About the Lutheran Church
Lutheranism is the oldest Protestant Christian tradition, resulting from the Protestant Reformation in Germany which was begun by Martin Luther in 1517. Luther, a German monk, realized there were significant differences between what he read in the Bible and what he saw practiced in the medieval Roman Catholic church. His goal was to reform the church, but instead, he was excommunicated. Luther and his followers, who adopted the name of Lutherans, used his teachings to begin the Lutheran church. The newly invented printing press allowed Luther's movement to spread quickly through northern Europe and Scandinavia.
As European and Scandinavian Lutherans began to migrate to the New World, they established Lutheran churches in what would become the United States. Due to missionary efforts, today Lutheran congregations can be found throughout the world. Over the centuries, Lutheranism has divided into many sub-denominations, and it now covers the spectrum from ultra-conservative to ultra-liberal branches.
Of the various branches of Lutherans in America, TCLC is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), the largest Lutheran body in the USA. The Lutheran Church as a whole is the second largest protestant denomination in the world with over 70 million adherents.