Get Woke, Empty the Pews

It would be a full-time job to chronicle all of the irrational reactions by liberals to the Kyle Rittenhouse verdict, and scarcely worth the effort. But I do want to note one such response because it affects me directly: that of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The ELCA, of which my congregation is a member, sent out this “Pastoral Letter” authored by Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton. Here is the letter, titled “A pastoral message on the Rittenhouse acquittal,” with my comments interpolated:

​Dear church,

In the book of Leviticus we read: “You shall not render an unjust judgment; you shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great: with justice you shall judge your neighbor” (19:15).

Our social message on Community Violence urges us to become more involved in countering the reality and fear of violence in our communities and our neighbors’ communities…

Violence is countered primarily by law enforcement, but I don’t think that is what she means.

…pursuing justice and seeking peace no matter how long the journey or complex the challenge.

When a child is allowed to become a vigilante…

One of the left’s mindless anti-Rittenhouse themes. Rittenhouse took no hostile action against anyone until he was chased by a mob and attacked by three criminals.

…without recourse…

The “recourse” was that he was prosecuted for murder. He was acquitted because he was innocent.

…we are forced to confront the idols of our society: guns, violence and white supremacy.

What utter stupidity! Guns are not idols but tools; in this case, a tool of self-defense without which Rittenhouse likely would have been murdered. And what on God’s green Earth does “white supremacy” have to do with anything? It was not a factor in the trial, for the good reason that it had nothing to do with the case. This is the kind of mindless blather that we have come to expect from liberals and, sadly, from the ELCA.

To be sure, this is not about one person, but indeed about all of us, together.

Today’s acquittal is an injustice.

Really? Why? The esteemed Bishop might at least do us the courtesy of explaining what was unjust about it. Videos of the attackers’ assaults on Kyle Rittenhouse showed clearly that he acted in self-defense. Has she not seen the videos? Does she offer an intelligent comment on the evidence? Does she have some explanation for why a jury of 12 Kenosha residents unanimously determined that Rittenhouse acted in self-defense and therefore was not guilty?

Of course not.

It points to the disorder in which we all live.

Some of us more than others.

As we seek to restore justice; so also will we restore God to God’s rightful place at the center of our life together.

Somehow I don’t think that wrongly convicting Kyle Rittenhouse under pressure from a mob would help to “restore God to God’s rightful place.” On the contrary.

This is the sort of left-wing nonsense that the ELCA spews on a regular basis. It is not coincidental that the ELCA is a failing denomination.

The ELCA had over five million members when it was formed out of a merger of three Lutheran churches in 1988. As of the end of 2020, it had shrunk to 3.3 million, with no end in sight. Why is the ELCA failing? One obvious reason is that it has made clear that Christians who are not hard-core liberals–that is, the overwhelming majority of the population–are not welcome. Many of my friends have left the ELCA, unwilling to support its ill-informed leftism. I hate to give up on the institution, but one of these days we likely will follow them.

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