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Lutheran Ethicist Network

The Lutheran Ethicist Network (LEN) brings into association and conversation rostered leaders, professional ethicists, theologians, and others who have strong interests in ethics and a commitment to the Lutheran tradition.  It also serves as an informal consulting and conferring resource to the Theological Discernment Team (TDT) in the Office of the Presiding Bishop, supporting the ELCA's work in several different capacities, including:

  • Widening the community of moral deliberation
  • Study and analysis of social issues from theological and ethical perspectives
  • Consultation assistance in development of social statements, messages and policy resolutions
  • Dedicated support for the Journal of Lutheran Ethics (JLE)

LEN is comprised of individuals with various competencies and interests. It includes professors from universities and seminaries both active and retired, pastors, bishops, chaplains, lay people trained in ethics, graduate students, and others with special interests in ethics. It is connected to the TDT through the portfolio of the Director for Theological Ethics of the ELCA, Rev. Dr. Roger Willer; you can contact him at roger.willer@elca.org for more information or to join the Network's mailing list.   A semi-annual newsletter (late spring and early fall) supplies news and information about the Network, its Gathering (see below) and the work of the Theological Discernment Team.

Lutheran Ethicist Gathering

The Network meets face-to-face on an annual basis for the Lutheran Ethicists' Gathering (LEG). For over 20 years, 30-50 participants with particular concerns rooted in Lutheran ethics have been meeting to discuss mutually agreed upon topics. The topics give particular attention to the intersection of Christian ethics with the church's presence in society and have provided a sustained conversation within the Network, benefiting both those involved and the wider church.  The gatherings take place in early January from Wednesday evening to Thursday evening, directly prior to the annual meetings of the Society of Christian Ethics.  Information about the next Gathering appears in the LEN newsletter and on the registration site posted each fall. (see above)

LEG History

Since 1992, LEG has been held in more than 15 cities and recent notable past gatherings include "Climate Change" in Seattle, WA (2014); "Lutherans and the Law in Human Society" in Atlanta, GA (2008); and "Economic Globalization" in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada (2002). Click Here to see a complete list of all previous gathering dates, locations, topics, and speakers.