The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Go with God

Count backward. Count 25 years backward, a quarter century — to the time the ELCA came flush-faced and wide-eyed and hopeful into being. From three separate cities of the United States, by electronic weavings, we met and sang a lusty "Gloria" together.

And on the Epiphany of 1988 I began writing this column for this magazine. I called it then — and, for the last time, I call it now — "Between us."

You and I: we've come a long way together.

I was 43. I am 69. The world is not what it was. I mean the whole world! Nor are we what we were. Nor is the church.

We rejoiced at our birth, didn't we? Three bodies had become one, and "One" surely manifested the pleadings of our Lord: "That they may be one. ... As you, Father, are in me and I am in you."

"One" would be a finer witness. "One" would gather a greater strength, could accomplish more than the "three" that had been, could perform a sacred service, judging the poor with righteousness; deciding with equity for the meek of the earth; belting our waists with faithfulness.

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