The Logan Square Ecumenical Alliance (LSEA), of which St. Luke’s is a founding member, has been selected by the faculty of the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago (LSTC) to receive their annual “Community of the Cross” award.
The “Community of the Cross” award is presented to “a community, institution, congregation, or any collectively functioning Christian group whose activities manifest the invitation of our Lord to take up the cross and follow him, and whose service is directed to the world around it, both Christian and non-Christian, and whose satisfaction and honor clearly derive from the gospel.” Originally sponsored by Christ Seminary – Seminex, the award entered the ambit of LSTC when the Seminex faculty joined LSTC in 1983. With this long history, it is the highest honor the LSTC faculty can bestow, reflecting the respect and esteem with which they regard the recipient.
In their rationale for awarding this honor to the Logan Square Ecumenical Alliance, the faculty noted the following:
- Since its founding, the LSEA self-identifies as “a group of social-action oriented congregations and organizations in the Logan Square, Chicago area.”
- Participating congregations make the alliance truly ecumenical: First Evangelical Lutheran Church, Humboldt Park United Methodist Church, Kimball Avenue Church, Nuestra Señora de las Americas, St. Luke’s Lutheran Church of Logan Square, and San Lucas United Church of Christ, along with the Alliance of Local Service Organizations (ALSO) and Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA).
- Leaders meet regularly to discern the community’s needs and support one another. They show innovation and motivation, having written and received a grant to build ecumenical relationships in their neighborhood through storytelling, testimony, and community action.
- This group equips their assemblies to offer testimonies within and beyond liturgies in multiple ways.
- These assemblies regularly have enacted social action within or directly following worship, separately and together, often in conjunction with #OccupyPalmSunday.
The LSEA is honored by this recognition, which will be awarded at the seminary’s commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 21, 2017, at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in Hyde Park.