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MEMBERS OF CHRIST LUTHERAN CHURCH - PUT YOUR MOUTHS WHERE YOUR MONEY IS!
Posted on Saturday, February 12 @ 03:39:32 CST by van

Religion Some time ago, I posted a story on this web site regarding Mayor Coleen Seng's appointment of the not-so-Rev. S.T. Williams' to the board which over-sees the funds remaining from the sale of what used to be called the Lincoln General Hospital to the Bryan Hospital corporate complex. I addressed the Lincoln City Council and related to its members why, in my opinion, Williams was unfit for the appointment and should not be confirmed by the council. They didn't listen! There is more to the story and a portion of it is presented here. Later on, I'll share with you which well known Nebraska State Senator (Gribbit) may be helping cover-up grossly unchristian conduct if not possible criminal conduct on the part of one or more of the clergy at Christ Lutheran Church in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Lutheran Christian Brothers and Sisters, how long are you going to set still and accept the baloney the "Reverend Doctor" Luke Schnake is feeding you. It's time to stand up and PUT YOUR MOUTHS WHERE YOUR MONEY IS!!

For decades, while Pastor Charles Reimnitz was serving Christ Lutheran Church the congregation grew in size, and likewise, the donations of members to the Lord's work at the local, district and synodical levels increased year by year. Additionally, Reimnitz along with other rock solid Christian men like Richard Buethe, a Lincoln insurance executive, and others stimulated donations and volunteered thousands of hours in the building and expanded of the Haiti Mission Society. The Lord truly blessed the work of these men and thousands of Haitians have become Lutheran Christians and thousands of their children have been given an opportunity to attend schools sponsored by the churches planted in Haiti.

Upon the well-earned retirement of Pastor Reimnitz, CLC experienced a time where it was served by "vacancy pastors." The momentum created by Reimnitz within the congregation carried it through until finally, Rev. Luke Schnake was called to serve and subsequently moved to Lincoln to become Reimnitz' successor. Thereafter, Rev. S.T. Williams became part of a dastardly duo which, in my opinion, plundered the coffers of CLC, drove off dozens of families which had been members of CLC from its advent, ran up debt, increased the administrative staff to an obscene level, abolished the regular meetings of the "Voters' Assembly", abolished the Board of Elders and other boards, and in general raped the congregation.

Through the creation of what is called a Lay Leadership Board, powers in the congregation were concentrated into the hands of a few men who, as now can be seen, are not too willing to level with the members of the parish and who are essentially controlled and manipulated by Schnake.

Add to that the fact the Rev. Russ Sommerfeld (reputed to be far from an adherent to conservative Lutheran Doctrine) was elected to be "President" of the Nebraska District of the LC-MS. For those who would otherwise not know, The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod is divided into districts, and each district is headed by a president. While each LC-MS congregation is autonomous, the district presidents have a duty to insure church doctrine is taught and synodical by-laws are adhered to by the "member" congregations and the pastors thereof. The first step in disciplining an errant pastor commences at the district level. This, however, is predicated upon the assumption that district president involved will have the "scrotal capacity" (that's the nice way of saying "balls") to carry out his duties, even when such become unpleasant.

Defrocking an ordained Lutheran Pastor has only taken place, to the best of my knowledge, twice in Lincoln in the last three and a half decades. In those two instances, sex offenses were involved. One involved homosexual conduct and the other adultery. In both of those instances, I'm pretty sure the members of the effected congregations were not fully informed as to the details of the circumstances.

At least, in those instances, our Christian body did not do as certain Roman Catholic leaders have most recently done - dump ecclesiastical garbage onto another congregation. Time will tell if Sommerfeld and company elect to solve CLC problems by allowing Williams to "take a call" and hence avoid dealing appropriately with his UNCHRISTIAN CONDUCT!

You were earlier informed that S.T. Williams was placed on some sort of "Administrative Leave with Pay" by the Lay Leadership Board of CLC and was placed on "Restricted Status in the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod" meaning he had a paid vacation of indefinite length, and that he could not, for until released from such, seek and accept a "call" from another congregation

.As you can glean rom the following letter from Schnake to the members of CLC, Sommerfeld has "opened the church door" and very likely hopes that Williams will, sooner than later, escape to a place far far away and the problems he has caused will evaporate. Schnake, Sommerfeld and the infamous CLC - LLB have purposely kept the members of that congregation in the dark about what is really going on and aren't about to let the folks know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!

In case any member of CLC was out of town or otherwise didn't get a copy of the "beat around the bush" letter from Schnake, and because I want to motivate each the concerned members of that church to stand up and PUT THEIR MOUTHS WHERE YOUR MONEY IS, I obtained a copy of the letter and am presenting here a verbatim copy of such - minus the church letterhead:

To: Christ Lutheran Church
From: Pastor Luke R. Schnake, Director of Ministries
Date: January 20, 2005

Re: Pastor Williams' Administrative Leave

Dear Brothers and Sisters in our Lord and our Savior Jesus, Christ,

Understandably, these past few months have been challenging, difficult and leading to much prayer for many of you. I am deeply grateful for your ongoing support for the overall ministry of our congregation, for your devotion to the Lord in your worship life, and for your ongoing prayers for us in leadership.

Not too long ago, you received a letter from Rev. Russ Sommerfeld, our District President, in which he informed the congregation that his investigation of a specific allegation regarding Pastor Williams had been concluded, and that Pastor Williams had thereby been removed from "Restricted Status I The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod, and is eligible to consider calls in the Synod. In that very same letter, Pastor Sommerfeld indicated that there were other issues yet to be faced by the LLB, and that he would be assisting them, as needed, in their part of the process.

That process is now in effect, with ongoing meetings, the sharing of findings, the response to the findings, and the response of those responses, etc. Although there are not many specifics that I can share with you at this point, I can assure you that due diligence is being given by the Lay Leadership Board members and others, in keeping with, not only our own Personnel Manual, but also the Biblical standards for the Office of Pastor. In can assure you that there is no intentional effort to delay the process, nor is this a matter involving issues between individuals. The circumstances require a deliberate and thoughtful process, a process in which hopefulness is very much part of the picture. All involved are seeking, by God's grace, to apply Biblical values of truth, grace, understanding, patience and more.

It is my fervent prayer, and my personal encouragement to the LLB that we be able to resolve the matter withing thirty to forty days (God willing). When all things are resolved, I pledge to you a fuller explanation of the matters that have been under consideration these many weeks.

With warmest regards in our Lord Himself during this glorious Epiphany season.

- Signed - Pastor Schnake

The good members of CLC have chosen to overlook the fact Schnake has put members of his family on the church payroll, has hired a business manager for $60,000 a year if not now more, has spent tens of thousands of the Lord's dollars on posh office additions for himself, Williams and others, none of which Pastor Reimnitz ever seemed to want or need, so for the moment, I'll let "sleeping dogs lie" (or perhaps lying dogs sleep). Where I want you folks to focus your attention is on the overt racism and plundering the coffers of the congregation by Schnake and Williams for their own self-serving purposes and their own ego salving adventures.

Shortly after his arrival at Christ Lutheran Church and because Williams while actively endeavoring to "take over" what many referred to as the "Haiti Mission" project was spewing out what I considered racially inappropriate statements about Pastor Reimnitz, I invited Williams to join me for coffee at the Village Inn down in south Lincoln. On that occasion, I gave him what we old military guys called a "warning order." I informed him that, for the good of his ministry at CLC, he should "back off" and work with Pastor Reimnitz and Richard Buethe rather than attempting to undermine and take over what they were doing and had been doing for years down in Haiti.. It was at that coffee, Williams told me, what he told others, "NO WHITE MAN CAN RUN A BLACK MINISTRY." He also stated, "YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND VAN - I DON'T NEED THAT CHURCH, IT NEEDS ME" and further, that he "COULD GET A CALL TOMORROW IF HE WANTED ONE."

Later, Williams had the unmitigated gall to THREATEN Pastor Clint Poppe, who at the time held a leadership roll on the Nebraska District Mission Board, that if he, Poppe, didn't approve of the district office giving him $30,000.00 to spend in forming a parallel mission effort in Haiti, he - Williams - would "cut off Christ Lutheran's contributions to district." Poppe requested Williams to present a budget to show how the funds would be disbursed and Williams adamantly refused to do so. Consequently, Poppe would not approve granting Williams a $30,000 slush fund to do with whatever he pleased and I have been told Williams carried out his treat relative to CLC's contributions to the district office.

Williams has ABUSED THE OFFICE OF THE KEYS (the pastoral office) by threatening two people - now documented - that if they did not do as he directed, he, WILLIAMS, WOULD WITHHOLD HOLY COMMUNION FROM THEM!

I challenge the member/contributors of Christ Lutheran Church to demand Williams to stand before the congregation assembled in the chancel proximate to the Cross of Jesus Christ and with his hand upon the Holy Bible, answer the following questions:

l. Did you ever use or condone the use of funds donated to Christ Lutheran Church to subsidize one or more Sudanese unmarried couples who were cohabiting (that's what we used to call "SHACKING UP") with your personal knowledge?

2. Did you ever use or approve of the use of money donated to Christ Lutheran Church (a tax exempt corporation) to pay undocumented Sudanese individuals for work done at CLC or anywhere else?

3. Did you ever mis-use a "church credit card" for personal purchases or personal travel?

4. Did you pay with a Christ Lutheran Church credit card or cards, all or part of the expenses for Ramon Marcano and his then bride to be, to travel with you to the Bahamas to be married there and did they stay there on a " honeymoon" for around a week with all or part of the expenses also paid by you through the use of one or more church credit cards?

5. Did you pay all or part of attorney fees or any other expenses associated with the later divorce of Ramon Marcano from his wife (Lancaster County Court Case # CI -03-2453) with either money donated to Christ Lutheran Church or with a church credit card or cards?

6. Did you personally condone Ramon Marcano, an undocumented worker, being on the payroll or as a "part time" worker of Christ Lutheran Church?

7. Did you ever disburse or cause to be disbursed from church funds, directly or indirectly, money for any other "black" member of Christ Lutheran Church to divorce his "White" wife and in fact counsel the man to leave his wife rather than attempt to resolve their differences?

8. Did you ever deposit a check given to you for a church cause or project into your own personal bank account rather than in an account owned by CLC?

9. Will you state before God and the members of Christ Lutheran Church assembled, that you have NEVER THREATENED TO WITHHOLD HOLY COMMUNION FROM A MEMBER OF THE CHURCH FOR ANY REASON WITHOUT FIRST CARRYING OUT THE STEPS REQUIRED BY THE BYLAWS OF CHRIST LUTHERAN CHURCH AND THE SPECIFIC STEPS MENTIONED IN THE BOOK OF MATTHEW, THE FIRST BOOK OF THE NEW TESTAMENT IN HOLY SCRIPTURES?

10. Will you state before God and the members of Christ Lutheran Church assembled that if you answer the preceding question in the negative and that if it can later or at the time be shown conclusively to the congregation that you lied in answering the question, you will voluntarily resign from the Ministry of the Lutheran Church - Missouri immediately?

Christian Brothers and Sisters of Christ Lutheran Church, you have a duty to God to insure proper and legal stewardship of His funds. Further, since most people utilize church donations as tax deductions on their own personal tax reports, every single penny of the money should be used by the church in a lawful manner.

If indeed the members of CLC want to regain control of their church, then they must , re-establish periodic Voters' Assembly meetings where budgets and expenditures are reviewed to insure the Lord's money is not being "Ripped Off" by one or more folks who wear their collars backwards, return church government to boards and to voters in general and a Board of Elders in particular, let Schnake, Williams and others know they serve at the pleasure of the Elders and the Voters Assembly, then and then alone can honesty prevail and God pleasing administration of His resources be assured.

Time has long past time for the pastoral tail to stop being allowed to wag the congregational dog! Stand up, speak up and PUT YOUR MOUTHS WHERE YOUR MONEY IS!

By the way, if you ever see fit to dump Williams and perhaps Schnake also, and give your over-paid business manager his walking papers, even though I am not a member of CLC, I will donate my professional time for a period of three months to re-establish a congregational staffing and money management system and do so pro bono - with one provision - that the $5,000 per month salary of the current "Business Manager" be donated each of those months directly to the Haiti Mission Society to make up, in part, for the confusion and hurt Williams has caused that mission project.

Other than the Schnake letter presented above, the statements made herein are based upon my own feelings, beliefs and opinions, and if anyone can show any statement made, in total or in part, is inaccurate, I will see that an appropriate and timely correction is made.

If S.T. Williams is humble and repentent enough to stand before God and the Christ Lutheran Church congregation assembled and, after answering all of the questions presented above, apologize to me and my family for all of the hurt he has caused me and them and ask to be forgiven, I will, before the same assembly, publicly state my total forgiveness of his wrongdoings.

However or if ever he is able to square his conduct with the CLC congregation, the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod, as well as federal, state and local authorities is his problem. Any relief from punishment or sanction by any or all of them for any inappropriate or illegal conduct in which he may have engaged is strictly between him and them.

VansOpinion
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