Evangelical Lutheran General Synod of the United States of North America
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The Evangelical Lutheran General Synod of the United States of North America, commonly known as the General Synod, was an association of Lutheran church bodies in America that was established in 1820.
The roots of the "General Synod" reach back to the Pennsylvania Ministerium, at whose suggestion the Synod was founded in 1820. Under the leadership of the Rev. Dr. Samuel Simon Schmucker (1799-1873), the General Synod founded Gettysburg Seminary in 1826 and Gettysburg College in 1832, the oldest continuously operating Lutheran college and seminary in North America.
Like many Protestant denominations, the General Synod was split over the issue of slavery and the political and military conflict of the American Civil War, at which time the United Synod of the South (also known as the General Synod - South) was founded. The General Synod further split over theological issues in 1867, when the General Council of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in North America was formed by dissatisfied members of the General Synod. These three groups were reunited in 1918 with the formation of the United Lutheran Church in America, a predecessor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
In 1912, the General Synod reported 1,384 pastors, 1,788 congregations, 420,398 baptized members, 317,073 confirmed members, and 237,648 communicants.
- Bente, F. American Lutheranism Volume II St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House. 1919.
- Wolf, Edmund Jacob. The Lutherans in America; a story of struggle, progress, influence and marvelous growth. New York: J.A. Hill, 1889.
- Lutheran Witness Vol. 32
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