The Wartburg Watch has yet another sad story of an elderly woman shunned by her congregation for, possibly, asking some financial questions — though, thanks to confidentiality requirements, she can’t even learn what she is supposed to have said.
Since she was excommunicated from her Lutheran church four years ago, LaVonne Pfeil says that her life has been ruined.
“I lost my church, I lost my husband, lost my reputation, lost a lot of money,” said Pfeil, who’s 79 years old. “I can go to a grocery store. If people see me, they turn around with their cart. I used to know everybody. Now I have no friends.”
As Christianity declines, churches are returning to their authoritarian, cult-like roots, and they are finding justification for it in the Gospels because those are the texts of a first-century cult fighting for its life.
And, of course, it says something about who is sitting in church when they abandon decades-long friendships because the pastor tells them to.