Monday, January 23, 2006

WELS Woman

I had a strange experience tonight at work that I think fits well with this whole Lutheran-blog-sphere thing we got going on here. This lady walked up to the customer service desk this evening and said she was looking for some information about Lutherans and Luther. Well, my ears perked right up and asked her what kind of stuff she wanted, which, believe it or not was not the right thing to ask. She launched into a disjointed explanation of why she became a Lutheran (she was a Catholic for 50 sum years). She talked non-stop for almost 20 minutes (or more, I actually lost track of time)... I tried to interrupt her a few times to find out exactly what she wanted, but she just continued her diatribe.

It seems that her husband and she had converted from Catholicism to Lutheranism Wisconsin Synod (WELS) variety, I'm not sure how she got involved with the WELS congregation. She didn't seem too pleased with it, I think they were a bit conservative for her taste (hmmm, shocking! *chuckles*). Anyway it seems that they were disenchanted by the Catholic church for many, many years. She said "I didn't leave the Catholic church the left me decades ago." Sadly, though, her husband got sick and died right around the time of the Conversion (her words and emphasis). She actually started to break up at this point, she said that her husband was afraid that he would die a "sinner" because he had left the Catholic church, I told her that was untrue (I tried to say more, but I couldn't get a word in edgewise) she told me that she got her pastor (she kept saying a Pastor Schultz, or Scholts, or something like that) to go to the hospital and let make her husband understand he would be in God's grace.

She said that she had gone through the new member class, but that there wasn't enough information. She wanted more, and she complained that it seems that Lutheran churches don't have the books memebers need, "Catholic churches have bookstores in the back of the churches..." Once, I finally figured out that she wanted books on Lutheran Theology, I told her about the Reader's edition of the Book of Concord, she got real excited about that, but was a bit disappointed when I told her that it was out of stock until March. I can't order it through work, so I gave her Concordia Publishing House's web address. I also encouraged her to buy a copy of Self-Study Bible when she told me she only had a Catholic Bible.

This woman wore me out. I could tell, though that she was excited about the gospel message she was getting from the WELS church. She did say somethings that concerned me though, I can't confirm this, but she said that she WELS looked down on Girl Scouting and Boy Scouting. I was shocked! I told her that many LCMS congregations support troops for scouting. Then she started nattering on about other things, I couldn't keep up, besides I have to be careful about conversations I get into when I'm on the clock. I finally, got myself disengaged from this lady and sent her on her way with a small stack of reading recommendations.

The very NEXT customer, another woman, came up and asked me "Do you have any books about numerology?" I wanted to scream. I showed her the books she wanted and then went and took a break.


Preachrboy said...

Do you have any books on Divine Coincidences?

Anonymous said...

I wanted to say hello the other day when you posted that you felt all alone out there, so here's a belated "Hi"..I'm not WELS, but I think they may be concerned with the corporate prayers and pledges to "God" done in the Scouts.

Genuine Lustre said...

Well there ya go, a perfect example of how you are a mask of God in your vocation.

Anonymous said...

I'm a WELS pastor's wife...though growing up I was LCMS. :)

The above poster is correct..scouting is discouraged due to how we view fellowship.

Here is a link that will explain it a bit more:

Personally, the Scouts have never really interested me, so it has never been a big deal for me personally, though I do understand why some people would be bothered by it.

I think it was great that you were there to comfort her--she definitely sounded frazzled and wanted information quickly.

I also wanted to thank you for recommending the Concordia Self-Study Bible for her...I have it and love it. :)