Caring for Our Church Workers in Need
‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ Matthew 25:37-40
There are many ways that congregations, schools, and church workers are blessed and served by being part of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod that are given little notice or fanfare. We are blessed to have faithful, Lutheran catechetical and devotional materials through Concordia Publishing House. Many rostered church workers are blessed with home loans through Lutheran Church Extension Fund. The tenth objective of the Synod is “Aid in providing for the welfare of pastors, teachers, and other church workers, and their families in the event of illness, disability, retirement, special need, or death.”
One of the primary ways that this is carried out is through the service of Concordia Plan Services (CPS). It is a great asset to our congregations and those who serve in the Synod. From health insurance to retirement plans, CPS serves the Synod and its members by striving to be good stewards in the ongoing care and support of church workers and their families. If you ever have questions about how CPS can be of support your congregation or school in that care of church workers through health, wellness, and retirement resources, contact them at 888-927-7526.
However, there are other ways that this objective is carried out. Soldiers of the Cross is a program through which the Synod and districts provide emergency financial support for church workers in need. There are times when church workers or family members endure medical emergencies that lead to financial pressures on families. Soldiers of the Cross has been a way to provide grants to assist the church worker families for such times. Since COVID-19 began, Soldiers of the Cross provided more than $1.5 million to those who served LCMS ministries and were effected by COVID-19 through loss of wages or positions. If you wonder how the District or Synod can assist a church worker family with a special need, please contact me at 314-590-6210. We are here to serve.
These are just a few examples of things we are able to do together as the Synod that we would not be able to do in the same way individually. It is my fervent prayer that God will strengthen our walking together for the sake of the proclaiming of the pure Gospel, the administration of the Sacraments, the loving care for the flock, and the seeking after the lost. May God bless us in that walking together!
Prayer – Almighty God, our heavenly Father, You graciously provide for all of our needs. We give thanks for all of the ways in which we work together for the sake of Your kingdom. Bless our congregations, schools and especially our church workers as they serve in these challenging times; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan