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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - August 3, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa Lutheran Unity Shaken By Doctrinal Difference Briefs The Odar RapMs Gazette 'Songs, Hv David K. AmlmoH UPI vjuui The theological divisions in the 27 million member Lu- theran church i Missouri Synod) me spilling over to the denomination's sister Luther- an Churches and could pose senous problems for the fra- gile unity IhiU among American Lutherans. That spillage became clear at the recent convention of the Lutheran Church in America the nation's largest (3 mil- lion members) and most liber- al Lutheran communion. Dclogales lo the convention adopted a resolution express- ing regret at -all official ef- to legislate adherence" to documents other than the Bible which "serve to fence God's Word and f r a c t u r e God's people." The resolution was a direct slap at the present conserva- tive administration of the Mis- souri Synod which has pressed for and received by slim convention votes a require- ment that doctrinal state- ments approved by conven- tions are binding on all members of the church. Heresy Charges The conservatives in Mis- souri, headed by the synod president, Dr. J. A. 0. Preus, have used that resolution to press heresy charges against the one-time president of its prestigious Concordia semi- nary and several of the semi- nary staff. The result has been a wide doctrinal and theological split in the gener- ally conservative denomina- tion with the ouster of a ma- jority of the seminary profes- sors, establishment of a "se- minary in a major split in the church's mission staff and, finally, the organi- zation of the moderate minori- ty into l.inhi-r- ans Mission iKlilMi." Missouri and the IX.'A, middle :u American Lutheran Churcli, in [lie Lutheran Council in the T.SA cUTSAi. primary vehicle of iwer-Lwln'raii co- nperatiim and unity in the t'nited Stales. 1'ropotiriits 1. u 1 ii c r n a unit y among all three churches have expressed ccrn aboiu what the impact of the internal Missouri struggle means for the future of Lu- theran cooperation, and tin- action by the 1.CA convention, clearly siding with Die moder- ates, strengthened that "con- cern. Chain llniken The movement openly to align the church with the out- of-power moderates came, ac- cording to one observer, when ii was announced that 1'reus would not be present for the ceremonial a n d traditional greeting to the delegates, thus rupturing a chain of presiden- tial appearances by heads of "sister churches" reaching back more than a decade. The delegates, after an abortive plan to disinvite Preus or his substitute, then pushed for an invitation for equal time for a represent- ative of EL11I. They followed up thai invi- tation and appearance by the ELIM's president, the Rev. Samuel J. Hoth of St. Louis with passage of a res- olution called "a statement of concern" in which the dcle- gates expressed solidarity with "our Lutheran sisters and brothers everywhere who will join in an evangelical tes- timony that God's Word shall not be bound." Slim Majority Roth, in his statement to the convention, said those in- wlve'l in KI.IM were rrsistinf: "with i otusiderable passion what we see as an attempt to liinc! v.-i'li fcr mutations of doctrine, or even cxfg< tiral judgments, adopted al huge conventions by a .slim majority vote." Tin- present leadersiiip uf Missouri, which openly ae- ttmt relations tie tween the two cluirches "have not always been as one would wish them lo is not likely 10 take the I.C'A action happi- li could mean an increased withdrawal on the part of Mis- souri from such .structures as I.CI'SA and a heightened re- luctance to participate in inter-Lutheran mission pro- grams until its internal battle between conservatives and moderates is finally resolved. Mr. Hasvold To r THeHieV' movie Hasvold of Cambridge, Wis., "A Thief in the Night" will he will be installed as pastor of shown at ,he Frce Mcthodist Shepherd Lutheran church t.hurchi -ltle ,ilm is hei'c Allg' 18' about the prophecy of the sec- Shows Mark Sunday Activities A concert by evangeli.-t and recording artist Jim llolii will Firs! Church of the .Naza: ene. The I n t e r d e noininaliomil c h u r h has scheduled the (iospd film "The Heturn" Sun- day at 7 p.m. Jehovah s Witnesses circuit If P. Ijovinger will 'give a slide show and .speech at a.m. Sunday at Kingdom Hall. Topic of the presentation will be "Our Troubled (inest speaker, the Itev. Italph Colton, will give a sermon entitled "Some Kaets About Our Religion" at 9 and I a.m. Sunday at the C'al- vin-Sinelair United Presby- terian church. The annual picnic of the Cedar Valley Bible church will be held i Sunday at 2 p.m. at Ihe Ellis Missionary (ilen Kendall will speak at the Not'lridge I'ark liaplist diiii'ili Suiiiiiij
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