Monday, May 26, 2008

A Grace-Free Church!


My parents belong to a small denomination called Association of Free-Lutheran congregations. Now, they aren't all that free. They still insist on wearing formal attire in the church service, a suit for the pastor, and it's sort of assumed that you don't wear jeans unless you're really young. I'm not supposed to be wearing jeans. Achhhhhhhh! That's the sound of being strangled.

They still sing hymns out of a hymnal, along with some contemporary songs, but it's pretty shut down, or buttoned up.

The name of their church? Grace Free Lutheran Church. Since it's in the Free-Lutheran denomination, they have to put the 'free' in there, so the grace is followed by the free, producing "grace-free." Can you imagine that? A church that is unabashedly calling themselves a grace-free church, like saying something is fat-free, or sugar-free. They have another church in their denomination called Faith Free Lutheran Church.

I tell you - ignorance gone to seed. It's frustrating. A church that holds back on allowing the power of the Holy Spirit. Nice people, but they are afraid of the workings of the Holy Spirit, and then they have such a silly name.

10 comments:

Bike Bubba said...

Actually, I believe that the "free" adjective, when applied to a Lutheran church, generally indicates that its spiritual heritage is in the "free" churches of Europe--those that refused to accept tax money for their support, and thus exempted themselves from control.

Maybe gone to seed in other ways, though.

Gabrielle Eden said...

Interesting, Bubba. Actually, I don't mean to be too hard on them. They preach the true word of God, and I appreciate that. There is some good, honest sincerity. It just gets really dry, and my throat is getting parched from the dryness.

Gabrielle Eden said...

Oh, I forgot to clarify that I knew that the 'free' wasn't originally supposed to be about being free in the spiritual sense. I figured they had branched off from someone else or something.

billgraver said...

...as opposed to the Free Methodists who are total Holy Rollers.

I know what you mean, though. I grew up in a stodgy old church like that and the only word I can use to describe it is DEAD.

Isn't there inherently something wrong when God's children act like they're at a funeral all the time? Aren't we, instead, supposed to be living the life that He created us for?

billgraver said...

...as opposed to the Free Methodists who are total Holy Rollers.

I know what you mean, though. I grew up in a stodgy old church like that and the only word I can use to describe it is DEAD.

Isn't there inherently something wrong when God's children act like they're at a funeral all the time? Aren't we, instead, supposed to be living the life that He created us for?

billgraver said...

whoops. Hit the darn button twice

Gabrielle Eden said...

Oh I agree, Bill. I go along with my parents, just to be in sort of rhythm with them as I live with them, but then steal away to a charismatic church as much as I can, only problem is it is not that alive either.

I get despairing about it. I need the body of Christ. I need the support and cooperation of the body in my walk with the Lord.

There is a large charismatic church I could go to but its worship music is so bad. Sigh...............

The Twin Cities has long been a place where revival has a hard time getting started.

One has to rely on one's own inner revival, and thrive on however few significant others one can find.

Guitarman said...

I go to the EFCA Evangelical Free church of America. I've not thought about this in years. What I have in my head is the "FREE" is in reference to denominationally free. meaning what ever you are....or aren't, you're welcome. I'll look it up now though. It is odd that their sign says "Faith Free", as if there is none at their church? Good post.

billgraver said...

and I have to contrast that church sign with one outside of a church I know of in the inner city of Aurora, IL. The church is called Warehouse Church and the sign outside their building says, "All Sinners Welcome.'

Gabrielle Eden said...

That's pretty brave, welcoming SINNERS! Whoa!