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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Jesus' rules

Is there another way to do meetings?

“Robert’s Rules of Order, latest edition, shall govern parliamentary procedure of all meetings.” These words, or others much like them, are found within the defining documents of our church, synods and congregations. Their purpose is to identify our rules of procedure, how we conduct ourselves as we carry out our business in assembly.

Coming from a law and gospel tradition, we recognize the importance of rules. We live with the ever-present influence of the “Old Adam,” and passions can run high when people of the ecclesia militans (church militant) express differing views on important issues that touch the core of their faith. But “the church militant” should be a term we use to portray our stance as a people called out as a countercultural influence, not to describe how we carry out our internal discussions.

Robert’s Rules imposes what is essentially a confrontational style of decision-making on our organizations.


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August issue

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