Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Mission Creep(s) 2 - Mendicant Merchandise

A few weeks back, I blogged off some steam about LCMS missionaries having to fund their own ways into the mission field.

Then came this (and I'm going to withhold some names and details so that the missionary involved doesn't suffer any reprisals . . . okay?):

Church workers going abroad have to go hat in hand to congregations, asking for financial support because they get very little -- if any -- from the Board for Missions.

What IS provided to them are these handsome (and we suspect comfortable) long-sleeved Ablaze! shirts (an actual shirt photographed in the pastor's office is shown here) to give to the pastors of the congregation where their mendicant pleas are made.

Why to the pastors? As far as I'm concerned: wrong color, wrong collar.

If money given to the Synod isn't going to the missionaries, just where, EXACTLY, is all that money going? Of the MILLIONS of dollars in offerings and gifts given faithfully by Christ's people, how much is really getting spent for missions and education -- the things upon which our Synod was founded? And why is it being spent on freebie Ablaze! paraphernalia?

Can anyone shed any light about the Fanning Into Flame kickback scheme where a congregation gives money to the program and then the program gives money back to the congregation?

Anyone care to wax eloquent on the fact that our synodical colleges and seminaries get no financial support from the Synod at all?

Will ANYONE be held accountable?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I used to work for a company which did not allow its employees to take gifts from salesmen or any other company reps. Gifts and kickbacks given to people with control of the purse strings almost always come with strings attached. Shame on the Ablaze representatives for using these tactics and shame on the LCMS for losing its mission and becoming what appears to be nothing more than an old boys club.