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United States, Lutheranism in the.

1. Lutheranism was brought from Eur. to Am. beginning in the 17th c. See Arensius, Bernhardus Antonius; Campanius, Johan; Danish Lutherans in America; Fabritius, Jacob; Falckner, Daniel, Jr.; Falckner, Justus; Gutwasser, John Ernst; Kocherthal, Josua; Lock, Lars Carlson; Torkillus, Reorus. Salzburgers* settled 1734 near Savannah, Georgia In pre-Revolutionary days Lutheranism spread esp. in New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Maryland See also Berkenmeyer, Wilhelm Christoph; Henkels, The, 1; Stover, John Caspar, Sr.; Stoever, John Caspar, Jr..

Through most of the 18th c. the hist. of Lutheranism in the US is the history of Luth. immigrants and of congs. in most Luth. settlements. It was a time of confusion. Congs. were widely scattered and poor. Pastors were few; some were adventurers and impostors.

2. The period of larger organizations or syns. began 1748 with the Pennsylvania Ministerium (see United Lutheran Church in America, The, Synods of, 22). The New York Ministerium was organized in the 1780s, the North Carolina Syn. 1803 (see United Lutheran Church in America, The, Synods of, 15, 16).

3. After the death of H. M. Mühlenberg 1787, till 1817 (tercentenary of the Reformation), rationalism and indifference gripped the Luth. Ch. in the US See also Quitman, Frederick Henry; Schober, Gottlieb.

4. Immigration from Luth. countries to the US reached its peak 1817–1860. New syns. were organized, some in reaction against unionism*: Ohio Syn. 1818 (see Ohio and Other States, The Evangelical Lutheran Joint Synod of), Maryland Syn. 1820 (see United Lutheran Church in America, The, Synods of, 11), The General* Syn. of the Ev. Luth. Ch. in the USA; 1820, Tennessee Syn. 1820 (see United Lutheran Church in America, The, Synods of, 16), Buffalo* Syn. 1845, Mo. Syn. 1847 (see Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, The). The Gen. Syn. included ca. two-thirds of US Lutheranism 1860.

5. For lack of pastors some pastors trained students in their homes; some pastors were trained in sems. of other denominations. The Hartwick* Sem. lacked efficient direction. The Luth. Theol. Sem., Gettysburg, was est. 1826.

Adherence to the Ger. language drove many young Eng.-speaking people into Eng. denominations.

6. The Gen. Syn. carried on Home Mission work chiefly through dist. syns. See also Central Missionary Society of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the United States; Keller, Ezra. J. C. F. Heyer* was sent as miss. to India by the Pennsylvania Ministerium in the early 1840s. See also Passavant, William Alfred.

7. The Definite* Syn. Platform led to controversy. Other controverted matters: Antichrist,* Church* and Ministry, Open* Questions, Predestination* (see also Predestinarian Controversy, 2), Sunday.*

8. Reaction against indifference and confessional laxity and the impact of the Civil War (see United Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the South, The, 1) led to disruption of the Gen. Syn. and formation of the General* Council of the Ev. Luth. Ch. in (N.) Am. in the 1860s.

9. The Synodical* Conference was organized 1872. Intersynodical mergers saw formation of The Norw. Luth. Ch. of Am. 1917 (see Evangelical Lutheran Church, The, 13), The United* Luth. Ch. in Am. 1918, the American* Luth. Ch. 1930. For other similar developments see Union and Unity Movements in the United States, Lutheran. See also Lutheran World Federation, The. ARS

See also United States, Lutheran Theology in the.

I. Acrelius, A History of New Sweden (Philadelphia, 1874); E. L. Hazelius, History of the American Lutheran Church from Its Commencement in the Year of Our Lord 1685, to the Year 1842 (Zanesville, Ohio, 1846); C. W. Schaeffer, Early History of the Lutheran Church in America (Philadelphia, 1857); A. L. Gräbner [Graebner], Geschichte der Lutherischen Kirche in America (St. Louis, 1892); The American Church History Series, ed. P. Schaff et al., IV: H. E. Jacobs, A History of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the United States, 5th ed. (New York, 1907); O. Kraushaar, Verfassungsformen der Lutherischen Kirche Amerikas (Gütersloh, 1911); W. J. Finck, Lutheran Landmarks and Pioneers in America (Philadelphia, 1913); J. L. Neve, History of the Lutheran Church in America, 3d ed. W. D. Allbeck (Burlington, Iowa, 1934); F. Bente, American Lutheranism, 2 vols. (St. Louis, 1919); A. B. Faust, The German Element in the United States, 2 vols. (New York, 1909); A. R. Wentz, A Basic History of Lutheranism in America, rev. ed. (Philadelphia, 1964); V. Ferm, The Crisis in American Lutheran Theology (New York, 1927); C. Mauelshagen, American Lutheranism Surrenders to Forces of Conservatism (Athens, Georgia, 1936); R. C. Wiederaenders and W. G. Tillmanns, The Synods of American Lutheranism ([St. Louis], 1968); E. C. Nelson and K. S. Knutson, Lutheranism in North America 1914–70 (Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1972).

Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

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