Bishop John Henderson and International Mission leader Glenice Hartwich represented the LCA at a global gathering of Lutherans in Namibia, Africa, earlier this month.
Australian Lutheran World Service head Chey Mattner also attended as a member of the Committee for World Service. The Australian contingent also included Pastor Matt Anker, who was invited to share his ministry with people of African backgrounds at a ministry exhibition.
The 12th Lutheran World Federation (LWF) Assembly in Windhoek brought together almost 800 participants – including nearly 400 delegates from the 145 LWF member churches in 98 countries. Many thousands more attended the global commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation at Sam Nujoma Stadium on 14 May.
During the assembly, Rev Dr Musa Panti Filibus, Archbishop of the Lutheran Church of Christ in Nigeria, was elected as LWF president. Dr Filibus will succeed Bishop Dr Munib Younan of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land. Despite Bishop Henderson becoming ill during the week-long event (see separate story), Mrs Hartwich said representing the LCA was ‘an amazing privilege’.
‘We were blessed through the vibrant expressions of the word in worship and songs in many languages and traditions’, she said. ‘We were inspired and challenged by the Spirit working through the word shared through keynote presentations, Bible studies, prayer and daily conversations with believers from across the globe.
‘The sense of unity in the Spirit was even more evident through the loving care and prayers which surrounded us, and which were shared with us by those who attended the assembly, by the people in the LCA and by people from across the globe following the health crisis for Bishop John. We were certainly surrounded by a great cloud of living witnesses.’
The LCA is an associate member of both the LWF and the International Lutheran Council.