The Board of Directors
The Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod
1333 S. Kirkwood Road
St. Louis, MO 63122-7295
Dear Friends in Christ Jesus on the Board of Directors of Synod and the Board for Communication Services:
Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
We, the Board of Directors of the Southern Illinois District of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod, wish to go on record in expressing our disappointment over the cancellation of Issues, Etc. This radio program has been a great blessing to the pastors and people of the Southern Illinois District and has reached people around the globe with the good news of Jesus Christ. Even though Issues could be controversial at times, it addressed the important issues facing the church today and excelled in defending the truth of the Christian faith. Those interested in apologetics and in a careful, thorough treatment of God’s Word have lost a valuable resource.
Furthermore, official explanations for the show’s cancellation have not answered many of the concerns expressed by the pastors and people of our district. Sadly, the cancellation of Issues has left many with the impression that certain voices in the church are being silenced. These impressions will persist without a full disclosure of the reasons for the show’s cancellation.
We also wish to express our concern over the hasty terminations of Rev. Todd Wilken and Mr. Jeffrey Schwarz, both of which belong to congregations in our district. From our vantage point, Rev. Wilken did an exemplary job as host of Issues and Mr. Schwarz an exemplary job as producer. These faithful servants of Christ were dismissed without any prior notification or expressions of appreciation. Secular businesses may operate this way, but we expect more compassion and brotherly concern among the people of God.
Therefore, we, the Board of Directors of the Southern Illinois District, respectfully request that you and the Board of Communication Services revisit your decision to terminate Issues, Etc., restore the program, and reinstate both Rev. Wilken and Mr. Schwarz to their positions. We also request a full disclosure of the reasons why this show was cancelled. Too many concerns have been raised to keep your proceedings and rationale for termination a private matter. We urge that this issue be approached openly and in a spirit of love, asking the Holy Spirit to guide us and work among us as we fix our eyes and message on Jesus.
Respectfully in Christ,
Rev. Antonin Troup, District Secretary
Rev. Herbert Mueller, District President, SID
[This letter was adopted in the regular meeting of the Southern Illinois District Board of Directors on April 26, 2008.]