The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod

History of the LCMS


The Missouri Synod can trace its beginning in America to Friedrich Conrad Dietrich Wyneken (1810-1876).  Coming to America in 1838, he went into the west of his day to minister to the spiritual needs of German Lutheran immigrants.  He found the task gigantic and the conditions deplorable.  Through him, Johannes Konrad Wilhelm Loehe (1808-1872) of Neuendettelsau became active for North American missions.  He established German colonies in the Saginaw Valley in Michigan, whose settlers were also to serve as missionaries to the native American Indians.

Meanwhile, a group of emigrants had left Saxony and settled in Perry County, Missouri.  Their leader was Martin Stephan (1777-1846), a pastor from Dresden.  He, like Loehe, belonged to the movement most easily styled “Old Lutheranism.”


In these two divergent groups the beginnings of the Missouri Synod can be found.  In April 1847, F.C.D. Wyneken, Wilheim Sihler and August Craemer instigated the moves which let to the organization of the German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Missouri, Ohio and other states.  Later it was renamed simply, The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod and in 1854, a constitution was drafted and districts formed.  Dr. C.F.W. Walther of Missouri was the first president.


The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod is known for organization matters, education, doctrine and missions.  Our denomination has over 6,000 churches in North America committed to the work of the Lord in these areas.



LCMS Website