Editor’s Introduction

This month’s journal on war and peace is published in the shadow of Memorial Day, an observance and national holiday in the United States on which those who have defended the country and died in wars are remembered. Globally and throughout human history, it is estimated that the total number of people killed in conflicts is between 150 million and 1 billion. In this issue, Stewart Herman provides a critical perspective on the ELCA’s 1995 social statement on “For Peace in God’s World,” while Daniel Bell explores the ethical implications of drones, one of the most recent weapons used in war.

Journal of Lutheran Ethics Update

What follows is a brief update on several JLE matters.

New Book Review Editor
I am very pleased that Dr. James Childs, Jr. is JLE’s new Book Review Editor. Jim is the former long-time Dean at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, OH. Although he has officially retired as Professor of Systematic Theology at Trinity, Jim is continuing to teach on a part-time basis. As a teacher, scholar and author of numerous books and articles, he is widely known and highly respected in the field of Ethics and began his service as Book Review Editor with the March issue of the journal. As Book Review Editor, he will also serve on the Advisory Council. Welcome aboard Jim!

New Editorial Assistant
I am also delighted to inform you that Ms. Heather Dean is JLE’s new Editorial Assistant responsible, among other things, for posting the journal’s monthly issues. In this regard, she has replaced Paul Edison-Swift and will also serve on the Advisory Council. More broadly, Heather has succeeded Maggie Olson as the Theological Discernment Team’s Administrative Services Coordinator. Previously, she served as a Lutheran Volunteer Corps intern with Dr. Mary Streufert and the ELCA Justice for Women Program. Welcome aboard in a different capacity, Heather!

When JLE’s new microsite was launched in connection with the new ELCA.org website, it became clear that the archives of back issues would have to be imported manually. Thus, in recent months, we have had steady research inquiries from people asking about the archives. Our response has been to immediately access the article(s) from the old website and fulfill the request(s) as well as to indicate that the archives will soon be available on the new microsite. This important work of importing the archives onto the new microsite will be one of the projects for the Theological Discernment Team’s summer intern, Ms. Megan McDermott.

There are other things we are in the process of doing with the microsite. We will be adding the names of those serving on the JLE Advisory Council under a new tab and adding the names, brief bios and pictures of Jim Childs and Heather Dean to the “Meet the Editors” page. In addition, we will be exploring how the JLE Facebook page can become operational and a place where readers can share their reactions and thoughts about JLE articles.

Internal Distribution of JLE
Recently, JLE sought authorization to distribute the journal via email to ELCA staff colleagues. This authorization was approved and staff are now receiving monthly issues. In addition, we are pondering the possibility of hosting monthly “brown bag” lunches at which there would be discussion of a journal article.

Lutheran World Federation (LWF) Contact
In March, the Rev. Dr. Kaisamari Hintikka, LWF Assistant General Secretary for Ecumenical Relations and Director of the Department for Theology and Public Witness, and Dr. Carlos Gilberto Bock, LWF Director for Mission and Development, visited the Lutheran Center and I was among those who met with them. During our conversation, the possibility of the journal becoming more significantly, though not predominantly, global was discussed. Following her return to Geneva, Dr. Hintakka encouraged her colleague, Dr. Kenneth Mtata, to contact me and, to date, we have exchanged emails. Time will tell what may come of this.

September 14-15, 2014 Advisory Council Meeting
Among items on the agenda will be consideration of journal topics for 2015 and special 500th observance issues for 2017. Please begin thinking about these matters in particular and if you have any suggestions and/or thoughts, please send them to me at jleinfo@elca.org.

Enjoy the spring and summer seasons. Please commend the journal to a friend and thank you for reading the Journal of Lutheran Ethics.

Dr. James Kenneth Echols
Journal of Lutheran Ethics