By Gretchen Roberts
ST. LOUIS (July 22, 2013) — With a vote of 946 to 7, LCMS convention delegates overwhelmingly affirmed altar and pulpit fellowship between the Synod and the Evangelical Lutheran
Church of Liberia (ELCL), in passing Resolution 4-01. After convention attendees rose to sing the Doxology in celebration and thanksgiving of this partnership in the Gospel, the Rev. James Kollie, on behalf of the ELCL, thanked the LCMS for the partnership.
“I am overwhelmed and say a very big thank-you to the LCMS for allowing our partnership with you. We do appreciate it, and we know the people in Liberia will celebrate today when they hear the news,” Kollie said.
Synod President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison previously declared fellowship with the ELCL May 10, 2012, after the LCMS Commission on Theology and Church Relations in April recognized full agreement between the LCMS and ELCL. The ELCL has 137 congregations with more than 6,000 baptized and confirmed members, as well as 12 Lutheran schools.
This is rather Most Rev. Chris Ekong from the Lutheran Church of Nigeria.
It’s a joy to hear the LCMS finally affirmed partnership with Liberia. What has happened today is a definite step toward reinforcing our Gospel presence through Word & Sacrament to a nation that is deeply hungry for the message of grace as they pick up the pieces of a devastating 14 years civil war. May God strengthen this partnership and bless the work of His hands in Liberia.