29 April 2008

SID Board of Directors Weighs In

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.]


dgkirch said...


As I asked you regarding the IED BOD statement, does this statement manifest a change in position by President Mueller from the COP unanimous statement? Or something else?


Stan Slonkosky said...

Was D.P. Herb Mueller not present when the COP issued the statement that those who criticize the cancellation of "Issues, Etc." are satanic and violating the 4th and 8th commandments?

William Weedon said...

I can't answer for President Mueller other than to note that this letter is one he has signed off on and that should speak for itself as to President Mueller's position; how it relates to COP's letter I am not in a position to be able to offer comment upon.

dgkirch said...

Thanks. I noticed that his name was on the statement, so that certainly says something regarding his position on that one.


Rev. James Leistico said...

The facts as I know them are that Pres. Mueller was present at the meeting and the CoP letter passed by vote without dissent. Therefore I know that he did not vocally vote dissent or abstention.
HOWEVER, it is possible that he also did not vote in favor of the letter, remaining silent. Thus, this statement does not necessarily manifest a change in position, but might only show Pres. Mueller choosing how best to express his opposition.

Anonymous said...

What a courageous letter! Expressing the need to settle all distrust, it is certainly written in a spirit of Christian love! I thank God and pray for the SID!

Kevin in Indiana said...

Thanks to the SID for your courage, leadership, and faithfulness to the Gospel and the outreach that once reached hundreds of thousands via podcast! The internet was ablaze, but not now.

I wish our leadership from Indiana would respond too.

Kevin in Indiana

rev furgeson said...

This is an awesome thing from a DP. Not only a general SID protest, but now one from just the board of directors. Once again, Pres. Mueller puts it on the line for the sake of the truth and Christian brotherhood.

wmc said...

Pres. Mueller has done the right thing here by speaking officially along with his district's board of directors. This is a wise move on his part. His signature indicates that this is his dissenting voice to the letter from the Council of Presidents.

Very wise, and very pastoral. If we ever have bishops (as opposed to bureaucrats), this is the sort of man we would want.