Following a recommendation from General Pastors Conference, Synod has asked the General Church Board (GCB) to commission a study of the implications and advisability of full membership in both the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and International Lutheran Council (ILC).
A number of congregations had submitted proposals to this Convention of Synod in relation to the LCA applying for full membership of the two international Lutheran bodies. The (then) General Church Council referred the matter to the General Pastors Conference for advice.
Membership in the LWF has been regarded as a theological matter for some years, particularly since 1990 when the LWF member churches voted to become a ‘communion’. Membership in the ILC has not been regarded as a theological matter as it has a different self-understanding to the LWF. The practice of the LCA, however, has been to ‘pair’ these relationships so that what it does in respect to one it also does in respect to the other.
General Synod requested the GCB to submit a report with recommendations to the 20th General Convention of Synod in 2021.
The LCA currently holds associate member status in both the LWF and ILC.