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["the chatter of a missionary sysadmin"]

the home team that breaks your heart

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Tried this morning to go to a Lutheran church -- it's my own home team, the old school, it's where I come from. I still, after all this time, "self-identify", as they say, Lutheran.

Now those of you who know a thing or two about the state of the mainline denominations have an inkling of how much of a crapshoot walking into such a church, at random, is. So I've taken some time to rifle through the websites of the churches around here, and just write off in advance those that are plainly not worth bothering with (usually there's telltale jargon, buzzwords or codephrases). So I have a short-ish list of ELCs Club kirks added to our overall list.

This morning, running only somewhat late, we picked one of those ELCA churches off the list that had an 11am service, and headed for it. Arriving, it seemed quiet... No cars in the back lot, but I'll circle to the front... No. Indeed, looking at the front of the church, the 11am service time has been pried off the sign, and "Service Times" chopped down to "Service Time", and only the 9am is left. Delightful. Whether or not they're heretics, they can't even keep from imploding down to a single service. w00 w00.

I mean, come on, people -- Carl Braaten died for your sins!* Of all the theological traditions in this bloody country, by all rights, theirs/ours ought to have the least chance of botching. Anchored in Scripture, respectful but not locked in to tradition, some breadth of ethnic origins, and a worldwide fellowship to draw upon. Who told you it was a good idea to sell out for this mess o'pottage, you $%^#^&*s?

I wouldn't even mind if they were just dull, or just infested with heresies -- one or the other can happen to anybody. But both?

And don't talk to me about the LCMS sonsaguns -- they're schismatics, and halfway to fundies to boot. They wouldn't have me, and I wouldn't sign away what they'd ask me to sign away.

Once again, between the Devil and the deep blue sea...

* = Well, no, Carl Braaten didn't die for our sins, but I'm pretty sure they're killing him slowly...

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