For Immediate Release
Contact: Vicki Biggs, 314-996-1236, 314-556-3829 (cell), @theLCMS, @LCMSConvention
Delegates address 100 resolutions over course of convention
ST. LOUIS, July 26, 2013—Religious freedom, campus ministry, churchwide multilingual capabilities, alternate route to the pastoral office, the church’s call process and structure were among the matters that came before the delegates to the 65th Regular Convention of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod on the fifth and final day of business. Here is a summary:
- Among 11 resolutions adopted having to do with witnessing to the Lutheran faith was a heartily endorsed proposal – garnering the highest affirming percentage of any resolution before the convention — to encourage LCMS congregations to increase and strengthen their efforts to engage on college campuses and to support LCMS U, the church’s campus ministry initiative. Delegates endorsed a resolution calling for the church’s publishing and broadcast entities to produce materials that will help prepare church workers and laity for the ongoing defense of religious freedom. They also voted to assign responsibility to the LCMS Office of National Mission for leading the church in expanding its multilingual capabilities, strengthening its prison ministry and increasing its ministry among Native Americans. Read more…
- While acknowledging that residential seminary education is the premier route to the Office of the Holy Ministry, delegates voted to continue and strengthen the relatively new Specific Ministry Pastor (SMP) distance-education program offered at both LCMS seminaries. Delegates also voted to allow the president and other Synod leaders to be involved in the call process for new faculty members at the LCMS’ two seminaries. Read more…
- Among 16 resolutions acted on that had to do with the care of church workers and lay members, delegates voted to commence a study on the call process for returning missionaries and military chaplains as well as rostered church workers without calls. They endorsed the Soldiers of the Cross fund, which exists to provide financial assistance to rostered church workers in times of need, and supported a move to encourage the use of family devotions in the home. Read more…
- Encouraging the practice of confession and absolution for pastors and calling for a new study on the proper roles of men and women in the church were among the final four resolutions put forward by the Floor Committee on Theology and Church Relations on the final day of the convention and adopted by the delegates. Read more…
The Rev. Dr. Charles Gieschen, professor at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., preached at the service of Matins to begin the day. His homily centered on the Great Commission and the call to make new disciples through Baptism and teaching.
At the close of business on the final day of the convention, delegates joined together in the Itinerarium – a service of prayer for travelers. At 12:15 p.m., LCMS President Matthew C. Harrison – with a bang of the historic convention gavel – adjourned the convention. All told, the delegates addressed 100 resolutions during the course of the convention.
The Synod convention, which serves as the principal legislative assembly for the church body, was held July 20-25 at the America’s Center Convention Complex in St. Louis. Along with the consideration of resolutions, the convention included opportunities for worship and fellowship. Participant included nearly 1,200 clergy and lay voting delegates, plus visitors, special guests, exhibitors, staff and volunteers. Total attendance was some 3,500.
To learn more about the Synod convention, visit www.lcms.org/convention. For a complete news round-up, visit www.lcms.org/convention/news.
About The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod is a biblical, confessional, witness-oriented Christian denomination with 2.3 million members – 600,000 households – in 6,200 congregations. Through acts of witness and mercy, the church carries out its mission worldwide to make known the love of Jesus Christ. Learn more at www.lcms.org.