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Author Topic: Liturgical/Traditional Lutherans in North America?  (Read 13186 times) Average Rating: 0
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Alveus Lacuna
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« on: June 05, 2009, 03:12:33 PM »

I am interested in attending the most traditional and liturgical expression of Lutheranism available in the Unites States, as I know that most Lutheran groups in the United States are far more 'Evangelical' than their roots are.  Is their a sort of overarching organization that these types of Lutherans use to distinguish themselves from other Lutheran groups?  I would like to do some searching online for one in the Kansas City metro area, but I don't really know what to look for.  I have heard of the 'Missouri Synod' or something to that effect, but I don't know if these are the very traditional Lutherans, or just some fundamentalist group.
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ialmisry
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« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2009, 03:38:55 PM »

I am interested in attending the most traditional and liturgical expression of Lutheranism available in the Unites States, as I know that most Lutheran groups in the United States are far more 'Evangelical' than their roots are.  Is their a sort of overarching organization that these types of Lutherans use to distinguish themselves from other Lutheran groups?  I would like to do some searching online for one in the Kansas City metro area, but I don't really know what to look for.  I have heard of the 'Missouri Synod' or something to that effect, but I don't know if these are the very traditional Lutherans, or just some fundamentalist group.

The Missouri synod is your best bet.  The ELCA went a little high church after its merger, but is like the Episcopalians: the higher the church, the lower the theology (and in general, the morality).
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Alveus Lacuna
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« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2009, 03:44:47 PM »

The ELCA went a little high church after its merger, but is like the Episcopalians: the higher the church, the lower the theology (and in general, the morality).

Don't they also have women pastors?
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« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2009, 04:08:51 PM »

I am interested in attending the most traditional and liturgical expression of Lutheranism available in the Unites States, as I know that most Lutheran groups in the United States are far more 'Evangelical' than their roots are.  Is their a sort of overarching organization that these types of Lutherans use to distinguish themselves from other Lutheran groups?  I would like to do some searching online for one in the Kansas City metro area, but I don't really know what to look for.  I have heard of the 'Missouri Synod' or something to that effect, but I don't know if these are the very traditional Lutherans, or just some fundamentalist group.

The Missouri synod is your best bet.  The ELCA went a little high church after its merger, but is like the Episcopalians: the higher the church, the lower the theology (and in general, the morality).

I don't know about that generalization. There's quite a bit of conservative high church and liberal low church in ECUSA.
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« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2009, 04:12:57 PM »

The ELCA went a little high church after its merger, but is like the Episcopalians: the higher the church, the lower the theology (and in general, the morality).

Don't they also have women pastors?

ELCA and ECUSA both have female rectors and even bishops. LCMS has neither, though with the LCMS the latter does not matter as they aren't even episcopal in church governance.
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« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2009, 09:38:14 PM »

You should do a web search for the Society of St. Polycarp and contact one of the pastors from there.  They are a group of confessional Lutheran pastors.  I remember seeing a listing somewhere a long time ago of other conservative/confessional Lutheran churches, but I lost that link long ago.

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« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2009, 10:30:36 PM »

The two most traditional main line Lutherans are the Wisconsin Synod (WELS) and the Missouri Synod (LCMS).  If you can find one of them that have a monthly German service, you will get pretty close.  BTW - my father is a retired LCMS pastor and I was an elder in the WELS prior to my conversion to Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2009, 12:26:06 AM »

ELCA, LCMS, and WELS are the "mainstream" groups of Lutherans in North America. But there are also quite a lot of smaller Lutheran denominations which happen to be more "Catholic", "liturgical", and "apostolic":

The Anglo-Lutheran Catholic Church: http://www.ecclnet.org/
The Evangelical Marian Catholic Church: http://www.evmcc.org/
The Apostolic Lutheran Church of America: http://www.apostoliclutheran.org/index.php
The Evangelical Catholic Church: http://www.evangelicalcatholicchurch.org/index2.htm
The Lutheran Orthodox Church: http://www.orgsites.com/pa/lutheranorthodox/
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« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2009, 12:39:08 AM »

Here's a YouTube of how Catholic the LCMS can be: Grace Lutheran Church, Tulsa.

About the only thing that makes them Protestants is their ecclesiology, indicated by their lack of bishops in apostolic succession.
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ialmisry
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« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2009, 09:46:07 AM »

ELCA, LCMS, and WELS are the "mainstream" groups of Lutherans in North America. But there are also quite a lot of smaller Lutheran denominations which happen to be more "Catholic", "liturgical", and "apostolic":

The Anglo-Lutheran Catholic Church: http://www.ecclnet.org/
The Evangelical Marian Catholic Church: http://www.evmcc.org/
The Apostolic Lutheran Church of America: http://www.apostoliclutheran.org/index.php
The Evangelical Catholic Church: http://www.evangelicalcatholicchurch.org/index2.htm
The Lutheran Orthodox Church: http://www.orgsites.com/pa/lutheranorthodox/

http://www.evmcc.org/

Woah. Talk about bizarre.
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« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2009, 12:47:59 PM »

Here's a YouTube of how Catholic the LCMS can be: Grace Lutheran Church, Tulsa.

About the only thing that makes them Protestants is their ecclesiology, indicated by their lack of bishops in apostolic succession.

Using censers, genuflecting before the altar, elevating the host, back of the priest to the congregation--outrageous!  How dare they actually liturgize like catholics!
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« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2009, 11:53:26 PM »

Now I'm not a Lutheran, but when you live in the Upper Midwest, you live in Lutheran country, so here's what I know about Lutheran churches that I've gained from others. I have no idea of the liturgical differences between Lutheran churches.

I've heard that the Lutheran Church-Wisconsin Synod is even more conservative than the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (which is itself much more conservative than the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America or ELCA).

Here's a link on the Wisconsin synod:

http://www.wels.net/cgi-bin/site.pl

Here's a website explaining the difference between the Missouri Synod and Wisconsin Synod:

http://www.wels.net/cgi-bin/site.pl?1518&cuTopic_topicID=14&cuItem_itemID=13178

Of particular note I saw this:

"Because Scripture assigns the headship role to men and a helping role to women, only men serve in offices and roles that involve an exercise of authority over other men in WELS. Missouri does not allow women to serve as pastors but allows women to serve in a number of areas which involve the exercise of authority over men."
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« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2009, 09:48:26 PM »

DH is Lutheran (Missouri Synod).  They're conservative, though not nearly so much as WELS.  WELS is more fundamentalist and tends to separate from other Lutherans, according to what I've seen on the WELS website.

What you find in a service, varies.  The Lutheran church has its own traditional service book, but lately contemporary services have been coming into the church.  DH's church used to follow the service book every week, but nowadays they have PowerPoint and praise and worship choruses just like the other churches.  If you want the traditional service, you have to get up for the 8am service.
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Alveus Lacuna
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« Reply #13 on: August 03, 2009, 10:29:24 PM »

After speaking with my spiritual father, I've decided that it's probably just best to avoid attending these services.  Thank you for all of the information, though.
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scamandrius
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« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2009, 12:42:05 AM »

^Good call.  It's best, as a catechumen, to focus on your journey and not worry about what other confessions are doing.
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