LCMS Agencies

Concordia Publishing House


Synod’s Publisher



From coal-fired steam presses in 1869 to the most advanced digital technology today, the purpose of Concordia Publishing House has remained the same: to provide the churches, schools and homes of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod with resources that are faithful to the Holy Scriptures and the Lutheran Confessions.


CPH is the largest and oldest continually operating Lutheran publishing house in the world, employing 220 staff and reaching out across the globe in a variety of languages. The number of resources that CPH provides is impressive. From Arch Books to advanced commentaries, the goal of all resources from CPH is to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ to the glory of God.


Blessings



  • One in Christ-new day school curriculum with educational technology included.

  • PrayNow-the first Lutheran daily prayer app for Apple devices (Android coming soon).

  • The Lutheran Study Bible-first-ever Study Bible using exclusive Lutheran resources (in print and digital formats).

Challenges



  • Educating people on the dangers of other publishers’ materials that claim to be Christ-centered and faithful to Scripture, but actually are neither.

  • Ever-growing demand for our uniquely Lutheran resources, and responding to those needs as quickly as possible.


Concordia Plan Services


Synod’s Benefits



Since 1965, the LCMS has entrusted Concordia Plan Services with administering the Concordia Plans for LCMS workers and their families.


Benefits include health, retirement, death and disability plans. A staff of 110 supports 32,000 workers, 58,000 dependents, 17,000 retirees and 6,000 employers (congregations, schools, etc.). All together, the employee benefit trust funds represent $3.2 billion of assets under management.


Blessings



  • A highly qualified board dedicated to our mission.

  • Strong relationships with Synod leaders and ministries.

  • High participation in benefit programs.

  • New products and services, such as a retirement savings plan with match incentives, health coverage for seminarians and families, retirement planning workshops, wellness programs and financial education.

Challenges



  • An increasingly complex regulatory environment, including health-care reform.

  • Prudently managing the trusts in a new economy.

  • Educating workers and employers on the value of collectively participating in Synod’s self-funded benefit plans.


LCMS Foundation


Synod’s Gifts



Since 1958, the LCMS Foundation has provided expertise and services to help Christians plan and direct their passion for giving to family and ministries of the church. Through the gift planning process, individuals make personalized plans for distributing their assets both during their lifetime and when the Lord calls them home.


Each year, the Foundation processes over $40 million in current gifts, prepares $75 million in future gifts and distributes over $20 million in matured planned gifts. The Foundation has 79 full-time and part-time employees, manages $900 million in assets and provides stewardship-based gift planning training to over 100 individuals from ministries throughout the country.


Blessings



  • Extensive partnerships in biblical stewardship-based gift planning.

  • Over $1.2 billion distributed to ministries since 1958.

  • Excellent investment returns.

Challenges



  • To help more Christians create personalized gift plans.

  • To equip church professionals and volunteers with gift planning skills.
     


Lutheran Church Extension Fund


Synod’s Financial Resource



The Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) provides funds and services for ministry expansion and enrichment. The 200 national and district staff members are stewards of a $1.9 billion portfolio with loans to 3,000 partners supported by nearly 60,000 investors.


Blessings



  • Dedicated investors that help maintain a strong asset base, even during tough economic conditions.

  • Organizations and rostered church workers committed to conducting their ministry using LCEF’s loans and services, such as capital funding, demographics, architectural expertise and construction assistance through Laborers For Christ and NAILS.

  • New opportunities to serve through stewardship education and school marketing.

  • International ministries assisted by loans and investments, such as those in Kenya, Latvia, Vietnam and Brazil.

Challenges



  • Responding to the changing needs of the LCMS and its members.

  • Elevating LCEF’s exposure among younger members.

  • Providing appropriate financial tools and resources to ministries facing economic difficulties.


Concordia Historical Institute


Synod’s Repository



Concordia Historical Institute is the Department of Archives and History of the LCMS. It preserves the records of the Synod from its founding to the present and makes them available to help the church appreciate God’s blessings and plan for the future.


Three full-time and eight part-time Institute employees manage and preserve the collections, answer requests for information and assist scholars doing research on the history of Lutheranism in America.


Blessings



  • The Institute is blessed with the largest collection of resources on the history of Lutheranism in the country.

  • The Institute has received generous support from the Synod and individuals to meet special needs.

Challenges



  • The Institute needs to make the church more aware of its history and of the treasures available in the Institute’s collections.

  • The Institute needs ongoing support to engage adequate staff and to use current technology to manage its collection and provide services to the church.


> CPH’s exhibit at the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904 was awarded the grand prize for excellence of workmanship and materials.


> Agency: An instrumentality that the Synod has caused to be formed to further the Synod’s objectives.


> In 1927, Concordia Historical Institute was incorporated into the church to provide for the preservation of its records.


> Be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain (1 Cor. 15:58).


May 2011

The Lutheran Witness — Providing Missouri Synod laypeople with stories and information that
complement congregational life, foster personal growth in faith, and help interpret the
contemporary world from a Lutheran Christian perspective.

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