Woke in the WELS: Less Churches, More Ministry


This is not a chance quote. The WELS promoted it shortly after Hein's presentation at the WELS synod convention. And it was brought up again in this months' WELS Connection which was recorded months in advance.

If, "So that we may obtain this faith, the ministry of teaching the Gospel and administering the sacraments was instituted" (AC V) it would sure seem to me that fewer Pastors overseeing fewer Divine Services would be less ministry. Unless they define 'ministry' as something other than Word and Sacrament (the question to ask: what are you administering? If it isn't word and sacrament, it isn't ministry as defined in AC V). This would seem to reveal a deficient view of the Office of the Holy Ministry. Of course, our sainted Dr. Hoenecke correctly identifies the OHM as the pastorate, full stop. The English editors of his dogmatics, of course had to try and deflect by appeals to later authority.

Remember, too, we are in a midst of the WELS 100 in 10 initiative to plant 100 new congregations in 10 years. Read between the lines: close 300 existing (traditional) parishes and 'plant' 100 new (likely, less than traditional) parishes.