The Church of the risen Lord has real comfort to give–in its most basic confession: Christ is Lord!
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The Lutheran Witness — June/July 2015
Infertility. Children. Miscarriage. Adoption. Family. The topics are intertwined, and it’s hard to find someone who doesn’t have an opinion on any one of them.
This issue of The Lutheran Witness deals with these issues, continuing a conversation starting by LCMS Life Ministry and the Concordia Seminary Life Team, who hosted a one-day infertility ethics symposium Nov. 8, 2014, at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. Discussing doctrine and ethics, the conference presenters asked and answered important questions: What does Jesus say about the value of life? How does He talk about families? What good word does He give regarding marriage and children?
Some of the presentations given at the symposium are featured in part here. The Rev. Christopher Esget’s “Hannahs in the Pews” repeats the hope Christ offers those who suffer barrenness or miscarriage. In “Be Fruitful and Multiply,” the Rev. William Cwirla navigates the murky waters of the ethics of reproductive technology, while the Rev. Dr. James Lamb’s “From Created to Creator” explains where Lutherans begin their discussion regarding in vitro fertilization.
Other articles are simply written by those who have experienced these issues in their own lives. In “Adopted into Christ,” the Rev. William Johnson and his wife, Cammie, share the story of their adoption into Christ’s family through Baptism and the adoption of their daughters into their own family. in “Saved through Childbearing?” Rebekah Curtis, a mom herself, unpacks that tricky verse from the Bible, reminding us that we are saved by God’s mercy, not by anything we do.
The Rev. David Fleming’s “Not Alone” reminds couples without children that Jesus’ love covers all their hurts, while the Rev. Kevin Roop’s “Keep Talking” encourages husbands and wives to take their concerns to Christ in prayer.
The Rev. John Sharp, in “Husbands Ask Their Pastors,” offers pastoral care specifically to husbands and fathers, who often get lost in the discussion, while Tamara Ockree’s “Dear Christian Sister” reminds women who have lost children in miscarriage that God offered up His own Son for our salvation.
The Rev. Michael Schuermann’s “What about Embryo Adoption?” explains the value and worth Jesus places on even the tiniest embryos, while the Rev. Jason Swan’s “Objective Values” uses a timeless C. S. Lewis book to remind us that life begins at conception and has innate value because of Jesus!
Infertility. Children. Miscarriage. Adoption. Family. The topics are weighty. The discussions are hard. And that makes the conversation all the more worth having because, as the Rev. Christopher Esget reminds us, “We preach Jesus who is with us in all our brokenness and loss and will at the last wipe every tear from our eyes.”
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Adriane Heins, Managing Editor
The Lutheran Witness
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Since June 26, 2015, and the redefinition of marriage, your religious exercise arena has, no doubt, begun to feel more enclosed; a bit like Alice in Wonderland–too tall for a room full of locked doors.
You’ve got wounds, some closed, some still raw and weeping, wounds that time simply can’t heal, wounds that will only be healed in the resurrection.
Christ comes only for sinners. We qualify.
But who are we today? Are we a people identified by our German food and drink preferences? Are we just angry at the establishment? Are we just anti-Roman Catholics (or Roman Catholics-lite according to some)?
By Baptism, our weakness is buried in His death, and we are raised into a hope that cannot be put to shame.
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