Confirmation (Lutheran Church)
Confirmation in the Lutheran Church is a public profession of faith prepared for by long and careful instruction. In English, it is called affirmation of baptism, and is a mature, they laid hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit. Note, Prior to admission to the Eucharist, it is necessary to be instructed in the Christian faith. Confirmation teaches Baptized Christians who wish to become Lutheran Martin Luthers theology on the Ten Commandments, the Apostles Creed, the Lords Prayer, Baptism and the Eucharist. At the conclusion of this instruction, young persons traditionally make a public profession of their faith in a public ceremony. Students often begin taking classes at about age twelve and are usually confirmed at age fourteen. Some Lutheran pastors and theologians are now beginning to ask whether it is permissible to adopt the practice of the Eastern church and to confirm/chrismate at baptism, Lutherans do not accept that only a bishop can confirm as is the custom in the Anglicanism.
Even in countries where Lutherans claim to apostolic succession such as Estonia, Finland. A priest is allowed to confirm, Lutheran sacraments Confirmation Christian Questions with Their Answers
History of Lutheranism
Lutheranism as a religious movement originated in the early 16th century Holy Roman Empire as an attempt to reform the Roman Catholic Church. The movement originated with the call for a debate regarding several issues within the Catholic Church by Martin Luther. Lutheranism soon became a religious and political movement within the Holy Roman Empire owing to support from key electors. This movement soon spread throughout northern Europe and became the force behind the wider Protestant Reformation. Today, Lutheranism has spread from Europe to all six populated continents, at the beginning of the 16th century, the European continent had seen vast changes in the ordering of society and culture in the last 200 years. The dramatic loss of population due to the Black Death had created new economic opportunities, New technologies came about to address labor shortages and the need to increase productivity, which in turn created new classes of society to support manufacture and trade. Hans Luther, the father of Martin Luther, was a member of new middle class.
Hans Luther made a living leasing and operating mines and smelters. The Luther family enjoyed enough income and social status that it was possible for Hans to envision a university education, the spread of books and higher education had an obvious impact on the Lutheran reformers. The Gutenberg Bible was first printed in 1455, with subsequent editions of the Bible, along with the spread of the book, universities were becoming the centers of a new academic culture that existed outside of the immediate control of the Roman Catholic Church. In 1502, Frederick III, Elector of Saxony, founded the University of Wittenberg, on 31 October 1517, Luther wrote to Albrecht, Archbishop of Mainz and Magdeburg, protesting the sale of indulgences. He enclosed in his letter a copy of his Disputation of Martin Luther on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences, peter with the money of poor believers rather than with his own money. Christians, he said, must not slacken in following Christ on account of such false assurances, some scholars have questioned the accuracy of Melanchthons account, noting that no contemporaneous evidence exists for it.
Others have countered that no evidence is necessary, because this was the customary way of advertising an event on a university campus in Luthers day. The 95 Theses were quickly translated from Latin into German, within two weeks, the theses had spread throughout Germany, within two months throughout Europe. From 1510 to 1520, Luther lectured on the Psalms, the books of Hebrews, Romans, as he studied these portions of the Bible, he came to view the use of terms such as penance and righteousness by the Roman Catholic Church in new ways. He began to teach that salvation or redemption is a gift of Gods grace, Luther came to understand justification as entirely the work of God. That is why faith alone makes someone just and fulfills the law, faith is that which brings the Holy Spirit through the merits of Christ
The Augsburg Confession was written in both German and Latin and was presented by a number of German rulers and free-cities at the Diet of Augsburg on 25 June 1530. It is the document contained in the Lutheran Book of Concord. On 21 January 1530, Emperor Charles V issued letters from Bologna, although the writ of invitation was couched in very peaceful language, it was received with suspicion by some of the Protestants. This summary has received the name of the Torgau Articles, on 3 April, the elector and reformers started from Torgau, and reached Coburg on 23 April. There, Luther was left behind because he was an outlaw according to the Diet of Worms, the rest reached Augsburg on 2 May. On the journey, Melanchthon worked on an apology, using the Torgau articles, and sent his draft to Luther at Coburg on 11 May, during the diet, the cities of Weißenburg in Bayern, Heilbronn and Windesheim expressed their concurrence with the confession. The Protestant princes, declared that they would not part with the confession until its reading should be allowed, the 25th was fixed for the day of its presentation.
In order to exclude the people, the chapel of the episcopal palace was appointed in place of the spacious city hall. The reading of the German version of the text by Christian Beyer lasted two hours and was so distinct that every word could be heard outside, the reading being over, the copies were handed to the emperor. The German he gave to the chancellor, the Elector of Mainz. Neither of the copies is now extant, the first official publication was edited by Philipp Melanchthon, a professor at the University of Wittenberg and a close colleague and friend of Martin Luther. That in doctrine and ceremonies nothing has been received on our part against Scripture or the Church Catholic, signatures of several secular leaders in Saxony. The Augsburg Confession became the confessional document for the Lutheran movement. Following the public reading of the Augsburg Confession in June 1530, the response by Charles V. However, in September, Charles V declared the response to be sufficient and gave the Lutheran princes until 15 April 1531, in response, Phillipp Melancthon wrote a lengthy and sustained argument both supporting the Augsburg Confession and refuting the arguments made in the Confutation.
This document became known as the Apology of the Augsburg Confession and was translated into German and was widely distributed. The Lutheran princes at the diet concurrently agreed to an alliance in the event of action by Charles V known as the Schmalkaldic League. By 1535, the League admitted any city or state to the alliance that gave official assent to the Augsburg Confession and the Apology
Confessional Lutherans believe that this is a vital part of their identity as Lutherans. Churches of the larger Lutheran World Federation subscribe to the Book of Concord as an exposition of faith, two main confessional movements arose during the 19th century, the Old Lutherans and the Neo-Lutherans. The Old Lutherans originated from the Schism of the Old Lutherans, while Neo-Lutheranism arose in Germany in the 1830s from the Pietist driven Erweckung and it gave rise to those calling themselves confessional Lutherans. Neo-Lutheranism developed in reaction to Pietism on the one side and Rationalism on the other, german clergymen like Martin Stephan, C. F. W. Wyneken and Wilhelm Loehe became a part of the movement as they studied the works of Martin Luther, the Germans who settled in Indiana under F. C. D. Wyneken, and the Prussians under J. A. A, grabau in Western New York and southeastern Wisconsin. Among the members of the ILC are the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, the Lutheran Church–Canada, the Independent Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Germany, among the CELC are the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod and the Evangelical Lutheran Synod.
In the Nordic countries, there are a few churches that identify themselves as confessional Lutheran. These include the Concordia Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Sweden, Lutheran church bodies and Lutheran individuals that identify themselves as confessional hold to a quia rather than a quatenus subscription to the Book of Concord. Quia subscription implies that the subscriber believes that there is no contradiction between the Book of Concord and the Scriptures, some Confessional Lutherans maintain that this distinguishes them from other Lutheran bodies and Lutherans, they believe, hold to a quatenus subscription. The Missouri Synod teaches Antichrist refers to the office, and not to the person, and the WELS states that the reference is to the office, but not to the exclusion of the current office holder. Of course, the reasons listed in the Treatise on the Power and Primacy of the Pope are generally considered conditional and not necessarily permanent by most quia Lutherans
Christian views on marriage
Most Christian authorities and bodies view marriage as a state instituted and ordained by God for the lifelong relationship between one man as husband and one woman as wife. They consider it the most intimate of human relationships, a gift from God, Protestants consider it to be sacred and even central to the community of faith, while Catholics and Eastern Orthodox Christians consider it a Sacrament. Biblically, it is to be held in honour among all…, Jesus maintained the importance and sacredness of lifelong marriage in his own teachings. He quoted from both Genesis 1 and 2, stating in Matthew 19, 3-6 that God had created humanity as male and female, so they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, let no one separate, in most states with a traditionally majority Christian population, civil laws recognize marriage as having social and political statuses. Christian theology affirms the secular status of marriage, but additionally views it from a moral, while marriage is honored and affirmed among Christians and throughout the Bible, there is no suggestion that it is necessary for everyone.
Single people who either have chosen to remain unmarried or who have lost their spouse for some reason are neither incomplete in Christ nor personal failures, God himself is the author of marriage. The vocation to marriage is written in the nature of man and woman as they came from the hand of the Creator. By this grace they help one another to attain holiness in their married life, Christ is the source of this grace. Just as of old God encountered his people with a covenant of love and fidelity, so our Savior and it calls sex with the wife of another, or sex with someone else other than the husband, the sin of adultery. Christians seek to uphold the seriousness of wedding vows, while the voice of God had said, I hate divorce, some authorities believe the divorce rate in the church is nearly comparable to that of the culture at large. Roles in Christian marriages between opposite-sex couples challenge deep-rooted beliefs and traditions—most dating from biblical days and its proponents teach the fundamental biblical principle of the equality of all human beings before God.
Complementarianism prescribes a husband-headship male-dominant hierarchy and this views core beliefs call for a husband’s loving, humble headship and the wife’s intelligent, willing submission to his headship. Without necessarily using the term obey, they believe women have different, Biblical patriarchy prescribes a strict male-dominant hierarchy. Their organizations first tenet is that God reveals Himself as masculine, God is the eternal Father and the eternal Son, the Holy Spirit is addressed as He, and Jesus Christ is a male. They consider the husband-father to be sovereign over his household—the family leader and they call for a wife to be obedient to her head. Christians today hold three competing views as to what is the biblically ordained relationship between husbands and wives, the great debate about marriage in contemporary Christian circles is among three primary groups—Christian egalitarians and Biblical patriarchists. The Code, with variations, occurs in four epistles by the Apostle Paul, the Roman law of Manus gave the husband nearly absolute autocratic power over his wife, including life and death
Martin Luther, O. S. A. was a German professor of theology, priest, monk and a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation. Luther came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church and he strongly disputed the Catholic view on indulgences as he understood it to be, that freedom from Gods punishment for sin could be purchased with money. Luther proposed a discussion of the practice and efficacy of indulgences in his Ninety-five Theses of 1517. His translation of the Bible into the vernacular made it accessible to the laity. It fostered the development of a version of the German language, added several principles to the art of translation, and influenced the writing of an English translation. His hymns influenced the development of singing in Protestant churches and his marriage to Katharina von Bora, a former nun, set a model for the practice of clerical marriage, allowing Protestant clergy to marry. In two of his works, Luther expressed antagonistic views towards Jews, writing that Jewish homes and synagogues should be destroyed, their money confiscated.
Condemned by virtually every Lutheran denomination, these statements and their influence on antisemitism have contributed to his controversial status, Martin Luther was born to Hans Luder and his wife Margarethe on 10 November 1483 in Eisleben, part of the Holy Roman Empire. He was baptized as a Catholic the next morning on the feast day of St. Martin of Tours and his family moved to Mansfeld in 1484, where his father was a leaseholder of copper mines and smelters and served as one of four citizen representatives on the local council. He had several brothers and sisters, and is known to have close to one of them. Hans Luther was ambitious for himself and his family, and he was determined to see Martin, his eldest son, become a lawyer. He sent Martin to Latin schools in Mansfeld, Magdeburg in 1497, where he attended a school operated by a lay group called the Brethren of the Common Life, the three schools focused on the so-called trivium, grammar and logic. Luther compared his education there to purgatory and hell, in 1501, at the age of 19, he entered the University of Erfurt, which he described as a beerhouse and whorehouse.
He was made to wake at four every morning for what has been described as a day of rote learning and he received his masters degree in 1505. In accordance with his fathers wishes, Luther enrolled in law school at the university that year but dropped out almost immediately. Luther sought assurances about life and was drawn to theology and philosophy, expressing particular interest in Aristotle, William of Ockham, philosophy proved to be unsatisfying, offering assurance about the use of reason but none about loving God, which to Luther was more important. Reason could not lead men to God, he felt, for Luther, reason could be used to question men and institutions, but not God. Human beings could learn about God only through divine revelation, he believed and he attributed his decision to an event, on 2 July 1505, he was returning to university on horseback after a trip home
Lutheranism is a major branch of Protestant Christianity which identifies with the theology of Martin Luther, a German friar, ecclesiastical reformer and theologian. Luthers efforts to reform the theology and practice of the Catholic Church launched the Protestant Reformation in the German-speaking territories of the Holy Roman Empire. Lutheranism advocates a doctrine of justification by grace alone through faith alone on the basis of Scripture alone and this is in contrast to the belief of the Catholic Church, defined at the Council of Trent, concerning authority coming from both the Scriptures and Tradition. In addition, Lutheranism accepts the teachings of the first seven ecumenical councils of the undivided Christian Church, unlike Calvinism, Lutherans retain many of the liturgical practices and sacramental teachings of the pre-Reformation Church, with a particular emphasis on the Eucharist, or Lords Supper. Lutheran theology differs from Reformed theology in Christology, the purpose of Gods Law, the grace, the concept of perseverance of the saints.
Today, Lutheranism is one of the largest denominations of Protestantism, with approximately 80 million adherents, it constitutes the third most common Protestant denomination after historically Pentecostal denominations and Anglicanism. The Lutheran World Federation, the largest communion of Lutheran churches, Other Lutheran organizations include the International Lutheran Council and the Confessional Evangelical Lutheran Conference, as well as independent churches. The name Lutheran originated as a term used against Luther by German Scholastic theologian Dr. Johann Maier von Eck during the Leipzig Debate in July 1519. Eck and other Catholics followed the practice of naming a heresy after its leader. Martin Luther always disliked the term Lutheran, preferring the term Evangelical, which was derived from euangelion, the followers of John Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli, and other theologians linked to the Reformed tradition began to use that term. To distinguish the two groups, others began to refer to the two groups as Evangelical Lutheran and Evangelical Reformed.
As time passed by, the word Evangelical was dropped, Lutherans themselves began to use the term Lutheran in the middle of the 16th century, in order to distinguish themselves from other groups such as the Philippists and Calvinists. In 1597, theologians in Wittenberg defined the title Lutheran as referring to the true church, Lutheranism has its roots in the work of Martin Luther, who sought to reform the Western Church to what he considered a more biblical foundation. Lutheranism spread through all of Scandinavia during the 16th century, as the monarch of Denmark–Norway, through Baltic-German and Swedish rule, Lutheranism spread into Estonia and Latvia. Since 1520, regular Lutheran services have been held in Copenhagen, under the reign of Frederick I, Denmark-Norway remained officially Catholic. Although Frederick initially pledged to persecute Lutherans, he adopted a policy of protecting Lutheran preachers and reformers. During Fredericks reign, Lutheranism made significant inroads in Denmark, at an open meeting in Copenhagen attended by the king in 1536, the people shouted, We will stand by the holy Gospel, and do not want such bishops anymore.
Fredericks son Christian was openly Lutheran, which prevented his election to the throne upon his fathers death, following his victory in the civil war that followed, in 1537 he became Christian III and advanced the Reformation in Denmark-Norway
In the Christian churches, Holy Orders are ordained ministries such as bishop, priest or deacon. Except for Lutherans and some Anglicans, these churches regard ordination as a sacrament, the Anglo-Catholic tradition within Anglicanism identifies more with the Roman Catholic position about the sacramental nature of ordination. Denominations have varied conceptions of Holy Orders, in the Anglican churches and some Lutheran churches the traditional orders of bishop and deacon are bestowed using ordination rites. The extent to which ordination is considered sacramental in these traditions has, many other denominations do not consider ministry as being sacramental in nature and would not think of it in terms of holy orders as such. Historically, the word order designated a civil body or corporation with a hierarchy. The word holy refers to the Church, in context, therefore, a holy order is set apart for ministry in the Church. The Eastern Orthodox Church considers ordination to be a Sacred Mystery, although all other mysteries may be performed by a presbyter, ordination may only be conferred by a bishop, and ordination of a bishop may only be performed by several bishops together.
Cheirotonia always takes place during the Divine Liturgy and it was the mission of the Apostles to go forth into all the world and preach the Gospel, baptizing those who believed in the name of the Holy Trinity. In the Early Church those who presided over congregations were referred to variously as episcopos or presbyteros and this link is believed to continue in unbroken succession to this day. Over time, the ministry of bishops and presbyters or priests came to be distinguished, in Orthodox terminology, priesthood or sacerdotal refers to the ministry of bishops and priests. A bishop is the Teacher of the Faith, the carrier of Sacred Tradition, a bishop is consecrated through the laying on of hands by several bishops. The consecration of a bishop takes place near the beginning of the Liturgy, since a bishop can, in addition to performing the Mystery of the Eucharist, ordain priests and deacons. Customarily, the consecrated bishop ordains a priest and a deacon at the Liturgy during which he is consecrated. A priest may serve only at the pleasure of his bishop, a bishop bestows faculties giving a priest chrism and an antimins, he may withdraw faculties and demand the return of these items.
After the Aër is taken from the candidate to cover the chalice and diskos, the candidate is taken to the southeast corner of the Holy Table and kneels on both knees, resting his forehead on the edge of the Holy Table. Afterwards, the bishop brings the newly ordained priest to stand in the Holy Doors and he clothes the priest in each of his sacerdotal vestments, at each of which the people sing, Worthy. A deacon may not perform any Sacrament and performs no liturgical services on his own but serves only as an assistant to a priest and may not even vest without the blessing of a priest. After being vested as a deacon and given a liturgical fan, the Anglican churches hold their bishops to be in apostolic succession, although there is some difference of opinion with regard to whether ordination is to be regarded as a sacrament
Book of Concord
The Book of Concord or Concordia is the historic doctrinal standard of the Lutheran Church, consisting of ten credal documents recognized as authoritative in Lutheranism since the 16th century. They are known as the books of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. The Book of Concord was published in German on June 25,1580 in Dresden, the authoritative Latin edition was published in 1584 in Leipzig. Those who accept it as their doctrinal standard recognize it to be an exposition of the Bible. The Holy Scriptures are set forth in The Book of Concord to be the sole, divine source and it was intended to replace German territorial collections of doctrinal statements, known as corpora doctrinæ like the Corpus doctrinæ Philippicum or Misnicum. This aim is reflected by the compilers not calling it a corpus doctrinæ although it technically is one, the list of writings predating the Formula of Concord that would be included in The Book of Concord are listed and described in the Rule and Norm section of the Formula.
These creeds, the Apostles Creed, Nicene Creed, and Athanasian Creed, were formulated before the East-West Schism of 1054, the other documents come from the earliest years of the Lutheran Reformation. The preface of the Book of Concord was considered to be the preface of the Formula of Concord as well, a recent book on Lutheranism asserts, To this day. The Catalog of Testimonies was added as an appendix in most of the 1580 editions. This follows St. Pauls directive, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you and they contain the truths believed universally by true Christians everywhere, explicitly by all consistent Christians, implicitly even by inconsistent and erring Christians. Christian truth, being one and the same the world over is none other than that which is found in the Lutheran confessions and they often identify themselves as confessional Lutherans. They consider the Book of Concord the norma normata in relation to the Bible, in this view the Book of Concord, on the topics that it addresses, is what the church authoritatively understands Gods authoritative word to say.
This is called a quia subscription to the Lutheran confessions, one who subscribes the Lutheran confessions quatenus, insofar as they are a faithful exposition of the Scriptures, believes that there might be contradictions of the Scriptures in them. The largest Lutheran church to subscribe unconditionally to the Book of Concord is the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland with 4.6 million members, English translations of individual documents of The Book of Concord, notably The Augsburg Confession, were available since the 16th century. The first complete English translation of The Book of Concord was the 1851 Henkel edition followed by an edition in 1854. Henry E. Jacobs and others published the next English version in 1882 with a revised Peoples Edition in 1911, the 1882 edition was accompanied by a companion volume that contained historical introductions and English translations of other documents illustrative of the history of The Book of Concord. Lutheran Church, German-Latin English edited by Friederich Bente and this edition introduced the practice of inserting in square brackets the translations of variant readings of either the Latin translation of the German or the German translation of the Latin text.
A smaller edition with just the English text was published, justus Jonas, who had originally translated the Apology from Latin into German, made use of both the quarto and the octavo editions
Sola scriptura is a Christian theological doctrine which holds that the Christian Scriptures are the sole infallible rule of faith and practice. However, sola scriptura rejects any original infallible authority other than the Bible, in this view, all secondary authority is derived from the authority of the Scriptures and is therefore subject to reform when compared to the teaching of the Bible. Sola scriptura is a principle of many Protestant Christian denominations. The Catholic Church regards the Apostolic preaching and writing as equal since both came from the Apostles, the Catholic Church describe this as one common source. With two distinct modes of transmission, while some Protestant authors call it a source of revelation. Sola scriptura is one of the five solas, considered by some Protestant groups to be the pillars of the Reformation. Luther said, a simple layman armed with Scripture is greater than the mightiest pope without it, the intention of the Reformation was to correct what he asserted to be the errors of the Catholic Church by appeal to the uniqueness of the Bibles textual authority.
Catholic doctrine is based in Church tradition, as well as Scripture, Sola scriptura meant rejecting the infallible authority given to the Magisterium to interpret both Scripture and Church tradition. Sola scriptura, does not ignore Christian history, rather, it sees the church as the Bibles interpreter, the regula fidei as the interpretive context, and Scripture as the only final authority in matters of faith and practice. As Luther said, The true rule is this, Gods Word shall establish articles of faith, Lutheranism teaches that the Bible of the Old and New Testaments is the only divinely inspired book and the only source of divinely revealed knowledge. Scripture alone is the principle of the faith in Lutheranism, the final authority for all matters of faith and morals because of its inspiration, clarity, efficacy. Lutheranism teaches that the Bible does not merely contain the Word of God, but every word of it is, because of verbal inspiration, as Lutherans confess in the Nicene Creed, the Holy Spirit spoke through the prophets.
The Apology of the Augsburg Confession identifies Holy Scripture with the Word of God, a mistranslation is not Gods word, and no human authority can invest it with divine authority. Holy Scripture, the Word of God, carries the authority of God in Lutheranism, every single statement of the Bible calls for instant. Every doctrine of the Bible is the teaching of God and therefore requires full agreement, every promise of the Bible calls for unshakable trust in its fulfillment, every command of the Bible is the directive of God himself and therefore demands willing observance. It teaches that readers must understand the language Gods Word is presented in and it teaches that, consequently, no one needs to wait for any clergy, and pope, scholar, or ecumenical council to explain the real meaning of any part of the Bible. Lutheranism teaches that Scripture is united with the power of the Holy Spirit and with it, not only demands and this teaching produces faith and obedience. Holy Scripture is not a letter, but rather, the power of the Holy Spirit is inherent in it
Lutheranism by region
Lutheranism is present throughout various regions of the world. With an estimated 74.2 million adherents, it one of the largest Protestant branches. Namibia has the highest proportion of Lutherans of any country in Africa, indeed, it is the only country outside Europe to have a Lutheran majority. Other African countries with significant Lutheran populations include Eritrea, Madagascar, according to the Lutheran World Federation list of member churches, thirteen Indonesian Lutheran churches or synods associated with the LWF claim more than 6 million members. The largest of these is the Huria Kristen Batak Protestan which comprises almost 4.2 million members, Lutherans in India number more than 3.5 million, the largest being the 2. 5-million-member Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church. Smaller Lutheran communities exist elsewhere, including Hong Kong SAR, Myanmar, Church attendance on Sundays is no longer the norm. Often, people attend religious services only for baptisms, weddings, traditionally, the Lutheran youth would receive preparatory confirmation classes for 1 to 2 years around age 14, to introduce them to Christian doctrines. A large confirmation service is once the series is completed.
In some areas confirmation is now delayed until the end of the high school, except in Northern Europe and Austria, very few seminaries are state-supported. The training for students in theology embraces a range of theologies including modern and contemporary movements in biblical criticism. Due to agreements like the Leuenberg Agreement, most Lutheran churches in Europe have church fellowship with other churches arising from the Reformation, such as the Reformed, the Lutheran faith was first established in some states of the Holy Roman Empire now located within Germany. After the Thirty Years War ended in 1648, the Lutheran, the ruler of each principality was given the right to choose one of these three denominations to become the state church of his principality. Some German states became Lutheran, some became Reformed, while others remained Catholic, the regional Protestant church bodies accept each other as equals, despite confessional differences. This is a rather unusual in most other countries.
Since World War II, the Lutheran and United Protestant regional churches have been members of the umbrella Evangelical Church in Germany, the SELK is a member of the International Lutheran Council. The SELK is separate from the church bodies and has 35,642 baptised members as of 2008. The Evangelical Lutheran Free Church, primarily located in the lands of the former East Germany, has 1,470 baptised members, the German parishioners of the Moravian Church, which is a member of the Lutheran World Federation, are confessionally counting as Lutherans. Lutheranism is the church in most of the Nordic countries including Denmark, Sweden