Do Lutheran schools make a difference? Yes! Quite!
What kind of difference? Reliable statistical research* reveals that those who attended Lutheran schools:
* Report more frequent experiences with God in their personal lives. * Exhibit a more consistent belief in the divinity of Jesus. * Profess a greater clarity on the way of salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone (show more tendency to reject belief in salvation by works). * Display more Biblical knowledge. * Engage in a much fuller devotional life. * Do more witnessing to others about Christ. * Hold a more balanced theology (not liberal, not ultraconservative, but a balanced conservatism). * Have a greater awareness of the presence of the Trinity in one’s whole life. * Give a higher value to relationships with God and other persons. * Show more reasonable respect for authority. * Live out stronger tendencies to be forgiving and personally forthright with other people. * Evidence greater avoidance of over-simplistic views. (i.e., views of social issues as mere power struggles.). * Reveal less tendency to be anxious about their faith. * Are less swayed by their peers. The research also proved that the more years a person attended a Lutheran school, the more significant the difference became.
The research does not indicate that these same qualities cannot be present in individuals who have not attended a Lutheran elementary and/or secondary school, but it is less likely. Similarly, it is recognized that the power to lead a Christian life is a free gift of the Holy Spirit working through the Word.
* Milo Brekke, How Different Are People Who Attended Lutheran Schools (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House; based on data compiled by Youth Research Center for “A Study of Generations.”)