The unevenhandedness of the leadership of the ELCA is stunning. From synod to synod, the rules that bind the congregations of the ELCA are meted out without any type of consistency. Take, for instance, the issue of dual affiliation. Those congregations without a substantial value are either ignored by individual synod bishops or dismissed by the synod for violation of the ELCA constitution. Yet, those congregations having substantial assets are fought tooth and nail and even taken to civil court. The Grace Lutheran congregation of Eau Claire, WI was brought before Polk County Circuit Judge Molly Gale-Wyrick by the Northwest Wisconsin Synod of the ELCA and 67 disgruntled Grace Lutheran congregants, known as Amazing Grace Lutheran for violating the ELCA constitution regarding dual affiliation. Perhaps an explanation of the pertinent sections of the ELCA constitution that the synod accused Grace Lutheran and their council of violating will help us understand the depths of the ELCA’s depravity:
8.17. References herein to the nature of the relationship between the three expressions of this church—congregations, synods, and the churchwide organization—as being interdependent or as being in a partnership relationship describe the mutual responsibility of these expressions in God’s mission, and the fulfillment of the purposes of this church as described in Chapter 4, and do not imply or describe the creation of partnerships, co-ventures, agencies, or other legal relationships recognized in civil law. It would appear from this article of the ELCA constitution that the relationship between congregations, synods and the churchwide organization is not governed by the law of man, but is interdependent and a partnership in God’s mission. From this article it would also appear that a Wisconsin Circuit Court Judge should have no jurisdiction over the above said organizations.
20.15. The procedures for consultation and discipline set forth in the bylaws shall be the exclusive means of resolving all matters pertaining to the discipline of congregations of this church. Neither the churchwide organization nor a synod of this church shall institute legal proceedings in which conduct described in provision 20.31.01. is the basis of a request for relief consisting of suspension of that congregation from this church or removal of that congregation from the roll of congregations of this church. A congregation of this church shall not institute legal proceedings against the churchwide organization or a synod of this church seeking injunctive or other relief against the imposition or enforcement of any disciplinary action against that congregation. Again, the ELCA appears to not be so inclusive in all matters as this article dictates the exclusive means for resolving all matters of discipline of congregations. While no congregation can institute legal proceedings against any synod for the imposition of discipline, apparently break-away congregants can persist in troublemaking and become party to a lawsuit against another congregation. Interestingly enough, the ELCA constitution does not specifically allow an action such as this to occur.
31.03. Charges against a congregation which could lead to discipline must be specific and in writing, subscribed to by the accuser(s), and be made by one or more of the following: a. at least one-fifth of the voting members of the congregation, submitted to the synodical bishop; b. at least three other congregations of the synod, submitted to the synodical bishop; c. the Synod Council; or d. the synodical bishop. 20.31.04. When there are indications that a cause for discipline exists, efforts shall be made by the bishop of the synod to resolve the situation by consultation in the same manner as set forth above for ordained ministers in 20.21.04. and 20.21.05. 20.31.05. If those efforts fail, the procedures for discipline shall be the same as that set forth above for ordained ministers in 20.21.07. through 20.21.22.
20.21.12. The accused shall have the privilege of selecting two persons (one clergy and one lay) and their alternates of the six persons from the churchwide Committee on Discipline to serve on a discipline hearing committee. The remaining four persons (two clergy and two lay) and their alternates, or six, if the accused does not exercise the privilege, and their alternates shall be selected by the Executive Committee of the Church Council. The council and pastors of Grace were accused and convicted without due process since they were not allowed to attend the alleged disciplinary hearing before the synod council.
20.16. It is the intent of this church that all matters of discipline should be resolved internally to the greatest extent possible. It is the policy of this church not to resort to the civil courts of this land until all internal procedures and appeals have been exhausted, except for emergency situations involving a significant imminent risk of physical injury or severe loss or damage to property. This particular article is most troubling. While intent is a broad term, greatest extent possible is not. The synod went out of their way to violate their own constitution while accusing the Grace Lutheran council of violating the ELCA constitution while disregarding the synod council’s deliberate misinterpretation of their own document. Do as I say and not as I do or am required to do by the articles of the document instituted to govern their organization. Incredible!
It is not surprising that an organization that disregards the tenets of a faith they are called to uphold violated their own governing documents. What is surprising is that there are still so many that continue to uphold and support this organization that denies much of the long standing, sound Lutheran doctrine that they profess to defend. As the leadership of the ELCA greases the skids on their rocket sled to hell, when will those passengers wake up and realize that the ELCA is on a path to destruction. These liars and thieves make the tax collectors and Pharisees of Jesus time look small time in comparison. The devil is laughing all the way to the bank while these supposed men of God lead the faithful astray. 1 Timothy 6:3-5, “These are the things you are to teach and insist on. If anyone teaches otherwise and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, they are conceited and understand nothing. They have an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions and constant friction between people of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain.” Those of you foolish enough to remain in fellowship with the ELCA; Keep filling the offering plates so that these ungodly purveyors of lies can continue in their wickedness or finally open your eyes and see what atrocities these co-conspirators of Satan are doing to the Lord’s church.