I post this with a heavy heart. I don’t want this blog to become a diatribe against my church body (LCMS). Complaints lead to bitterness, and that to all kinds of spiritually harmful thoughts and feelings. On the contrary, St. Paul urges us to think on “whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy” (Phil. 4:8 NKJV).
I want to do that, but feel I must share the following. This is press release included in an insert in the latest issue of The Reporter, “The Official Newspaper of the LCMS.”
A new LCMS mission start in Broken Arrow [Oklahoma] began worship and fellowship activities April 7 at Liberty Elementary School. Ablaze! Live Church, sponsored by the Lutheran Church of Our Savior, Tulsa, kicked off its opening day with an Easter egg hunt at Liberty Elementary School at 10 a.m. Despite the cold weather, 500 people participated—250 of them, children. There were plenty of live music, eggs, candy, and fun for all.
Ninety-five people came back for the evening worship service at 7 p.m. The band Zion’s Fire led worship, kids had their own children’s church, and Pastor Tom Dreier gave the message: “What every family needs to know about Easter.”
God exceeded the congregation’s wildest expectations and plans for the birth of His new mission start. More than 40 volunteers helped with various aspects of this church—including music, teaching, children’s church, nursery, greeters, and builders. What an awesome God we serve, and what a witness!
Ablaze! Live Church worships at 7 p.m. on Saturdays at Liberty Elementary School in Broken Arrow. For more information, visit the mission’s Web site at www.ablazelive.com or call (918) 704-6224.
Yes, the name of this congregation is “Ablaze! Live Church.” (Please keep your comments PG-rated.)
But I really don’t want to belabor the objections and troublesome issues outlined in this press release. What I feel I must say is that the cat is out of the bag. I know some folks have been crying this for some time, telling us over and over again that the Emperor has no clothes (and I have been aware of this for some time), yet instances like this drive the point home all the more. And, Lord have mercy, I believe this is only the tip of the iceberg.