The countries within which LC-MS Office of International Mission works in Africa constitute a land mass roughly twice the size of the United States not including Alaska and Hawaii. LC-MS Office of International Mission serves God’s Mission in Africa not only through LC-MS missionaries, but by supporting other Lutheran church bodies in their mission efforts. In this way, the resources given to LC-MS Office of International Mission are maximized and God’s Word is proclaimed even in the places of crisis that LC-MS missionaries cannot be physically present but where these church bodies remain and continue to grow. Regional Outcome Development Projects enable the Area Directors to build and maintain relationships and coordinate the many mission efforts which are the LC-MS in mission in Africa.
Mission Relationship Development – Regional
LC-MS Office of International Mission works with African Lutheran church bodies as partners in mission in 16 African nations with requests for relationship to explore mutual mission opportunities in 9 other African countries. The Area Directors visit these African partners in a continent roughly the size of the United States, China, India, Western Europe and Argentina put together, to forge relationships between these mission partners and LC-MS Registered Service Organizations, districts and congregations of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod in the United States, for the purpose of mutual mission. The below projects allow quick facilitation of mutual mission needs discovered in accord with LCMS Office of International Mission’s outcome-based goals.
There is also an explosion in the growth of Lutheran church bodies in Africa through recent years. The number one request to LCMS Office of International Mission is to help these church bodies understand better their Lutheran identity. The below projects allow the Area Directors to travel to the remote places in which these emerging Lutheran church bodies are located, to encourage these churches, teach, assess their needs and explore ways of coming to a more full partnership based upon a mutual confessional Lutheran understanding of Scripture.
Africa Area Mutual Mission Outcome Development
Each of the LCMS Office of International Mission two designated areas of Africa – East and Southern Africa, and West and Central Africa – encompass an area greater than the size of the contiguous United States. The context of Africa makes project planning through the budget process a challenge as situations change rapidly. Along with that, African cultures have a tendency to focus on a strong past and present and a weak future. Funded Mission Relationship Development Projects allow LCMS Area Directors in Africa to react rapidly to change, needs and opportunity through mission partner church bodies when in accord with mission objectives and outcomes. In addition, short-term agricultural consultancies help churches in these areas become more self-sufficient and self-sustaining.
Mission Relationship Development, Anglophone West Africa
A16156-20701-372 – Structural
Mission Relationship Development, East Africa
A16156-20701-373 – Structural
Mission Relationship Development, Francophone West Africa
A16156-20701-374 – Structural
Mission Relationship Development, Southern Africa
A16156-20701-375 – Structural
Mission Relationship Development, Central Africa
A16156-20701-376 – Structural
Agricultural Project Consultancy – East Africa
Agricultural consultancy provides East Africa Lutheran church bodies the ability to build their capacity for sustainability. Church bodies are helped by LCMS agricultural consultants through this project to gather local farmers so that they can learn better methods of farming in line with biblical principles of resource management. Note: This is a Revenue-Dependent project and can only be done if/when funds are raised.
FINISHED PROJECT REPORT!! Delano and Linda Meyer, former agricultural missionaries in West Africa, made a trip to East Africa, visiting the countries of Tanzania and Kenya, ministering to 418 people in those two places. During their visit they talked with our Lutheran churches about topics such as management of the harvest, changes in the environment, life of the soil, water and soil conservation, animal care, battle of the spiritual kingdoms, and husbands and wives. Delano shares: “The genius of the GRAAP Community Development series is that it respects and gives dignity to the people by asking them to discuss their problems, talk freely about causes of their problems and identify how they can lift themselves out of poverty and hardships.” He later concluded: “Participants expressed a great deal of enthusiasm and many said they planned to change habits that keep them in poverty. This was truly an encouraging experience for us.” Praise God for opportunities like this to help not only in the spiritual realm but also in the physical. Pray that God would open more opportunities for us to reach out in all areas of life!
(Photo above: An unexpected opportunity for missionary Delano Meyer to witness Christ to many unchurched youth awaiting a work project at Kandongu, Kenya, where they joined the Lutherans for the agricultural training sessions.)
Gifts to support projects can be made out to “Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod” with the project name and number in the memo line and sent to:
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod Mission Advancement
PO Box 66861
St. Louis, MO 63179-0089
or please contact LCMS toll-free gift line at 800-930-4438 or www.lcms.org/givenow.