Post: Readers Respond

The Winter issue arrived yesterday and with it a reminder to indicate my devoted loyalty to Pietisten. So, enclosed is my check for your "Even Better" offer of two years.

I am not going to read the issue just now. Instead I will tuck it into my bag for reading on the long trip to Australia I'll be taking shortly. Your devoted reader and a copy of Pietisten will be attending the Seventh Assembly of the World Council of Churches in Canbena, Australia as the accredited visitor" of the Evangelical Covenant Church. This may be a first for Pietisten though not for pietists.

There have been Covenanters at every one of the previous six assemblies dating back to 1948 in Amsterdam. The President of the Covenant Church has always been present with others.

This is also an especially historic event in that Dr. Burton Nelson will accompany four North Park Theological Seminary students all of whom attend the sessions as well. The initiative for this effort came from the Covenant's Interchurch Relations Commission.

There is so much distrust and misinformation regarding the World Council that the participation of our students will be vital for the future in educating the Covenant Church about the mission we share with other Christians.

We Pietists can contribute a great deal to the WCC and to the many churches that make up the body of the WCC — and there is much to be learned from them as well.

By the way, the Winter issue "Out and About" column tells of Dr. Krister Stendahl's inaugaural lectures for the Gustafson Lectureship. Dr. Stendahl bas written a fine little book of reflections on the Seventh Assembly theme "Come. Holy Spirit — Renew the Whole Creation," entitled Energy for Life. It's published by the WCC in the Risk book series. Robert McNaughton, Cromwell, Connecticut.

This latest issue is one of your very best. I'm still amazed bow busy people like yourselves get it all put together. I'm now anticipating a bibliography on Pietism as Bryce Nelson requested. Best wishes for the New Year! Norbert Johnson, White Sear Lake, Minnesota.

I am filled with admiration at the great job you and your staff are doing. Pietisten fills a real need, with its basic wisdom and biblical orientation, together with an exuberant liberty that reflects Jesus' life and ministry. Sigurd Westberg, Chicago, Illinois.

I have become familiar with Pietisten through its availability at Covenant Bookstore, where I work. I enjoy it a great deal. It is a particularly valuable periodical, I think, as a forum for dialogue and criticism in the Covenant Church. On this score, Michael Hardin's piece on Larsen's The Mission of a Covenant (Summer, '90) is quite good. Hardin is absolutely correct in his distinctions between covenant and contract, acceptance and assurance, unilateral and bilateral. Keep up the conversation. Jonathan Sweeney, Chicago, Illinois.

I have appreciated most of the articles in Pietisten. The sermon "Seize the Day" by Arthur Mampel was of particular inspiration to me and just what I needed to begin the new year. Thanks to all of you who contribute to this publication. Evelyn Lindquist, Minneapolis. Minnesota.

Enclosed is my check for my nest year's Pietisten. The writers who contribute to Pietisten. it seems to me, like to use long words when a couple of words or a short sentence would explain their subject better, So you can six that as a layman. my dictionary and my Bilble still go hand in hand. Maybe this Dutchman should lead a movement for clarity rather than clouding or masking things with big words. Isaac Leyden, Haddam Neck. Connecticut.

Hej Pappa [Tommy], David, Peter, and Phil, Hur mår du? Pappa, didn't you realize that I have moved? Please send Pietisten to my new place. I really like it and I'm even getting Rick to read it. Thanks! Oh, by the way, George (of George's) wants to know when you're coming down for coffee.Kerstin Carlson, Chicago, Illinois.

Pietisten: Why are the Portland Trailblazers off to such a great start in the NBA this season? Is it because they have an ex-Celtic, Danny Ainge?

It's the great Pacific Northwest air - that's why the Blazers are so great! Thanks for your good work. Allan Johnson, Portland Oregon.

Enclosed is my check for another year's subscription to your fine publication. I have greatly enjoyed the past four issues. These I recently gave to the parents-in-law of my daughter, Carolyn Chilson Palmquist. The Wendell Palmquists are from Langor, Iowa Covenant Church. LaVonne Palmquist will undoubtedly share them, also, with her aunt, Mrs. Anna Roos, whose grandson, John Roos, is now with Covenant Bookstore and Covenant Publications. I complement you on the high quality of writing in your publication! Marian R. Chilson, Medina, Ohio.

Thank you for the copies of Pietisten you've sent me. I like it - please continue sending it - check enclosed. Paul Bergstrom, Cromwell, Connecticut.

Teheran: 7 Jan 91: Belated Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all. Let's hope that 1991 will bring lots of laughter. . . . Robert Thompson, Geneva and New York.

January 8, 1991: It was a treat to read Elder's [Lindahl] "Retirement Soliloquy" in your Fall issue. The man has always seemed so ageless that it's hard to conceive of his retirement.

"But then, I've aged," he writes, "And like old deans, we professors don't die, we just lose our faculties." Vintage Elder. Close to corn, but truly funny in a non-abrasive way. Without shock and without trickery he always seemed to make his point and he always made it clear. It's good to hear from him through your pages, and it's good to see he really hasn't retired.

In that same issue, Earl Schwartz quite rightly points out that socialism was not invented by Marx and Engels. True, and neither was communism. Neither of them ever made that claim. Engels wrote rather convincingly that most visions of socialism were mere utopianism and that not until Marx was there a scientific approach. What is foundering is not communism or socialism, but what is called by C.L.R. James, state-capitalism.

Even so, under the most oppressive Stalinist regimes of the Soviets and Eastern Europe, illiteracy was abolished and universal health care established. And while our armed might guarded against the Communist hordes, the best parts of socialism swept through Europe with high union membership. The union leadership has traditionally been teeming with Communists and fellow-travellers wherever they've been most effective.

February 4, 1991: Much has occurred since the beginning of this halting letter. Not the least of which I'll have to pay an extra 4 cents to mail it.

Obviously the Gulf war takes top billing. I was in a blue funk up until the actual opening attack even as I took in meetings and Mary and I attended the giant rally at Northrup Auditorium in opposition to this madness.

It's interesting to me that red-necked Princeton seems much more to be against this war than most of the people I've talked with in the Cities. The unemployment rate and low paying jobs of Princeton may have some bearing since our now "voluntary" armed forces are made up predominantly of the disadvantaged."Be all that you can be," you know.

True tragedy is when youth, full of hope, die needlessly. And who knows what terrible toll our "surgical strikes" at Baghdad are ringing up. Imagine eye surgery with a blow torch! Dennis Jones, Princeton, Minnesota.

Happy New Year! We thank God for you and the hard work and research each of you do and contribute — Tommy, David, Peter, and Phil. We look forward to each issue. Yes, we are happy to renew our subscription. Please accept this small contribution for stamps or as your work dictates. May you and yours always be blessed. Bob and Hazel Sloan, Minneapolis, Minnesota.