Entries by Mark Ellingsen

Doesn’t Grace Compel Us to Traverse the Reformed Path of Following Jesus?

     When a Lutheran like me dialogues with a Reformed theologian like Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, at least to this Lutheran it feels like a conversation among kin.  In no other part of Christendom do Lutherans find the celebration of God’s grace more strongly and compellingly articulated than among the heirs of Calvin.  How wonderful to live […]

The Joys of Being Found by Jesus in Liturgy and Heritage: A Lutheran – Episcopal Celebration

     Randall Balmer’s compelling story of finding Jesus in the cadences of the historic liturgy and the Presence of Christ in the Church’s Sacramental life was a sweet song in my Lutheran ears.  How wonderful to be worshipping the same way Christians have for 1500 or more years, to be worshipping with all the faithful who have […]

Can Lutheran Dialectical Thinking and Living Counter-Culturally be Considered an Appropriate Gospel Witness by Anabaptists?

      What led me to fall in love with God, Christian faith, and the church of my youth was the awareness that ours is a faith for rebels, for people who are committed to living counter-culturally – going against the grain of what society expects.  My high-school years in Pennsylvania led me to sense that Mennonites and the […]

Is Spontaneity and Freedom from the Law a Legitimate Option in the Church Catholic?

IS SPONTANEITY AND FREEDOM FROM THE LAW A LEGITIMATE OPTION IN THE CHURCH CATHOLIC?         I really appreciated the dialogue with all my partners (the new friends I’m making), and my  personal responses to each which you can read will indicate in more depth my appreciation and thoughts about your insightful reflections.  I am struck by how two elements […]

Lutheranism: An Evangelical Catholic Way to Follow Jesus

      In order to articulate Lutheranism’s approach to following Jesus, we need to sort out the Lutheran self-image (at least its historical image) and appreciate the diversity within the Lutheran family.  Of course it is well known that Lutherans did not originally name themselves  Lutheran.  That title is a function of their critics naming them, rather like […]

Lutheran-Catholic Sacramental Spirituality: Are We Still Divided Over How We Follow Jesus?

As in the case of the dialogue we have already had with the Orthodox tradition, this Lutheran along with other Confessional Lutherans can wholeheartedly endorse the Sacramental spirituality of the Roman Catholic Church (though Lutheran Pietist elements and Lutheran members reflecting a modernist piety might object). Indeed except for the Catholic teaching of transubstantiation (which […]

A Lutheran Celebration of Orthodox Liturgical and Sacramental Spirituality: Some Inquiries About How Much Freedom the Orthodox Tradition Sanctions

In view of Martin Luther’s appreciation of the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox traditions (Luther’s Works, Vol.31, p.81), and the outreach Luther theologians later in the 16th century made to the Ecumenical Patriarch, it should not be surprising that a modern Lutheran theologian would find much to endorse in this thoughtful presentation of the Orthodox heritage.  […]