Lutheran Elementary Schools: Making Disciples for Life
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age. Matthew 28:19-20
There is one imperative in the Great Commission of Matthew 28:19-20 and it is not “Go!” The Greek would be better translated, “As you are going.” The imperative that our Lord Jesus gives is to “make disciples.” He also then identifies the means by which disciples are made, “baptizing…teaching.” Lutheran schools are one of the ways in which the Church is supported in this charge to make disciples. Likewise, Lutheran schools also support parents in their God-given responsibility of bring children up in their fear and admonition of the Lord.
This year there are nearly 10,000 among our 49 Lutheran elementary schools in Missouri District. This is the largest enrollment since 2016-17 school year. As the theme for the National Lutheran Schools Week highlights, our schools’ purpose remains “Making Disciples for Life.” The Christian faith is more than just a subject within a larger curriculum. Students are taught the Scriptures, the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer and Luther’s Small Catechism. Hymns of faith are sung in chapel services, choir rehearsals and in classrooms. From the Table of Duties, students are taught the vocations within home, church, work, and as citizens. Each day, our schools are working to make disciples who will serve their Lord in varied places and vocations throughout their lives.
Our congregations and schools are called to be good stewards of those entrusted to our care. This means paying attention to more than just test scores. We are forming servants for Christ. What we teach matters. The mission of our schools is markedly different than that of public schools. Armed with the Scripture and other tools for teaching the faith such as hymnals and the Small Catechism, we pray the Spirit will work through the Word so that it will pass from the ear to the heart, from the heart to the lip, and from the lip to the life as disciples are made for God’s mission of mercy and love to the world.
Prayer – Almighty God, the fount of all wisdom, by Your Holy Spirit enlighten those who teach and those who learn, that rejoicing in the knowledge of Your truth they may worship You and serve You from generation to generation; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan