Augsburg Fortress

Reclaiming the ''L'' Word: Renewing the Church from Its Lutheran Core

Reclaiming the ''L'' Word: Renewing the Church from Its Lutheran Core

Reclaiming the "L" Word is a book about renewing congregations by recognizing and living out the core teachings of the Lutheran faith. In the introduction, the author states:

"I hope that people of every denomination will find this book helpful as they wrestle with these important issues within their own traditions. But this little book is primarily written for those who call themselves Lutheran and, specifically, those who are members of ELCA congregations, and it is intended to help us answer central questions: Who are we? What DOES it mean to be a Lutheran today, anyway? And, why does it matter?"

Inspirational, engaging, and challenging, this book is a must-read for pastors and congregational leaders!
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  • Publisher Augsburg Fortress
  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9780806645964
  • eBook ISBN 9781451412468
  • Brand Lutheran Voices
  • Dimensions 5.5 x 8.5
  • Pages 96
  • Publication Date April 11, 2003


"Thank God for Pastor Fryer's reminder of where Lutheran Christians stand: at the foot of the cross, where we are met by Jesus, who has come down for us, and whose love welcomes and changes us. May the five Guiding Principles of this book ignite a new Reformation—setting us free to follow Jesus into a world desperate for his love, trusting that God has intentionally gifted each one of us with something precious to offer, and the passion to share it."
— The Reverend Mary Ann Moller-Gunderson, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin

"There should be a warning label on this book: 'Caution: Reading this book could result in the transformation of the Church.' Way to go Kelly! Just what we need. I'll take 165 copies, one for each congregation in the Northern Illinois Synod."
— Bishop Gary M. Wollersheim, Northern Illinois Synod, ELCA

"Kelly Fryer has such a winsome way of articulating the connection between mission and the Lutheran theological tradition! This book reflects her passions for the theological integrity, for mission-driven congregations, and for painting outside the box. When you read this book, expect some surprises!"
— Dr. Rick Bliese, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago


It is critical for us, as a church, to be thinking together about what it means for us to say that we are God's people through Jesus . . . who also happen to be Lutheran. I hope that you will spark a lively conversation in your church about this question. I hope you will wrestle with these five guiding principles and disagree with them and even debate them in good old Martin Luther fashion. I hope they will spur you on to try to define in your own place, in your own time, what it means to be a Lutheran. I hope they will help you answer the question, "Just exactly who are we, anyway? And what IS it that God wants to be doing in us and through us?" Nothing else that matters much will happen until we do this.

That much I am sure of.

— from page 94.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Timothy F. Lull
Introduction: Of Traffic Jams & Transformation

In Defense of Dogma
A Confession
Jesus Is Lord
Everyone Is Welcome
Love Changes People
Everybody Has Something to Offer
The World Needs What We Have

For Further Reading