Established during the time of the Reformation in Europe, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Lithuania became a recognized church in Lithuania and joined the Lithuanian Council of Churches. This Council allowed the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Lithuania (ELCL) to maintain a working relationship with the Roman Catholic and Russian Orthodox Churches, as well as with congregations of the Reformed tradition in Lithuania.
The ELCL remained an isolated Lutheran church until 1968, when admission into the Lutheran World Federation provided the small struggling church with international contacts. These continued to grow after the independence of Lithuania came in 1992, and the Lutheran area of Lippische Landeskirche of North West Germany partnered with the ELCL. In the following year, the Grand Canyon Synod of the ELCA became a second companion for the ELCL, and both of these international partners assisted in the regaining of property, which had been confiscated from the Lithuanian Lutheran church during the soviet years. In addition, these two companions continue to support social and diaconal activities of the ELCL.