On late Friday afternoon, February 8, 2019, Matthew C. Harrison publicly admitted interfering in Synod’s Presidential nomination process.
To read President Harrison’s public admission on the LCMS website, CLICK HERE. (Note: To read it online, you have to click the words “A note from President Harrison + .” Otherwise it is hidden.)
What did Harrison do wrong?
President Harrison tainted Synod’s nomination process by giving wrong advice to pastors about who could nominate him, and he did so at Synod expense.
- Harrison sent postcards to pastors he hoped would nominate him. He added handwritten notes such as “Important Bro!”
- Harrison advised his pastor friends that Boards of Elders or Church Councils could nominate him for Synod President if their constitutions were silent on the issue of nominations. That’s wrong, unconstitutional advice.
Several pastors who received his postcards with “confusing” advice under the address of the International Center and the Synod’s postage meter stamp, immediately knew something wasn’t right. CLICK HERE to read more about the postcards Harrison wrote which caused this confusion and offense.
For What SHOULD Harrison Have Apologized?
Here are links to three sample postcards: Postcard 1; Postcard 2; Postcard 3.
President Harrison sent his postcards in early January — right before the time when many congregations fill out their official nomination forms and mail them in.
Harrison tainted his nomination count because the pastors who got his postcard were potentially misled by their Synod President’s improper and confusing advice.
And President Harrison did so by ignoring the Bylaws of Synod he promised to uphold.
Bylaw 126.96.36.199 Every board or commission member, officer, and all staff of corporate Synod and every agency of the Synod shall be sensitive in their activities to taking or giving offense, giving the appearance of impropriety, causing confusion in the Synod, or creating potential liability. [Emphasis added]
In light of his PUBLIC ADMISSION and the facts, how may all of Harrison’s nominations be viewed as valid?
This is a Mess
Secretary Sias’ stewardship of our Synod’s nominating process has been compromised by his own boss.
He has his own bylaws to follow:
3.12.2 (b) The Secretary of the Synod shall provide a secure and verifiable method that will offer opportunity to every congregation of the Synod to submit nominations. He shall, with the approval of the Board of Directors of the Synod, obtain the assistance necessary to accomplish this task. [Emphasis added]
With what President Harrison admits he has done and the confusion he has caused, how can Secretary Sias report a valid count of congregations who constitutionally nominated Harrison?
Integrity once lost can seldom be recovered.
Secretary Sias, Board of Directors – what will you do? It’s your job to fix this!
Congregations … and the integrity of our nominations process … matter!