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Ohio and Other States, The Evangelical Lutheran Joint Synod of.

1. Names used by this body include Gen. Conf. of the Ev. Luth. Preachers in Ohio and the Adjacent States (General Conferenz Der Evangelisch-Lutherischen Prediger in Ohio und den angrenzenden Staaten) 1818–29; The Ger. Ev. Luth. Ministerium in Ohio and the Neighboring States (Das Deutsche Ev. Luth. Ministerium in Ohio und den benachbarten Staaten) 1818–49; Syn. and Ministerium of the Ev. Luth. Ch. in the State of Ohio 1830–43; Ev. Luth. Joint Syn. of Ohio and Other States 1844–; Ev. Luth. Syn. of Ohio and Adjacent States (1849 charter); The Ev. Luth. Joint Syn. of Ohio and Other States 1902–30.

In the last decades of the 18th c. many Luths. moved to the Northwest Territory, which included Ohio. The number increased after Ohio became a state 1802/03. Early Luth. pastors in Ohio include Wilhelm Georg Forster (William George; Foster; Foerster; d. 1815; licensed as candidate by Pennsylvania Ministerium 1798, ordained 1802; pastor Shenandoah Co., Virginia; to Fairfield Co., Ohio, ca. 1806), P. Henkel (see Henkels, The, 2), J. Steck,* and J. Stauch.* The 1st of 7 special conferences was held October 17–19, 1812, Washington Co., Pennsylvania; the 7th was held September 20–24, 1817, New Philadelphia, Ohio.

2. September 14, 1818, a conf., or syn. (the minutes use both terms), was formed at Somerset, Ohio, but without a specific name; the title page of the minutes uses the name Gen. Conference of the Ev. Luth. Preachers in Ohio and the Adjacent States; pres. J. Stauch, secy. P. Henkel, treas. G. H. Weygandt.* The body declined to join The General* Syn. of the Ev. Luth. Ch. in the USA 1820.

3. A sem. was est. 1830 at Canton, Ohio, transferred 1831 to Columbus, Ohio; 1st prof. W. Schmidt* (1803–39); see also Ministry, Education of, X G. In 1831 the body divided into an E Dist. of the Ohio Syn. and a W Dist. of the Ohio Syn. In course of time other districts were formed. By the mid–1840s it was commonly called a “Joint Syn.” (Ger. “Allgemeine Synode”). The term arose out of the fact that its districts met together, or “joined,” in the gen. conv. The body met biennially as a delegate syn. since 1854. The word “Joint” was officially included in the name 1902.

4. In November 1836 the Syn. and Ministerium of the Eng. Ev. Luth. Chs. in Ohio and Adjacent States (later called The Eng. Ev. Luth. Syn. and Ministerium of Ohio and Adjacent States) was organized as an Eng. Dist., or Dist. Syn., at Somerset, Ohio, by mems. of the Joint Syn., which adopted a provision forbidding this new dist. to join any other body without approval of the Joint Syn. The majority of this dist. severed connection with the Joint Syn. 1840 and joined the Gen. Syn. 1843 (see General Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the United States of America, The, 3). The minority continued the Eng. Dist., which seceded from the Joint Syn. and joined the Gen. Syn. 1855 as the Eng. Syn. and Ministerium (see also General Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the United States of America, The, 3). A dissenting minority organized a new Eng. Dist. at Circleville, Ohio, 1857. It joined the Gen. Council 1867 as the Eng. Ev. Luth. Dist. Syn. of Ohio and Adjacent States without approval of the Joint Syn. and separated from the latter 1869. But a minority organized 1869 as an Eng. Dist. loyal to the Joint Syn.

5. The Joint Syn. of Ohio was influenced by the Pennsylvania Ministerium and the Tennessee Syn.; it was also affected by unionism and New* Measures. The Lutheran Standard was est. 1842, Lutherische Kirchen-Zeitung 1860. Relations were est. through J. G. Burger* and J. A. Ernst* with J. K. W. Löhe.* Influx of Ger. candidates strengthened conservatism under leadership of W. Sihler* in the early 1840s. The conservatives withdrew 1845 (see Document of Separation); yet the Joint Syn. resolved 1848 to adhere to the Luth. Confessions and took an antilodge stand beginning 1854. Contact with the Mo. Syn. in the 1856–59 Free* Luth. Conferences deepened the confessionalism of the Joint Syn. For lack of a clear statement by the Gen. Council on the Four* Points the Joint Syn. did not join the Council. Fraternal relations were est. with the Mo. Syn. 1872 (see Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, The, V, 15). The Joint Ohio Syn. helped organize the Synodical* Conf. As a result of the Predestinarian* Controversy beginning January 1880, the Joint Syn. withdrew from the Syn. Conf. 1881; spokesmen for the position of the Joint Syn. included H. A. Allwardt,* F. A. Schmid(t),* and F. W. Stellhorn.* Unsuccessful efforts were made at intersyn. conferences 1903–06 to heal the breach; see also Chicago Theses (Intersynodical Theses; Theses for Union).

6. On relations with the Iowa Syn. see Iowa and Other States, Evangelical Lutheran Synod of, 9. See also National Lutheran Council; American Lutheran Church.

7. The Joint Ohio Syn. engaged in home mission work; conducted a miss. among Negroes in Baltimore, Maryland, and in cen. Alabama, and among Jews, esp. with Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, as a center; in 1912 it took over the Hermannsburg stations at Kodur and Puttur, among Telugu in E India (see also India, 13).

8. Schools: a sem. at Columbus, Ohio (see par. 3); Capital U., Columbus (see Ministry, Education of, VIII A); Luther Sem. (the “Practical Dept.” added 1881/82 to the sem. at Columbus moved 1884 to Afton, Minnesota, as Luther Sem., moved 1892/93 to St. Paul, Minnesota, united 1932 with Wartburg Sem., Dubuque, Iowa); Hebron Coll. and Academy, Hebron, Nebr. (opened 1911 as academy, expanded 1924 into a Jr. Coll.; closed 1942); Luther Coll., Regina, Sask., Can. (see Luther College, 5); St. John's Academy and Coll., Petersburg, W. Virginia (opened 1921 as academy, enl. 1931 into a Jr. Coll.; closed 1933); Woodville (Ohio) Normal School (est. 1882, closed 1923); Pacific Sem., Olympia, Washington (opened 1907; theol. dept. discontinued 1911; coll. dept. discontinued with the close of the school year 1917); practical sem., Hickory, North Carolina, 1887–1912.

C. Spielmann, Abriss der Geschichte der evangelisch-lutherischen Synode von Ohio u. a. Staaten, in einfacher Darstellung, von ihren ersten Anfängen bis zum Jahre 1846 (Columbus, Ohio, 1880); P. A. Peter and W. Schmidt, Geschichte der Allgemeinen Evang.-Lutherischen Synode von Ohio und anderen Staaten (Columbus, Ohio, 1900); E. A. Boehme, Handbuch der Evangelisch-Lutherischen Synode von Ohio und anderen Staaten: Manual of The Evangelical Lutheran Joint Synod of Ohio and Other States (Columbus, Ohio, 1910); C. V. Sheatsley, History of the Evangelical Lutheran Joint Synod of Ohio and Other States From the Earliest Beginnings to 1919 (Columbus, Ohio, 1919); M. Loy, “The Joint Synod of Ohio,” The Distinctive Doctrines and Usages of the General Bodies of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the United States, 4th ed., rev. and enl. (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1914), pp. 5–35; B. H. Pershing, “Lutheran Synodical Organization in Ohio Before 1850,” The Lutheran Church Quarterly, IX (1936), 402–418; G. W. Mechling, History of the Evangelical Lutheran District Synod of Ohio Covering Fifty-three Years 1857–1910 (n. p., 1911); W. D. Allbeck, A Century of Lutherans in Ohio (Yellow Springs, Ohio, 1966); Lutheran World Missions, ed. A. S. Burgess (Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1954), pp. 26–30.

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

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