Five years have passed since the 2016 Churchwide Assembly approved (912-28) a declaration repudiating the 15th-century Doctrine of Discovery. The doctrine, sanctioned by the Roman Catholic Church, gave European nations license to “discover” undeveloped lands, annex them, exploit their resources and rule over the native peoples there. Many of the world’s Indigenous peoples, including those from the Americas, say Europeans used the doctrine to justify stealing their land and resources, and oppressing their people—crimes for which there has been no restitution and whose effects still linger.

Download a study guide for “Beyond a resolution,” which appeared in Living Lutheran‘s November 2021 issue. The free pdf contains five pages of discussion questions and a copy of the article.

Robert C. Blezard
Robert C. Blezard is pastor of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Aberdeen, Md., and editor of Living Lutheran's study guides. Previously he served as an assistant to the bishop of the Lower Susquehanna Synod.

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