The Missionary Sponsorship appeal to return Lori Endress
to Thailand was launched in March 2004. Lori is a Short-term Missionary developing and teaching English programs at the McGilvary Faculty of Theology and Seminary of Payap University in Chiang Mai, Thailand. By December, about $29,000 in donations and pledges had come in from congregations and individuals. This response was sufficient for Mission in the World to renew Lori’s Short-term Missionary placement for two more years. About $8,000 is still needed to fully fund Lori’s placement to June 2006 so additional sponsorships are encouraged.
Rev David Kaiser
, accompanied by his wife Marlys
, served from August to December 2004 as Volunteers in Mission (VIM) at the Lutheran Theological Seminary (LTS) in Hong Kong. David had taught Christian education courses previously for three years as an ELCIC Short-term Missionary. The VIM Support Group at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church in Regina raised more money than needed for David’s expenses so the balance of about $3,000 will be sent to LTS Hong Kong to assist the seminary students.
(Evangelical Lutheran Church, Selkirk MB) was scheduled to return to Slovakia in November 2004 as an English teacher for another term with VIM. However, the VIM office was informed that the Evanjelicke Lyceum, the Lutheran high school in Bratislava, was able to find a local teacher to fill this need in their English department.
ELCIC Long-term Missionary Bonnie Weppler
traveled to Madagascar for two weeks in November 2004 to represent the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Papua New Guinea (ELC-PNG) at a Lutheran World Federation (LWF) consultation on south-south missionaries. In the south-south program, the sending and receiving churches are in the south while the sponsoring church is in the north. The ELC-PNG receives missionaries from Madagascar and the Philippines who are supported by grants from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
With funding from the government of Norway, the Norwegian Missionary Society carries out a youth exchange program with about a dozen of its global church partners including the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon (EELC). Rev Etienne Fomgbami
, the Good News Partner in Canada from 2000 to 2003, is the coordinator for the EELC in this program. He spent two weeks in Norway in January to receive training for this assignment which he will carry out while he continues as an evangelism instructor at the Meng School for Evangelists and Catechists near Tibati, Cameroon.
(St John’s, Waterloo ON) will complete her VIM service at the McKean Rehabilitation Center in Chiang Mai, Thailand at the end of March and return to Canada in April 2005 as scheduled. Elvira has been helping to address the needs of the residents at McKean (a Foundation of the Church of Christ in Thailand) which includes the elderly disabled and people coping with the effects of leprosy. She decided not to extend her VIM placement after it became necessary for her to renew her visa every month by traveling to the neighbouring country of Burma and returning to Thailand through a border crossing.
Rev Jack and Valerie Frederick
(VIM: Redeemer and Ascension Lutheran Parishes, Georgetown, Guyana) were in the middle of a flood in January 2005. More than a meter of rain fell in one month, the worst rains in Guyana in 100 years. About 20 people died from an intestinal disease spread by the flood waters which were waist deep in some villages. The Fredericks took refuge in the second story of the Redeemer parsonage and were faced with a massive clean up after the flood waters receded in February. The ELCIC’s Global Hunger and Development Appeal sent $5,000 to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Guyana to assist the church with their flood relief efforts.
As part of Rev Brian Rude
’s role as an ELCIC Long-term Missionary in El Salvador, he has taught theology at the Salvadoran Lutheran University (ULS) in San Salvador. Brian reported an attack on the ULS on January 29, 2005 during which one of their guard was brutally murdered and their computers, other equipment and money from tuition fees was stolen. The ULS is characterised as an alternative project in education, promoting a critical conscience for the society, accompanying the people in their struggles for justice, and in giving education opportunities for the poor. Mission in the World sent a donation of $3,000 to help the ULS recover from this attack and ELCIC National Bishop Ray Schultz wrote to the Acting Rector, Rev Hector Fernandez, to let the Lutheran community in El Salvador know that “we have been with you in our prayers all along, sharing in your sorrow and in your outrage.”
Mission in the World has made three ecumenical appointments. Margaret Sadler
who served with VIM at the LWF World Service office in Mauritania in 2001 is representing the ELCIC for three years as the ecumenical partner on the Anglican Church of Canada’s Partners in Mission Committee (for their world mission program). Rev Nadine Nicholds
(Trinity, New Hamburg ON) has been appointed to the Board of the Canadian Churches Forum for Global Ministries which conducts mission personnel orientation and re-entry programs for five Christian member denominations. Nadine led a youth exchange in 2003 between the Eastern Synod and their companion church in Guyana. Rev Katharine Bergbusch
, ELCIC Long-term Missionary in Peru, will be part of the Canadian contingent at the World Council of Churches Conference on World Mission and Evangelism in Athens, Greece, May 9-16, 2005.
(Messiah, Camrose) left in November 2004 to begin her year as a Volunteer in Mission with the International Assistance Mission in Central Asia, a joint placement with the World Mission Prayer League Canada. Leah is using her skills as an occupational therapist as the Team Leader for Visual Impairment Services which provides education and vocational training to visually impaired children and adults. She is also developing curriculum for pre-school kids with visual impairment. Leah reported on the very cold weather in Central Asia in January 2005. It snowed in some communities where that has not happened for thirty years but the snow was appreciated since there has been a drought there for ten years.
Al and Darleen Anderson
are continuing their VIM assignment with the Lutheran Association of Missionaries and Pilots (LAMP) Canada for another year to February 2006. In the request to the VIM office, Ron Ludke, LAMP Canada Executive Director, wrote that “Al, in his position as Director of Ministries, has worked closely with the board and staff of LAMP in developing a strategic plan for ministries that is aggressive and responding to current needs. Darlene, who has fulfilled an active support role, has been no less valuable.” The Andersons recently visited a number of ELCIC congregations in British Columbia where they shared LAMP through scripture-linkage stories with the use of music and computer. Then they were off to the United States for LAMP meetings. That trip was followed by “fly ins” to assess ministry needs, as per the new strategic plan, in all Manitoba and Ontario villages that will be offering LAMP Vacation Bible Schools this summer.
has begun a one-year VIM placement with the Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Poland. Michael has just completed a master’s degree in law. He will serve mainly as a program assistant at the Center of Mission and Evangelism in Dziegielow, Poland and spend some time in their national office in Warsaw where he will work on English translation of the church’s web site. Michael left for Poland on March 14, 2005, the day after his commissioning service at St John’s Lutheran Church in Montreal.
The 2005 ELCA Global Mission Events
with the theme of Gathered by God's Grace
are endorsed by the ELCIC. Participants can choose the most convenient site and time: Fargo, North Dakota July 14-17 or Baltimore, Maryland August 25-28. A thousand or more participants at each site will be immersed in mission experiences from North America and around the world. Children's and youth programs are included. Several Canadians will be invited to present “global university” workshops. Brochures and registration forms with Canadian dollar fees are being distributed to ELCIC congregations. Further information and additional registration forms are available at www.elca.org/gme
or call toll free 1-800-638-3522 ext 2642.
Established September, 1995. Page revised March 10, 2006.