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 & 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 inspired 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.
Grace, Faith, Scripture
Grace / Sola Gratia
God loves the people of the world, even though they are sinful, rebel against Him and do not deserve His love. He sent Jesus, His Son, to love the unlovable and save the ungodly.
Faith / Sola Fide
By His suffering and death as the substitute for all people of all time, Jesus purchased and won forgiveness and eternal life for them. Those who hear this Good News and believe it have the eternal life that it offers. God creates faith in Christ and gives people forgiveness through Him.
Scripture / Sola Scriptura
The Bible is God’s inerrant and infallible Word, in which He reveals His Law and His Gospel of salvation in Jesus Christ. It is the sole rule and norm for Christian doctrine.