Monday, May 28, 2012

LCMS, Anglicans Affirm Common Beliefs; Mull Fighting Homosexuality, Abortion Together

The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and the Anglican Church in North America affirmed core teachings of the Christian faith they share and expressed hope to jointly fight some key social challenges, including homosexuality, abortion and secularism, after concluding the first round of theological discussions.

The cooperation between the two denominations is a reason for joy at a time when "there is a widespread failure to recognize the biblical teaching regarding the creation of man and woman and their biblical roles, life-issues, and other grave challenges that society faces," LCMS President the Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison said in a statement Friday as the two bodies released a joint report summarizing the areas of agreement.
There are some differences in doctrine, Harrison agreed, but quoted a Lutheran theologian as saying that churches who can honestly discuss where they have disagreements in doctrine are in fact closer to each other than churches who cannot discuss such matters.

The dialogue, aimed at increasing the level of mutual understanding and affirmations between the church bodies, led to a joint affirmation of core Christian teachings the two denominations share. The discussions, which took place during four meetings over the past 18 months beginning the fall of 2010, also included a representative of the Lutheran Church-Canada.

The theological agreements include faith in the Trinity as per the Apostles,' Nicene, and Athanasian creeds; faith in one Lord Jesus Christ, God and Man, who is the savior of all the world; the Fall into sin and the reality that only by grace through faith in Christ can fallen human beings find justification and salvation; one Baptism for the remission of sins and the new life given through this sacrament; and that these truths are known through the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, the very Word of God written, which are the infallible basis for all church teaching.

Based on the areas of theological agreement, the churches also recognized "certain grave, particular challenges that we face today." Read more

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