LCMS Veterans of the Cross

Veterans of the Cross

Emergency financial support for retired church workers and families

Veterans of the Cross assists retired Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod church workers, as well as their surviving spouses and dependent children, who are confronted by a financial crisis that forces them to choose between equally vital, basic human needs.

The program was created in 1920, when the Lutheran Laymen's League established an endowment fund to help care for the spiritual, emotional and physical well-being of retired servants of the Church who had enrolled in the old, low-benefit pension plan. These elderly workers often had staggering medical expenses that consumed precious financial resources, leaving less for life’s essentials.

Today, some retirees still require additional assistance from their Synod. Because of a lifetime of service in small or struggling congregations that were unable to afford full-time salaries, these workers received a lower overall benefits contribution into their Concordia Plan Services retirement account.

Veterans of the Cross supplements these low or inadequate pensions to help retired workers and surviving spouses secure necessities, such as medications, food and basic utilities.

The average monthly support is between $500 and $1,000. Veterans of the Cross stipends are approved annually and continue as long as need is demonstrated.

Veterans of the Cross is funded by designated donor contributions and income from a special endowment fund. Funding in Veterans of the Cross is restricted to aiding retired workers and widowed spouses only. To help active workers in crisis, please consider supporting Soldiers of the Cross.

The LCMS Office of National Mission administers the program through a special partnership with Concordia Plan Services. Information about specific beneficiaries is confidential, and privacy is respected.


Concerned for a retired LCMS church worker?

To refer a church worker to the program, please contact your district president. Information about specific beneficiaries is confidential, and privacy is respected.


How to help

The Veterans of the Cross program is supported by direct donations. Your donations are necessary to continue providing stipends to our church veterans in their times of need.

Give Now

Give by mail:
The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
Attn: Veterans of the Cross
P.O. Box 66861
St. Louis, MO 63166-6861

Give by phone: 888-930-4438




Contact Soldiers of the Cross

Ross Johnson

Rev. Dr. Ross Johnson
Director of LCMS Disaster Response —  |  314-996-1395

LCMS Church Information Center —  |  888-843-5267 (THE LCMS)


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The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod Inc., including Mission Central (in Mapleton, Iowa), is an IRS registered 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity.

A contribution designated (restricted) for a specific purpose when accepted, will be used only to fund expenses related to that purpose. Occasionally, we may receive more in contributions for a particular purpose than can be wisely applied to it in the foreseeable future or the purpose may cease to be feasible. In these situations, the LCMS will make reasonable attempts to contact contributors to apply their contribution differently. If a contributor cannot be contacted, the LCMS will use the gift to meet a similar pressing need that most closely matches the contributor's original intent. Consistent with Synod Board policy, no more than 13.5 percent of a charitable contribution may be allocated to administering gifts and communicating with contributors. Contributions received and accepted by the LCMS are deemed to be in agreement with this statement.

Our Tax Identification Number: 43-0658188

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