Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod President Gerald Kieschnick issued the following statement about Pope John Paul II on April 2, the day the pope died in his Vatican apartment:
Pope John Paul II’s strong voice in confronting issues crucial for our age with courage and conviction for more than a quarter of a century will be missed. He provided inspiration and leadership, not only to Roman Catholics but also to the greater Christian world and beyond with his uncompromising stances in favor of life and against the culture of death.
Though historic differences between our churches remain, Pope John Paul II will also be remembered for his call for Christian churches to seek to work out their differences in faithfulness to their convictions and to their doctrinal heritage.
We join together with all those from around the world who mourn the loss of Pope John Paul II, and we pray that all those who grieve his death may find comfort and peace in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, in whose name alone there is life and salvation.
Posted April 7, 2005