A blessing, but is something missing?

It was so refreshing and stimulating to read “The Little Church That Could” in the February 2008 Lutheran Witness. The article gave me a thrill.

May Living Water Community Church continue to be a blessing to many more!

By the way, many articles written by Paula Schlueter Ross have impressed me.

Lois Schumacher
Fort Wayne, Ind.

I very much enjoyed “The Missionary Who Never Left Home” by Rev. John T. Pless. Before I read this excellent article, all I knew about Wilhelm Loehe was his name. I especially appreciated Loehe’s understanding of the “Divine Service as the place where the Heavenly Bridegroom meets His Bride.” Such beautiful imagery.

No less edifying was Loehe’s assertion that “the missional church [is] a liturgical church.”

Little wonder, then, that reading “Sharing Your Faith: The Little Church That Could” in light of the Pless article so horrified me. A mission congregation of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod named Living Water Community Church? What faith is being shared? Community faith? What is that? To paraphrase Bill Cosby: I know what I think of when I hear “community church.”

In my town there is a community church known informally, and not particularly respectfully, as “the yellow box church.” One of their selling points, for lack of a better term, is their coffee shop, where, presumably, a barista serves up the modern-day sacramental meal of espresso and scones.

When I hear “Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod” I know it is the place where the forgiveness of sins is available to me, a poor, miserable sinner, and my Heavenly Bridegroom will come to me in His holy Word and His very Body and Blood. A place where God’s Word is sung and prayed in the liturgy, as it has been for centuries, with angels and archangels and all the company of heaven, an unbroken thread across time and place. At least this is my fervent hope and prayer, that the LCMS will continue to be that church.

Elaine Gavin
Naperville, Ill.


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