AN IMPORTANT THEOLOGICAL DISCOURSE ON ELCA-L




THE REV. DR. PROFESSOR FRANZ BIBFELDT


START OF THE THEOLOGICAL DISCOURSE

Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Gregory Singleton
Subject: Bibfeldt

I have received a note from a friend who also subscribes to LTHRN-L. It seems as though they have a vigorous exchange over there about Herr Professor Doktor Franz Bibfeldt. Are their any Bibfeldtian scholars out there on elca-l?

Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Greven John
Subject: Bibfeldt

I have discovered a bona fide really-truly Bibfeldt web site:

http://www2.uchicago.edu/alumni/alumni.mag/9502/Feb95Bibfeldt.html


Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Maureen Jais-Mick
Subject: Re: Bibfeldt

On Wed, 17 Jul 1996, Gregory Singleton wrote:

> Herr Professor Doktor Farnz B. Are their any Bibfeldtian scholars out
> there on elca-l?

Ah, the first purge of the new list!


Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Christine
Subject: Uh duh...
At 10:22 AM 7/17/96 -0500, you wrote:
>I have received a note from a friend who also subscribes to LTHRN-L. It
>seems as though they have a vigorous exchange over there about >br> >Herr Professor Doktor Farnz B. Are their any Bibfeldtian scholars out
>there on elca-l?

For those of us who have books we have not yet colored in, what's Bibfeldt?

Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Paul.Bellan-Boyer
Subject: Re: Bibfeldt
Herr Dr. Bibfeldt is well know for anticipating Martin Buber's concept of "I-Thou," with his essay entitled, "Y'all." Sadly, as with most of Bibfeldt's writings, there are no extant copies known.

Much of Bibfeldt's work was consigned to the flames during the hard winter of '86, and even more was condemned by the Inquisition before it was written.


Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Gregory Singleton
Subject: More on Bibfeldt

One of the quickest ways to get up to speed on Franz Bibfeldt, Lutheran theologian *in extremis* is to visit the web site John posted. I have done so and am most impressed.

For a more detailed analysis, criticism and appreciation, see:

TITLE: The unrelieved paradox : studies in the theology of Franz Bibfeldt / edited by Martin E. Marty and Jerald Brauer.

PUBL.: Grand Rapids, Mich. : Eerdmans

DATE: 1994

OTHER NAME: Marty, Martin E., Brauer, Jerald C.

SUBJECT: Theology, Doctrinal--History--20th century

ISBN: 0802807453 (pbk.)

CONTENTS: Includes bibliographical references.

Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: "Marvin A. Huggins"
Subject: Re: More on Bibfeldt

Gregory Singleton wrote:

> For a more dtainled analysis, criticism and appreciation see:
>
> TITLE: The unrelieved paradox : studies in the theology of Franz

I am shocked to discover that this title is not found in the catalog of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis!

Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Greven John
Subject: Re: More on Bibfeldt

On Wed, 17 Jul 1996, Marvin A. Huggins wrote:

> I am shocked to discover that this title is not found in the catalog of
> Concordia Seminary, St. Louis!

I can hardly believe it! Was it not at Concordia, St. Louis, that the earliest work on Bibfeldt was done by Professor (then seminarian) Marty?

Date: Wed, 17 Jul 1996
From: Maureen Jais-Mick
Subject: Re: More on Bibfeldt

On Wed, 17 Jul 1996, Greven John wrote:
> I can hardly believe it! Was it not at Concordia, St. Louis, that the
> earliest work on Bibfeldt was done by Professor (then seminarian) Marty?
My theory is that it wasn't the theological issues, such as the ordination of women, that caused the split in the LC-MS and led to the founding of Christ Seminay-Seminex, but Marty's pioneering work on Bibfeldt that caused the break.

Didn't Bibfeldt question the ordination of men on the grounds that Christ didn't ordain anybody?

Tough words.


Date: Thu, 18 Jul 1996
From: Gregory Singleton
Subject: Re: More on Bibfeldt

On Wed, 17 Jul 1996, Maureen Jais-Mick wrote:

> My theory is that it wasn't the theological issues, including the
> ordination of women, that caused the split in the LC-MS and led to the
> founding of Christ Seminay-Seminex, but Marty's pioneering work on
> Bibfeldt that caused the break.

Interesting theory. Hmmmmm. Shortly after the early work on Bibfeldt Marty, an LC-MS pastor at the time, entered that hot bed of liberalism, the University of Chicago, for doctoral work. He studied with a number of heathenish people, including the LCA (I think--still can't keep the alphabet soup history straight) pastor Jerry Brauer. He winds up going on the faculty of said hot bed of liberalism and editing the occultish (or is it Druidic?) CHRISTIAN CENTURY. Next thing you know there's trouble right there in the city on the lake, and Marty gives aid and comfort to both CS-S and CURRENTS IN THEOLOGY AND MISSION. Now, lo these many years later, Marty is an ELCA pastor (and the Higgins Rd. folk don't mind that he is at the hot bed of liberalism or editing a occult--or is it Druidic?--magazine).

I think you are on to something here. (not to be confused with being on something)

> Didn't Bibfeldt question the ordination of men on the grounds that Christ
> didn't ordain anybody?

Indeed he did, and he also advanced the doctrine of the laypersonship of all believers. Tangentially related to this, he suggested that crosses and crucifixes worn about the neck should be replaced by little metal packets of pledge envelopes.

Date: Thu, 18 Jul 1996
From: John Dornheim
Subject: Re: More on Bibfeldt

Inspite of all of the allegations back in 1974, we did not pillage the seminary prior to our exile. It did seem appropriate,however, that Bibfeldt go into exile as well. Afterall, you couldn't have a seminary library in exile without a book or two. Needless to say, it was equally important to take his card from the catalog stack.

John
(on the committee but not the purloiner. He/she, like Deep Throat, remains a mystery tho' I have my suspicions)

Date: Thu, 18 Jul 1996
From: David Moeller
Subject: Re: More on Bibfeldt

On Thu, 18 Jul 1996, Gregory Singleton wrote:

> .... Tangentially related to this, he suggested that crosses > and crucifixes worn about the neck should be replaced by little metal > packets of pledge envelopes.

Current thinking is to attach contribution envelopes to an appropriately pierced part of the parishioner's anatomy. As well as being a built-in stewardship reminder, this practice also empowers the individual to declare the nuances of his or her theological/political stance by simple reference to right or left as the current location of choice. Thus the concept of counting noses could be given a whole new dimension and the notion of giving ear to a new idea greatly expanded. The practical advantages and efficiencies are obvious, but when one reflects on the possible contamination by elements of Decision Theology and the potential inconsistencies with orthodox Bibfeldtian ambiguity even when combinations such as (for example) left nostril/right ear are included in the paradigm, one must conclude that the jury is still out.

END OF THE THEOLOGICAL DISCOURSE