Despite being 2000 kilometres from Australian Lutheran College at North Adelaide, members at Good Shepherd Witta were thrilled to have a ‘visit’ from ALC’s first professor, Dr Wendy Mayer.
Based on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast hinterland, the Good Shepherd flock was able to watch the ALC 2017 Opening Lecture, delivered by Professor Mayer, on screen live via internet streaming. Following the lecture on the topic ‘Preaching schism: why what good people say can have unintended consequences for the Church’, those attending were treated to a live question and answer session via video feed with Professor Mayer, who is also the ALC’s Associate Dean for Research.
Pastor Andrew Jaensch, also on the ALC’s faculty, arranged the event for his fellow members at Witta, which had a reported average weekly attendance of just 16 in 2016, but has continually served its community since the late 1800s when German families first settled in the area.
Congregation chair Phil Thamm said the opportunity to watch the lecture and engage in the post-lecture session was ‘a real blessing’. ‘Professor Mayer gave us a deeper understanding of the subject, explained why we can have opposing views and how this can lead to schism between us individually and in the wider church’, Mr Thamm said. ‘Our members were very appreciative of this wonderful opportunity and for one of the LCA’s smallest congregations to have access to an ALC faculty member in this manner was tremendous. The contact with Professor Mayer gave us an inkling of the type of research she is doing and its great value to the church.’
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