Sunday, October 17, 2010

Church Workers

While we're at it, there are plenty of lousy terms to go around. "Public ministry" is certainly one of them, but I think the worst has to be "church workers." I think of guys in hard hats.

It would be funny, but the truth is that it denigrates the Holy Office.

I suppose someone could answer that you need a term for that section in the synodical website. What are you going to call pastors, teachers, and deaconesses (are they listed in there too?), all at once.

Answer: how about "Pastors, teachers, deaconessess"? Is that really so hard?

In addition, "church workers" has to be about the clumsiest designation I've ever heard.

Of course it has plenty of longevity. I think St. Leo the Great was the first to use it, during the controversy with Dioscorus. Just kidding.

New administrations in the LCMS have a way of putting their mark on things. The Bohlmann administration gave us the current LCMS cross (ah, more on that later, sometime); the Barry administration gave us those nice little "What About" tracts; the Kieschnik administration gave us, well, you know . . .

So here's a suggestion to pass along: how about the Harrison administration making a review of our nomenclature?

Church workers? Honestly.



  1. "Pastors, teachers, and deaconesses" might not be too terribly clumsy to say, but "Pastors, teachers, deaconesses, directors of parish music, directors of Christian education, and directors of Christian outreach" is quite the mouthful.

    Regardless of what you think of all of those positions, those all are classified as "church workers" in our synod.

  2. I'm lazy... I like short terms... like "mass."

  3. It's far worse than "church workers" - let's remember that hideous nomenclature created solely to appease the IRS "minister of religion - ordained" and "minister of religion - comissioned." There's your Old Missouri view of the ministry - all it lacks is one more category: "minister of religion - lay."


  4. My dear comrade pastor, do you not understand that such glorious titles underscore the equality and solidarity we all share as ministers. Church Workers unite!

  5. Church workers with backhoes! Backhoes, I say!

  6. Don't forget the selling power the Concordias have in being able to market their church work careers.

  7. It's better than "rostered leaders."

  8. Actually, "church workers" is the short form of "professional church workers." It's kind of like being in the NFL or NBA I guess. No more NCAA for us, no siree! We're in the pros now!

    "Stand aside folks. This is a job for a professional." Gads.

    Kyrie eleison!

  9. I think the term professional church worker should be cause for having the tongue of the speaker removed... it is a hateful term that has wrecked havoc upon our church... for that matter, minister of religion (ordained or commissioned) is even worse. I wish that we Lutherans could speak of priesthood with a straight face and good intentions... but I am not holding my breath...


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