Full Text for Lutheran Missiology and Campus Ministry (Text)

LIFE Lutheran Missionary Education - p.6 Missionary Pastors and Lutheran Missions - p.10 Lutheran Missiology and Campus Ministry - p.14 The Language of the Heart - p.16 Peace for the Warrior - p.18 In the Field - p.20 WORLD of the For the April 2000. Volume Four, Number Two 4 For the Life of the World F E A T U R E S 3 From the President 6 Lutheran Missionary Education: Some Thoughts on Integrating Our Tradition By the Rev. Dr. Detlev Schulz, Associate Professor of Pastoral Ministry and Missions, Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind. As much as the Reformation reminds us to look at missions as a gift of God directed towards us, we also become bearers of this gift to others. 10 Missionary Pastors and Lutheran Missions By the Rev. Prof. Timothy Quill is Coordinator of the Russian Project at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind. To be a pastor is to be a missionary pastor. There is no other kind of pastor. What are pastors authorized by the risen Lord to do? Make disciples of all nations. 14 Lutheran Missiology and Campus Missions By the Rev. John T. Pless, Campus Pastor, University Lutheran Chapel, Minneapolis, Minn. Campus ministry in the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod seeks both to guard and guide the faith of our own Lutheran students, while at the same time, carry the good news of Christ to those who live without Him. 16 The Language of the Heart By Amy Kashenov, a missionary in the Republic of Kazakhstan, located in the former Soviet Union To communicate Christ to a person or people, you need to speak in a language they understand. To take it one step further, to most effectively share Christ in a way that impacts the listener, you should speak in the language of his heart. 18 Peace for the Warrior By the Rev. Dr. Daniel Gard, Professor of Pastoral Ministry and Missions, Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind. To be a chaplain means to know the joys and sorrows, the pleasures and suffering, the courage and fears of warriors. If they are deployed to a forward position, he is deployed with them. If they face imminent attack, he faces it with them. If their lives are in danger, his life is in danger. To a chaplain who truly serves Christ, there is no being "in the rear with the gear." Where his people are, there he must be. Why? Christ must be there with them. 20 In the Field by Pam Knepper Managing Editor For the Life of the World Featuring the Rev. Brian Hamer, Pastor at Christ the King Lutheran Church, Riverview, Fla. Cover Photo: Rev Pavel Zayakin (with deacon’s stole) conducting the Lutheran liturgy on St. John the Baptist Day in a cemetery in the village of Verkhni Suetuk, East Siberia. Assisting is Seminarian Alexey Vinogradov (black robe) who attends Lutheran Theological Seminary in Novosibirsk. For theLIFE WORLDofthe PRESIDENT Rev. Dr. Dean O. Wenthe PUBLISHER Rev. Scott Klemsz MANAGING EDITOR Pam Knepper ART DIRECTOR Steve Blakey For the Life of the World is published quarterly by Concordia Theological Seminary Press, 6600 North Clinton Street, Fort Wayne, Indiana 46825. No portion of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher of For the Life of the World. Copyright 1999. Printed in the United States. Postage paid at Fort Wayne, Indiana. To be added to our mailing list please call 219/452-2150 or e-mail Rev. Scott Klemsz at CTSNews. For the Life of the World is mailed to all pastors and congregations of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod in the United States and Canada and to anyone interested in the work of Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind. page 10 page 18 CONTENTS page 6 page 16 page 14 page 20 The life and mission of campus ministry is centered in the Divine Service. This means that campus ministry ought to be marked by confessional fidelity, liturgical integrity, and catechetical clarity for the sake of the mission to seek and save the lost on the university campus. I t is often observed that North American university campuses form one of the church’s most crucial and challenging mission fields. Increasing numbers of international students with their families, as well as a domestic population that has little or no knowledge of the Christian faith, invite the church to enter into the academic arena with a clear proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) has a long and rich history of campus ministry. Dating back to the 1920’s, campus ministries were established at the University of Wisconsin, Purdue, and the University of Minnesota. While most Protestant denominations organized student clubs or religious centers on campus, the LCMS intentionally planted campus chapels that were centered in the preaching of the Word and the administration of the Sacraments. Missouri Synod Lutherans were com- mitted to building and staffing chapels that would serve to nurture the faith of their own students, while engaging in missionary outreach to the unchurched. While campus ministry is an expensive undertaking, it is an investment that con- fessional Lutherans cannot afford to pass by. In the not too distant past, campus min- istry in the LCMS was often identified with campus pastors who espoused the theolo- gy of Seminex and uncritically embraced ecumenical and activistic agendas. In the late 1960’s and into the early 1980’s a fair number of LCMS campus ministries were con- ducted cooperatively with the American Lutheran Church and the Lutheran Church in America. A pan-Lutheran student organization, Lutheran Student Movement, replaced the Synod’s Gamma Delta. Joint campus ministry conferences were sponsored on a national and regional level. As it became clear that the church bodies that now com- prise the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) and the LCMS were embarked on “divergent courses,” the Missouri Synod began to examine its approach to campus ministry. As joint campus ministries were gradually phased out and a new generation of younger campus pastors came to serve the church, campus ministry claimed a new identity in the LCMS. At the present time LCMS campus ministry seeks both to guard and guide the faith of our own Lutheran students, while at the same time, carry the good news of Christ to those who live without Him. As with other missionary enterprises in the Synod, there is a temptation in campus ministry to latch on to mission paradigms shaped more by the culture of American Evangelicalism than by the ethos of confessional Lutheranism. There are pressures for Lutheran campus ministry to conform itself to the patterns of the popular para-church groups that are dominant on campus these days. Rather than take on the characteristics of the meta-church movement with its cell groups, confessional Lutheran campus ministry and its missionary vitality is anchored in the means of grace—Christ’s own instruments for growing and sustaining His Church. The life and mission of campus ministry is centered in the Divine Service. This means that campus ministry ought to be marked by confessional fidelity, liturgi- cal integrity, and catechetical clarity for the sake of the mission to seek and save the 14 For the Life of the World By the Rev. John T. Pless LutheranMissio Campus Ministry  lost on the university campus. Confessional fidelity is absolutely essential in the postmodern atmos- phere of the contemporary university. LikeAthens of old, the university is not an irreligious place. At the University of Minnesota, for example, there are more than sixty identifiable religious groups ranging from established denominational campus ministries to the devo- tees of Wicca. In the past, the truth claims of Christianity have been debated and denied in classrooms and other campus set- tings. Now the most objectionable feature of Christianity does not seem to be its claims regarding the historicity of the Biblical narrative but the claim of particularity. The religious climate on campus will tolerate the personal testimony to individual spiri- tual experience as long as that testimony does not become a con- fession of the exclusive nature of Christianity. Against this backdrop, confessional Lutheran campus min- istry confesses and proclaims a message with specific Christological and salvific content. We cannot abandon the name of the One who alone is the way, the truth, and the life. We will not abandon the full-bodied truth of the incarnation and the atonement, of Law and Gospel, of the specificity of the forgive- ness of sins actually given and bestowed inWord and Sacrament, in order to be acceptable to the pluralistic campus culture. Liturgical integrity is a necessary corollary of confessional fidelity. Lutheran Liturgy is shaped and formed by the means of grace that stand at its center. The Liturgy guards the catholicity of the church on campus as it serves as a shield against momen- tary trends that would render the church irrelevant in the name of relevancy. Every aspect of our life and mission flows from the gifts Jesus bestows on us in the preaching of His Word and the giving out of His body and blood in the Holy Supper. From this lively and life-giving center, the Gospel is carried out to those who do not know Christ or are in doubt or confusion because of the perversion or mishandling of His Word. Gathered in the name of the Triune God, the church in the university is nour- ished and sustained with the forgiveness of sins, life, and salva- tion given in sermon and Sacrament. While genuine evangelism is generated from the Divine Service and leads the evangelized b a c k to font, pulpit, and altar, the Liturgy itself is not an evangelistic tool. That is, campus ministry ought not let those who know the least about the Christian faith dictate the shape and substance of the liturgical assembly. As the Word of God has free course, others are drawn into the Divine service by catechesis and Holy Baptism. Catechesis is the necessary link between Liturgy and evangelism on campus. Catechetical clarity is essential for campus ministry. With the large influx of international students, as well as increas- ing numbers of otherwise educated Americans who know little or nothing of the story line of the Bible or of the doctrinal con- tent of the Christian faith, the campus minister must be a cate- chist. Here, Lutherans are particularly well equipped as we have the Small Catechism as a guide into the heart of the Biblical nar- rative—Jesus Christ crucified and risen for the salvation of the world. Structured around the distinction between Law and Gospel and centered in the person and work of Jesus Christ, the Catechism provides its user with a summary of Christian doc- trine as well as a pattern for understanding the Christian life shaped by faith and love. There is no substitute for careful cate- chesis. As many of the students with whom we work have a hard time discerning the difference between superstition and faith, the campus pastor may not take any short cuts when it comes to catechesis. Confessional fidelity, liturgical integrity, and catechetical clarity are essential for the church in any setting, but they are especially acute for our mission on campus where the acids of unbelief are so potent and corrosive. A campus ministry marked by confessional fidelity, liturgical integrity, and catechetical clarity need not be afraid of engaging the university as a mission field. Such a campus ministry will be secure at its very center, confident of the identity that is ours in Christ, and able to move into the university with an invitation to life in the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. Rev. John T. Pless is Campus Pastor of University Lutheran Chapel in Minneapolis, Minn. APRIL 2000 15 ologyand