Nicene Creed Video

This is a beautiful video of the Nicene Creed done in kinetic typography, over stained glass windows, and with the voices of three generations.

The video was posted by Patrick Blake.

Meritless Lawsuits and Spiritual Abuse

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A little over a year ago, Pastors Glende and Skorzewski and two of their staff members brought four meritless lawsuits against a former member of their congregation.  All four lawsuits were either dismissed or thrown out of court for having no merit.  Here are some links to articles about the issues:

However, unanswered questions remain.  This article asks just one of those questions:  Will Pastors Glende and Skorzewski ever express contrition for bringing these meritless lawsuits?  Or in other words, will there be any fruit of repentance?

Pastor Skorzewski made repeated unwanted sexual comments toward another man’s wife.  Pastor Glende also made a rude sexual comment.  Then when her husband complained at an “informational meeting” about the matter, they took him to court.

They asked the court to issue a restraining order because he had been complaining about them.  Put another way, they wanted a secular court to potentially throw a man in jail, because he had complained about them and their inappropriate sexual comments.

Jail.  Think about that for a moment.  When someone violates a restraining order, they often go to jail.  Jail.

So this was not a little thing.  This was not two pastors gossiping behind someone’s back.  They and their staff filed four (4) restraining order petitions.  Disobeying a court restraining order is called contempt of court, and a remedy for contempt of court is jail.

Glende took his case right to trial, however, his case was so weak the court threw his case out before the defense even presented any evidence.  For example, on the witness stand Glende complained that the layman had asked his family and friends on Facebook for prayers and support.

Think about that for a moment.  A WELS pastor complained to a secular court that a layman asked his family and friends for prayers and support.

Here is Pastor Glende’s testimony under oath:

A:   Okay, I received this.  I received it yesterday.  It was dated yesterday at 2:29.  I believe that would have been from Wednesday.

THE COURT:   What is it?

WITNESS [Glende]:   It’s a Facebook post that was made by [Jonathan] and then there are several comments that follow below.

BY ATTORNEY GILL:

Q:   Could you read them to the Court?

A:   The comment that was Jonathan’s posting was,

“If anyone would like to support Mara Rose and I Friday at 9:30 to noon at the Outagamie County courthouse, that would be amazing.  There’s currently four temporary restraining orders against me for alleged harassment by me from four petitioners.  They are the former pastor of The CORE church, his assistant, the senior pastor at St. Peter and his assistant.  They were filed after I attended the meeting on August 13.  I was allowed to speak at it, too.  I’m thankful to get my day in court.  Mind you, this is the same church where their leadership caused repeated sexual harassment against my wife, drinking on the job, and using an AK-47 as a church prop, ‘lapse in judgment.’  They are in the process of potentially reinstating one of the pastors that was ordered to resign.  I hope and pray that many others will too see the potential pitfalls they are creating with others and past and current decisions.  Thanks for your prayers and support, Jonathan and Mara.”

— Court transcript, pages 19-20.

Does that sound like harassment?  Does that sound like the sort of behavior that should potentially result in time spent in jail?

This is serious.  Would you like your pastor to treat you like this?  Why does the WELS tolerate this sort of behavior?

The danger here is not just that two litigious guys can bring spectacularly bad lawsuits against innocent people and threaten to have them thrown in jail, but that two pastors, with impunity, have wronged a layman.  This is not just secular abuse, it is spiritual abuse.

This is one of the ways that faith is destroyed:

Satan gets another Christian to sin against us in deed or word.  It pleases Satan if a person with spiritual significance or authority, such as a parent, pastor, spouse, or leader in the Church sins against us.  Their spiritual status, their office, magnifies their offense and intensifies the damage that it does.  This is a kind of ritual abuse, the misuse of holy things against us.

Grace Upon Grace, by John W. Kleinig, page 234.  Emphasis added.

Can we do better?  The WELS must do better, for the sake of the Lord’s name.

Thanksgiving 2014

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If we just consume & go shopping, and forget to be thankful, we will have missed the point of the holiday.  A life cannot be good or happy unless it is lived in gratitude.

A blessed Thanksgiving to you.

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

— 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, ESV.

Registration Open for 2015 BJS Conference

1662544_10152444063081500_4306235128816276750_nRegistration is now open for the February 20 & 21, 2015 Brothers of John the Steadfast Conference in Naperville, Illinois.  The rates are $65 per person or $100 per couple or $45 per student.  If one registers before January 20, 2015, there is a $10 discount.

Regarding the conference, Pastor Scheer has written an article entitled, “What can you expect in Naperville in February?”  In a few words he says: food, faith, friends, news, and good news, etc.

I have attended the previous five annual Brothers of John the Steadfast conferences, and appreciated every one.  The scheduled slate of speakers at this conference looks to be excellent:

  • Larry Beane (Gottesdienst magazine)
  • Hans Fiene (The Lutheran Satire)
  • Clint Poppe (Good Shepherd Lutheran Church)
  • Todd Wilken (Issues, Etc.)
  • Bryan Wolfmueller (Table Talk Radio).

Click here for the conference schedule.

Click here to register for the conference.

Persecuting Christians

This is an interesting video about persecuting Christians.

It was posted by Prager University.

New Blog Design

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This is a stream in northern Wisconsin near the Apostle Islands.  Autumn can be a beautiful season of transition and change.  The leaves were just beginning to change color.

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven

— Ecclesiastes 3:1, ESV.

May the Lord bless you this Autumn and through all the seasons of change.

New Design

wordpress-logo-32The new blog design has been implemented.  As noted previously, the old posts have remained, but there are issues with some of their formatting.

If there are any questions or concerns about the formatting of an old post or block quote, please contact me.  I might re-post some older articles in order to fix their formatting.  Also, in the new design I tried to keep some of the old graphics in order to maintain some continuity and familiarity.  The new design is called “Syntax.”

Blessed Veterans’ Day

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The picture above is of the United States flag at Fort Laramie, Wyoming.  Primarily cavalry served there during the time of the old west.  The men who served there served under circumstances that were not easy.  It is never easy to serve others, but it is good.

Veterans today also face hardship, especially those who served and were wounded in combat.  Some also lost close friends.  Not only do they carry the disabilities and scars from their wounds, sometimes they can also face discrimination and suspicion from those who do not understand.  It is especially hard when men who hold offices of trust, and who are supposed to protect others, also display discrimination and suspicion based on military service.

Whether you served in combat or not, whether you were wounded or not, your service to the people of this country is appreciated.  Service is not easy, but it is good.

May you have a blessed Veterans’ Day.

New Blog Design Coming

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The picture above is of a path through the mountains.  It makes me think of our journey through life.  We can’t always see around the next corner, but “we know that for those who love God, all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”  (Romans 8:28, ESV).

May the Lord bless you in your journey through life.

New Blog Design

On April 8, 2014, Microsoft stopped supporting Windows XP.  When that happened, many PC users began changing/upgrading their operating systems.

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In a similar way, WordPress.com no longer supports the design of this blog.  The current design is called “MistyLook,” and WordPress says that “MistyLook” is not responsive to new mobile media platforms like smartphones and tablets.  Therefore, Light from Light should update to a new design, eventually.

Light from Light has had the “MistyLook” design from its very beginning over six years ago.  As part of this change, the old posts will remain, but the new design will break some of their formatting.  Old emphases and highlights in block-quotes will be hidden, photos in some old posts will not reach to the margins, and there may also be other technical issues.  I’m hoping for as smooth a transition as possible, but there will be some problems.  If there are any questions or concerns about an old post or block quote, please contact me.

Hopefully, the new design will better accommodate photo-sharing, and will also have an easy to read typeface.

Nebraska Windmill

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This is a picture of a windmill at the Nebraska Windmill State Recreation Area.

Wise King Solomon once said:

The wind blows to the south
and goes around to the north;
around and around goes the wind,
and on its circuits the wind returns.

— Ecclesiastes 1:6, ESV.

And that is why renewable energy works.

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God’s blessings to you.

Unexpected Sunset at Rib Mt

Passing through Wausau on my way home from a business trip, I decided to stop at Rib Mountain State Park to get in a little hiking.  Since it had been cloudy most of the day, I considered whether to take my camera.  Figuring this would be just an outdoor, exercise, and fresh autumnal air hike without the possibility of any reasonably good pictures, I decided to take my camera anyway.

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While hiking on the quarry trail, the sun came out in glorious warm orange, lighting up the autumnal leaves of the trees and the forest floor.  A man and his dog jogged by, and commented on the wonderful light.  It was a nice reminder of the grace and mercy of God.

“Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun” (Ecclesiastes 11:7, KJV).

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I would have taken some pictures of the actual sunset, but I kept dithering about returning to the car.  The leaf covered trail I had taken to this spot had been hard to follow even in the daylight.  (I had considered turning back a number of times before the sun came out.  But when the sun came out, I felt compelled to keep going).  Nonetheless, the last thing I wanted to do was stumble back on that rocky, meandering, leaf covered trail in the dark.  There were a lot of leaves still on the trees, and a cloudy starless night in the forest can be very dark.  I had a flashlight, but was uncertain of the strength of its batteries.

Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun:  But if a man live many years, and rejoice in them all; yet let him remember the days of darkness; for they shall be many.”  (Ecclesiastes 11:7-8, KJV).

In all your days, may you rejoice with discerning eyes.

Notes

In case you were wondering, I did safely return just as the last usable light of the day had ended.

Also, have a blessed Reformation Day.