NAHA Header

NAHA Logo

Report of the Annual Meeting of the Haugean Churches Held at Lisbon, Illinois, in June, 1854
Translated and edited by J. Magnus Rohne (Volume IV: Page 15)

INTRODUCTION

It is an axiom in history that an historian must have sources. Of late certain agencies, among them the Norwegian-American Historical Association, have been actively engaged in bringing to light new sources and in making older sources more accessible. These two phases of the work are really two sides of the same shield, with the preponderance of importance verging first to one side, then to the other. The reprint and translation of the Report of 1854, herewith offered, is in part a recovery or re-discovery of a relatively rare document. Though the existence of this little book has been known among a small group of former Hauge's Synod men, the present reprint and translation have been made in order to give this important document the wider circulation that it deserves.

That there is a real demand for just this document can be proved by the writer's personal experience; others have perhaps felt the need just as keenly. In a recent article the writer called attention to the deplorable lack of source material relating to the early history of Hauge's Synod. {1} N. N. R¿nning in his history of Red Wing Seminary {2} refers to a meeting at Lisbon, Illinois, in 1854; but an article by P. A. Rasmussen in Der Lutheraner, October 23, 1855, contradicts Mr. R¿nning's statement in regard to the date of the founding of the school which that convention is supposed to have established. {3} This leaves the historian in a quandary. Where did Mr. R¿nning procure his information? If such a meeting was actually held, is there a report of it in existence? When Rasmussen began to publish his Kirkelig Tidende in 1856 he immediately printed a full report of the meeting of Eielsen's group in 1855; but there is no reference to a meeting in 1854.

In his perplexity the writer took the matter up with his good friend and colleague, Professor K. O. Eittreim of the Luther College faculty. Professor Eittreim stoutly maintained that there was a Report for 1854, --- in fact he declared that he possessed a copy, which he would in due time recover, once he had a chance to unpack his books in his new home. There the matter rested until one day Professor Eittreim walked into the writer's office with a book in his hand and a smile on his face: he had found the lost Report of 1854!

Professor Eittreim has kindly permitted the old though well-preserved copy to go through the wear and tear incident to a translation, and the writer is trying to make it accessible to larger circles by the reprint and the translation which is herewith published. Incidentally it may be added that Professor Eittreim has also recovered a copy of the Report of 1855, which, it is hoped, will in due time be made available in an English version by the agency of this Association.

Like every other piece of literature, this pamphlet must be judged, as the theologians would say, in the light of its context, that is, in the light of other literature in the same field. The fact that there is so very little of this related literature enhances the value of the book immensely. Elling Eielson cared little for the "fussy" protocols and minutes so dear to the "educated" clergyman. He is reported to have said on one occasion: "I have nowhere read that Christ kept a protocol when he traveled about and conducted meetings for the people. {4} Because of this attitude, no record was kept of the most significant church meeting that has ever been held among the Norwegian Lutherans in America: Eielsen's meeting in 1846 when he organized the first Norwegian Lutheran Synod in this new land. Not a word directly! All we have is a short letter of 1848 with a vague and indefinite reference to the momentous transactions of 1846 --- Ole Andrewsen's letter of 1848 --- then silence! Now that great silence, which virtually stretches from Eielsen's arrival in America in 1839 until the meeting at Lisbon, Illinois, in 1854, is officially terminated by the reappearance of this Report of 1854. May there be some one among the readers of these lines who can devise means of breaking that silence in many other ways!

With the information contained in this Report and with the help of P. A. Rasmussen's Kirkelig Tidende (1856-1862), {5} the historian will be able to piece together a fairly complete record of church developments in Haugean circles in the fifties. Unfortunately very little in the way of official documents stating Eielsen's side of any question has survived or has ever existed. The historian, therefore, has to face the necessity of conjecturing what Eielsen's position may have been. Anyone can appreciate the dangers lurking in this situation not only to Eielsen and his opponents but more especially to the historian who is to conjure a statement of Eielsen's views out of stark silence, while at the same time his opponents were distinctly vocal. The recovery of this Report is, therefore, a matter that should be of real interest in all Norwegian-American circles.

The Report is a pamphlet of twelve pages, seven of which are devoted to the Lisbon meeting, and three to a personal admonition by the Reverend P. A. Rasmussen; of the other two, one is the title page, the other a blank. In spite of its diminutive size, the document contains a great deal of information. At the outset we are told that E. Eielsen was elected chairman of the meeting and P. A. Rasmussen secretary. This raises at once the question as to how and when officers were elected in Eielsen's group: were they elected annually like the moderators of the Presbyterian church, and what were their duties aside from their functions at the meetings, which from this time on were held somewhat regularly?

There was a lengthy discussion of the need of pastors; particularly in Iowa, seeing that the people in those parts "could not be satisfied with the pastors who were available, on account of greater or lesser deviations from the pure Lutheran doctrine." These early Haugeans express genuine concern for the preservation of the "pure, sound doctrine." This has its historic interest, as it was the Norwegian Synod which later had to bear some odium for being too much concerned about the "pure doctrine." One also wonders who the pastors were who deviated from the "pure Lutheran doctrine." Several possibilities suggest themselves. If the pastor or pastors in question were Lutheran, the most likely possibility is C. L. Clausen, as his field of labor radiated from St. Ansgar, Iowa, through north and central Iowa and southern Minnesota, where these Ellingians were settling in large numbers. If Clausen ever made any approaches to the members of Eielsen's group, he was sure to be rebuffed, as Eielsen had roundly denounced him as a Grundtvigian errorist. Another possibility is Nils Brandt, whose work was largely restricted to eastern Iowa, where there also were a few Haugeans, but it seems that Elling Eielsen at least on one occasion approved of Reverend Nils Brandt's preaching. {5a} Both these pastors began their labors in Iowa in 1851. Somewhat too late to draw the fire of the Ellingian group is V. Koren, who arrived at Washington Prairie, near Decorah, Iowa, on December 23, 1853. He could hardly have made any impression one way or the other by June, 1854. One guess is as good as another, of course; but it is quite evident that the Haugeans of Eielsen's group were not satisfied with the pastors then available in Iowa.

The Report also throws light on the strange case of the Reverend H. L. Thalberg, who has denied that the Eielsen group was instrumental in inducing him to come to America. {6} Certainly efforts were made by the convention of 1854 to persuade Thalberg to come to America, though these efforts may not have been altogether the deciding influence in Thalberg's mind.

The moment of greatest historic interest at the convention was when Elling Eielsen arose to move that a seminary be established. {7} This school was indeed established at Lisbon," Illinois; but it survived only long enough to get a place in history as the first educational venture of its kind among Norwegians in America. {8

Another point of great historic interest is P. A. Rasmussen's persistent work for the purchase of a printing press; his last word in the matter was that he hoped that there would be enough money for his project even after the synod had bought the property for the seminary. Rasmussen did receive his press and with it published some books, including Johan Arndt's True Christianity, and a paper called Kirkelig Tidende. This paper, evidently patterned after Olaus Nielsen's paper by the same name published at Fredrikshald, Norway, appeared from 1856 to 1862.

Rasmussen's attack on Eielsen's "Old Constitution" is also of great historic interest. This is apparently the first of a long series of such attacks. Though Eielsen seemingly acquiesced in all that was urged against his beloved Constitution, he hesitated at the last moment in 1856, as he did later, in 1875, and thereby caused a breach in the brotherhood. Rasmussen and Eielsen parted company in 1856, largely because of the warfare that Rasmussen was conducting in his Kirkelig Tidende against Eielsen's Old Constitution. The split also brought on the collapse of the Lisbon school, after it had been in operation for less than a year.

Eielsen suffered many schisms in his church; the most serious were that of 1848, when Ole Andrewsen, Paul Anderson, and O. J. Hatlestad left him; that of 1856, when Rasmussen and Thalberg left him, taking the Lisbon church and other important congregations with them; and that of 1875, when the organizers of the Hauge's Synod left him. Eielsen's strength lay in his personal work; as an organizer and a churchman he was markedly deficient. Somehow, the intricacies of motions and protocols and church machinery bewildered him. For instance in 1875 he agreed to changes in the Old Constitution and yet proceeded to organize a small group on the basis of the unrevised Old Constitution, by which act he severed his connection with Hauge's Synod. He did essentially the same thing in 1856, though we read in the Report of 1854 that he agreed to the changes and was willing to serve on a committee which should prepare the changes. In explanation of his strange action in 1875 it has been charitably said that: "By this time Eielsen was growing old and did not seem to realize the import of all that was taking place. {9} But what shall the historian who wishes to be just as well as charitable say in explanation of his very similar action of 1854 to 1856? Can it be true that Eielsen was bewildered by these larger meetings so that he, in 1854 and 1856, "did not seem to realize the import of all that was taking place"? In 1856 he was at any rate in the very prime of life. This is no reflection on Eielsen; he made no pretense at being anything more than a personal evangelist. In his own words, he "puttered in a small way" {10} with the Gospel. Eielsen was a remarkable man: remarkable in his wonderful strength, persistence, personal magnetism, and consecration to Christ; remarkable also in his many idiosyncrasies and shortcomings. {11

Peter Andreas Rasmussen, more commonly known as P. A. Rasmussen, came to America in 1850 at the age of twenty-one. Having had a fair common school education in Norway, Rasmussen planned to become a teacher in America. He perhaps intended to join the Norwegian Synod group, but by accident met Eielsen and joined him. He secured a position as teacher at Lisbon, Illinois, in 1851, and gave such satisfaction that the people there (in 1853) urged him to become their pastor. In order to prepare himself for this holy calling, he went to Fort Wayne, Indiana, where Dr. Wm. Sihler was conducting a so-called "practical" theological seminary for men whose education did not qualify them for studying the Scriptures in the original languages. After a year at Fort Wayne, Rasmussen was ordained (in 1854) in time evidently to return to Lisbon for the meeting in June. Rasmussen left Eielsen in 1856, and remained outside of all synodical connections until 1862, when, together with the Reverend Nils Amlund and the Reverend John W. Field, he joined the Norwegian Synod. In 1887 he left the Norwegian Synod and in 1890 participated in the formation of the United Norwegian Lutheran Church. In 1855 and 1856 he served as president of the Lisbon school. From 1856 to 1862 he published the Kirkelig Tidende. To utilize his press still further he organized the "Lisbon Norwegian Lutheran Association for the Publication of Christian Books of Instruction and Edification." Through his efforts were published such books as Johan Arndt's True Christianity, The Book of Concord, and other books of devotion and edification, all in the Norwegian language.

Rasmussen was an energetic, capable, and resourceful man. Indeed, Bothne says of him that with his extraordinary natural gifts -- he could have become a Norwegian bishop had he remained in Norway and had he received the proper training. {12} On the other hand, his many transfers from one synod to another do not testify to a high degree of constancy or tractability. Nevertheless, Rasmussen must be counted as one of that race of giants who trod the Middle Western plains in the early days of Norwegian immigration. {13

As noted above, the printed copy of the Report carries a brief sermon from Rasmussen's pen. Since this is probably Rasmussen's first published sermon it has a certain historic interest; it is, however, not an integral part of the proceedings of the convention and has therefore not been included in this reprint.

The reader will no doubt notice that the proofs of the original had not been carefully read and corrected; but inasmuch as the student of history always prefers an exact copy, the misprints and other awkward expressions have been retained. It is quite possible that these are due to the fact that the printer's work was done in St. Louis in what seems to have been a German shop.

[TEXT OF THE REPORT]

Fredagen den 16de og L¿verdagen den 17de Juni ankom de til det ved Lisbon i Kendall Co. Illinois berammede Aarsm¿de valgte Deputerede fra Chicago og fra forskjellige Menigheder i Wisconsin og Illinois, og bleve der kj¾rligen og broderligen modtagne, og indlogerede hos de forskjellige Br¿dre af Menigheden.--- S¿ndag, som var Trinitafis S¿ndag, samledes en betydelig M¾ngde Mennesker i den nys opbyggede Kirke, hvor Menighedens Pr¾st P. A. Rasmussen pr¾dikede over Dagens Evangelium, og der-efter forrettede den hellige Nadveres Uddelelse. --- Eftermiddagen pr¾dikede E. Eielsen fra Wisconsin over Johannes's I Epistel 3 Cap.

Mandag den 19de Juni samledes atter i Kirken saavel de Deputerede, som ellers mange andre Br¿dre og S¿stre, som ¿nskede at bevaane M¿dets Forhandlinger. Og aabnedes M¿det med Afsyngelsen af en Psalme, og m¿d B¿n om Herrens naadige Bistand og hans Helligaands Underst¿ttelse, Oplysning og Vei-ledning til Dagens Forretninger. --- Deferrer skredes da til Forhandlingerne.

F¿rst blev gjordt opm¾rksom paa at v¾lge en Ordf¿rer og en Sekretair. Og valgtes da eenstemmig E. Eielsen til Ordf¿rer og P. A. Rasmussen til Sekretair.

E. Eielsen foreslog nu til Overveielse, hvorledes den alt mere og mere voxende Trang i de forskjellige Menigheder i Illinois, Wisconsin, og Iowa for Ordets ordentlige Tjenere bedst kunde afhj¾lpes, og fremlagde tillige en Skrivelse fra Iowa, hvorfra ingen Deputerede vare komne, som indeholdt den indst¾ndigste Begj¾ring om at erholde en aandelig oplyst Prest, som og maatte v¾re bef¾stet i den rene, sunde L¾re, da Flere der for deres Samvittigheds Skyld ei kunde lade sig tilfredsstille med de Pr¾ster, som der vare formedelst deres st¿rre og mindre Afvigelser fra den rene lutherske L¾re. --- Alle indsaae Vigtigheden af denne Gjenstands alvorlige Overveielse, da Trangen til retskafne og den sunde L¾re f¿rende Ordets Tjenere mere og mere fra mange Kanter begynder lydeligen at yttre sig; men om Maaden, hvorpaa denne Trang saa snart sore muligt kunde blive afhjulpen, derom rare Meningerne forskjellige, --- Gudmund Strand fra Koskonong meente, at man til Afhj¾lpelsen af den forhaandev¾rende Trang burde tage Personer af et christeligt Sind og af et sundt Begreb i L¾ren, om de end ei rare i Besid-delse af den Uddannelse, som man ellers kunde ¿nske og ansee som n¿dvendig, hvilken Anskuelse ogsaa Flere bifaldt. Han toreslog da at v¾lge en christeligsindet Mand Torbj¿rn Tjentland af Wisconsin, men som dog ei selv var n¾rv¾rende paa M¿det, til Priest. Dette Forslag antoges af Nogle, men afsloges atter af Andre paa Grund af de Flestes Ubekjendtskab med ham, samt ogsaa paa Grund af hans fremrykkende Alder og store Familie, der kunde blive ham hinderlig til Udf¿relsen af de Pligter, som da vilde komme at hvile paa ham. Da Meningerne vedbleve at v¾re forskjellige herom, udsadtes samme Forslags Afgj¿relse indtil Eftermiddagen, for imidlertid at kunne n¾rmere overveie samme.

P. A. Rasmussen foreslog at kalde Candidat i Theologien Thalberg i Norge igjennem O. Nielsen i Fredrikshaldt til at komme herover, og som Pr¾st at virke iblandt vore Landsm¾nd her, da der var indl¿ben Underretning om samme Cand. Thalberg, at han skulde ei alene v¾re af et christeligt Sind, men ogsaa have rene og sunde Begreber i L¾ren. Dette Forslag antoges eenstemmig.

Ligesaa foreslog P. A. Rasmussen at skrive til Olaus Nielsen, og paa det Indst¾ndigste opfordre ham til at gj¿re al mulig Flid, at bev¾ge saadanne unge Mennesker, der maatte v¾re i Besiddelse af de n¿dvendige L¾re-Evner, og dertil v¾re f¿rte til en sand levende Christendoms ¯velse, at komme herover, for efter en passende Uddannelse red et christeligt Seminar at indtr¾de i samme Stilling som Ordets Tjenere i de Menigheder, sore maatte retteligen kalde dem hertil. Ogsaa dette Forslag antoges eenstemmig af alle Deputerede.

Ordf¿reren foreslog nu Oprettelsen af et Seminar til Uddannelse af unge begavede Mennesker af et christeligt Sind til Skolel¾rere, saavel som til Pr¾ster, hvor der kunde erholdes Underviisning i de meest n¿dvendige Kundskaber, som udfordres til samme Embeders rette Forvaltning. P. A. Rasmussen under-stottede samme Forslag, og ledsagede det med en Henviisning til de Fag, hvori fornemmelig burde gives Underviisning, nemlig: Reen og tydelig L¾sning, grundig Kjendskab til Stavereglerne, Regning, Skrivning, Retskrivning, norsk Grammatik, det tydske og engelske Sprog, Sang, Bibelhistorie, Kirkehistorie, Dogmatik eller Troesl¾ren, grundig Kjendskab til de symboliske B¿ger: Den uforandrede augsburgske Confession, dens Apologie, de Smalkaldiske Artikle, Luthers st¿rre og mindre Catekismus, samt "Formula Concordiae", Symbolik, Pastorale, Bibelforklaring, ¯velse i Catechisation m. m. --- Alle indsaae N¿dvendigheden af en saadan L¾reanstalts Oprettelse i vor egen Midte til Opholdelse af den rene, sunde L¾re her i dette Land, hvorfor ogsaa samme Forslag eenstemmig antoges.

E. Eielsen fremlagde nu det Sp¿rgsmaal, hvor der for samme Seminarium meest passende Sted vilde va¾re? Selv foreslog han Oprettelsen heraf ved Lisbon, og tiltraadte strax flere af de Deputerede, sore Gudmund Strand, Torger Olsen Ryg med Flere denne Mening. Nogle fra Wisconsin yttrede dog, at de ansaae Lisbon, som for langt bortliggende fra de andre Settlementer i Wisconsin, saerdeles da de ansaae Iowa, sore der Sted, hvor de fleste Nykommere herefter vil drage hen, hvorfor de da foreslog et Sted i Wisconsin for samme Seminars Oprettelse. P. A. Rasanmussen mente, at naar blot Oprettelsen heraf blev i en af yore egne Menigheders Midte, saa vilde det ei gj¿re noget til Sagen, om det var saa langt fjernet fra Menighederne i Wisconsin, som Lisbon er, da der ei vilde blive en Skole for almindelige B¿rn overhovedet, men kuns for dcm, sore skulde uddannes til vordende Skolelaerere og Pr¾ster, og som ei vilde v¾re n¿dsaget til at gj¿re oftere Reiser frem og tilbage, men som kunde blive der, indtil de yarc f¾rdige at indgaae som Arbeidere i de Menigheder, sore maatte kalde dem dertil. Tillige fremh¾vede han ogsaa, at en saadant Seminar maatte fornemmelig blive opholdt red frivillige Gaver af Levnetsmidler, som der i Menigheden red Lisbon lettere end i andre enkelte af vore Menigheder i Wisconsin vilde kunde tilveiebrindges. Det antoges da eenstemmig, at red Lisbon vilde v¾re det mest beqvemme Steal for Oprettelsen M samme Seminarium. Da det nu var Middag h¾vedes M¿det for denne Formiddag.

EFTERMIDDAG KL. 2.

Forslaget om Valget paa Torbj¿rn Tjentland til Priest optoges paany af Ordf¿reren. Da det imidlertid befandtes, at de Fleste endnu vare for meget ubekjendt med ham til at kunne argive Stemme heri, saa besluttedes endnu at henstille dette Valg, hvor-imod man enedes om, at v¾lge ham (Torbj. Tjentland) til at reise omkring i de forskjellige norske Settlementer at holde Opbug-gelses-Forsamlinger, hvorved Menighederne vilde blive bedre bekjendt med ham. Skulde da til n¾ste Aar Faae eller Ingen komme herover fra Norge efter den fra vort Samfund udgaaede Kaldelse, saa at N¿den og Trangen til Ordets Tjenere vilde komme at blive lige stor, da vilde han til n¾ste Aar, om han ellers maatte blive funden dygtig dertil, og en christelig Meniganhed maatte komme til at tilstille ham ordentlig Kaldelse, kunde blive ordineret til det hellige Pr¾dike-Embede, uden at indgaae paa noget Pr¿veaar, som ellers if¿lge vor Constitution udfordres.

I Henseende til det forhen gjordte Forslag om et Seminars Oprettelse ved Lisbon blev nu af Ordf¿reren videre fremdraget, hvorlades det ogsaa snarest muligt kunde s¾ttes i virkelig Udo f¿relse hermed, og besluttedes efter en kort Overveielse heraf, at Subskriptions-Planer strax skulde omsendes i alle de til vort Samfund h¿rende Menigheder, for at indsamle et saa stort Subskriptions-Bel¿b sore muligt, hvormed man kunde begynde Opf¿relsen af en til samme Skole passende Bygning, samt til Indkj¿belsen af et Stykke Land, der skulde vedf¿ies Seminariet, sore dets Eiendom. Dette Subskribtions-Bel¿b skulde v¾re at udbetales i tre Terminer: Den f¿rste til October Maaned dette Aar, den anden til i Mai 1855, den tredie til October 1855.

P. A. Rasmussen fremdrog nu et tydsk Skrift af Dr. Rudel-bach "Om Sakrament-Ordene ", og foreslog Opl¾selsen af nogle Capitler i samme Skrift, handlende om "Forsagelsen ved Daaben, dens Begmndelse i den hellege Skrift og i Daabens ganske ¯konomie, om de kirkelige Vidnesbyrd for Forsagelsen, dens oprindelige Form, og det Faststaaende og Uforanderlige derved" m. m. --- Da dette befaldtes, blev da en grundig Fremstillelse af visse Artikle opl¾ste, der stillede denne Sag i det klareste Lys, og tjente til megen Bestyrkelse for alle de forenede Venner som vel alle havde hidtil med Varme forsvaret samme L¾re-Artikles Bibeholdelse, som grundede i Guds Ord og overeensstemmende med Christendommens Fordringer, men dog uden hidtil at have h¿rt eller lest en saa grundig Fremstillelse deraf. --- Derefter gik han over at opl¾se en Artikel af "Formula Concordia" om den hellige Nadvere, da saavel L¾ren herom, som L¾ren om Daaben her i Landet meget anf¾gtes og forvendes af de forskjellige Parantier og Sekter. Under Forel¾sningen heraf vare Alle i den, st¿rste Opm¾rksomhed, og bleve meget bestyrkende red den grundige, n¾sten i intet andet Skrift saa rene, tydelige og paa den hellige Skrift sig grundende Fremstillelse af denne Gjenstand, som det i dette Skrift findes. --- Efter Forel¾sningen heraf bem¾rkede Forel¾seren nogle Ord om de symboliske B¿gers Opstaaen og Foranledigelsen til samme, samt deres Vigtighed for os her i dette Sekternes Land, --- fremh¾vede den store Naade, som Gud ogsaa hat beviist os her i dette fra vort christelige Hjem saa langt bortliggende Land, at han hat betroet os sit Sandheds Ord, og bevaret ogsaa for os den rene, sunde L¾re, saaledes som den af de af Guds Aand selv udvalgte og oplyste hellige F¾dre blev bragt for Lyset, --- formanede til at erkjende samme Naade med skyldig Taknemmelighed og at blive faste red samme dyrebare L¾re, --- samt paapegede den Skam og Skj¾ndsel, som vil blive alle dem til Deel, der frafalde den rene Sandhed og handle som Forr¾dere imod den lutherske Kirke, naar de paa hiin den store Dag, da Herren atter vil komme igjen, skal see den store Skate af Sandheds Vidner, som have her i Tiden aflagt den gode Bekjendelse og stredet for Sandhedens Sag skinne som Solen, men selv staae br¾ndem¾rkede i deres egen Samvittighed som Afvegne og Frafaldne. --- Deferrer sluttedes denne Dags For-retninger med Afsyngelsen af en Psalme og med B¿n og Taksigelse for Herrens i denne Dag beviste Naade.

Tirsdag Formiddag samledes man atter, og aabnedes Forhandlingerne meal Sang og B¿n. Skolel¾rer G. Petersen fra Akers Sogn ved Christiania, just ankommen hertil fra Norge, hvor han i en R¾kke af 9 Aar havde v¾ret beskj¾ftiget meal Skole-Underviisning og tilbydende sin Tjeneste iblandt os sore Skolel¾rer, valgtes ogsaa eenstemmig derfil af alle de Deputerede. Vel stemte man for Chicago, som der nu for Tiden for norsk Skole meest tr¾ngende Sted; men paa Grund af den indtr¾dende Hede, som og paa Grund af den der allerede begyndte Cholera, ansaae man der meest beqvemt, at Petersen begyndte Skolen i Lisbon, hvortil han ogsaa var villig. Hans L¿n bestemtes til 12 Doll. maanedlig.

P. A. Rasmussen foreslog J. Johnsens "Christelig Psalmebog" at blive indf¿rt, som almindelig Kirkebog i vort Samfund, da han syntes at finde i den en st¿rre Samling af de meest kjaernefulde, aandrige og grundige Psalmer, end i nogen anden Psalmesamling. Vel h¿rtes en Stemme at yttre Frygt for en saadan Forandring af Psalmebog, idet den meente, at man veal saadanne Ombytninger fra der Gamle til noget Nyere ei vilde v¾re synderlig bedre tjent. Men da Flere godtgjorde, at dette ei her kunde v¾re Tilf¾lde, da denne her ¿nskede For¾ndring mere maatte kunde ansees som en Tilbagegang fra noget Nyere til der Gamle, --- da der videre blev gjordt opm¾rksom paa, at i samme Psalmebog ogsaa er indf¿rt de bedste og de fleste af Guldbergs Psalmer, --- og da tillege de fleste af de Deputerede fandtes at v¾re bekjendt med samme Bog, og erkjendte den ubestridelig at v¾re den bedste Psalmesamling, sore vi i vort Sprog hat, saa antoges ogsaa eenstemmig samme Forslag. ---

Da igjennem Olaus Nilsens "Kirkelig Tidende" er udtalt ¯nske om at gj¿re et nyt Oplag af samme Psalmebog, saa beslutredes, at skrive til ham, og indhente Oplysninger fra ham, hvor Shaft han t¾nker at overgive samme til Pressen, samt hvad Pri-sen paa samme vil blive, og da, efterat have indhentet tilfredsstillende Oplysninger herom, at udsende Subskriptions-Planer i de forskjellige Menigheder af vort Samfund. --- M¿det h¾vedes hermed for denne Formiddag.

EFTERMIDDAG KL. 2.

E. Eielsen opfordrede de Deputerede, saavel som de andre paa M¿det v¾rende Venner, til strax at begynde en Subskription til Oprettelsen af det f¿rommeldte Seminar. Der overdroges Sekretairen at skrive samme. Efterat have gjordt dette og opl¾st den for de Forsamlede, tegnedes da til et Bel¿b af omtrent 1400 Dollars; og var det en sand Glaede at bem¾rke den Interesse, sore besj¾lede Alle for at faae dette Forslag realiseret til Virke-lighed. Derefter blev besluttet, at tage nogle Afskrifter af Subskribtions Indbydelsen, for at de forskjellige Menigheder i Wisanconsin og Illinois maatte strax faae den i Haende red de Deputerede, naar de kom at reise tilbage.

P. A. Rasmussen bad nu de N¾rv¾rende om Opm¾rksomhed, idet han havde at foreslaae nogle Rettelser i vor Constitution, som da ogsaa strax skj¾nkedes ham. Han foreslog da, at der i I Paragraph til "den apostoliske Troesbekjendelse" skulde tilf¿ies "den nic¾niske og athanasianske Troesbekjendelse", samt at der til den "augsburgske Confession" skulde tilf¿ies de andre den lutherske Kirkes symboliske B¿ger, nemlich Den augsburgske Confessions Apologie, de Smalkaldiske Artikle, Luthers st¿rre og mindre Catekismus og Formula Concordiae. Og antoges dette Forslag om disse symboliske B¿gers Tilf¿ielse i vor Constitutions I Paragraph eenstemmig af alle Deputerede.

Videre fremdrog han til Overveielse den 2 Paragraph, og frem-h¾vede deri en Feiltagelse af det rene lutherske Kirkebegreb, idet i samme Paragraph ei er udtalt Forskjellen imellem, hvad Kirken i dens egentlige Forstand er, og hvorledes den synligen aabenbarer sig her i Verden. Efterat fremh¾vet det rene lutherske Begreb i denne L¾reartikel, og til Tydeliggj¿relse deraf opl¾st den 4de Artikel af den augsburgske Confessions Apologie "Om Kirken ", viste han hen til Vigtigheden af at bibeholde den rene symboliske L¾re af denne Artikel, og at vogte sig for den Udskjeielse, som til tvende Sider herfra lettelig kan gj¿res, nemlig f¿rst den, som det romaniserende eller catholiserende Patti eller de ivrige Velyndere og Befordrere af Grundvigs og Wexels "kirkelige Anskuelse" falde hen til, idet de i aldeles Mods¾tnng til den lutherske L¾re forklare Kirken som "Sam-lingen of alle D¿bte, som bekjende den christelige Troe ", med hvilken vrange Udla¾gning de ogsaa i Virkeligheden atter optage den catholske Kirke L¾re, og skjeie dermed ud fra den lutherske Kirke, hvis Bekjendelses Skrift "den augsburgske Confession" giver en ganske anden Definition over Kirken. Og for det andet at vogte sig for den Udskeielse, som de fleste Sekter her i Landet falde hen til, idet de vii gj¿re der udvartes Samfund til et af blat Omvendte og Troende bestaaende Samfund, uden at klargj¿re, at dette vel er Kirken i dens egentlige Forstand, den usynlige Kirke, men som dog i dens synlige Aabenbarelse herneden ei kan andet end v¾re blander, bestaaende saavel af Omvendte som Uomvendte, dog saaledes, at alene de Omvendte egentlig er Kirken, medens de Uomvendte blot ere i Kirken, i det udvortes Samfund efter Navnet og ei i Gjerningen. For at forebygge Misforstaaelse bem¾rkede han tillige, at de aabenbar Ugudelige, som leve i aabenbare Laster, hvormed de forarge baade dem, som ere i Samfundet og dem, som ere udenfor, visselig ikke engang optages i det udvortes Samfund med Deelagtiggj¿relse af Kirkens gode Ting, men burde ganske afholdes fra Herrens Nad-vere indtil de viste et forandret Sind. Efterat nu ogsaa Ordf¿reren tilligemed Torger Olsen Ryg samt og Flere udtalte sig for samme Anskuelse, enedes man eenstemmig om, at i denne Paragraph maatte skee en Rettelse, og det rene lutherske Begreb herom tiidelig frems¾ttes. Hvad mere der i samme Constitution kunde va¾re at rettes, eller tjene til dens Fuldst¾ndiggj¿relse, det overlodes til n¿ere og grundigere Gjennemsyn og Overveielse i dette f¿lgende Aar. Til dette n¾rmere Gjennemsyn af Constitutionen nedsadtes en Committee, bestaaende at: E. Eielsen, E. A. Rasmussen, Torger Olsen Ryg. --- Da det nu var Aften sluttedes Millet for denne Dag med Sang og B¿n.

Onsdag Formiddag samledes man atter, og aabnedes ogsaa nu Forhandlingerne med Sang og B¿n.

I Henseende til der forhen gjordte Forslag om Indkj¿belsen af et Stykke Land, som der vordende Seminars Eiendom, foresloges nu af Nogle et fra Kirken omtrent 1 3/4 Mill beliggende Stykke Land (40 Acres) med en derpaa staaende stor Husebygning, hvilket man meente at v¾re tilfalds. Tvende M¾nd afsendres strax til at indhente mermere Underretning herom, hvilken de ogsaa efter en kort Tids Forl¿b tilfreds stillende bragte. De 40 Acres Land befandtes at v¾re udm¾rket godt, vel opdyrket og indgj¾rdet, sk¿nt beliggende, hvorpaa en temmelig stor Ablehouge, samt en Plantning af fiere andre Tr¾er, som meget tjener til Stedets Forskj¿nnelse og Nytte. Huset var stort og temmelig vel indrettet, ja meget passende til dette Brug med 14 st¿rre og mindre V¾relser, foruden nogle ganske smaae Rum og en muret Kj¾lder. Tillige h¿rte ogsaa til samme Eiendom en Lade, samt en god Brand med fortrinligt Van& Der var alt at erholde for den Sum 1800 Dollars, hvoraf 100 skulde betales strax, 900 inden 6 Uger og 800 til n¾ste Aar i Mai Maaned. Da nu dette Sted saaledes befandtes at v¾re saare vel indrettet til det hen-sigtede ¯iemed, saa besluttedes ogsaa eenstemmig at kj¿be samme Eiendom, hvilket ogsaa blev gjordt samme Dags Eftermiddag, efterat v¾re taget i ¯iesyn af flere af de Deputerede. --- Hvis en tilstr¾kkelig Subskription til denne Seminar-Bygning og Eiendomme kunde erholdes, besluttedes at kj¿be et Trykkerie, at til-f¿ies som Seminariets Eiendom. --- Til Casserer og Regnskabs-f¿rer valgtes P. A. Rasmussen. --- N¾ste Aarsm¿de berammedes at afholdes den I Mandag i Juni Maaned 1855 paa Springprairie i Wisconsin.

Nu sluttedes M¿det med Afsyngelsen af Psalmen "Lover den Herre, den m¾gtige Konge" og med Taksigelse for Herrens store Naade, der saa kjendelig havde hvilet over Forsamlingen i Bevarelse af Enighed og Kj¾rlighed, og styrkede i Hjertet drog enhver hjem til sit.

P. A. RASMUSSEN,
Secretair.

TRANSLATION

On Friday the sixteenth and Saturday the seventeenth of June the delegates elected from Chicago and from various congregations in Wisconsin and Illinois arrived for the annual meeting scheduled to be held at Lisbon, Kendall County, Illinois. On their arrival the delegates were received in love and brotherly kindness by the various brethren in the congregation, who had already arranged to receive the delegates into their homes.

On Sunday, which was Trinity Sunday, a considerable number of people gathered in the newly erected church building, where the local pastor, P. A. Rasmussen, preached on the text for the day. After the sermon he officiated at the celebration of the Lord's Supper. In the afternoon E. Eielsen from Wisconsin preached, taking the First Epistle of John, Chapter 3, as his text. On Monday, June 19, the delegates as well as other brothers and sisters who wished to listen to the proceedings gathered in the church. The meeting opened with the singing of a hymn and with a prayer invoking God's gracious aid and the enlightenment and the sustaining power of His Spirit in guidance of the day's proceedings. Thereupon the convention began its deliberations.

The first point of business was to elect a president and a secretary. E. Eielsen was unanimously chosen president and P. A. Rasmussen secretary.

E. Eielsen proposed that the convention should consider the constantly growing need of the various congregations in Illinois, Wisconsin, and Iowa for proper ministers of the Gospel and how this need could be alleviated. In support of this he put before the convention a memorandum from Iowa, whence no delegates had come, containing the most urgent request that they be given a spiritually enlightened pastor who, withal, must be grounded in the pure, sound doctrine, since there are many who, for conscience's sake, could not be satisfied with the pastors who were available on account of greater or lesser deviations from the pure Lutheran doctrine. All recognized the importance of a thorough consideration of this matter, since the need of upright .ministers of the Gospel, who preach the sound doctrine, is more and more keenly felt in many parts. But as to the way in which this need could be relieved as quickly as possible, the opinions were quite diverse.

Gudmund Strand from Koshkonong thought that in order to relieve the present need persons might be used who possess a Christian temperament and a sound conception of the truth, even if they do not have the education which one otherwise could wish or regard as necessary. This view was shared by many. He thereupon moved that they choose as pastor a Christian-minded man by the name of Torbj¿rn Tjentland from Wisconsin, who, unfortunately, was not present at the meeting. This motion was acceptable to some but objectionable to others, chiefly because he was a stranger to most of them. Others, moreover, regarded his advanced age and large family as possible hindrances in the performance of the duties which would devolve upon him. As opinions continued to be divided on this question, the decision in the matter was postponed until the afternoon, to afford an opportunity for further pondering of the problem.

P. A. Rasmussen moved that the meeting should, through O. Nielsen in Fredrikshald, call Thalberg, Candidate in Theology, from Norway to come and take up the work as a pastor among our countrymen here. Concerning this same Candidate Thalberg reports had come that he is not only Christian-minded, but also possesses pure and sound doctrinal views. This motion was unanimously accepted.

Similarly P. A. Rasmussen moved that they write to Olaus Nielsen and urgently request him to be most diligent in seeking to induce such young men to come over here as are in possession of the necessary gifts of learning and withal have made headway in the exercise of a true, living Christianity, in order that, after proper training at some Christian seminary, they may take up the said ministry of the Gospel in the congregations which may send them a proper call. This motion was likewise unanimously accepted by all the delegates.

The president now moved that a seminary be erected where young men who are gifted and Christian-minded could be trained to be parochial teachers as well as preachers, and where they could receive instruction in the branches most necessary for the proper performance of these offices. P. A. Rasmussen seconded this motion, and added a few remarks about the subjects which ought to be taught; namely, clear and distinct reading, thorough drill in spelling, arithmetic, writing, rhetoric, Norwegian grammar, German, English, singing, Bible history, church history, dogmatics or Christian doctrine, a thorough acquaintance with the symbolical books of the Lutheran Church --- to wit: the Unaltered Augsburg Confession, the Apology, the Smalcald Articles, Luther's Large and Small Catechisms, besides the Formula of Concord, --- Lutheran symbolics, pastoral theology, exegesis or Bible interpretation, catechetics, or training in catechizing, and so forth. All saw the necessity of establishing such an institution in our own midst for the maintenance of the pure and sound doctrine in this country; wherefore this motion was also unanimously passed.

E. Eielsen now raised the question where this seminary might most properly be located. His opinion was that the school should be established at Lisbon and at once several of the delegates, Gudmund Strand, Torger Olson Ryg, and others among them, voiced the same sentiments. A few from Wisconsin did intimate, however, that they regarded Lisbon as being too far from the other settlements in Wisconsin, especially since they regarded Iowa as the place whither most of the newcomers hereafter will go. Accordingly they proposed that the said seminary be built somewhere in Wisconsin. P. A. Rasmussen thought that so long as the institution was located in the midst of one of our congregations, the fact that it was as far removed from the congregations in Wisconsin as Lisbon is, would really make no great difference, since it would not be a school for ordinary instruction, but only for those who were to be educated as future school teachers and pastors. These, of course, would not need to make frequent trips back and forth, but would remain at school until they were ready to enter upon the work in the congregations which might call them. He further stressed the fact that such a seminary must be supported by free-will gifts of food supplies, which in the congregation at Lisbon could be made more readily than in certain other congregations in Wisconsin. It was unanimously decided that Lisbon would be the most suitable place for the establishment of the proposed seminary. As it was now noon, the forenoon meeting was adjourned.

Two O'CLOCK P. M.

The motion concerning the choice of Torbj¿rn Tjentland as a pastor was again brought up by the president. Since it became evident that most of the delegates present were not as yet sufficiently acquainted with him to vote in the matter, it was decided to postpone the choice. Instead, it was decided that Torbj¿rn Tjentland should be appointed to travel about in the various Norwegian settlements to conduct meetings of edification. In this way the congregations will become acquainted with him; and in case by next year few or no pastors shall come over from Norway in response to a call from our synod and the need for ministers of the Gospel shall then be as great as now, then next year --- provided that he is otherwise found capable and a Christian congregation gives him a regular call --- he can be ordained to the holy ministry without having to serve a year on trial, as is otherwise required by our constitution.

In regard to the motion concerning the establishment of a seminary at Lisbon the president further indicated how this school as quickly as possible could be put into operation. After a short consideration of this problem, it was decided that subscription lists shall be circulated throughout all the congregations of the church that as large a fund as possible may be collected for the erection of a suitable building for the school and also for the purchase of a piece of land which should be added to the seminary property. The sum subscribed may be paid in three installments, the first in October of this year, the second on May 1, 1855, and the third in October, 1855.

P. A. Rasmussen now exhibited a German treatise by Dr. Rudelbach on the subject "Concerning the Words of the Sacrament,'' and proposed that someone read a few chapters of this work concerning "the renunciation at Baptism, {14} its basis in Scripture and in the whole baptismal economy, concerning the testimony of the church in support of the renunciation, its original form, the abiding and unchangeable elements in it" and so forth. On the approval of this suggestion, a thorough elucidation of these points was read, whereby they were brought into the dearest possible light, and served to strengthen greatly all the associated friends, who undoubtedly all had hitherto very warmly defended the retention of the said articles of faith as being based on God's word and being in conformity to the tenets of Christendom, without, however, having heretofore either heard or read so thorough a discussion of the subject.

After this, Rasmussen read an article from the Formula of Concord concerning the Sacrament of the Altar, since this doctrine, as well as the doctrine of Holy Baptism, is severely attacked and perverted by the various parties and sects in this country. During the reading of this all present were most attentive, and were greatly strengthened by the thorough presentation of the subject, which is seldom to be found in other writings in such a pure, clear, and Scriptural form as in this particular treatise. After he had finished reading, Rasmussen added a few words concerning the origin and occasion of the writing of the Symbolical Books {15} and showed their importance for us here in this land of sects. He further stressed the great grace that God has shown us in this distant land by entrusting us with His word of truth, and by preserving for us the pure and sound doctrine, just as it was brought to light by the holy and enlightened Fathers whom the Holy Spirit had chosen. He admonished them to acknowledge this grace by a due gratitude, and to hold fast to this precious doctrine. On the other hand, he depicted the shame and infamy which will be the portion of all those who fall away from the pure truth and act as traitors to the Lutheran Church, especially on that great day when the Lord shall come again, and they shall see a great host of witnesses for the truth who have here in time made the good confession and fought for the cause of truth. They shall see these witnesses shine as the sun, whereas they themselves will be branded in their own consciences as apostates and reprobates. The deliberations of the day were brought to an end by the singing of a hymn and by prayer and thanksgiving to the Lord for the grace He had bestowed on them during this day.

[TUESDAY FORENOON]

Tuesday morning the delegates convened again, and opened their deliberations with songs and prayers.

Teacher G. Peterson from Aker's parish near Christiania, who had recently arrived from Norway, where he had taught in the schools for nine years, offered his services among us as teacher. {16} He was unanimously elected to this office by the delegates. Chicago would ordinarily have been designated as his field of activity since in this city, for the present, the need for a Norwegian school is the greatest; yet, on account of the approach of the hot summer season, and on account of the cholera, which has already made its appearance there, it was deemed best that Peterson should begin to teach at Lisbon, which he also agreed to do. {17} His wages were fixed at twelve dollars per month. {18

P. A. Rasmussen proposed that J. Johnsen's Christelig Psalmebog [Christian Hymn Book] be adopted as the official hymn book of the synod. He seemed to discover in this hymn book a larger collection of the most pithy, spiritual, and weighty hymns than in any other hymn collection. To be sure, a single voice was raised in apprehension with regard to this proposed change of hymn books, this person holding that such changes from the old to the new are not necessarily advantageous. {19} Several others made it plain that these objections do not apply in the present case, since the proposed change was to be regarded rather as a reversion from something new to something older. Attention was further called to the fact that in this same hymn book the most and the best of Guldberg's hymns {20} were also included. When, finally, it was discovered that most of the delegates were acquainted with the proposed hymnal and declared it to be beyond a doubt the best collection of hymns that exists in the Norwegian language, the proposal was unanimously accepted.

Since through Olaus Nielsen's Kirkelig Tidende [Church Times] a desire has been expressed that a new edition of this hymn book be published, it was decided that someone write Nielsen and inquire how soon he intends to send the copy to the press. Inquiries should also be made regarding the estimated price of the book, and when satisfactory information is procured, subscription lists should be circulated in the congregations of our synod. The forenoon session was thereupon adjourned.

TWO O'CLOCK P. M.

E. Eielsen requested that the delegates as well as other friends present at the meeting immediately begin to subscribe money toward the establishment of the above mentioned seminary. The secretary was asked to draw up a suitable subscription list. When he had done this and had read it to those present, the sum of about $1,400 was subscribed. It was indeed a great joy to observe the eager interest which all manifested in their desire to make this proposal a reality. Upon motion, it was decided that copies of the invitation to subscribe be made, in order that they may be laid before the various congregations in Wisconsin and Illinois by the delegates immediately on their return home.

P. A. Rasmussen now asked those present to give him their attention as he intended to propose some changes in our Constitution; {21} which, indeed, they did. He proposed that to the words, the Apostolic Creed, in paragraph I, should be added the words, the Nicene and Athanasian Creeds, and that to the Augsburg Confession should be added the other Symbolical Books of the Lutheran Church, to wit: the Apology to the Augsburg Confession, the Smalcald Articles, Luther's Large and Small Catechisms and the Formula of Concord. {22} The proposal concerning the addition of these Symbolical Books to Paragraph I of our Constitution was unanimously accepted by all the delegates.

Rasmussen thereupon proceeded to the examination of Paragraph 2, where he noted a misconception of the pure Lutheran doctrine concerning the Church, inasmuch as this paragraph makes no distinction between the Church, in its essential sense, and in its visible appearance in this world. After he had expounded the true Lutheran doctrine of this article, and for its further elucidation had read Chapter 4 of the Apology of the Augsburg Confession, the article entitled "Of the Church," {23} he proceeded to point out the importance of maintaining the pure Symbolical doctrine of this article, and the necessity of guarding against departure from this article, which can easily occur in two directions:

In the first place, there are those who incline toward Romanism and Catholicism or who favor and zealously promote the "Church Conception" of Grundtvig and Wexels, {24} in so far as they, in absolute contradiction to Lutheran doctrines, declare the Church to be "a communion of all the baptized, who profess Christian faith." By this perverse declaration they actually accept anew the doctrine of the Catholic Church, and set themselves at variance with the Lutheran Church, the doctrinal statement of which, the Augsburg Confession, gives quite a different definition of the Church. {25

In the second place, the Church has to avoid the pitfalls in the opposite direction into which most of the sects in this country have fallen, whereas they have made the visible church into an association of those only who are converted believers, without explaining that this, indeed, is the Church in its essential aspect, namely the invisible church, but that in its visible form here on earth it cannot be anything but a mixture of both converted and unconverted. Even so, it is only the converted who actually comprise the Church; the unconverted are merely in the Church, in the external association only in name, not in deed. To ward off misunderstandings, he remarked also that the openly wicked, who live in open vice whereby they cause offense both to those who are in the church and those who are without, assuredly ought not to be admitted into membership even of the external association, whereby they are made partakers of the treasures of the Church; but ought, of course, absolutely to be barred from the Lord's Table until they show a different spirit.

After the president, Torger Olsen Ryg, and others had declared themselves to be in accord with this view, it was agreed unanimously that a correction must be made in this paragraph, and that the pure Lutheran conception concerning this matter should be clearly stated. Other things in the Constitution that might need correction or might need to be clarified or expanded, were referred to the next annual meeting for a more careful and thorough examination and deliberation. As a committee to examine the Constitution in this way, the meeting appointed E. Eielsen, E. A. Rasmussen, {26} and Torger Olsen Ryg. As it now was evening, the meeting was closed for the day with song and prayer. {27}

[WEDNESDAY FORENOON]

On Wednesday forenoon the sessions were continued after devotional exercises consisting of song and prayer.

With respect to the motion to buy a tract of land for the proposed seminary, it was now proposed by several to acquire a tract of land comprising forty acres situated about one and three miles from the church and having a large residence on it, quarter which was believed to be for sale. Two men were immediately dispatched to make inquiries concerning this probability, and in a short time they returned with a very satisfactory report. The forty-acre tract was reported to be an excellent piece of land, well cultivated and fenced, beautifully situated, and having a rather large apple orchard along with a grove of other trees, all of which enhance the value and beauty of the place. The house, which is large and conveniently built, is admirably suited for the proposed school, having fourteen large and small rooms besides a few very small rooms and a stone basement. In addition the property has a barn and a well with excellent water. All of this is now to be had for a sum of $1,800, of which $100 must be paid at once, $900 within six weeks, and $800 by next May. As this place seemed remarkably well adapted to the intended use, it was unanimously decided to buy the property, which, indeed, was done that same afternoon after several of the delegates had inspected it. {28

It was decided that in case sufficient subscriptions were received for the seminary building and the property, a printing press should be bought and added to the seminary properly. P. A. Rasmussen was elected treasurer and bookkeeper. It was decided that the next annual meeting should be held the first Monday in June, 1855, at Spring Prairie, Wisconsin.

The meeting closed with the singing of the hymn, "Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of Creation," and with thanksgiving for the Lord's great grace which had so evidently rested upon the assembly for the maintenance of unity and love. Strengthened in spirit, each one departed to his own home.

P. A. Rasmussen
Secretary

Notes
<1> See J. Magnus Rohne, "The Value of Church Records," in Norwegian-American Historical Association, STUDIES AND RECORDS, 3:76 (Northfield, Minnesota, 1928).

<2> Festskrift udgivet i Anledning af Red Wing Seminariums Femogtyve Aars Jubil¾um, 7 (Red Wing, Minnesota, 1904).

<3> See Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism up to 1872, 186 (New York, 1926).

<4> Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 96. See also Thrond J. Bothne's "Kort Udsigt over det Lutherske Kirkearbeide blandt Nordm¾nandene i Amerika," appended to Hallvard G. Heggtveit, Illustreret Kirke-historie, 834 (Chicago, Takla, 1898).

<5> It has been generally supposed that this paper was discontinued in 1861; but quite fortuitously it was discovered that there is in the Luther College archives a complete file of the paper for 1862.

<5a> "Pastor Nils Brandt's Erindringer fra Aarene 1851 til 1855," dictated to Reverend Adolf Bredesen, in Symra, 1907, p. 108 (Decorah).

<6>Kirkelig Maanedstidende, 1859, p. 182. See also Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 188, and Ronning, Red Wing Seminariums Festskrift, 12.

<7> The fact that Eielsen was the chairman of the meeting apparently did not deter him from making motions even when he presided. 

<8> See Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 185 ff.

<9> G, M. Bruce, "The Hauge's Synod," in Juergen L. Neve, Brief History of the Lutheran Church in America, 392 (Burlington, Iowa, 1916).

<10> Eg bare putla saa smaat." Rasmus B. Anderson, First Chapter of Norwegian Immigration (1821-1840), Its Causes and Results, 414 (Madison, Wisconsin, second edition, 18o6).

<11> Biographies of Elling Eielsen are found in Chr. O. Brohaugh and I. Eistensen, Kortfattet Beretning om Elling Eielsen's Liv og Virksomhed (Chicago, 1883); Erick O. M¿rstad, Elling Eielsen og den "Evangelisk-lutherske Kirke i Amerika" (Minneapolis, 1917). Sketches are found in Bothne, "Kort Udsigt," appended to Heggtveit, Kirkehistorie (Takla ed.), in Johan A. Bergh, Den Norsk Lutherske Kirkes Historie i Amerika (Minneapolis, 1914), in Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, and in Rasmus Malmin, O. M. Norlie, and O. A. Tingelstad, Who's Who among Pastors in all the Norwegian Synods of America (Minneapolis, 1928).

<12> In "Kart Udsigt," appended to Heggtveit, Kirkehistorie (Takla ed.), 844. 

<13> For biographical materials on P. A. Rasmussen, see Bothne in "Kart Udsigt," appended to Heggtveit, Kirkehistorie (Takla ed.); L. M. Bj¿rn, Pastor P. A. Rasmussen (Minneapolis, 1905); Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 105; Malmin, Tingelstad, and Norlie, Who's Who among Pastors in the Norwegian Synods.

<14> This refers to the renunciation of the devil, which reads in the modern versions of the altar book as follows: "N., dost thou renounce the devil, and all his works, and all his ways?" The Ellingians had recently had a controversy with Paul Anderson on this subject. See Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 103.

<15> That is, the Symbolical Books of the Lutheran Church which comprise the Book of Concord.

<16> In the Norwegian state church the "teacher" also had to teach religion. In consequence he was accorded a station in life somewhat below that of a pastor. It was natural, therefore, that Peterson should apply to a church meeting for a position. For the difference between the Norwegian and the American teacher, see Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 58 ff.

<17> Cholera had visited most of the settlements in 1849, 1850, and 1852.
See Anderson, First Chapter of Norwegian Immigration, 274; also Knut Gjerset and Ludvig Hektoen, "Health Conditions and the Practice of Medicine among the Early Norwegian Settlers, 1825-1865," in Norwegian-American Historical Association, STUDIES AND RECORDS, 1:1-59 (Minneapolis, 1926). The cholera of 1854 was not so deadly as that of the former years.

<18> Ole Knudson Trovatten was elected forsanger and parochial school teacher in the Koshkonong congregations in 1845 at a salary of ten dollars a month. These pioneers did not handle much money but they managed to eke out an existence and to be happy in the absence of material wealth. 

<19> The Ellingian group in America as well as in Norway was very conservative in regard to changes in texts of all kinds as they feared that new doctrines would thus be smuggled into the church. Witness their bitter fight against Wexelsism. See Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 116. 144; Mons O. Wee, Haugeanism, a Brief Sketch of the Movement arid Some of Its Chief Exponents (St. Paul, 1919).

<20> Guldberg's Psalmebog [Hymn Book] was issued by the Scandinavian Press Association (consisting of pastors from the Norwegian Synod) at Luther Valley, Wisconsin, in 1854. But, of course, the rival groups could not use each other's hymn books. See Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 140.

<21> Proposals to change the Old Constitution met with Eielsen's ready hostility. It has been noted above how suspicious the Ellingian group was of all changes. By this act Rasmussen virtually read himself out of Eielsen's group, the final rupture taking place two years later, in 1856. For the text of Eielsen's Old Constitution and Eielsen's jealous guardianship of it, see Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, l05-111.

<22> This is more than is required of any Norwegian American Lutheran church even to this day; all that most of the bodies require is: the three Oecumenical Creeds, the Augsburg Confession, and Luther's Small Cateanchism. Many of the German and English speaking Lutherans require the whole Book of Concord as above. P. A. Rasmussen undoubtedly got this idea at Fort Wayne.

<23> H. E. Jacobs, Book of Concord, 161 ff. (People's Edition--Philadelphia, 1911). 

<24> Kirkelig Anskuelse. See Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 113, 122, 145.

<25> This was a thrust at certain members of the Norwegian Synod, which was organized in 1853. A controversy arose over the "Third Article" of the Apostolic Creed. See Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 147. 

<26> P. A. Rasmussen?

<27> The sessions had to be conducted on a strictly "daylight" basis in those days as it is doubtful if there were even kerosene lamps in the settlements. Certainly there were no screens against the light-loving insects.

<28> For some reason this deal was not closed that day. P. A. Rasmussen in an article in Der Lutheraner for October 23, 1855, says that ours (i. e. the Ellingians) had procured land in January of 1855, but that teaching had not commenced until Easter because he had been too busily engaged in translating and printing Johan Arndt's True Christianity. This indicates also that the printing press was quite promptly secured. See ante, p. 19, 22, and Rohne, Norwegian American Lutheranism, 186.

<<   Previous Page   |   Next Page   >>


 
To the Home Page