History of the LCMS
The roots of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod run deep, tracing back to 1847 when Saxon and other German immigrants established a new church body in America, seeking the freedom to practice and follow confessional Lutheranism.
Initial members, which included 12 pastors representing 14 congregations from Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Michigan, New York and Ohio, signed the church body’s constitution on April 26, 1847, at First Saint Paul Lutheran Church in Chicago, Ill.
Originally named The German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Missouri, Ohio and Other States, the name was shortened to The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod in 1947 on the occasion of our 100th anniversary.
BELIEF and PRACTICE
With the universal Christian Church, The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod teaches and responds to the love of the Triune God: the Father, creator of all that exists; Jesus Christ, the Son, who became human to suffer and die for the sins of all human beings and to rise to life again in the ultimate victory over death and Satan; and the Holy Spirit, who creates faith through God’s Word and Sacraments. The three persons of the Trinity are coequal and coeternal, one God.
Our congregations accept and preach the Bible-based teachings of Martin Luther that the reformation of the Christian Church in the 16th century. The teaching of Luther and the reformers can be summarized in three phrases: Grace alone, Faith alone, Scripture alone.
The LCMS logo is three crosses in one. They declare that “we worship one God in Trinity and Trinity in Unity.”
The open arms point upward toward God in prayer and receive God’s grace. The lower arms point down, as if open to embrace the world with God’s love.
The 12 additional points of the logo cross remind us of the 12 tribes of Israel and the 12 apostles. The four arms appear to be in motion, as we urgently tell the world what God’s love in Jesus Christ means to us, uniquely, as Missouri Synod Lutherans.