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Letters to the editor

Follow Jesus like it really matters to you Taking note of Lenny Bruce, plus LCMS, Palestinians, liturgy articles

Sad tale ® APRIL 2012 $2.50

Inactives: Story 20, study guide 26 n

Easter: Live like you have nothing to lose 14

n Holy, divine promises 18 n

A congregational resurrection story 28

n Needy wrapped in care 30 Where are they?

I was so sad to read about the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod’s announce- ment (April, page 8) that it was with- drawing from partnership with the ELCA in chaplaincy, HIV/AIDS min- istry and Lutheran Disaster Response. LCMS provided tens of thousands of volunteers, skilled builders through Laborers For Christ, and contributed 40 percent of disaster funds. I am thankful to God for all they contributed in this ministry of service, and I hope they will one day be a partner again in this important witness to our Lutheran

faith in action. The Rev. Leon A. Phillips Jr. Allentown, Pa.

“Today is the day” (April, page 14) by Kelly Fryer is wonderful, as is Paul Sherry’s example of living “as a fol- lower of Jesus, the one who has set us all free from sin and death to do jus- tice, love mercy and walk humbly with God” (Micah 6:8). Most of the sec- ond page of that article is an example of what pastors should be preaching, especially during the Easter season. Of course, giving proper credit to Fryer, in accord with Jerry L. Schmalenberger’s correct opinion in “My view,” because

“Authenticity matters” (page 49). The Rev. Harold E. Burnette Edinburg, Va.

Words of wisdom

Concerning “Inactive members: What do we do with them?” (April, page 20): Have you forgotten the wisdom of Leonard Alfred Schneider (a.k.a. Lenny Bruce)? “Every day people are straying away from the church and

going back to God.” Oh, hallelujah. Jim Peterson St. Paul, Minn.

Accompaniment matters I am grateful to the ELCA for the oppor- tunity to serve as an ecumenical accom- panier (April, page 32) in Palestine/ Israel in 2003. I have participated in much church work and activities over the years. It was, however, standing with Palestinians (among them Pales- tinian Lutherans) against the injustices and inhumanity of illegal military occu- pation that I understood most fully what it is to take a risk for the gospel. The risk is twofold: accepting the hardships of an occupied people and accepting the inevitable accusations of anti-Semitism by people who have elevated the state of

Israel above the God of Israel. Esther Nelson Portland, Ore.

Useful and relevant Thank you for the useful and relevant article about the biblical roots of our Lutheran liturgy (March, page 20). I like the joyful and inspiring photo illustration with the Carthage College

48 The Lutheran •

dance team. At church I experienced our familiar liturgy in a new way as I

thought about its roots. Richard Kaeske Deerfield, Ill.

Courting controversy

It is one thing to engender discussion about theological issues, quite another to court controversy by presenting stereotypical, demeaning and sexist images not even remotely connected to the topic. Ironically, the liturgies you purport to support were developed at a time when church leaders were busy eliminating women from church leadership roles and relegating them to

“support” roles. Let’s not regress. Nanette Morton Albuquerque, N.M.

Enlivened & delighted The cover article on Lutheran liturgy was exciting. Approaching a usually serious topic with a touch of whimsy and surprise is very welcome in my community. Is it fear that brings objec- tions to such things as applesauce communion (February, page 38) and a Seusscharist (January, page 39)— and probably to liturgy cheerleaders too? What is the fear? Thank you for keeping us enlivened and delighted in

our faith. Jean Smith Vancouver, Wash.

Open the eyes

After the Pyrrhic victory over those of us who look aghast at the idea of noncelibate gay clergy, why should you feel blindsided (March, page 4) when we laity look askance at dialogue between Lutherans and Muslims? Ours is not an ivory tower world. Idealism

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