The Third Synodal Letter - Pages 108 - 112

that Pastor Grabau could have altered the synodal church document of 1848, least of all in the way Krause described it in his written work, through complicated supplements; rather the matter consists as follows:

At the close of the synodal session of 1848 Pastor Grabau was commissioned by the synod to write a summary of the issues dealt with by the synod. There was a large number of documents, but the summary was small enough that it could be printed. Pastor Grabau also took on this task in order to serve the church of Christ; it is known to us that the task took an entire year to complete, whereby he applied all his physical and spiritual powers to this dry and difficult work along with his more than ample ministerial duties. When the work had been conscientiously completed, he delivered it to the pastors of the member congregations; these, in turn, set the work before the deputies of the congregations. The work was unanimously approved as correct and empowered with all their signatures. The signatures of Pastors von Rohr, Müller and Grabau were not the only ones there, as one might conclude from Krause's fanciful presentation of the facts; Krause himself attested to the correctness and affixed his signature. When the members of the synod and those of the ministry approved and signed the summary, Pastor Grabau was then commissioned to prepare it for printing. He did this, editing the copy for a few errors (which the ministerial brothers had pointed out) and inserting instructive citations from old, godly and righteous faith Lutheran theological writings, such as from Luther, Chemnitz, Joh. Gerhard, Abrah. Calov, Erdm. Neumeister, et al. which might further explain and clarify the work and show how old and true testaments of the church are sufficiently in agreement with the synod's verdict and how the teaching of the church is forever grounded in the word of God from its beginning unto Judgment Day.

The congregations as a whole and just about every individual member see the great usefulness of such citations and are happy to have them. Only Krause's worldly and hierarchical sensibilities are against them and create much trouble because of them and thus he wages battle against Christ the Lord, His church and its true teaching. He believes he has rightfully taken up Saul's spear in order to impale David to the wall, however he will fall and die on his own turmoil. Every righteous Christian sees how foolish it is to disparage the work itself and the citations because the verdicts and acknowledgements of the synod, as taken from the church documents, are not changed in the least and hold their value. However Mr. Krause is so blinded by his own supposed spiritual light that he simply doesn't know the difference between cabbages and turnips. However things are even worse, as we are forced to surmise, because the evil in his soul caused the writing of this arrogant, distended and deceitful little book, which was then published. If, as Krause maintains, Pastor Grabau had sinned so dreadfully by adding the notations here and there among the decisions of the synod,

then it follows that he would consider them false and contrary to the word of God. However the situation has been sufficiently illuminated to show how far this poor deluded man has fallen into shameful foolishness and dense darkness, and it appears he intends to continue in this state.

II. "I was forced to oppose it, etc." (Page 3 of the libelous little book)

This is the second untruth. Mr. Krause wasn't the least bit interested in this; he did this to avoid the scandal caused by the application of church discipline and divest himself from it. He had never said anything before about the altering of church documents; at the time he seemed to be completely satisfied with the summary. It was only after the true and brotherly warnings of Pastors Grabau and von Rohr, along with Pastor Lange, were delivered to him, his wife and step daughter that he became dissatisfied and took the trouble to disavow it. Now he could only take comfort by wallowing in his sins, for he knew of no other path than to ignore his sins and those of the family members, whom we had mentioned. Setting aside any attempt to seek forgiveness, a small roster of sins has ensued, among which may be listed the altering of synodal documents, which must have played a major role, and the charging of the aforementioned pastors in order to remove his own neck from the noose and shake off the yoke of Christ. You will never hear from him, "let the righteous man strike me, for it is a kindness such as balm for my head." His heart was hard and his neck was iron and he would remain unreachable. Any reasonable man, indeed most Christians, will recognize the correctness of what was said above by seeing what follows below.

III. "However Pastor Grabau declared and insisted that, etc."

To our knowledge Pastor Grabau has never sunken to declaring that as Senior Minister he has the right to alter a public church document approved and signed by the entire synod without the synod's approval. It is even less likely that Pastors von Rohr, Lange and Kindermann would go along with this practice. As one voice they have shown Pastor Krause that his allegation is unfounded and unprovable; as one voice they have warned him. When they were unable to come to a united Christian understanding, they deferred the decision to the assembled ministry or to the synod. In this Mr. Krause once again exhibits his ignoble and deceptive nature; he knows how to masterfully twist and turn an issue so that whoever is not acquainted with his methods and operations may believe that he is speaking the truth. However whoever knows at least a small portion of the issue, will and must form a different verdict while exercising his intellect and conscience.

4.) 'I alone was not heard, rather, etc."

This is just as untrue as the previous statement. With regard to this matter, Krause never introduced any proof grounded in the word of God, which our pastors could disavow as sin; they would have insisted that he acknowledge this. It is even less true that he, as he alleges,

was dutybound to tell the truth, that he insisted upon it and was therefore forced to experience their hostile verbal assaults and disfavor, which grew ever greater each day! We, the entire congregation, publically testify that they exercised forebearance and gentleness in their dealings with him and gave warning to him in secret, without informing their congregations. Above all else they attempted to hide the matter and straighten things out for as long as their consciences would permit them to do so as servants of the church.

Since Mr. Krause persists in his godless undertaking and becomes ever more public, it is quite understandable and appropriate to their office that they had to make him aware of his godlessness and give him warning to turn himself around through true repentance. It also follows that Mr. Krause is full of suspicion and mistrust, camouflaging and covering his own sins, spreading gossip and acting as though he has done nothing, drawing up counter-charges against others by which he creates "hostile verbal assaults and disfavor" out of well intended ministerial warnings.

5. "Pastors Grabau and von Rohr represent the ministry and the synod and they dominate both."

This evil statement is completely contrary to the truth. We attest that their counsel and opinions in the church and church matters have never been accepted as law without the consent of the entire ministry and the entire church synod and they have never attempted to intrude upon this process. However Pastor Krause has done so within his congregation. For example, the pulpit had to be placed in the small church where he indicated, in contradiction to the will of the church administrators and the entire congregation and no one would dare complain; it was the same with the sacristy - he alone had the right to decide on the setup in the church.

In similar matters when he was asked by the congregation to lend his advice in their meetings, he responded that he did not have to and he did not want to! Despite the wishes of the congregation he would not preach nor allow a sermon to be read on the third day of Pentacost! Thus it has been sufficiently shown that he, Mr. Krause, was capable of transferring the idea of a domineering representative of the ministry and synod. His own pride and desire for power had already reached this lofty summit. It is also untrue that he was persecuted out of hatred, for the church of God has no other weapon that the word of God, which affects anyone whom it touches, even Pastor Krause. If he wishes to call this hatred and persecution, then we will leave it to him to fight with Christ, Our Lord, who has commanded the pastor of His church to faithfully lead His flock, 2 Corinthians 10: 4, 5,8. St. Paul also diligently warns that a bishop shall uphold the word, Titus 1, 9 - 11. Ephesians 6, 13 and 17. Furthermore he is not merely suspected of being a disturber of the peace, rather through his own writings he has confirmed himself as one.

6.) "Which pure theological writings, etc." (Libelous Writing, page 4)

This is the most unpleasant, grossest, most dreadful and yet totally laughable lie. How could people believe that any man in possession of a conscience,

let alone a Christian, which Mr. Krause still believes he is, would allow himself to be so deluded by Satan as to unashamedly and without fear write down such lies in this world and thus bring to light his own devilish hatred for the Christian church. The evil of this man has reached its fullest potential and he does not think of the danger to his soul since he keeps his heart, his hand and his feather busy in order to perform his finest service for Satan. We affirm and testify that in the absence of a pastor scarcely any books of sermons other than those of Joh. Arnd and Heinr. Müller have been read by us and other congregations of our synod. Unfortunately we must do without the sermons of Lasenius because we do not have a copy of it; to the best of our knowledge the same is true in Buffalo since in 1840 their copies were burned in the church fire. There are a few private copies and much of the book is often read aloud.

We have never heard from our pastors that these books are suspected of pietistical sentiment, however we are well aware that they are truely recommended. It is unclear to us how Mr. Krause could have arrived at this shameful untruth.

7.) "Pastors Grabau and von Rohr reject every grounded proof." (ibid)

We do not know what grounded proofs Mr. Krause is referring to here. In his writing he talks about an error but doesn't name it, therefore we must declare it untruth along with the statement, "they place people under church discipline and ban them if they do not agree with their interpretation." We designate this with it's proper name, lie, and we do this because it does not agree with the facts, which are at hand. If he wishes to apply this statement to himself, then perhaps it would be better for him to provide further proof.

8.) They conduct secret investigations by pumping men and women for information (ibid, page 5)

No events of this kind are known to us nor are we aware that such a system has operated among us (even when Pastor von Rohr was our spiritual caregiver at an earlier time.) It is even less likely that information was pumped from men and women or that anyone wanted to extract testimony from them, which might lead to evidence of sin. We have learned that imprudent people, who might have forgotten the rule of Jesus Christ, "If your brother sins against you" and Matthew 18, have been warned and will continue to be warned to observe and comply with these rules. However, if there have been gross sins, which must be openly acknowledged and prayed for, then the sinner is free to do so in accordance with the word of God. In the 7 years we have been here, we have never heard that our pastors might want to discover anything through men and women informants within the congregation.

It is a shame that Mr. Krause could not cite one single event in which such an inquisition took place!

His reformation is off to a bad start and his thesis is muddled and ineffectual.

"They do not recognize the rights of housefathers and mothers, instead, etc." (ibid, page 5)

On this statement there is nothing to say except that it is a lie. To the best of our knowledge, our rights as housefathers have never been encroached upon. (Although there are supposedly many instances at hand,) Krause has failed to produce one right or circumstance. We have to believe it is out of ignorance. Any man, who has the use of his five senses, knows that this is ridiculous, that it must stem from hatred when someone puts such a thing into print but provides no proof. However Krause is not ashamed of his fictitious allegation of sinfulness against our pastors, even though he was a fellow brother in office to them for many years.

"They reveal the secrets entrusted to them in confession, etc." (ibid, page 5)

We have encountered no statement in Krause's prime piece of libel in which lies are not evident. It is also the case here. He makes an accusation for which there is no proof and he cannot produce one. Any reasonable Christian an decide how injust this is. We must testify that we may confidently unburden our hearts during confession and we have done so often without having heard that what was confessed was related by our confessors. However if they had told him something derived from the confessional, then it was his duty to punish them for it or place the notification here. The poor fool seems to have completely forgotten how disrespectfully he had dealt with confession, so we found if necessary to remind him. During his time in office here in Martinsville he often permitted members of his family to stay in the room where confessions were supposed to be heard because the room was warm and it was cold outside.

The penitents had to make their confessions in the presence of his family members; the penitents were loathe to do this and if they were overheard, it was not necessary for Krause himself to reveals the secrets entrusted to him since there were other people at hand to do so. We observed this practice for a long time without registering a complaint to him even though each individual was filled with fear and anxiety because of this obstinate and defiant man. How many sighs there were to heaven over this, God only knows. We finally found it necesary to register our concerns to him but they were not received in a friendly manner. Instead he acted as though he had suffered a great injustice. Each Lutheran Christian recognizes this blatant godlessness and says, "Who could still place trust in him?" Who would still offer his confession to him? Thus he was deprived of his holy office in accordance with the order of the Christian church. Instead of admitting his sins and repenting, he persisted in these grievous sins and cast them upon other true servants of Christ, believing that he had set everything straight.

Go on to pages 113 - 117

Copy of text provided by the A. R. Wentz Library, Lutheran Theological Seminary, Gettysburg, PA

Imaging and Translation by Susan Kriegbaum-Hanks