In November, 1990, the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis and the Saint Paul and Minneapolis Synods of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America entered into a formal covenant relationship.Since that time many parishes in the Synods and the Archdiocese have held prayer services for unity and have fostered conversation among clergy and laity on further implications of the Covenant.Recommendations, suggestions and insights have come from many members and offices of our communities and the result is this document, which we hope will be a source of help to all those who assist in marriage preparation.But most especially we hope and pray that it will be a source of help to those who are to enter into Lutheran Catholic marriage.This commitment is one which includes both the affection and fidelity you have for one another and the willingness to undertake a holy calling.
Although Christian teachings concerning marriage have developed over time, there are major themes in the Scriptures that can be considered fundamental to Christians in every age.
In the New Testament Jesus’ presence as a guest at the marriage of Cana (John 2:1-11) confirms God’s own presence and blessing of marriage.
Further, the use of the marriage banquet as a symbol of the final, heavenly gathering of Christ and his people is an expression of God’s blessing as well (Matthew 22:2-12; 25: 1-13; Luke -40; Revelation 19:7-9).
With a mutual concern for Church unity and the unity of marriage, two years ago we asked the members of the Lutheran-Catholic Covenant Commission to develop a guide for couples who are preparing for marriage in our two traditions.
The Commission, constituted equally of members of the two synods and the archdiocese, has completed the guide; it has been reviewed by the proper ecumenical commissions and by other official bodies of each of our churches.