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Northwest District (LCMS) James P. Maier Papers

Identifier: NWD.45
While serving as a parish Pastor, The Rev. James P. Maier was accused of false teaching and resigned from his ministry, but later he was reinstated and continued to serve as a parish Pastor. The papers consist of his written works, his correspondence (most of which pertained to the ongoing discussions about his writings), and brief biographical information.


  • 1925 - 1969
  • Majority of material found within 1936 - 1969

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is available for research by appointment.

Conditions Governing Use Note

The Northwest District Archives is the owner of the materials in the James P. Maier Collection and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the Northwest District Archives before any reproduction use. Copyright resides with the creator of the documents or their heirs. The status of copyright is governed by the Copyright Law of the U. S. (Title 17, U.S.C.). In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners.


0.2 Linear Feet (in 5 folders)


Records contain the correspondence and writings of The Rev. James P. Maier.

Biographical note:

The Rev. James P. "Jake" Maier was born in Altnest, Romania, in 1899 June 20. He graduated Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri, in 1925 and was ordained shortly thereafter at his first parish in Tillamook, Oregon, where he served until 1936. He also served as pastor in Sheridan, Oregon, 1926-1928; Walla Walla, Washington, 1936-1946; and Sweet Home, Oregon, 1957-1964. From 1956-1957 he was Interim Pastor in East Wenatchee, Washington. In the Oregon-Washington District (now Northwest District) he was editor of the Lutheran Messenger from 1933-1936. He married Helen Selma Mieger in 1925.

In the early 1940's Rev. Maier distributed an essay on Baptism entitled Question 244 which led to accusations of false teaching. In 1945 the District Convention resolved that since various District officers had dealt with Rev. Maier without convincing him that he was in error, a committee of three be appointed to deal further with him in an evangelical manner and report to the next convention. He prepared a follow-up essay in 1945 November entitled God's Gearing. After two meetings with the committee in which the issues of Baptism, Conversion-Regeneration, and Justification were discussed, the committee recommended to the 1946 District Convention that since no agreement could be reached, Rev. Maier should be expelled from the Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod. However, a substitute motion took note that even though Rev. Maier was in error, he was in ill health, and therefore the convention resolved that he should not further disseminate his views, and that he resign as Pastor from Emmaus Lutheran Church, Walla Walla, Washington. If he failed to do either, the District President was authorized to expel him immediately. Nevertheless, the committee was still willing to discuss the issues with him in hopes of a restoration to ministry. In 1946 he resigned from his parish.

When the committee and Rev. Maier could not come to an agreement in the following years, the committee petitioned the 1955 District convention to be relieved of their assignment. The Convention accepted the request, but formed a new committee made up of the District Visitors to whom Rev. Maier was to present his doctrinal position. This committee was then to report to the next Convention. The District Visitors met with Rev. Maier for three days, after which they recommended to the District President that he reinstate Rev. Maier to the ministry. In 1956 February 14 District President Carl H. Bensene declared Rev. Maier eligible for a call. The District Visitors reported their findings to the 1957 Convention which adopted their report. Rev. Maier subsequently served briefly as an Interim Pastor in Wenatchee, Washington, and then was called to a parish in Sweet Home, Oregon, from which he retired in 1964. He died in 1979 December 9.
Guide to the Northwest District (LCMS) James P. Maier Papers
Nolan R. Bremer
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Northwest District (Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod) Archives Repository

Northwest District Archives
Concordia University
2811 NE Holman St.
Portland Oregon 97211-6099 USA