"laestadian, apostolic, gay, lgbtq, ex-oalc, ex-llc, llc, oalc, bunner" LEARNING TO LIVE FREE: Dead Faith

Friday, December 17, 2004

Dead Faith

Thank you, exoalc, for your informed comments. I found this by googling "laestadius dead faith" . . .

Melvin Riutta
The Daily Mining Gazette 4.9.2001.
Church hostages?
To the editor:
The Apostolic Lutherans and all the other churches of the Laestadian movement, regardless of which faction, teach it was their ancestors who brought true Christianity to America in the 1870s.
And now it is their church alone that has the power and authority given from God to proclaim sins forgiven, and all other churches are of dead faith! This teaching distorts the very nature of God and manages to poison relationships and divide families. This is evidenced by the more than 30 feuding factions that make up the Apostolic Lutheran Laestadian movement today.


  1. ......of course all of the folks that this letter was meant for made their snide remarks of how Melvin "wasn't all there". But letters like his helped give me strength to break free of my legalistic chains of the Apostolic Church. I'm sure the Holy Spirit was with Melvin as he sat down to pour out his heart in this letter. And yes folks....he is "all there". He just doesn't wear horse blinders!

  2. Personally, I find it amusing that anytime anyone asks any questions about what is being taught, they are dismissed as being crazy. If I had a nickel for every time I've heard that I just lost it...
    It is interesting to note that the people who haven't "gone crazy" in their eyes are perhaps the highest percentage of people on psychiatric medications in my community (this from medical professionals in my area, as well as personal contact). Things that make you go hmmmm....

  3. My experience on questioning OALC preachers has been futile and frustrating. Mostly they have no answers, I have been accused of being "negative", I have heard a preacher preach that questioning is a sign of "immaturity", and eventually a curious listener will be labelled as "crazy". These are methods used to keep people in line and keep dissension to a minimum.

    Much of the OALC "doctrine", or "dogma" as I see it, is nothing more than man's opinions.

    I too have a shiny new SUV, and I also strongly believe and try to live that we are here on earth for a far greater purpose than ourselves, and that means reaching out to others. That is one thing I found lacking in the OALC. Why is reaching out to the community not encouraged? What can be so wrong about the church engaging in activities to encourage charitable giving?

    Even after 9/11, on the national day of prayer, the OALC here in this area didn't even so much as open its doors. And didn't so much as utter a prayer for all of those whom lost loved ones. I found that sad and disappointing.

  4. In the First Apostolic Church I had heard over and over that if somone is truly seeking, God will lead them to us. Of course, that is because they only believe that they have the "one true" church. They completely ignore that we are commanded to "go forth" and try to bring salvation to the unsaved. They only minister onto themselves. People in the world just can't comprehend when I try to explain how I was raised. The closest I can come is to tell them we were raised like the Amish except we had cars, electricity, wore regular clothes and such. But we had a very closed "community". I really can't blame many though. If you don't have a questioning, curious, or thirsty mind why should you question what you have been taught all your life. I am still sorting what I find in the Bible with what I heard growing up. It can be very overwhelming. Add the family and peer pressure when they see you are searching beyond the walls of the church and it is very hard way to go. Also, when it has been drummed in your head all your life that to question displays a "lack of faith", questioning becomes uncomfortable. I prayed for forgiveness many times for my lack of faith. Thank God the Holy Spirit kept pestering me to keep reading the Bible and keep searching beyond the community of my birth. I'm free but I'm not. I will always be tethered to my past because it is part of who I am. And on a humerous note: What a rude awakening to find that being of Finnish decent doesn't automatically make us better then everyone else! :)

  5. I seem to remember reading that the early Laestadians justified the lack of evangelism by saying that every nation had been exposed to the Gospel. I remember an OALC relative saying that Africa "had a chance" but refused to believe. My goodness. An entire continent.

  6. Yes, I've heard that too. I also heard growing up, and also in more recent years, that every adult person at some point in their life, has the chance to be saved through exposure to the OALC. Did anyone else learn that? It always left me wondering about all those people living in remote hillsides in other countries.

  7. I heard that one, too. Everyone has a chance.
    So far-fetched, but somehow people believe it.
    When asked, "Are there any Christians in (for example) England?" the response might be, "yes, one family". In a whole country. Pretty weak gospel, I would say. Sounds like the same thing as the FALC... if the Spirit draws, they will come to us. And then they tell the story of the one guy who traveled barefoot from Italy, searching for a congregation where he could find a blessed forgiveness of sins, and he finally found the OALCers. And their case rests.

  8. Is this a site for discussing the gospel or just a place to vent about how mislead others are if they don't believe like you do?
    I don't see much here of the love that Jesus taught us to show.

  9. Dear pp,
    I'm sorry you are disappointed in this site. Its purpose is to provide a safe place for people (including me) to express experiences, ideas and feelings about the OALC. I think is a deeply compassionate purpose. Many of us have lost family, friends, community, emotional and material support, simply because we had "different beliefs" than the OALC. We need to talk about it. If even one person feels less alone, this site will have fulfilled its purpose.

    pp, I encourage you to post your own experiences here, and feel free to disagree with any opinions on the site. It is good to hear many perspectives on the OALC. Perhaps loving one's neighbors is best done by getting to know them.

  10. pp,
    If you read the blog's purpose you'll see it isn't to discuss gospel.
    Your post further reinforces my own experience that it is virtually impossible to dialogue with OALCers without being shut down.
    My hope is that the internet will help to change that.
    me me

  11. My first day on this blog, and what a wonderful read it's been. I left the OALC (If I follow your different acronyms correctly; my church called itself the FALC, these being the Detroit-Calumet "Heidemannians") years and years ago and have never suffered one minute of regret or pangs of worry since. I suffered a great deal of worry and fear about leaving Christianity (basic American Evangelical) altogether years later, in about 1995. That's another story. The story about my years of doubt, long after converting away from the FALC, is told in my book "A Journal on Doubt on my web site www.msu.edu/~kilpela. Hey, great posts from just about everyone. If I can be of help to anyone suffering doubts and fears and worries about having left Laestadianism, don't hesitate to write. You can find my email at my own blogs.

  12. After attending the OLAC for some time I put down the FV and started reading the New King James Version, and quickly identified some of the errors being taught in the OALC. It is very very sad that the church teaches that people cannot find salvation in any other church but the OALC......I worry for thoughs that preach this message and pray that their eyes would be opened to the seriousness of this claim.

  13. What is the FV?