<== Lutheran ==>

The term "Lutheran" is used by many of the protestant denominations of the Christian Church which were inspired by the works of the German Friar Martin Luther (1483 ??? 1546).

Martin Luther was an Augustinian Friar who was incensed by by Pope Leo X's attempt to raise funds by the selling of indulgences. He posted his famous ninety-five theses which challenged certain teachings and practices of the Catholic Church on the door of the Castle Church of Wittenberg on October 31, 1517.

Luther was excommunicated during the Diet of Worms in 1521. A growing number of secular and religious leaders were upset with the Papacy and sided with Luther in the schism.

Lutheranism rose during a period of rising literacy with an appreciation of ideas from the enlightenment along with a deep respect for the spirituality of early Christianity.

A variety of schisms and reunifications formed in the movement through the centuries. The schisms were often along national lines and on differing ideas on the roles of rationality and spiritualism.

Lutherans from different countries immigrated to the United States bringing along their local religious traditions. Notably, many Lutherans of the Old Lutheran tradition migrated to the United States to avoid persecution as Frederick William III attempted to create a United Church in Prussia.

The result of different waves of migration created a religious community with a notably diverse spectrum of beliefs from highly evangelical to moderate and liberal views.

Lutheran Denominations in the United States

Wikipedia reports that the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is the largest Lutheran denomination in the United States with 3.9 million members, followed by the Lutheran Church???Missouri Synod with 2.2 million members and the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod Website with 380 thousand members.

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