From our earliest days, the LCMS has understood our Gospel mandate to carry the pure Word of God and rightly administered Sacraments to the very ends of the earth. Wherever there are those who have not yet heard, whether in our backyard or across the globe, we have been prepared to proclaim the hope that is in us and the faith that comes from hearing. The mission zeal that marked the earliest days of our church is being invigorated in the present day. Mission is happening at home and abroad. The Kingdom of God is expanding. Thanks be to God. He does all things well.
That mission has been richly blessed by our Lord right up to the present day. Today the church is living mission more than ever before, despite the changing and challenging face of Christianity around the world. To say the world is changing is no surprise. The challenges to the Gospel often seem insurmountable to our human eyes and frail faith. Yet the Lord is blessing in amazing ways. He is faithful. His Word never returns empty. He is using our efforts to do great things. The mission field is abounding with a harvest unto eternal life.
We work at home and abroad. In the United States, we see the mission field that is growing around us. The United States is now the third largest mission field in the world. And so we work to support a domestic church that transitions from traditional ministry to a mission focus and ethos. A church that is invigorated to live in the midst of the mission. A church that has all that is needed to proclaim the Gospel in our own backyard.
At the very same time, we are working with partners around the world. Each partner has different needs and we stand ready to help and support them in meaningful ways. Many of our older church partners are moving from mission to traditional ministry. They often need us to support them with theological education for both pastors and lay leaders. They need support to transition into sustaining ministries as people become lifelong disciples of Jesus. Other emerging partners need us to help them engage with missionaries on the ground to support the beginning of an indigenous church that will share the Gospel in their own language and cultural context.
The mission work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod is as critical today as ever before. We ask for your prayers and support of that work. In the following pages you will hear a few of the amazing things that are happening by the grace of God in our Synod. I pray these will inspire you to partner with us in this wonderful task of telling the whole world about Jesus.
In His name,
Rev. Bart Day
Interim Chief Mission Officer and Executive
Director of the Office of National Mission,
The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod