« Home | Dream Work And The Upcoming Synodical Convention » | An Irenaeus Quote And Guarding Against Heretics » | Time Out Episode 71 » | Nineteen Years Ago… » | Who Get’s A Church Sign’s Top Billing In June? » | Is False Teaching A Violation Of The Second Comman... » | Issues, Etc. Interview With Dr. Steven Hein On The... » | Prayer And Spiritual Formation Workshop Part 7 » | Prayer And Spiritual Formation Workshop Part 6 » | Prayer And Spiritual Formation Workshop Part 5 » 

Friday, July 09, 2010 

Controversy, KFUO, And The LCMS? Again? I’m Shocked!

So, the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod sells it’s KFUO radio station to a contemporary Christian music station. Check. Then, oh this just priceless then “The Lutheran Church forced all Classic 99 employees to sign an agreement that is at the least questionable under Missouri and federal labor law. It states that if employees want six months severance pay they can not work for anyone, at any job, anywhere, for those 6 months” according to Fox2 out of St. Louis.

I seem to recall LC-MS, Inc. not acting like a fair and decent employer much less a church on another occasion just a little over two years ago. Hmm, I sense a pattern here somewhere. What a pathetic display of the soulless dominion of corporate orthodoxy.

And people wonder why I hope things get shaken up a bit next week…

Update: I have a source that tells me the KFUO employees are saying that Charles Jaco is misreporting this story and it just isn't true. I’ll keep looking for updates so as to figure out what the heck is going on here.


Lord have mercy!

Jim, this is almost as surreal as it is pathetic! I wonder which lawyer suggested that these folks sign an agreement to get their severance pay that REQUIRES them to not work for six months?!! Care to guess?

And right before the convention? Really?

Not surprising at all. Since we've made evangelism into a corporate numbers game, why would radio stations be any different?

In the late 70s or so I used to listen to the Lutheran Hour in my car, thinking I wish we (we was then RC) could be so clear about the Gospel but now we can't even be clear about ourselves but "we" is the "true" church and if only these guys were Catholic ...

I was years away from getting catholic distinct from Catholic, but it planted the seed. Didn't produce me as a number on an evangelism sales chart though, so I guess it was all wrong then, huh?

First off, why does the church need to own a radio station? Seems like a good move to get rid of it. It's just too bad that another classical music station has to bite the dust. Ok, I have a second point, but I want you to cut me some slack and think about it before you all start harping on me. In my church (a small non-denominational evangelical church) I'd get thrown out if I spent so much time being critical of it. Why don't they throw you out? Is that even an option in the LCMS? Why are you still there? Are you convinced that you will be able to instill some change? I'm not accusing you of anything. Just curious.

Hey Frank -- I saw this and talked to my husband, I agree it's a crummy thing to do -- legal because it's a private contract, but crummy. You and I have had this convo before when professional church workers - who've never held real corporate jobs before try to make corporate decisions, they usually stink at it. Ethically, you give a package to give a package and you don't put clauses like this one on it. In Telecom the standard package is 1 week's pay for every year of employment plus unused vacation time. There are no real laws surrounding packages other than you cannot collect un-employment for the weeks paid out. ie say MCI lays me off and I get four weeks. I have to wait four weeks before I can collect my unemployment. Reality is companies don't have to offer that at all. This was handled poorly and yes the timing was wierd doing that right before the convention.

Love your apparently not a confessional lutheran friend from the boonies. Deana

Hey Roger, I wasn't sure if you meant that you'd get thrown out of your small, nondenominational evangelical congregation, or some larger (nonexistent?) confederation with which it may sometimes choose to affiliate itself, but Frank's not (to the best of my knowledge) griping about his own congregation. He's dissatisfied with some of the decisions made by certain individuals and leaders in his church body. If you're a confessional Christian, it's important for the sake of fellowship to belong to a church where you believe that Scripture is accurately believed, taught, and confessed, bizarre bureaucratic choices notwithstanding. It may get to a point where leaving is the best option, if synod were to somehow force individual congregations to act against their consciences and against our confessions regarding doctrine and practice. But there are many congregations that are not particularly affected by the weirdness.

Thanks, Kelly. I've actually had quite a few dealings with Frank and I have a lot of respect for him. He stands up for the integrity of the church.

Integrity sure can be hard to come by. Even the best of churches fall victim to all sorts of goofy things and would bring ruin on themselves, were it not for faithful laypeople in their midst pointing back to God's Word and crying foul when necessary.

Deana, first things first… did someone say that you are NOT a confessional Lutheran? If someone did, I missed that and I apologize if I didn’t deal with that it right away! Clearly you and I are going to disagree on a few things but if someone is not being completely respectful with you… I’m going for his or her jugular just as I would if someone started trash talking about Kelly, Elephantschild, Dan, or any other of my crew. Let me know…

Now, I don’t think this matter is one of a bunch of people who have never had corporate jobs before so that’s why they are acting like idiots. Having worked in the corporate world I see way too many similarities to what is going on at LCMS headquarters from the way they fire people to the way that lawyers are used for communicating policy decisions. Both the LCMS and district offices no longer seem to behave in a manner that one would expect a church body to. Instead, in my ever so humble opinion, they seem to be taking their cue from the worst of corporate America. I don’t think that the situation with the KFUO employees (if the report is accurate) is an apparition or an isolated incident.

"He stands up for the integrity of the church." Thank you very much Roger!

I'll answer some of your questions above tomorrow once I'm settled in my hotel.

Looking forward to it, Frank.

Roger, lots of stuff here…

At one time the AM side of KFUO was used as an evangelism tool where the LCMS could broadcast Lutheran hymns, teaching, and general Lutheran programs to the St. Louis market. The FM side of KFUO was never utilized in this manner. When there was something going at LCMS, Inc., the FM classical side of KFUO might play a Bach hymn but this was not normative, ever. The FM side also had separate fundraising techniques for Lutheran and secular patrons where members of the LCMS would receive mailings highlighting the fact that the station was owned by the synod and the secular folks would receive mailing with no mention whatsoever of any ties to a religious organization. Sorta sneaky dontchya think? It’s almost as if the management of KFUO FM was… embarrassed to have ties to the LCMS. Hmm. Whatever the reason for owning KFUO FM to begin with, the sale of the station was probably a good move.

“Why don't they throw you out?” Unlike the pastors (who have their retirement tied to the LCMS) the LCMS has nothing to hold over my head to silence me. Our polity is such that we don’t have a top down style of structure as do many other denominations (or was depending on how the LCMS is gonna be reorganized after the convention… that’ll be a mess no matter what happens or who is in charge of it simply because of the complexity of the restructuring) so my district president can’t get on the phone and tell me to stop being critical of, say… the introduction of mysticism into our spiritual life, and tell me to shut down POTF.

“Why are you still there? Are you convinced that you will be able to instill some change?” I’m still here because I’m hoping against hope that one day we will actually be a synod gathered around one confession of faith. That will not happen unless we are honest about our differences and we can get past our stupid post modern tendencies of saying that all views are of equal value and deserve to be held as good, right, and proper even if those views and positions conflict with the historic Christian faith handed down to the church catholic by Christ, the patriarchs and the Apostles. Am I naïve enough to believe that one voice can make a difference? Yep, even if I doubt that voice will be mine.

I’m still here because I believe that the Lutheran Confessions of what it is that we are and what our Lord has done for us because of who we are is the proper exposition of Scripture. Our confession of the catholic faith has stood up pretty gosh darned well over the last 500 years and I think that confession is worth fight for over those who think we should conform to what is going on in both the culture as well as Americanized Christianity.

Post a Comment

About me

  • I'm Frank Gillespie
  • From The Haut South
  • Confessional Lutheran
My profile


Powered by Blogger