Hope for Lutheran Historical Institute

One of the items that snuck under everyone’s radar in the District’s insolvency was the archive. During the District convention in May, delegates voted to offer the archive to the Synod. The funny thing about that is District didn’t know that the archive – formally called the Lutheran Historical Institute (LHI) – actually was part of District, as opposed to a separate entity.

The archive has languished in the collective ignorance of most Canadian Lutherans because…I don’t know why…probably it just didn’t seem important. But now the archive, which contains tens of thousands of pages of documentation, may hold clues as to the root cause of the insolvency. Unfortunately, for now, LHI is shuttered. It ran out of money and stopped operating.

Archives are big unwieldly things. They contain documents, artifacts, and all kinds of awkward stuff…like the first TTY (text to speech for the hearing impaired) machines in Canada. Yes. The first deaf people able to use phones in Canada were Lutherans. Who knew? The archive knew. The archive is currently housed in the up-for-sale District office building. The proposed plan (not the archive’s idea) plan is to interim mothball the entire archive in a storage locker somewhere.

Now, there may be new hope and a possible home for LHI. Synod is willing to take ownership of the archive, if it’s legally allowed to. So now, we wait: there’s lawyerin’ to be done.

Full story: http://www.canadianlutheran.ca/lcc-indicates-willingness-to-receive-the-lutheran-historical-institute/

27 thoughts on “Hope for Lutheran Historical Institute

  1. Walter

    I’m sure district did a lot of things that were not on the up and up. The district treated the depositors money as if it was their own. I have a great difficulty believing this is a Christian organization. It became a very sleezy organization. People in the meetings and treasurers knew of the problems and yet no one came forth. I believe our DP knew of problems and said nothing because he didn’t have (A VOTE) . He knew and now we are stuck with a district that cannot be effective

    • S

      Did our DP never have a vote? The Kellen affidavit speaks to the overlap in roles between Encharis, EMSS and the District BOD but I’m really not sure what this means in terms of him voting. I am hoping a member of the Task Force will have more information that clarifies his roles and responsibilities. According to the affidavit, Rev Schiemann was not only DP but also President of DIL, VP, Director and Member of Encharis and EMSS, Vice Chairman of EMSS (according to CRA) and he acted as Executive Assistant for Outreach for a period of vacancy. His position around 1994 (according to history books) was Executive Assistant Mission Services.

  2. Very concerned

    This is something that could be checked . . . District bought securities in 1993 . . . spent a million dollars for West Coast Fisheries receivables at ten cents on the dollar . . . lost it all? Is this correct info? If this is correct, assume that funds were from CEF. Did District purchase other securities?

  3. Rudy

    And as far as this historical institute is concerned, I’m not too worried. It will be all that is left of this church in another twenty years.

  4. Rudy

    My post dealt with why no one is asking the leadership about the Gimbel sermon from May, in which the head of the LCC seminary blamed the CEF depositors, along with the rest of the church members, for the CEF fiasco.

    • Sharon

      Is a copy of Gimbel’s sermon available?

      • Puddleglum

        See Andreas’ SG post on May 13 titled “Pfingsten Predict”. Click on the “download a PDF ” link at the end of the post. You’ll find Gimbel’s sermon in the last 5 1/2 pages of the PDF document.

        Based on my experience it is a sermon that needs to be read through several times as you will find something of significance on each passage. Here are a couple of direct quotes:

        “To what degree does some blame fall upon all depositors who didn’t pay attention to warning signs in circulars and financial reports along the way?”

        “Rather than pointing fingers of blame at one or a few “guilty parties,” in a representative governance model, all stakeholders (all members of the ABC District) share part of the blame.”

        • Rudy

          These circulars and “financial reports” if you can call them that were never distributed to the depositors. Furthermore, if it was that obvious, then how much more blame belongs with the people who were in charge, and yet continued to accept new funds, AND loan out more moneys (our church had an approved loan of $4Million which was we were about to draw on in November of 2014!)

          • Rudy

            And so I guess I return to my original question: Why was the “More on Meetings” thread so mysteriously deleted? Anyone?

          • ANO
          • Rudy

            Yes. It shows as not found.

          • Annoyed

            I tried clicking on that thread as well. It showed up as not found.

          • Rudy

            So Andreas, can you enlighten us as to your motivations?

          • The post is still there. Try flushing your browser cache.

          • ANO

            The thread is back now.

          • Rev. Robert Clifford

            And why was the link to the cefinvestorsforum deleted?

          • I removed the link to the CEF forums because the host operator of the site is anonymous. That’s apart from some of the remarkably suspect claims and bad behavior on it as well. Nothing nefarious, we just have no reason to trust the site.

          • Reepicheep

            Andreas, can you provide us with some examples of “remarkably suspect claims” from the CEF forum?

          • Rudy

            “remarkably suspect claims and bad behavior…” hmm… could it be that this “anonymous operator” is actually someone from LCC? lol

          • Reepicheep

            Rudy: if your comment about “this anonymous operator” is directed at me, then yes, I am a member of LCC.

          • Rudy

            Hi Reepicheep,
            I was certainly not referring to you. Just the elected members in positions of trust in this organization

          • Puddleglum

            The affidavit sworn by Kurt Robinson on January 22, 2015 in connection with the District’s initial application for protection under CCAA made no mention of any such “warning signs”. According to the affidavit the first communication to the depositors was the letter from the District dated January 5, 2015 (paragraph 103, page 23 of the affidavit).

            In fact the preceding paragraph of the affidavit (paragraph 102) states the District had an extremely compelling motive for not divulging the CEF’s cash flow problems:

            “The Lutheran community is very tight. The Applicants were and are extremely concerned that once word got out that the CEF cash flow will be dried up that there would be a “run on the bank” with investors of CEF and DIL requesting their deposits to be redeemed and their accounts to be closed. CEF will not have sufficient funds to pay back all the redemption requests, and DIL does not have sufficient liquid funds to do so.”

            So on the one hand we have the assertion made in the sermon prepared for Pentecost Sunday that “some blame” fell upon “all depositors who didn’t pay attention to warning signs”. On the other hand we have a sworn affidavit from an officer of the District stating they were “extremely concerned” there would be a “run on the bank” once word got out about the CEF’s cash flow problems.

            Take a moment for a “face palm” à la Captain Jean-Luc Picard. 🙂

  5. Rudy

    So does anyone know what happened to the thread “More on Meetings”? I posted on it just two days ago, and yet it has mysteriously disappeared…. Hmmm….

  6. ANO

    There’s also the question of Synod understanding what it is they’re accepting, and making the commitment to have experienced professionals operate it and avoid LHI turn into another slow-motion disaster.

    • Guest Z.1

      The last LHI Director was/is an experienced professional. He was hobbled by an incompetent, inept board to the point of total distraction. There is no money, will or leadership from any direction now, so this too, indeed, will become another disaster.

  7. Empty Pockets

    If synod can take ownership archives they better be prepared to take on all cef and dil depositors. This will be interesting.

    • S

      It doesn’t sound like Synod intends to do a “take over” but will look after these, if permitted to do so. (District, on the other hand, gifted them to Synod without acknowledgement that they are not theirs to gift so that was wrong.) Technically, they belong to the depositors but realistically their value is worth far more to our congregations who unfortunately haven’t treated them this way (whom are also being hurt in all of this) than they are of any realizable monetary benefit to depositors. I truly have no idea of their worth and am just speculating. Maybe they would cost more to depositors to move and sell or relinquish in other ways and Synod is alleviating this responsibility? Perhaps this will be another item to put before the two committees but one might wonder if it’s worth paying a lot of additional lawyer fees for (perhaps Synod wants to cover the bill for that).

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