News Releases and Information Bulletins
CCM Verax Information Service
For Immediate Release
Date: 12 November 2002
Title: INTERNATIONAL LUTHERAN COMMUNITY RESPONDING TO US LUTHERAN ECUMENICAL "GRAND DECEPTION"
(Au Gres, Michigan,
USA) A call for help by US Lutherans to member churches of the Lutheran
World Federation (LWF) is being heard. In March 2002, CCM Verax asked
LWF member churches for assistance and support in countering the "grand
deception" in Called to Common Mission (CCM), the full communion
ecumenical agreement between the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
(ELCA) and the Episcopal Church in the USA. CCM came into effect on
CCM Verax, one of several ELCA groups opposed to this agreement, contends that "CCM is arguably the greatest act of deception ever cultivated by an ecclesial denomination in the history of North America."
In response to the CCM Verax appeal, the President of the Tamil Evangelical Lutheran Church (TELC) in India, Bishop Dr. T. Aruldoss, writes, "On behalf of the Tamil Evangelical Lutheran Church, I am pleased to convey its support to US Lutherans in their efforts to counter the ecumenical deception in CCM."
The Presiding Bishop of the Lutheran Church in Hungary (LCH), Dr. I. Szebik, offers to intervene in the matter as follows:
The full texts of both letters are available on the CCM Verax web site at:
Although CCM contains
much misinformation, CCM Verax is working chiefly to expose a key fallacy
in the agreement. This fallacy has been used by ELCA officials to concede
In short, CCM paragraph 11 states effectively that the Lutheran Reformers "deeply desired" to be "episcopalian." This assertion is false, and it was known to be false by a member of the ELCA CCM drafting team when CCM was written to replace the failed Concordat of Agreement. The Concordat was defeated at the ELCA1997 Churchwide Assembly. In obtaining the passage of CCM, ELCA officials disseminated information diametrically opposed to the Lutheran Reformers' stated positions on structures resembling "historic episcopacy."
Despite being made aware of the fallacies involved, ELCA officials refuse to address the problem. In a church with few or no checks and balances on power, US Lutherans are appealing for help and intervention from LWF member churches.
CCM Verax is grateful for the support shown by the international Lutheran community. To foster greater support in relation to these positive developments, CCM Verax has issued the "CCM Verax International Newsletter" (copy enclosed). The occasional newsletter has been sent to all LWF member churches. Further copies have also been sent to most top officials and bishops in both the ELCA and in the Episcopal Church.
Disagreements over unity between Lutherans and Anglicans (Episcopalians) are not limited to the USA. In Autumn 2001, the Protestant Church in Germany (EKD - Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland) stated its rejection of the Anglican (Episcopalian) conditions for unity which exist in CCM. This document is called A Protestant Understanding of Ecclesial Communion. Many member churches of the EKD are also member churches of the LWF. An English translation of this document is also available on the CCM Verax web site at:
The German church's rejection of CCM-style agreements has far reaching implications. As CCM has fractured the ELCA, so too could similar agreements cause splits in the Lutheran World Federation. This forecast would seem to be confirmed by the willingness of LWF member churches to intervene in the CCM affair and to support US Lutherans seeking to expose and to counter the "grand deception" in the agreement.
CCM Verax is administered
by Mark D. Menacher, PhD. Dr. Menacher is an ELCA pastor. He holds a Ph.D
in historical and systematic theology from the University of Manchester,
England. Pastor Menacher's wife is from Wales, and she is an Anglican