History, Mission, Vision & Core Values


An association of Lutheran Churches of the Missouri Synod (Lutheran Charities Association) opened a hospital on December 1, 1858. From its earliest days, Lutheran Charities Association recognized the guiding hand of a gracious God as it undertook its healing ministry. In 1984, an endowment was created with the proceeds from the sale of the Lutheran Medical Center. Today that endowment is managed by Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis, a grantmaking ministry of 75 St. Louis area congregations of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.

To the honor of Christ Jesus, the Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis seeks the improved care of people in the greater St. Louis metropolitan region.

Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis sees the Church brought into the lives of hurting people and people included in the healing life of the Church.

Core Belief
Faith in Christ Jesus, provided by God’s Holy Spirit, produces caring and giving, wholeness and healing.

Core Values

Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis holds the following values regarding our philanthropic efforts:

  • Connection to health and wholeness – Lutheran Foundation supports efforts that improve the physical, mental, and spiritual health and wellbeing of those served.
  • Connection to faith –Lutheran Foundation favors services that provide people an opportunity to identify, acknowledge, and discuss their faith, as well as (listed in ranked order):
    • Services that are initiated by Lutheran congregations or Lutheran service organizations.
    • Services that are initiated by Christian congregations or faith-based organizations.
    • Lutheran or other Christian volunteers are engaged in addressing community needs and faith is an important element of the program/service.
    • Lutherans or other Christians are involved as staff, Board members, and/or volunteers.
  • St. Louis-based – Lutheran Foundation funds projects which take place in the St. Louis region, with an emphasis on the following counties (listed in ranked order):
    • St. Louis City or County (where a majority of our Member congregations are located)
    • Counties of St. Charles, Jefferson, St. Clair, or Madison
    • Counties of Lincoln, Warren, Franklin, Monroe, or Jersey
  • Collaboration – Lutheran Foundation favors efforts where congregations and/or organizations work together to address complex community issues.
  • Measurable outcomes – Lutheran Foundation supports efforts that have clearly defined objectives and measurable outcomes that address clearly demonstrated community needs.