Notes from the Mission Field — Siberia and the Baltics

Here is an email letter that Pastor Johnson, Missionary to the Eurasia churches in Siberia and The Baltics, sent out recently. If you are aware of missionary newsletters that are sent out, please contact us so we can periodically publish them on BJS.

My church helps to support three missionaries in various parts of the world; if your church doesn’t yet support a missionary it would be a good idea to get it in your budget for this next year.

 

Dear Friends of Siberia and Baltic missions;

Greetings!

For most of September and October, I have been traveling throughout Iowa, Kansas, Texas and Missouri visiting congregations and telling the story of the Siberian Evangelical Lutheran Church and the resurgence of the Baltic Lutheran Churches. As I have now returned home for a few days, I must take this opportunity to thank you for the invitation to visit your congregation. It was a great privilege for me to speak in behalf of our Siberian and Baltic Lutheran brethren. Their need for continuing catechesis is immense. With your help, we can assist the Siberian and Baltic bishops in further catechizing and training their clergy and laity on the respective needs of pastoral care and the proper understanding of living the Christian vocation.

As I present the story of Lutheranism in Siberia and the repressions received by the Baltic Lutheran Churches under the Soviets, there has been great interest in hearing more. Therefore I have attached to this email a newsletter from the Siberian Lutheran Mission Society (SLMS-May 2008). This particular newsletter describes the conversion of the Siberian Evangelical Lutheran Church’s Bishop and his early years as a Lutheran in Siberia. Within the newsletter is also printed the sermon Bishop Lytkin preached at his consecration in Tallinn, Estonia as Bishop of the Siberian Evangelical Lutheran Church. I am sure you will find this SLMS newsletter to be most interesting reading. Other newsletters can be found here.

I am also attaching the link to the video I presented during my presentation at your congregation, “The Other Half of the Truth.” (Contact me If you desire a DVD of the Video).

Other newsletters and videos describing the life of the Siberian Evangelical Lutheran Church (SELC) can be downloaded from the Siberian Lutheran Mission Society (SLMS) website.

The question often asked when I visit congregations is when will I be deployed to Eurasia. The date has still not been determined, but I should expect to receive my date of departure soon after the installation of the new Director of International Mission. The new Director of International Mission is the former Rocky Mountain District President, Reverend Randy Golter.

To assist in your financial gifts to the Siberian and Baltic mission, I have attached a “Prayer Card” which describes the process of submitting support.

As new information is available, I will be sending you reports. Of course, you are welcome to contact me at any time.

Peace,

Rev. Daniel S. Johnson
Marshalltown, IA
Missionary to the Eurasia churches in Siberia and The Baltics

Here is a prayer card with information on giving for Pastor Johnson’s mission. You can also give at www.lcms.org/johnson.

About Norm Fisher

Norm was raised in the UCC in Connecticut, and like many fell away from the church after high school. With this background he saw it primarily as a service organization. On the miracle of his first child he came back to the church. On moving to Texas a few years later he found a home in Lutheranism when he was invited to a confessional church a half-hour away by our new neighbors.

He is one of those people who found a like mind in computers while in Middle School and has been programming ever since. He's responsible for many websites, including the Book of Concord, LCMSsermons.com, and several other sites.

He has served the church in various positions, including financial secretary, sunday school teacher, elder, PTF board member, and choir member.

More of his work can be found at KNFA.net.

Comments

Notes from the Mission Field — Siberia and the Baltics — 5 Comments

  1. Is anyone else bothered by the fact that our full-time seminary-trained Pastor Missionaries have to raise their own funds so they can go overseas and do their jobs?

    I don’t believe this is how things have always been.

    Has anyone ever written or seen any overtures that address this issue? Perhaps it is time for congregations and circuits to ask Synod to address this problem.

    If you have any info please post it here or email to [email protected].

    God’s Blessings,
    Ginny Valleau

  2. Ginny Valleau :Is anyone else bothered by the fact that our full-time seminary-trained Pastor Missionaries have to raise their own funds so they can go overseas and do their jobs?God’s Blessings,Ginny Valleau

    You are not alone. It is also disturbing that missionaries here in the states are abandoned, too. There was a time in our synod’s history when pastors were put on a salary for a year or so, until the congregation could become established enough to afford to pay their pastor. Nowadays we instead pay the salaries of mission executives who have no congregations…

  3. Pastor Ted Crandall :

    Ginny Valleau :Is anyone else bothered by the fact that our full-time seminary-trained Pastor Missionaries have to raise their own funds so they can go overseas and do their jobs?God’s Blessings,Ginny Valleau

    You are not alone. It is also disturbing that missionaries here in the states are abandoned, too. There was a time in our synod’s history when pastors were put on a salary for a year or so, until the congregation could become established enough to afford to pay their pastor. Nowadays we instead pay the salaries of mission executives who have no congregations…

    Whoa! I thought that Synod restructuring was supposed to eliminate the “bloated, inefficient, bureaucracy” within the LCMS. I hope you are referring to the LCMS districts, which have yet to be restructured.

    Good luck to all those seminary-trained pastors who owe $50,000 in student loans………..and much of that debt courtesy of the LCMS seminaries.

  4. Here is a proposed overture:

    To Pay Foreign and Domestic Missionary Salaries

    WHEREAS, one of the objectives of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod is to “Strengthen congregations and their members in giving bold witness by word and deed to the love and work of God, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and extend that Gospel witness into all the world” (LCMS Constitution, Article III, 2.); and

    WHEREAS, another of the objectives of the LCMS is to “Provide evangelical supervision, counsel, and care for pastors, teachers, and other professional church workers of the Synod in the performance of their official duties” (LCMS Constitution, Article III, 8.); and

    WHEREAS, when full-time LCMS domestic and international missionaries have to raise their own funds to support themselves during their assignments it takes away time these missionaries could spend on the mission field; and

    WHEREAS, the LCMS is now paying the salaries and benefits of three full-time mission executives (Chief Mission Officer, Executive Director of International Missions, Executive Director of National Missions); and

    WHEREAS, “The time has come for the gifts of God’s people to support the core purposes of Synod—seminaries, church-work programs at our colleges, and missions…mission offerings must directly support ordained Word and Sacrament missionaries at home and abroad” (Dr. Daniel L. Gard, The Lutheran Witness, June 2010, p.20); and

    WHEREAS, “…when seminaries and missions are financial priorities, proper stewardship is exercised and giving will increase” (Dr. Daniel L. Gard, The Lutheran Witness, June 2010, p.20); therefore be it

    Resolved, That the 2013 LCMS convention direct the Synod and encourage Districts to make national and international missionary salaries a financial priority above all other national and international mission expenditures.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.