The Mission: Far and Near
The LCMS is in the beginning stages of creating a church-planting initiative to help districts, circuits and congregations.
Christianity has been in Ethiopia for nearly 2,000 years. It became the state religion in 330 A.D. when Archbishop Athanasius of Alexandria sent a bishop to Ethiopia, resulting in the birth of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, and it remains the predominant religion to this day.
Congregations of the LCMS North Atlanta Circuit came together to form the Kairos Network to establish and support church plants in the area.
Concordia Food Ministry in Triangle, Va., proclaims the name of Christ and shows His care for people by providing free food and clothing to the community’s poor.
Sandra Rhein uses her gifts as both a deaconess and church musician in a unique way: She works with Lutheran church bodies in places like Kenya and Ethiopia to create Christ-centered hymnals in the local language.
Deng Jock Kier is a pastor in the Ethiopian Evangelical Lutheran Church Mekane Yesus (EECMY). Kier shared his journey from the tribal lands of western Ethiopia to the seminary and back to shepherd his people as a pastor in the largest Lutheran church in Africa with Pamela Nielsen, who was part of the visiting LCMS delegation to Ethiopia in November.
For more than 100 years, the LCMS has carried out international mission work. Nearly every Synod convention since 1974 resolved to grow the number of career missionaries serving overseas. In 2013, the Synod convention adopted Res. 1-11, “To Recruit and Place More Career Missionaries,” which called for the doubling of career missionaries.
Forums, or “foros” as they are known in Latin America, have been created to provide a platform for LCMS entities in the United States to plug into the mission of the church abroad.
Declining support is a sad reality that most Christian congregations, including LCMS congregations, are facing in post-Christian, 21st-century North America. But the LCMS English District is addressing that trend.