Congregations? Churches? The same thing?
Is this so?
Some friends in Australians a number of years ago prepared an excellent paper and study on adiaphora. Here is a quote from the paper.
d. The Formula of Concord permits some degree of liturgical diversity in public worship.
• At different times the church may change those rites and ceremonies which have not been instituted by God.
• The "church in every place" (German: die Gemeine Gottes j(e)des Orts; Latin:
ecclesia Dei ubivis terrarum) has the right to do so in its particular location.
• Does this refer to each local congregation, as the translation of church as
"community" and the incorrect translation of the Latin dative singular as "churches" in the footnote to FC Ep X, 4 by Tappert seems to imply, or does it refer to each regional church?
• The Latin translation of Gemeine as "church" (ecclesia) and of "every place" (jedes
Orts) as "in all lands" (ubivis terrarum) shows that the authors were thinking of
territorial churches. Historically speaking, that is how this formulation was
understood and applied in the Lutheran church until modern times.
Here is the rest of the paper: