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Publisher Description

Every community is shaped by its story of origin. For a church body, the story of origin communicates significant information about that body's identity and mission. For the Iowa Synod (formed in 1854), classic form was given to its story of origin in the historical account of Pastor Johannes Deindoerfer (July 28, 1828-May 14, 1907), one of the four original founders of the Iowa Synod and author of Geschichte der Evangelisch Lutherischen Synode von Iowa and anderen Staaten (Chicago: Wartburg Publishing House, 1897). The three most distinguishing sources ofauthority in Deindoerfer's account of the Iowa Synod are Holy Scripture, the Lutheran Confessions, and Wilhelm Loehe (1808-1872). This article focuses on the influence of Loehe on the Iowa Synod's identity and mission. Johannes A. Deindoerfer was born at Rosstal, near Nuremberg, in 1828 and educated at Nuremberg and Neuendettelsau, where he studied under Wilhelm Loehe. He was ordained at Hamburg in 1851 and sent as an emissary (Sendling) by Loehe to the colonies in Michigan, where he became pastor of the congregation at Fran kenhilf in 1851. Deindoerfer joined the Missouri Synod in 1852. However, theological controversy soon led to his departure from both Michigan and the Missouri Synod to Iowa, together with Georg Grossmann and eighteen others in 1853. Deindoerfer subsequently served as a pastor of the Iowa Synod at St. Sebald, Iowa; Madison, Wisconsin; and Toledo, Ohio. He was elected president of the Eastern District and later president of the entire Iowa Synod, in which office he served from 1893-1904. Deindoerfer's Geschichte encompasses the founding and first four decades of the Iowa Synod. Significant for his writing of the synod history, he also edited the synodical publication, the Kirchenblatt, from 1878-1904.

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February 1
Lutheran School of Theology and Mission
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