The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) is the major Canadian representative of the traditions of the Lutheran reformation of the catholic Christian church. Baptized membership is around 145,376 members. The ELCIC came into being in 1986 through the merger of two predecessor bodies.
We derive our teachings from the Holy Scriptures and confess the three ecumenical creeds of the Christian church. We hold to orthodox catholic theology as enunciated in the ecumenical councils of the first five centuries of Christianity.
We trace our roots as a confessing movement to the reformation of the catholic church initiated by Dr. Martin Luther in Germany in the 1500s. See Project Wittenberg for a great deal of primary source information. From Germany, Lutheranism spread to Scandinavia and the Baltic states, as well as to other areas in central and eastern Europe.
Today, Lutherans are to be found around the world. Lutherans have been continually present in Canada since the 1750s, when German Lutheran immigrants arrived in Halifax.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada holds membership in the Lutheran World Federation, the Canadian Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada is in full communion with the Anglican Church of Canada. See the joint Waterloo Declaration for details.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada is composed of five synods. From west to east, they are the British Columbia Synod, the Synod of Alberta and the Territories, the Saskatchewan Synod, the Manitoba/Northwestern Ontario Synod, and the Eastern Synod. The presiding officer and chief pastor of each synod is a bishop.
Pastor Kenn Ward, editor of the ELCIC's national magazine, Canada Lutheran, from 1991–2003, has written A Guide to the ELCIC as a brief introduction to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada.
At the 2007 National Convention, the ELCIC's Evangelical Declaration was updated on the 10th anniversary of its adoption by the church as a "guide for mission". The update includes changing the title of the document from Evangelical Declaration to In Mission for Others: A Theology of Mission.
The original Evangelical Declaration was adopted at the Sixth Biennial National Convention of the ELCIC, July, 1997, "as our church's vision for life and mission for the next decade (1997-2007), and as a source and guide for goals, objectives and strategies to propel us into the next millennium."
Even in its updated form, this document serves as an introduction to the ELCIC's current self-understanding of its mission.