Saturday, June 28, 2014

Pastoral Care resources: Responding to Domestic Violence

A Handbook for Pastoral Carers and clergy in responding to domestic violence produced by the Christian Churches of South Australia

Has God abandoned me - for women facing domestic violence from Lutheran Hour Ministries

Faith Trust Institute is a national, multifaith, multicultural training and education organization with global reach working to end sexual and domestic violence.  Their web site provides resources, training, blogs and articles relating to pastoral care to people experiencing domestic or sexual violence.

Paper - What Pastors can do to help victims of domestic violence in the church by Grant L Martin phd

Leadership Journal article - When domestic violence knocks

Huffington Post article - Why pastors struggle with confronting domestic violence

Bible Studies from Abigail's support group

Biblical perspectives on Domestic Violence

What the bible says about domestic violence and abuse

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Paper: Churches after Christendom - synopsis and comments

Church After Christendom is a book written by Stuart Murray

William H. Gross of Colorado Springs has made a synopsis of each chapter with some further comments in the article that is available here 

His opening comments are:
The Church as we know it isn’t going away like yesterday’s news. And the postmodern world isn’t overtaking us as quickly as some might fear. But the interaction between the existing Church and the changing world is never going to be what it was – it never has been. The Church must change its tune for a world that needs our lyric but has stopped listening to our music. This doesn’t mean we need to “accommodate” the world, in the sense of adopting its thinking and its ways; but we do need to “adapt” our message in a way that takes them into account. We need to recognize the times (Matt 16:3), tailoring our language, form, and outreach to match what we see. But what are the signs, and how should we adapt to them? Murray proposes that there was a pre-Christendom world prior to the 4th century, an Age of Christendom that extended to the 18th century, and then a gradual metamorphosis into a post-Christendom world. What characterized Christendom was its cultural predominance – its universal expression in society and government, and the general membership of those who lived in Western culture.
This book identifies the cultural changes that have been taking place over several decades, ostensibly in England, but in America as well. It also examines the current “condition” of the Church. Murray raises a number of questions, and he brings to bear a number of relevant facts. He then presents a series of alternative approaches for our serious discussion and review. It’s still a fresh millennium. We need to set some appropriate goals and develop a reasonable plan of action for this generation in which God has called us to arise. We need to do it corporately. We need to do it quickly, humbly, shrewdly, and biblically. We need to stop using worldly ways and return to our spiritual foundations. We need to stop making our churches ends in themselves. We need to rebuild them as a means of equipping the saints for works of ministry (Eph 4:12). These are Murray’s primary points. While I disagree with some of his premises and a number of the solutions in this book, I wholeheartedly agree with the issues he raises. I’m also grateful for all the information he provides. So be cautious in what you take away from all this.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Lutheran Saints....biblical basis and saints days

Christian Lutherans do believe in saints....

The biblical understanding of saints is that all Christians are saints (see Psalm 30:4, Acts 9:32, Romans 1:7)

In the Apostles Creed we state....I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Christian Church, the communion of saints.....
Think about what this is saying....We believe God is using His church to do something!!

In the Apology to the Augsburg Confession (XXI  Cult of Saints) we read...
It is also taught among us that saints should be kept in remembrance so that our faith may be strengthened when we see what grace they received and how they were sustained by faith.   Moreover, their good works are to be an example for us, each of us in his own calling......
However, it cannot be proved from the Scriptures that we are to invoke saints or seek help from them. “For there is one mediator between God and men, Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5), who is the only saviour, the only highpriest, advocate, and intercessor before God (Rom. 8:34). He alone has promised to hear our prayers.....

 Lutheran Christians therefore remember saints days and other minor festivals for 2 main reasons to remember:
  • How God is merciful and graceful 
  • How God has been at work not only forgiving people but also how He has used people to bring His love and grace into the world

Different Lutheran Communities differ in who they remember and when they remember them.  The following are link to various lists of saints remembrance days either as festivals or commemorations from different Lutheran communities:
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America festivals  and commemorations  ELCA ical Calendar
Lutheran Church Missouri Synod festivals and commemorations LCMS google calendar

Tuesday, June 24, 2014


LIBERATE is a new group of people committed to the message as defined by Jesus’ mission: “I have come to set the captives free” (Luke 4:18).
Through the demand of his law, God confronts and condemns people in their bondage and sin; through the declaration of his gospel, God comforts and forgives people with the liberating love of Jesus Christ. We want sufferers to hear these “two words” (law and gospel) so they can believe the promise that frees us from our past of guilt and shame; frees us from the present bondage of bitterness, insecurity, self-reliance, and fear; and frees us for the joy of worshiping God and serving our neighbor.
Our mission is to announce (and then announce again and again) this liberating word to a wounded and worn out world, hoping that the burdened and burnt out, the Christian and the non-Christian, will hear and rest in the freedom that Jesus came, died, and lives to give.

It was founded by Tullian Tchividjian, pastor of  is the senior pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, a Lecturer of Pastoral Theology at Knox Theological Seminary, a contributing editor to Leadership Journal, and the grandson of Evangelist Billy Graham.  

They host an annual conference and offer resources including:
Church Directory
Pastor's Network
Suggested reading list
Ministry resources

For more information go to 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Journal of Lutheran Mission

The Lutheran Church Missouri synod has commenced an online journal.   The Journal of Lutheran Mission.

The President of LCMS, Matthew Harris states
'It is our desire to follow the tradition of mission that  led to the founding of the Missouri Synod, to highlight  and expound good examples of Lutheran missiology and  to raise the height and breadth of discussion on mission  so that every member of the Missouri Synod prays for  the mission of the church, engages in it him/herself and  supports it each according to their vocation.'

The initial journal includes the following articles:
Missio Dei by Scott R. Murray 
Evangelicalism: The Heartbeat of American Protestantism and the Awkward Companion of American Lutheranism by Walter Sundberg  
Response to Walter Sundberg by Lawrence R. Rast, Jr.  
Ecclesiology, Mission and Partner Relations: What it Means That Lutheran Mission Plants Lutheran Churches by Albert B. Collver
The Future of Mission in the LCMS: Collaboration by Jack Preus  
Teaching the Faith Once Delivered by Charles P. Arand  
Challenges to Teaching the Faith as a Component of Mission Strategy   by Terry Cripe What Will Happen to Missouri? by Randall L. Golter 
LCMS Mission: A Paradigm of Its Own by Klaus Detlev Schulz  
Response to Detlev Schultz’s “LCMS Mission — A Paradigm of Its Own”   by William W. Schumacher 
A Theological Statement for Mission in the 21st Century   by Matthew C. Harrison  
Book Review: “You Have the Words of Eternal Life:” Transformative Readings   of the Gospel of John from a Lutheran Perspective  
Book Review: Into All the World:The Story of Lutheran Foreign Missions 

To view the journal visit

Monday, June 16, 2014

Book: The little church - stump or shoot

The Little Church  - stump or shoot
This book is the result of trying to raise the right questions and gain some perspective on the mission of the Lutheran Church in Australia, but you could transpose the principles to any church. We are a church in decline and we are facing all sorts of problems. This book aims at refocussing our mission. 
We need to start taking this problem seriously, not just the little churches, but the big ones in the cities and towns as well. Is it that we have lost our way? Have we lost our direction? If our goal was to nurture Lutherans effectively, we are not achieving that goal. If we were aiming for non-Christians, don't you think we might at least hit one every now and then? 
In a church in decline, the focus is, “How can we survive?” “How can we keep our doors open?” when the question is supposed to be, “How can I reach the lost for Christ?”   That is our great commission, making disciples, not running a church. Running a church is incidental to the mission and should support the mission. It is not in itself the mission. 
Just because a church is old and in decline however, does not mean that the time of the church in a particular area is over. By the same token just because a church has been there for 100 years or so, doesn’t mean that it should be there tomorrow. 
But maybe it is time to look to what God is doing in the community and what the church needs to do and be in the current climate! Maybe it’s time to look at our mission, look at the community and look at the church to see what needs to be done to get those 3 to meet in a new way. 
Change will come to your church whether you want it to or not. 
So don’t just let it happen, Make it happen! 

For more information and to obtain a copy 
Contact Rob Edwards directly 
or Visit Australian Christian Resource 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Music Book: All Together All Right (number 7 in the All Together series)

Robin Mann has compiled together 96 community Christians songs for the 7th book in the All Together series...All together all right....
The All together series have been used widely in the Lutheran Church of Australia for congregation, camp, school and small group worship.

Resources available include Music Book, Music CD, Word Book and CD Word Book 
These can be purchased either from:
Robin Mann
Australian Church Resources 

All Together Alrights songs:
590 A child is born
591 A is for the Armadillo
592 Born from above
593 Come to me all you who are weary
594 Donkey donkey
595 Gather us in
596 The God that I know
597 Friends & eating grace
598 Invitation
599 It’s Christmas
600 Jesus, the bright morning star
601 Kamana o’ i’ o’
602 Kingdom kids
603 More than a sign
604 No-one does the things my Lord can do
605 God of creation
606 Nothing is lost on the breath of God
607 Spirit of dreaming
608 Waiting for the day of the Lord
609 He came down
610 Because he lives
611 Christmas time is near
612 God is walking in the garden
613 Guest of a sinner
614 He was born a little child
615 In Christ alone
616 In my Father’s house
617 J.A.M.
618 Just like Jesus
619 Life overflowing
620 Mary in the garden
621 Matthew 7:7
622 Out of this world
623 Shine on us
624 The way it should be
625 Not with silver or gold
626 Together through the valley
627 Unconditionally
628 When they came Easter Day
629 Where were you?
630 You would not
631 Amen
632 Gift
633 Glory be to God in heaven
634 God in your goodness
635 How deep the Father’s love
636 Praise the Lord, all you nations
637 Living in the light
638 Love overflows
639 Magnificat
640 Nice one, Jesus
641 The Pilgrim’s song
642 I stand in awe
643 Spirit, lead us
644 Thank God, you’re here
645 Tremble
646 You shine
647 When the heart goes out
648 Advent Lamb of God
649 Eat this bread and drink this wine
650 Easy answers
651 For the common good
652 Gathered
653 Going nowhere
654 Can broken hearts be mended?
655 How long (till I see your face)
656 Heavy our hearts
657 Jesus, lamb of God
658 Jesus, you are the bread
659 Remember now, my children
660 Jesus speak
661 Law of love
662 Love the Lord
663 Save us in the time of trial
664 Soul of Christ
665 Table of plenty
666 Where love comes to life
667 Make room
668 As you have loved
669 Be my strength
670 Calm the storm
671 Christ is Lord of all
672 Hey Hey Samuel
673 Community in Christ
674 Heroes
675 Keep me, Lord
676 Lord, be the rising
677 Lord, now let your servant depart in peace
678 Jesus is beside us
679 May I walk in your foot-steps
680 May our lives and our prayers be one
681 Prisoners of hope
682 Servant’s song
683 Sleep, little baby
684 Who am I?
685 May the Lord bless and keep you