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CCM Verax

P.O. Box 26
Au Gres, MI 48703-0026



12 March 2002

Dear LWF Member Church Leader:

Re: Ecumenical Grand Deception - US Lutherans Seek International Support

As you may be aware, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) has entered into a full communion agreement with the Episcopal Church in the USA. This ecumenical agreement is entitled Called to Common Mission (CCM). Details now emerging about the nature of the agreement and about how it was adopted by both churches indicate that CCM represents an act of ecumenical grand deception. The apparent refusal of ELCA leaders to address this fact leaves us little choice but to approach the international Lutheran community for support.

The "visible unity" in CCM is not based upon the principle of "Christ alone" inherent in Article VII of the Augsburg Confession (CA). Instead, CCM prescribes ecclesial uniformity according to the Episcopalian (Anglican) understanding of the human tradition of bishops in tactile succession (episcopal succession or historic episcopacy).

In order to justify this concession to the Episcopal Church, the drafters of CCM sought to make the Lutheran Confessions compatible with the demands of Anglican uniformity. As a result, CCM paragraph 11 was worded to state that the Lutheran Reformers as per Article XIV of Apology to the Augsburg Confession "deeply desired" to have certain episcopalian structures, namely "historic succession" in the office of bishop.

Research now coming to light shows that the wording of CCM paragraph 11 is incorrect and that this wording was known to be incorrect when CCM was written. The Lutheran Reformers were not referring to "episcopal succession" in Apology XIV. Furthermore, both Luther and Melanchthon rejected "episcopal succession" out of hand. So, why were members of the ELCA given information contrary to the fact?

We would ask you to read the enclosed article, published in the Lutheran theological journal Logia, which details the nature of the grand deception in CCM.

The deception in CCM goes beyond the document itself. To cite one representative example, in its efforts to pass CCM the ELCA leadership repeatedly informed ELCA members that CCM did not require the ELCA to adopt a threefold ordering of ministers (bishop, priest, and deacon), like the Episcopal Church has. In contrast, when voting to adopt CCM, the Episcopal Church in Resolution A041 stated the ELCA had already "agreed that the threefold ministry of Bishops, Presbyters, and Deacons in historic succession will be the future pattern of the one ordained ministry shared corporately within the two churches in full communion,..." So, which church is telling its members the truth?

In addition to the enclosed article, you may read a full discussion of the duplicity in CCM in a document available on the Internet. This document, entitled "Called to Common Mission: Grand Illusion or Fabulous Fraud?", can be found in various formats at this web address:-

CCM represents a radical departure from the non-institutional unity envisaged by Article VII of the Augsburg Confession. This non-institutional unity has been realized in the Leuenberg Concordat and more recently in the German Protestant Church's (EKD) policy document entitled "A Protestant Understanding of Ecclesial Communion" (Kirchengemeinschaft nach evangelischem Verständnis - KneV). The German text of this document is available on the Internet at:- An English translation thereof is also available on the Internet at:-

US Lutherans seek your support. Because the ELCA has few, if any, internal checks and balances, CCM Verax on behalf of many US Lutherans is asking the international Lutheran community for support in three ways:

1. Please, study the enclosed essay and other related materials on the CCM Verax web site to gain a fuller understanding of the issues.

2. Please, encourage the ELCA leadership to suspend CCM until CCM itself and the method used to obtain its passage can be investigated fully by an independent arbitrator. Please address such correspondence to: Mark S. Hanson, Presiding Bishop, ELCA, 8765 W. Higgins Road, Chicago, IL 60631, USA.

3. Please, be prepared to assist US Lutherans who, being ecumenical in a Protestant (evangelical) sense, already feel forced to form a new Lutheran church in the USA which is true to the principle of Christ alone as the only basis for true and truthful unity (CA VII).

Please, support US Lutherans in their efforts to counter the ecumenical deception inherent in CCM.

Yours faithfully,

Mark D. Menacher, PhD
Pastor and CCM Verax Administrator

cc. Mark S. Hanson, ELCA Presiding Bishop