‘They’ll know we are Christians by our love’ was the message behind the launch of the God’s love – our care document at the LCA/NZ’s recent General Convention of Synod. This document is the re-working of the One Loving God – two hands saving and caring paper, a task that was requested by the 2015 Synod.
God’s love – our care has been developed to provide a resource for use in small groups for study and discussion where questions such as: Who are the most vulnerable in my community and in my workplace? What role can I play to advocate for the vulnerable? Or, how can I serve the needy? With this resource, such questions can be discussed in the context of Lutheran theology and words from the Bible.
Following the completion of the document, a one-page ethos statement has also been developed for Lutheran aged-care and community services.
These two publications clearly reflect the LCA/NZ’s Our Direction document. The vision, mission, values and priorities of the church, as set out in this document, stress that we are a church where love comes to life, not just in our private lives, but also through all of the church’s institutions, including our aged-care and community services.
The ethos statement is supported by background material that can be used within aged and community services to assist with the induction of board members, CEOs and managers, as well as other staff members.
Residents of aged-care, and those who use Lutheran community services, or those who are interested in these services, may choose to view the resources to understand why the Lutheran church would be involved in such activities.
Essentially, it’s all about love. As Christians we want to share Christ’s love by serving people. The diaconic (servant) ministry has been a part of the Lutheran church since its inception.
The distinctive character of our services is summed up perfectly in the church’s mission statement: God grows us as his people to a mature faith in Christ – a faith that comes to life through effective witness and ministry, so that people everywhere may know Christ and his love.
So they really will know we are Christians by our love.
Thanks are due to Dr Peter Lockwood for his theological input and to the reference group members who have provided feedback and input during the project.
Interested groups and individuals can access these resources by emailing the LCA/NZ’s Committee for Ministry with the Ageing at firstname.lastname@example.org