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LCMS and ACNA pledge cooperation

LCMS and ACNA pledge cooperation

The 2.3 million member Missouri Synod Lutheran Church and Anglican Church in North America have begun talks about ways they might cooperate in areas of common concern. They find agreement in much of their core doctrines, with some issues about liturgy, sacraments and the ministry of the ordained.

But they both agree that they must fight any effort toward marriage equality and must fight to de-legalize abortion.

From the Christian Post’s report:

“The joint report recognizes ‘a pervasive threat to the understanding of marriage as the life-long union of a man and woman as husband and wife and oppose any efforts to redefine marriage in any other terms.’

The churches affirmed the biblical teaching that God intends sexuality only to be fully enacted within the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman. “We oppose efforts within society or by some churches to view other sexual relationships as moral alternatives to heterosexual marriage.”

[…]’Denominationally we look toward the possibility of joint statements on important issues facing our churches and our culture such as questions about homosexuality and abortion. We also anticipate opportunities to work together to address human needs like hunger, homelessness, and other ministries of mercy toward those in crisis.'”

No major surprises here. Just as the Episcopal Church and the Lutheran Church are growing closer together, you’d expect those opposed to those denominations to do so as well. As the ELCA processes the reactions their decision last summer to allow partnered gay and lesbian to open serve as pastors, I wonder if the congregations withdrawing from the ELCA will reach out the ACNA or the LCMS first.


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Christopher Cooper

I agree that “crucifying” might not be the best term. It really depends on the type of procedure used in Uganda for executions. Maybe “firing squad” or “hanging” or “lethal injection” would better describe the collaboration of these two “churches” given the Anglican Church of Uganda’s relationship with ACNA and the large number of voices in the Ugandan Church that support the “Kill the Gays” bill…the one that seems to come up again every few months.

Nicole Porter

“Crucifying” is a poor term as well, Mr.Fisher.

“However it does make sense for ACNA and the LCMS to make common cause on issues that they see as important to them.”

Exactly. It doesn’t bother me none, more power to them.


An alliance formed for the purpose of crucifying*: how is that not similar?

JC Fisher

*And if “crucifying” is too harsh a term for outlawing any legal/liturgical recognition of same-sex couples (nevermind the suffering that can produce), ACNA’s international allies take their LGBT-crucifying far more literally (Kyrie eleison!).

Caoilin Galthie

One point of correction. TEC and the ELCA, one of several Lutheran churches in the US, albeit the largest, are in full communion with each other.

The LCMS is not to the ELCA what ACNA is to TEC and the Anglican Communion. The LCMS is just as Lutheran as the ELCA, with the ELCA being a coming together in 1988 of a whole range of Lutheran churches that grew up independently of each other in the US, mainly reflecting patterns of immigration from Lutheran countries. (However one of the founding partners of the ECLA was in fact a group that split off from the LCMS in the 70’s when the LCMS started turning more conservative.)

This is certainly different from the Anglican model of one Anglican province in each geographical area, which it is difficult to fit the ACNA in to.

One area of cooperation between the LCMS and the ELCA is Lutheran World Relief, which is connected to both. I also serve on the leadership board of a Thrivent Financial for Lutherans chapter along with LCMS members, and it works quite well!

However it does make sense for ACNA and the LCMS to make common cause on issues that they see as important to them.

Richard E. Helmer


I agree. If we must start prooftexting, how about trying:

“In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets.”

FWIW, I’ve had some very good experience in ecumenical work with a local LCMS congregation. The denomination, like the Episcopal Church, is not all of one mind.

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