Awaiting the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the legality of same-sex marriage, the LCMS recently released a marriage “toolkit,” created to help congregational members, confirmation classes, Bible study groups and others discuss the topic of marriage.
The Supreme Court is currently deliberating on two marriage-related cases: Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The court heard arguments in mid-March and is slated to make its ruling in late June.
“We believe men and women are both created in God’s image,” explained the Rev. Bart Day, executive director of the LCMS Office of National Mission. “We believe that they complement one another physically, psychologically and emotionally. And we believe that, from this balance of father and mother, children flourish.”
The toolkit, created to help LCMS members learn more about how Scripture defines marriage, is free and downloadable.
One of the major components in the kit is a Bible study explaining marriage, written by the Rev. Timothy Pauls, pastor of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Boise, Idaho. Broken into two parts, the study’s first part entails “Knowing What to Say,” which, according to Pauls, will “clarify what the Bible says about God’s design for marriage; explore what the Bible says about homosexuality … [and] determine from Scripture the relationship between marriage and homosexuality.”
The goal of the study’s second part, “Saying What We Know,” is “to review what the Bible says about marriage and homosexuality; to determine obstacles that obstruct a loving proclamation; to explore how we ought to speak the truth in love.”
Also in the toolkit are worship resources and links to information from other organizations.
The LCMS’ joint statement regarding the affirmation of marriage as well as an accompanying bulletin insert also will be available in the toolkit (click here for related story).
The toolkit is part of the Synod’s ongoing “Free to Be Faithful” campaign, which encourages education and informed action in defense of freedom of religion. To learn more or to download the toolkit, go to lcms.org/freetobefaithful.Download Marriage Toolkit
I read the article on the marriage “toolkit” in the Reporter. I am very concerned about the direction our culture is taking and wanted to see if this “toolkit” would be helpful in our congregation. On the first page I found that Synod is putting out more info to “encourage education and informed action in defense of freedom of religion.” This is so desperately needed. Thanks. Now we need to make sure it is used in our congregations and that our people use it in witnessing. We cannot be passive any longer.
Article from Lutheran Witness “Practicing What We Preach” July, 1996 is very helpful to understand why our church does what it does, carefully and deliberately.
At the Family of Faith Lutheran Church, Houston, we are currently enjoying a month long sermon-series called “Marriage Matters.” The CTCR document, “The Creator’s Tapestry”, along with this new Marriage Tool Kit, and the President Harrison’s Letter have all been helpful. We also celebrated two wedding services during our Sunday worship in the month of June.