LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison issued a statement Aug. 19 asking Lutherans to pray for peace in light of the continuing unrest in Ferguson, Mo.
The St. Louis suburb is in its second week of violent protests following the shooting death of black teenager Michael Brown by a white policeman on Aug. 9.
In the statement, Harrison calls the “fear, anger, animosity between races and a general nervousness” in Ferguson “one more tragic result of a world where sin and death continue their regime. Wars, rumors of war, tension and animosity between peoples we will always have with us (Matt. 24:6, 26:11).”
But, he adds, “Christ, whose death atoned for the sins of all humanity and whose resurrection trampled sin and Satan … gets the last Word. His is a Word of peace, despite sin’s turmoil (1 Thess. 5:23).”
Harrison asks for prayers for St. Louis and the Ferguson community, the Brown family, the law officer involved in the shooting and his family, the churches of Ferguson “as they seek to be instruments of peace” and the work of the LCMS, particularly in urban areas.
“The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod’s Black Ministry, Urban & Inner-City Mission and Disaster Response teams are working together with local church leaders to assess both immediate and long-term needs in Ferguson,” he writes. “Plans are now underway to provide a way for the life-giving proclamation and comfort of the Gospel to be sustained into the future, so that true and lasting reconciliation in Christ may be restored to this community.”
The statement, which also includes a prayer, is available here.
Posted Aug. 19, 2014