is reduced further by endless appeals to points of order and other parliamentary devices which stifle debate and curtail careful consideration of the issues.

It is worth noting that this is the method of operation of choice for those who abuse power -- the semblance of authority. Every tin-plated dictator in the world has their legislative body to give an appearance legitimacy to their exercise of raw power. Carl Mundinger, in his classic book, Government in the Missouri Synod, observes about Stephan, "There was a semblance of untrammeled investigation and free discussion on the part of all, but the decision was made by one. This is the pattern of Stephanistic control: appearance of democracy and the essence of highly centralized government." *4

Walther and Scriptural Authority

The other option, the proper use of authority, is demonstrated by C.F.W. Walther. He was not always clear on this issue himself, having come to America as an ardent advocate of Stephanism. But the disclosure of Stephan's immoralities, the rejection of his mismanagement of the common treasury for his own enrichment, and the serious and often fatal (for others) misjudgments of the Bishop of America (as Stephan had induced his fellow migrants to designate him) forced everyone into a crisis of faith and a reconsideration of the most fundamental principles of what church was and how it ought to operate.

One of the laymen of the Emigration Gessellschaft, Carl Eduard Vehse, had written theses concerning the nature and governance of the church. These were carefully supported by copious citations of Luther and the Confessions. In his theses, Vehse advanced a radical congregationalism which made the pastoral office little more than an employee-at-will of the congregation. Vehse soon retreated to Germany, but his brother-in-law Adolph Marbach, an attorney, carried the torch for the new idea about church and ministry, and Walther, still persuaded by the idea of an episcopacy, studied Scripture, the Confessions, and Luther to determine how the church should operate and what we should make of the Office of the Holy Ministry. He also had to confront, in their moment of crisis, what the Church is and whether they had the right to continue to call themselves "church." The culmination of his study came at the Altenburg debates, where Marbach stood for lay-dominated congregationalism, and Walther presented his theses on Church and Ministry.

The evening was clearly won by Walther. Even Marbach confessed that Walther had won him over -- although he later seemed to have changed his mind and also returned to Germany. Nonetheless, Walther had carried the debate by appealing to Scripture, to the Confessions, and to Luther. In doing so, he established the doctrinal basis for the polity of the Missouri Synod which was to follow.

At that point in time, Walther had no power. He was one of the clergy who, in the minds of the people, had betrayed them by excessive subservience to Stephan and by Episcopal ambitions. It was the authority of the Word and the clarity of the Confessions and Luther that carried the day. Walther emerged the theological leader of the emigration party, and the church that emerged came forth with fanatical fear and distrust of power centered in any one person or group -- especially the clergy.

Walther became the greatest theologian in America by surrendering any power, and working only from the foundation of legitimate authority. The Missouri Synod was established on the principle of the authority of the Word of God and the power of convincing, period. Walther never held much formal power after that, nor did he seem to want to. His congregation insisted on carefully reviewing everything he did and approving plans, constitutions, and projects. Stories are told, possibly apocryphal, of Walther being seated in his office during voters' meetings, only coming out when specifically requested to appear, and to say a closing prayer.

He exercised massive authority, however, as a faithful teacher. His influence went far beyond the confines of the Missouri Synod through his writings in Der Lutheraner, as he transformed the face of Lutheranism across the country. By the exercise of the authority of the office of the Pastor -- the Word of God and of convincing -- he framed the debate among Lutherans in America, and for much of the world. That is not to say that he had no detractors. He was apparently envied and hated by some, although not openly in our Synod until after his death. Today he has many vocal and vociferous critics among Church Growth advocates and Episcopalian wannabee's, but his authority is still great in our Synod, because it is still the authority of the Word of God and of the Lutheran Confessions that Walther exercised.

He never again seems to have advocated episcopal power, after Altenburg. He did, however staunchly advance the authority of the Office of the Ministry. The authority of the Pastoral office comes from the Word, according to Walther. "In a sermon delivered upon the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the founding of the Missouri Synod at the Jubilee Convention, St. Louis, 1872, Walther said, `Reverence and implicit obedience are due the ministry when the pastor teaches the Word of God.'" *5

Walther could easily envision, and he heartily prayed that what has happened in our Synod would never happen. He often said that it would be greatly preferable if the Synod is small and faithful rather than large and unfaithful. You don't hear much of that kind of talk today from Synodical officials. Walther wrote, "[I desire] that the chief function of the Synod should be the maintenance and furtherance of Lutheran Doctrine and the guarding of the unity and the purity of the same." *6

Power vs. Authority

Our Synod today seems more concerned with controlling the franchisees -- seemingly the modern attitude of our Synodical officialdom toward the congregations. Pastors in our Synod today are being urged to resign by their District Presidents, contrary to our theology and to their calls. The applicable passage from the Bible says that the gifts and callings of God are irrevocable. Our own theology says that a pastor may be removed from office only by He who called them into the office -- God Himself, working through the proper channels, using the proper means, and exercising the authority which God gives. And God restricts us to precisely four causes of removal from office.

When a pastor will not resign as his District President requests, or will not recognize the counterfeit authority in other issues being heralded to excuse the raw abuse of power, they are often being suspended and expelled from our Synod for failing to play the game. To do so, however would require that he submit to that which his vows of ordination prohibit a faithful pastor from submitting. This behavior of our officials is, strangely enough, Stephanistic.

We also see the abuse of power in the manipulation of the process of the call. Congregations are forced to wait for the District President to begin the process. They are required to call from sanitized lists of candidates. Their candidates names, submitted to the district only for biographical and professional data, are often removed from the list, while the DP offers names of men he wishes to see serving in that congregation. Some districts are even adopting the ELCA's "interim pastor" concept. This is the placing of a pastor in a congregation for a specific term, for example, two years. This is what Walther and our Synod's theologians referred to as a "Temporary Call." It has been our Synod's position historically that temporary calls are improper and inconsistent with our doctrine of the Call. Such an interim pastor is ostensibly there to address the hurts and weaknesses of the congregation. This, of course, functions under the implicit assumption that every congregation is hurting from the ministry of the previous pastor. It also allows the District President to address the previous pastor's peccadillo's, such as, perhaps, confessional theology, or possibly a reluctance to follow every programmatic lead of the district office staff.

Walther's doctrine of Church polity was different. He wrote that ". . . the Synod ought to steer clear especially of usurping the congregation's prerogative of calling [a pastor]." *7 "The more freedom a church government in a free state like ours affords, the more efficient it will be," Walther wrote, "provided that the Word is preached in all its power in the congregations. on the other hand, everything co-ercive that does not flow immediately from the Word easily causes opposition by refusal to comply and lays the foundation for frequent separations." *8

There is an authority which is proper in the Church. It is the authority of the Holy Ministry -- which is to say it is the authority of the Word of God. It goes as far as the Word of God goes and no farther. It cannot command, except the heart of the believer by the authority of the Word of his or her God. To the laity, the command is given to listen and follow that authority, not by its right, but by the rule of love and voluntary submission to one another in Christ. The writer to the Hebrews instructs us with these words: Obey your leaders, and submit to them; for they keep watch over your souls, as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you. Hebrews 13:17

On the other hand, the authority is limited as it is handed over to those who will exercise it. In the following passage, the word "elder" refers to the ones in the office of the holy ministry -- the pastors. Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed, shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness; nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock. 1 Peter 5:1-3

Notice that the limits are placed both on the why and the how of the authority. It is willing, not compulsory. Such authority is with eagerness for the Gospel, not for worldly gain or profit. And it is authority by leading, by example, and not by driving or command. We have the authority of the Word of God and of convincing. No more. We are shepherds. We have the authority to guard the flock with the Word of God -- teaching -- and reproving -- and rebuking -- and refuting. But notice that no passage of Scriptures give us the power to manipulate or to threaten or to destroy.

"Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be on the alert. Acts 20:28-30

Being on guard, and being alert, and warning the flock, and guiding them to pastures of the pure Word and Sacraments are our assignment. I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths. IBut you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. 2 Timothy 4:1-5 The members of the flock have the congruent duty of listening and believing, as Paul writes to the Corinthian congregation, that you also be in subjection to such men and to everyone who helps in the work and labors. 1 Cor. 16:16

The power to sit in judgment of men and women is not there. We judge doctrine, but not men. We are told to warn, to prescribe and teach, and to be an example. We are never given the authority to lord it over, terrorize, crush or destroy. There is no coercion here, but persuasion. The most we can do by the Word of God is identify and avoid such as will not hear the Word, mark and refuse to have fellowship with such as teach false doctrine. Even in the case of gross public sin or false doctrine, however, we are to treat the erring brother not as an enemy, but as a brother. But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary of doing good. And if anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of that man and do not associate with him, so that he may be put to shame. And yet do not regard him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother. 2 Thess. 3:13-15

Only after repeated warning and rebuke and refutation can we mark one as unacceptable and excluded utterly from our fellowship. Titus 3 says, Reject a factious man after a first and second warning, knowing that such a man is perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned. And Romans 16:17, the famous verse decried by the Statementarians, instructs, Now I urge you, brethren, keep your eye on those who cause dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which you learned, and turn away from them. But these are men who will not be led by the Word, and will not be convinced. And all we have the authority to do is turn away from them, For such men are slaves, not of our Lord Christ but of their own appetites; and by their smooth and flattering speech they deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting.

-- the right to command, to judge, is also defined by Webster as the power to influence or persuade resulting from knowledge or experience. It is power which acts without love and unbecomingly. It is power that insists on having its own way. It is power that manipulates, controls, threatens and destroys simply because it can. You can always question authority, and authority usually is willing to demonstrate its source. Power just runs rough-shod over opposition and obstacle, simply because it can.


Ours is a day in which the Church once again needs to forsake the abuse of power in favor of the appropriate and proper use of authority. Pastor Laurence White of Houston Texas illustrated the problem which causes our Synod so much heartache and division in his 1996 paper,
The Transformation of Missouri
. In it, Pastor White traces the sad decline of our Synod's use of authority and the rise of this abuse of power as our Synod ceased to answer theological questions with theology, and began to answer theological problems with political answers -- and a bewildering array of by-laws and regulations. *9 Our Synodical bureaucracy employs over 450 pastors and a staggering array of support staff. The Synod was founded for the purpose of doing together what individual congregations cannot effectively do by themselves -- the training of Pastors and teachers and the sending of missionaries. Today it supports our colleges and seminaries to only a minor degree -- 2 to five percent of their costs. The new "corporate" structure has fractured our Synod. The Foundation and LCEF are now independent Corporations. The Concordia University System has separated the ownership and direction of the colleges and universities from the Synod. Those who are listening today often hear talk is of spinning our colleges off as independents. Students at our Seminaries pay $125 per credit for classes - the actual cost is $185 per credit, but a large private gift reduces the net cost to the students. Total costs for a year of seminary mount up to over twelve thousand dollars per year. Of every dollar we give in our offering on Sunday morning to missions, only about one penny actually goes to support a missionary . It seems clear something is wrong. It also seems apparent that the Stephanism is not working for the blessing of the Synod today any more than it did 150 years ago.

This modern face of Stephanism surely is not working for the pastors whose careers have been derailed or destroyed. It is not working for the congregations which suffer the loss of their pastor, extended vacancy, and with it, the all-too-frequent loss of the touchstones of the Word of God and solid liturgical worship as the result of the Church Growth movement flowing from District offices. This brand of Stephanism is not effective in combating the encroachments of false and "liberal" theology. The Synod has lost the ability to respond effectively because it has abandoned its true authority in favor of the seemingly more pro-active exercise of power. We need to relinquish the exercise of power and return to the authority which Christ has given to his church on earth -- the right to determine and to judge doctrine, and the preacher, an authority which is found only in the Word of God.

Finally, Walther:

"There are many pastors in America who form a "union" of sorts so that they can play the "game" of synod. They may be renegades from the discipline of a legitimate synod, are usually poorly educated, know nothing about the doctrine of the church whose name they bear, may have no preparation for the office of the ministry at all, are filled with errors of every kind, may also be conscienceless people who carry on "ministry" like any other trade, just in order to earn their daily bread and live a comfortable life. When they come into an area, especially one that has no synod, they think, "This is nice, we'll form our own synod here." So then they accept as members any Tom, Dick, or Harry who happens to come along, so that they can play "synod." They all want to be "president," and so they elect a large number of vice-presidents so that everyone holds an office, a title, a dignity. They have no doctrinal studies of any kind, because their heads are empty and therefore they can't produce anything worthwhile. Neither do they have any interest in doctrine. They spend their time on "business," how they should precede in a proper parliamentary fashion. They appeal repeatedly for "proper procedure" in bringing matters up for consideration by the "right reverend synod," or the "venerable ministerium." And so they refer the matter from Caiaphas to Annas, etc. It is truly hair-raising and shocking to read the history of how certain "synods" came into being. The way they operate is nothing less than scandalous!
"In contrast to that, a Synod worthy of the name must above all else be formed so that the gifts which are distributed to the various servants of Christ may be best utilized for the benefit of all. And here again the number one priority must be the promotion of a better understanding of God's Word. Even if a synod proceeds in a free and easy manner, with no particular organized procedure, it is still a glorious synod so long as there is an intensive study of God's Word. The Lord is in the midst of His Synodical members. For there we are gathered in His name and there His Word is taught in childlike faith." *10

* Footnotes:
1. Rehborg, Gary,
Martin Stephan, an Apostle of Piety or an Apostle of Pietism?
, M. Div. Thesis, Concordia Theological Seminary, 1985, p.38.
2. Forster, Walter A., Zion on the Mississippi, (St. Louis, MO, Concordia Publishing House, 1953), p. 64.
3. Graebner, Th., Lutheran Pioneers, Vol. I, Our Pilgrim Fathers, The Story of the Saxon Immigration of 1838, (St. Louis, MO, Concordia Publishing House, 1919), pp. 16-17.
4. Mundinger, Carl S., Government in the Missouri Synod: The Genesis of Decentralized Government in the Missouri Synod, (St. Louis, Missouri, Concordfia Publishing House, 1947), p. 71.
5. Mundinger, p. 201.
6. Wohlrabe, John, C., Jr., The Americanization of Walther's Doctrine of the Church, CTQ, Vol 52, No. 1, January 1988, p. 13.
7. Ibid.
8. Ibid, p. 14.
9. White, Rev. Laurence, The Transformation of Missouri, a paper presented to the Lutheran Concerns Association Banquet on April 9, 1996.
10. Walther, C.F.W., Essays for the Church, Vol. II, (St. Louis, MO, Concordia Publishing House, 1992), pp. 45-46.


Forster, Walter A., Zion on the Mississippi, (St. Louis, MO, Concordia Publishing House, 1953).

Graebner, Th, Lutheran Pioneers, Vol. I, Our Pilgrim Fathers, The Story of the Saxon Immigration of 1838, (St. Louis, MO, Concordia Publishing House, 1919).

Mundinger, Carl S., Government in the Missouri Synod: The Genesis of Decentralized Government in the Missouri Synod, (St. Louis, MO, Concordia Publishing House, 1947).

Rehborg, Gary, Martin Stephan, an Apostle of Piety or an Apostle of Pietism?, M. Div. Thesis, (Ft. Wayne, IN, Concordia Theological Seminary Library, 1985).

Vehse, Carl Eduard, The Stephanite Immigration to America, 1840, trans. Rudolph Fiehler (Tucson, AZ, pub. Marion Winkler, 1977).

Visser, Alan G., Martin Stephan and Added Information of an Oral Interview with Edna Stephan, M.Div Thesis, )Ft. Wayne, IN, Concordia Theological Seminary Library, 1984).

Walther, C.F.W., Essays for the Church, Vol. II, (St. Louis, MO, Concordia Publishing House, 1992).

Walther, C.F.W., The Congregation's Right to Choose Its Pastor, Trans. Fred Kraemer, Ed. Wilbert Rosin, (Ft. Wayne, IN, Concordia Theological Seminary, n.d.).

White, Rev. Laurence, The Transformation of Missouri, a paper presented to the Lutheran Concerns Association Banquet on April 9, 1996.

Wohlrabe, John, C., Jr., The Americanization of Walther's Doctrine of the Church, CTQ, Vol 52, No. 1, January 1988.

1 comment:

revalkorn said...

Thank you for sharing this. I wish I had read it three years ago!