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Lutheran World Relief (LWR) is an international nonprofit organization and a joint ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. It is headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland. According to its web-site, LWR promotes, through its partners in 35 countries, sustainable development by helping communities increase the quality of life, engage in fair trade, and be better equipped to handle emergencies. This expanded mission originated from its beginnings as a non-governmental organization founded in 1945 for helping many European Lutherans who suffered devastation during World War II.[1]

Part of LWR's work includes responding to disasters. In the wake of the 2004 Southeast Asia Tsunami, Newsweek ranked LWR as one of the best international relief agencies, giving the Lutheran group an "A+" rating.[2] LWR coninues to receive high rankings from organizations such as the American Institute of Philanthropy, who gave LWR an A rating in 2007 through 2010.[3]

In 2007, Lutheran churches donated $14.5 million while the federal government donated $3.3 million to Lutheran World Relief. Lutheran World Relief is contributing to the efforts in aiding the people of Haiti suffering from the 2010 Haiti earthquake.

LWR is a member of ACT Development, a global alliance of churches and related agencies working on development that are committed to working together.


  1. ^ Lutheran World Relief Websites: Overview[1] and History[2], both retrieved November 30, 2008
  2. ^ Eve Conant, "Rating Tsunami Relief", Newsweek, January 17, 2005 (online edition retrieved November 14, 2007)
  3. ^ American Institute of Philanthropy website, "Top Rated Charities", retrieved November 14, 2007 and January 13, 2010)

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