A. Parish Educ. Defined.
1. Responsibility for Christian educ. is shared by parents (Dt 6:67; Ps 78:16; Eph 6:4) and the ch. (Mt 28:1920; Jn 21:1517). The ch. emphasizes the importance of Christian training in the home and organizes an educ. program for all ch. mems. Dt 32:46; Acts 20:28; Cl 1:10; and 2 Ptr 3:18 show that parish educ. is to meet high standards set by God, continue through life, and provide for spiritual growth and regular opportunities for Christian education.
2. All parish educ. activities should try to achieve the 3-fold aim of Christian educ.: the glory of God, the temporal and eternal happiness of the individual, and the welfare of mankind. This art. concerns parish educ. esp. in LCMS.
B. Parish Educ. at the Preschool Level.
1. The ch. was slow in arranging programs for children too young for formal agencies.
2. The preschool program of the ch. includes the S. S. nursery (or cradle) roll (birth to age 3), the S. S. nursery class (ages 34), the S. S. kindergarten class (ages 45), and weekday kindergarten (age 5 up to 6).
3. S. S. Nursery (or Cradle) Roll. Nursery Roll and Cradle Roll are somewhat interchangeable designations for the dept. giving attention to infants and small children. Some use Cradle Roll for birth to age 1, Nursery Roll for 13. Aims:
a. To awaken in parents a sense of responsibility for the religious instruction and training of their little ones and to give them initial guidance;
c. To give the ch. additional access to homes of unchurched who have prekindergarten children;
d. To provide basic materials for a head start in Christian nurture.
4. Nursery and Kindergarten Classes in the Sunday School. 3-yr.-olds who attend S. S. comprise the Nursery Class; 4-to-5-yr.-olds comprise the Kindergarten Class. In 1970, congs. in the US and Can. enrolled ca. 48,700 in Nursery Classes and ca. 79,900 in Kindergarten Classes.
5. Weekday Nursery School and Kindergarten. The Nursery School aims to provide learning experiences in a Christian environment for 3- and 4-yr.-olds. Some congs. operate nursery schools as part of the elementary school or as part of a nursery school-kindergarten program. The Kindergarten promotes learning through work and play in a Christian environment; it helps the child adjust to school life, develops creative abilities, broadens interests, and helps develop skills in learning, language, and self-expression.
D. Parochial, or Elementary, School.
a. That the child in relation to God develop (1) a growing knowledge of the Triune God, a growing trust in Jesus Christ as the Savior from sin, and an increasingly worshipful, sanctified life; (2) a growing knowledge of the Bible as the Word of Life, a proper understanding of Law and Gospel, and increased ability to apply God's Word to life situations, and a desire to gain the blessings of Holy Baptism and the Lord's Supper; (3) an understanding of the nature, function, and responsibility of the ch. as the body of Christ, plus a willingness and ability to serve as an active mem. of this body and as a priest of God.
b. That the child in relation to himself and his powers (1) develop knowledges, attitudes, and conducts needed to function effectively as God's child (spiritual powers); (2) understand his body and accept responsibility for its health, safety, and recreation (physical powers); (3) develop logical, scientific, and creative thinking habits, gain knowledge and communication tools, and acquire significant elements of his cultural heritage (mental powers); (4) develop soc. skills needed to live competently and creatively (soc. powers); (5)understand and control his emotions, find security and a true picture of himself through firm reliance on God and trust in Christ, and practice Christian love toward all men (emotional powers); (6) appreciate the beauties of nature and the fine arts and express himself in various fine-arts media (aesthetic powers).
c. That the child in relation to his fellowmen (1) recognize all men to be God's creation and show respect, courtesy, and consideration for the rights and welfare of others; (2) respect parents as God's representatives and appreciate his privileges and responsibilities as a mem. of an earthly family of which Christ is Head; (3) develop Christian soc. responsibility and cooperative skills; (4) develop concern for the spiritual and material welfare of all men and show this concern by witnessing and welfare activities; (5) respect govt. as God-ordained and appreciate his privileges and responsibilities as a mem. of the local, state, nat., and world community.
d. That the child in relation to nature (1) understand that God is the Creator, Ruler, and Preserver of nature; (2) thank and praise God for the gifts of nature; (3) develop knowledges, attitudes, and conducts needed to understand, use, and care for God's gifts in nature; (4) willingly use nature to glorify God and serve man.
3. The school stresses Christian growth opportunities in the whole school experience and provides for complete education in the curriculum.
4. See Teachers.
5. The curriculum may be defined as the sum of the experiences the child has in school. The teacher tries to provide a Bible-based, Christ-centered, and life-related curriculum. The Bible is frame of reference for all school activities.
6. At first special instructional materials were produced and promoted on a local or regional level. Production of such materials was assigned to the 1st Gen. School Bd., est. 1914. Materials have included textbooks in Bible Hist. and Catechism, the Concordia Primary Religion Series, Units in Religion for Lutheran Schools, and other textbooks. Materials for the teacher include General Course of Study for Lutheran Elementary Schools (1943); A Curriculum Guide for Lutheran Elementary Schools (3 vols. 1964; updated by annual supplements).
7. LCMS statistics covering US, Can., and S. America (figures for congs. usually include preaching stations). 1850: 41 congs., 41 schools, 41 teachers, 1,342 pupils; 1860: 155 congs., 129 schools, 129 teachers, 6,843 pupils; 1870: 214 congs., 226 schools, 20,369 pupils; 1880: 851 congs., 784 schools, 43,368 pupils; 1890: 1,662 congs., 1,226 schools; 1,305 teachers, 78,061 pupils; 1900: 2,147 congs., 1,767 schools, 1,907 teachers, 92,042 pupils; 1910: 2,736 congs., 2,130 schools, 2,360 teachers, 93,890 pupils; 1920: 3,283 congs., 1,310 schools, 1,954 teachers, 73,063 pupils; 1930: 3,843 congs., 1,339 schools, 3,335 teachers, 79,956 pupils; 1940: 4,358 congs., 1,259 schools, 2,247 teachers, 71,151 pupils; 1950: 5,608 congs., 1,277 schools, 3,228 teachers, 98,136 pupils; 1960: 6,610 congs., 1,413 schools, 5,501 teachers, 156,244 pupils; 1970: 7,233 congs., 1,215 schools, 6,616 teachers, 150,980 pupils. See par. 8.
8. In par. 7, figures for 1900 and 1910 include many Saturday schools and summer schools. Loss in pupils 193040 was largely a result of economic depression. Declining birth rate, higher school standards, and increased costs brought a decline in the no. of schools and pupils 196070.
9. Statistics for other Luth. bodies in America. 1969 LCA: 19 schools, 153 teachers, 2,908 pupils. 1970 figures for WELS: 244 schools, 1,038 teachers, 26,070 pupils; SELC: 3 schools, 14 teachers, 368 pupils; Ch. of the Luth. Confession: 11 schools, 31 teachers, 453 pupils; The ALC: 52 schools, 389 teachers, 6,975 pupils (plus 156 teachers, 2,846 pupils in kindergartens of 93 additional congs.).
10. LCMS has promoted schools and textbooks from its founding 1847. A Gen. School Bd. was created by syn. 1914. Secretaries of Schools: A. C. Stellhorn* 192160, William Albert Kramer (b. 1900) 196070. Secy. of Elementary and Secondary Schools: Al H. Senske 197180.
E. Sunday School.
4. As the Mo. Syn. grew, many congs. could not, or at least did not, maintain parochial schools. Instead, they organized part-time agencies of religious instruction, including the S. S. Some congs. with parochial schools also recognized the merits of the S. S. The S. S. is the most widespread educ. agency in the Mo. Syn.; few congs. are without one.
5. Materials used in early Sunday schools included esp. the Bible, catechisms, Bible histories, and hymnals. Ger. and Eng. S. S. lesson leaflets first appeared January 1911, Concordia Lesson Helps January 1916 (replaced January 1923 by Concordia Sunday-School Teachers' Quarterly), Interaction October 1960.
6. The Life in Christ series began October 1951. Mission:Life materials appeared 1971, the New Life in Christ series 1976.
7. Meetings to instruct and train teachers were soon held regularly. S. S. assocs. were formed in St. Louis, Missouri, Chicago, Illinois, and Cleveland, Ohio, in the 1920s. Many other assocs. were later formed elsewhere. The Bd. of Parish Educ. promoted circuit S. S. assocs. and provided programs for them through Dist. bds. Most Districts have sponsored S. S. convs. The 1st nat. conv. was held 1960.
8. LCMS est. the office of Gen. S. S. Secy. 1956; Allan Hart Jahsmann was its 1st incumbent 195968 In 1968 the name of the office was changed (present name: Secy. of Sunday, Weekday, and Summer Schools) and Dale E. Griffin appointed to it.
9. In 1938 LCMS approved appointment of a S. S. teacher training committee, which issued 16 courses first called Concordia Teacher Training Series, later changed to Concordia Leadership Training Series (more than 10,000,000 copies 193868).
10. Approximate LCMS S. S. figures. 1910: 53,343 pupils; 1920: 1,587 Sunday schools, 108,133 pupils, 9,553 teachers; 1930: 2,849 Sunday schools, 210,988 pupils, 20,174 teachers; 1940: 3,635 Sunday schools, 281,572 pupils, 29,531 teachers; 1950: 4,421 Sunday schools, 425,499 pupils, 48,514 teachers; 1960: 5,439 Sunday schools, 802,980 pupils, 92,206 teachers; 1970: 5,899 Sunday schools, 885,128 pupils, 98,754 teachers.
Approximate 1970 figures for other Luth. bodies in the US and Canada. LCA: 5,918 Sunday schools, 841,372 pupils, 119,837 teachers; The ALC: 4,596 Sunday schools, 672,461 pupils, 80,361 teachers; SELC: 55 Sunday schools, 4,566 pupils, 683 teachers; WELS: 899 Sunday schools, 53,002 pupils, 6,740 teachers; Ev. Luth. Ch. of Can.: 296 Sunday schools, 21,472 pupils, 3,159 teachers; ELS: 82 Sunday schools, 3,812 pupils, 534 teachers; Ch. of the Luth. Confession: 57 Sunday schools, 1,619 pupils, 256 teachers; Ch. of the Luth. Brethren: 87 Sunday schools, 7,450 pupils, 1,070 teachers.
F. Other Agencies of Elementary Educ..
1. These include weekday schools, vacation Bible (or summer) schools, and confirmation classes.
2. Weekday Schools. For children not attending Luth. elementary schools the weekday school offers 2 or 3 hrs. of Christian educ. in addition to S. S. In 1970, weekday after school classes had ca. 69,420 pupils, Saturday schools ca. 47,000 pupils, released time schools ca. 18,960 pupils. Weekday schools are taught by pastors, professional teachers, and volunteer teachers. Materials were issued in the early and mid-1940s under the series title Lessons in Religion for Part-Time Schools. The Concordia Weekday Series appeared in the 1960s.
3. Approximate summer school (later called VBS) figures. 1945: 1,043 schools, 36,168 pupils; 1950: 1,937 schools, 125,126 pupils; 1960: 3,475 schools, 338,435 pupils: 1970: 4,162 schools, 376,299 pupils. Special VBS materials were developed.
5. Christenlehre is catechetical instruction for all, formerly conducted sometimes only for children, in a ch. service usually Sunday morning or afternoon.
1. A few high schools were est. 185777 in the Mo. Syn. but closed for lack of sufficient financial support. A few other ventures, e.g., in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (1903), Chicago, Illinois (1909), and Fort Wayne, Indiana (1935), were more successful. A large increase in the no. of high schools began in the mid-1940s.
As of 1971, LCMS high schools (with yr. founded) included Luther High School North, Chicago, Illinois (1909); Conc. Lutheran High School, Fort Wayne, Indiana (1935); Luth. High School West, Detroit, Michigan (1944); Luth. High School, Racine, Wisconsin (1944); Luth. High School North and Luth. High School South, St. Louis, Missouri (1946); Luth. High School, Houston, Texas (1949); Luther High School South, Chicago, Illinois (1951); Walther Luth. High School, Melrose Park, Illinois (1953); Maier Memorial Luth. High School, Los Angeles, California (1953); Luth. High School, Denver, Colorado (1955); Milwaukee (Wisconsin) Luth. High School (1955); Our Savior Luth. High School, Bronx, New York (1955); Luth. High School East, Harper Woods (near Detroit), Michigan (1957); Luth. High School East, Cleveland Heights, Ohio (1958); Luth. High School West, Rocky River (near Cleveland), Ohio (1958); Long Is. Luth. High School, Brookville, New York (1959); Luth. High School, St. Paul, Minnesota (1959); Luth. High School, Mayer, Minnesota (1960); Martin Luther High School, Maspeth, New York (1960); Minneapolis (Minnesota) Luth. High School (1963); Luth. High School, Baltimore, Maryland (1965); Germantown Luth. Academy, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (1965); Luth. High School, Rockford, Illinois (1965); Martin Luther High School, Greendale (near Milwaukee), Wisconsin (1968); Luth. High School, New Orleans, Louisiana (1970); Saint John Luth. High School, Ocala, Florida (1970).
H. Parish Education at the Adult Level.
1. Congs. found it desirable to provide for adult educ. in Bible classes and special classes, particularly for parent educ. Topic studies of the LLL and LWML were used in meetings of those organizations. In 1944 the Mo. Syn. assigned the sphere of adult educ. to its Bd. for Parish Education. Secretaries of Adult Educ.: Oscar E. Feucht 1946-end of 1968, Victor Constien 196977. The bd. gave special attention to Bible classes, family life educ., adult school of religion, cottage Bible classes, and leadership training in Bible institutes.
2. In 1947 LCMS launched an intensive syn.-wide Bible study movement. The Train-Two program (aim: to train 2 persons as lay leaders for every existing and every prospective Bible class) began 1959. See also Bible Study.
b. Developing materials for annual observances of Christian Family Month.
c. Developing resources for the whole program of ministry to families.
d. Providing direction and aids for marriage educ. and counseling. An in-service training program in pastoral care to families was developed. An extensive seminar program was projected.
e. Materials in the Parent Guidance Series provided topic studies for Parent-Teacher groups.
g. Research projects resulted in several vols.: Engagement and Marriage; Sex and the Church; Family Relationships and the Church.
4. Congs. were urged to est. a weekday Adult School of Religion with these features: short-term (6 to 8 week) courses in spring and fall; 1 1/2 to 2 hrs. per session; multiple choices based, on needs and interests; teachers selected to teach a specific course. Special short-term courses were also developed for this program.
5. In cottage Bible classes, groups meet in homes of mems.
6. A manual entitled Leadership Training Through Bible Institutes was issued (later reissued as Adult Education Through Bible Institutes) to guide development of intercong. or circuit schools offering advanced courses.
7. In 1962 ca. 100 Bible institutes were in operation, most with weekly sessions for 6 to 8 weeks, some conducted in spring and fall. Programs included courses on the Bible, Christian doctrine, and various areas of ch. work.
I. Financing the Program of Parish Educ..
2. Sunday schools, weekday schools, and vacation Bible schools usually help to finance themselves, with the balance, if any, subscribed by the cong. or other sources.
A 197071 survey revealed annual tuition charges ranging from $1 to more than $400; decisions connected with tuition charges lie within cong. jurisdiction.
Annual operating cost is figured on 2 bases: (1) average daily membership (ADM); (2) average daily attendance (ADA). In the 197071 school yr. the average per pupil cost (ADM) in a survey of 702 schools was $359; on ADA basis it was $364.
4. The supporting organization for a high school may be 1 cong., or, in the case of a cen. school, an assoc. of congs., or an assoc. of individuals. 197071 tuition charges for Luth. mems. ranged from $250 to $1,220, for non-Luth. mems. from $450 to $1,300. In 1969 it was estimated that the capital investment required to est. a Luth. high school ranged from $2,500 to $3,000 per pupil. In 26 high schools the 197071 average operating cost per pupil (ADM) was $643, with the range extending from $472 to $1,261.
5. Government Aid for Lutheran Schools. See Public Aid to Church-Related Elementary and Secondary Schools.
J. Luth. Parent-Teacher Organizations. Gen. meet monthly; program usually planned jointly by parents and teachers. Aims: (1) mutual homeschool understanding; (2) home-school cooperation and unity; (3) supplementing the cong. budget and providing instructional equipment. The Nat. Luth. Parent-Teacher League was formed 1953 as a dept. of LEA Later it became a separate organization. It has provided helps to cong. parent-teacher groups in organization, program, and service projects. 671 groups were affiliated 197071.
K. Educational Administration and Supervision in the Local Congregation.
1. LCMS policy regards the cong. as the basic unit of administration and supervision. As a rule, the cong. exercises its authority and responsibility in this field through such officers as the pastor, bd. of educ., principal, S. S. supt., weekday school supt., VBS supt., and dir. of educ.
c. Provide lay leadership for the program.
d. Promote the agencies.
4. Professionally trained parochial school teachers are usually used in the entire program of the cong.
5. The principal of the school takes the lead in faculty meetings, setting up the curriculum, and evaluating accomplishments. He is also to carry out policies adopted by the bd. of educ. and represent the school in pub. relations. Luth. principals usually teach, but there were 60 full-time principals 197071. Full-time principals function as the educ. leaders of their schools in the administration and supervision of the whole program. Some full-time principals also serve as directors of Christian educ. for the whole parish educ. program.
1. Soon after the Mo. Syn. created a Gen. School Bd. 1914 (see also D 6), various Dists. created similar bds. or committees. Their area of concern grew from the parochial school to include all agencies of parish educ. Functions as defined in the 1971 LCMS Handbook, p. 160: The District board shall cooperate with the Synod's Board of Parish Education and shall assist and advise the local congregation with regard to the whole range of Christian education on all age levels, helping the local congregation achieve the objectives of Christian education. More detailed regulations on the Dist. level usually specify that the bd. shall consider itself advisory both to the Dist. and its officials and to the congs. and their pastors and teachers. See also 2.
3. Some Dists. have appointed full-time functionaries variously called Supt., Ex. Secy., Dir. of Christian Educ., or Counselor in Parish Educ. Development of this office was gradual: 3 Dists. 1918, 5 Dists. 1920/21, 1 Dist. in the 1930s, 6 Dists. in the 1940s, 7 Dists. in the 1950s, 5 Dists. in the 1960s. In 1972 two Dists. provided some service through other Dist. executives; the other 7 Dists. provided leadership through mems. of the Dist. Bd. of Parish Educ.
1. The Mo. Syn. appointed a Gen. School Bd. 1914 (see also D 6). A S. S. Bd. was created 1923. In 1932 these 2 bds. were joined to form 1 Bd. of Christian Educ. In 1944 the Mo. Syn. enlarged the scope of this bd. and changed its name to Board for Parish Education (changed 1959 to Bd. of Parish Educ., 1981 to Bd. for Parish Services). Functions are defined in the LCMS Handbook.
4. In 1932 the Mo. Syn. resolved that the syn. Bd. of Christian Educ. elect an executive secretary, whose field of activities shall be our entire work of Christian childhood-training under instruction of the Board. This resolution was reiterated 1938 and 1941. The office was filled 1943 by the election of Arthur C. Repp, who was succeeded by Arthur L. Miller 194672, Melvin Kieschnick 197276.
6. In 1965, to focus attention on the learner instead of the agencies, staff mems. were assigned to 1 of 3 divisions: children, youth, adults, so they were mems. of a dept. and a division. In 1968 the staff was reorganized into 3 divisions: editorial, field services, and research and development. In this reorganized staff structure Allan H. Jahsmann served as Ex. Dir., Martin F. Wessler as Dir. of Field Services (till 1971), Delbert O. Schulz as Dir. of Research and Development. ALM
See also Schools, Church-Related.
4th LEA Yearbook: 100 Years of Christian Education, ed. A. C. Repp (River Forest, Illinois, 1947); 8th LEA Yearbook: A. L. Miller, Educational Administration and Supervision of the Lutheran Schools of the Missouri Synod, 191450 (River Forest, Illinois, 1951); 13th LEA Yearbook: Readings in the Lutheran Philosophy of Education, ed., L. G. Bickel and R. F. Surburg (River Forest, Illinois, 1956); 14th LEA Yearbook: Tests and Measurements in Lutheran Education, ed. A. L. Miller (River Forest, Illinois, 1957); A. H. Jahsmann, What's Lutheran in Education? (St. Louis, 1960); Lutheran Elementary Schools in Action, ed. V. C. Krause (St. Louis, 1963); M.P. Strommen, Profiles of Church Youth (St. Louis, 1963); A. C. Stellhorn, Schools of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (St. Louis, 1963); 20th LEA Yearbook: M. A. Haendschke, The Sunday School Story (River Forest, Illinois, 1963); Church and State Under God, ed. A. G. Huegli (St. Louis, 1964); A. C. Repp, Confirmation in the Lutheran Church (St. Louis, 1964); W. H. Beck, Lutheran Elementary Schools in the United States, 2d ed. (St. Louis, 1965); 22d LEA Yearbook: The Teaching of Religion, ed. J. S. Damm (River Forest, Illinois, 1965); H. J. Boettcher, Three Philosophies of Education (New York, 1966); F. W. Klos, Confirmation and First Communion (Leader's Guide and A Study Book) (St. Louis, 1968); 26th LEA Yearbook: Christian Education-in Transit! ed. J. F. Choitz (River Forest, Illinois, 1969); F. A. Meyer and H. W. Rast, Foundations for Christian Education (mimeo; n. p., n. d.).
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission
Internet Version Produced by
The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod
Original Editions ©Copyright 1954, 1975, 2000
Concordia Publishing House
All rights reserved.
Content Reproduced with Permission