LIFE WORLD of the For the January 2005. Volume Nine, Number One Doctrine and Mission: Not Either/Or, but Both/And! - p.4 The Theology of Missions - p.7 A Perspective of Mission Life - p.10 Called to Serve - p.14 page 4 F E A T U R E S page 21 For theLIFE WORLDofthe PRESIDENT Rev. Dr. Dean O. Wenthe PUBLISHER Rev. Scott Klemsz EDITOR Rev. John T. Pless ASSOCIATE EDITOR COPY EDITOR ART DIRECTOR Jayne Sheafer Trudy Behning Steve Blakey For the Life of theWorld is published quarterly by Concordia Theological Seminary Press, 6600 North Clinton Street, Fort Wayne, Indiana 46825. No portion of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher of For the Life of the World. Copyright 2005. Printed in the United States. Postage paid at Huntington, Indiana. To be added to our mailing list please call 260-452-2150 or e-mail Rev. Scott Klemsz at firstname.lastname@example.org. For the Life of theWorld is mailed to all pastors and congregations of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod in the United States and Canada and to anyone interested in the work of Concordia The- ological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Indiana. 4 Doctrine and Mission: Not Either/Or, but Both/And! By the Rev. Dr. Lawrence R. Rast, Jr., Associate Professor of Historical Theology and Assistant Academic Dean at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Indiana What Scripture and the history of the church tell us is that there should be—in fact, there is—a complementary and inseparable relationship between doctrine and practice. 7 The Theology of Missions By the Rev. Dr. Douglas L. Rutt, Associate Professor of Pastoral Ministry and Missions and Ph.D. Supervisor at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Indiana A Lutheran understanding of mission will point to God in His Trinitarian economy as the original and ongoing source of mission. 10 A Perspective of Mission Life By the Rev. Theodore M. R. Krey, Missionary Pastor, church planter, and theological educator in Venezuela One who is asked to teach courses at the seminary level, visit his members, evangelize, care for fellow missionaries, and interact with the national church quickly realizes that mission work is God’s work and that anything that one is able to do and complete is only by the grace of God. 13 What Does This Mean? Professors Publish New Volumes with CPH p. 20 Candidates and Vicars Receive Assignments p. 21 Continuing Education p. 23 Serving the Church Vocational Retreat p. 25 Dedicated Servant Receives Second Miles Christi p. 26 Seminary Guild - Donation Day a Success p. 27 AlumnNews p. 30 CONTENTS JANUARY 2005 3 page 7 page 22 page 10 Called to SERVE I was sent by The Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod (LCMS) upon graduation from Con- cordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, to Venezuela in 2001. The Venezuelan Lutheran Church is a small synod of 25 Lutheran congregations spread across the country. She celebrated her 50th anniversary in 2001. My task as a missionary is multifaceted. I am a church planter which simply means that I am, by the grace of God, to start or help start a church here in Maracay, Venezuela. I am also a the- ological educator, that is, one who trains pastors and laypeople alike in theology. Third, I am responsible for the vol- unteers and other career mis- sionaries that we have in the field, and I work with the national church on a vari- ety of issues. 10 A missionary is one who is thrust into a strange culture, a strange people, a strange language and then comes to the realization that he is the strange one and every- one around him is normal. APerspe MissionLife M ission work is God’s work. The holy Christian and apostolic church finds her mandate to “teach all nations” in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The very heartbeat of the church is that by grace through faith we are saved, a message that intrinsically must be car- ried to all peoples–that Christ died for all and rose again for all. It therefore fol- lows that the church is sent by Jesus to all nations to preach Him, the Christ, the Gospel of salvation. An example of this is the Lutheran church in Venezuela. Today’s reality of shrinking mission budgets within the LCMS has directly led to my handling a variety of tasks. Three years ago there were seven LCMS pastors here in Venezuela. Today there are two. One of the major frus- trations of mis- sionaries is that many different tasks fall upon them which sometimes pre- vent them from doing any par- ticular task thoroughly. One who is asked to teach courses at the seminary level, visit his members, evangelize, care for fellow missionaries, and interact with the national church quickly realizes that mission work is God’s work and that anything that one is able to do and com- plete is only by the grace of God. Amissionary is one who is thrust into a strange cul- ture, a strange people, a strange language and then comes to the realization that he is the strange one and everyone around him is normal. Waiting two or three hours in line to pay utility bills or going to bank machines that have no cash quickly frustrates one who is accustomed to all the conveniences of North Amer- ica. Withdrawing money from the bank can be an all day ordeal when there are 150 people in line ahead of you. Then again, simply talking to people and teaching them about Christ are difficult when every single building has walls 10 to 15 feet high and no one trusts any one else. Misplaced trust can often mean being robbed or even being seriously injured. A missionary is hard put to avoid other religions, spiritual beliefs, and a host of ingrained superstitions in his field of endeavor. In a city like Maracay with a population of a million plus, religious parades and public veneration of saints is a com- mon occurrence. One also may experience outright competi- tion. When our storefront ser- vices were started, a Catholic chapel directly opposite us which had been closed for a year, was reopened. 11 Truly, the goal of all mission work is to proclaim the Gospel, Jesus Christ, the forgiveness of sins, and the love of the heavenly Father. The fulfillment of mission work is that the new believer, delivered from all evil, lives and dies with true faith only to live for all eternity. by the Rev. Theodore M. R. Krey pec ive of M ionLif A Lutheran missionary in a Roman Catholic coun- try is encouraged and well prepared when he opens his Book of Concord. As a new missionary I saw people worshiping the dead and knew people were in the cemetery praying to their dead. It is wonderful to find an already formulated and articulated answer in Augs- burg Article XXI. Then, too, in my visits I frequently hear people say, “I don’t believe in the priest.” At that moment the church of the Reformation clearly proclaims, through her missionary, that we don’t believe in the priest either, but that our authority and norm is not the church but Scripture alone. There are countless other issues that I daily encounter in speaking with people, such as receiving only one kind of the sacrament, priests who are for- bidden to marry, obligatory confession, penitence, and the mass. It is a delight to have beautiful statements already articulated which permit me to proclaim clearly and articulate- ly the true Jesus Christ and what His Church believes. About ten years ago the pope came to visit Venezuela. The pope greeted the people in the main square by saying, “The Lord be with you,” and his audience shouted, “And with thy spirit.” Liturgy in such a country for a missionary is simply not an issue. Due to the influence of Roman Catholi- cism, a Lutheran missionary who follows our two synodical hymnals finds that converts view a mission church with more respect and comfort when she practices the liturgy, although the instruments and musical arrangements vary. Truly, the goal of all mission work is to proclaim the Gospel, Jesus Christ, the forgiveness of sins, and the love of the heavenly Father. The fulfillment of mis- sion work is that the new believer, delivered from all evil, lives and dies with true faith only to live for all eternity. I am reminded of a young boy named Eddy. I visited Eddy in the hospital at the request of one of my members. He had a high fever. I talked to him of Jesus and the following day he was baptized. Again, we talked and he told me that he believed in Jesus Christ. The next day, I went to visit Eddy and he was already with his heavenly Father. As a missionary, I am fre- quently reminded of the urgency of the work that the church has and that “Today is the day of salvation.” Simply put, a missionary is one who dedicates his life to proclaiming Jesus Christ to all, especially the unbeliever. To this end, a missionary will consistently visit, listen, proclaim, encourage, and pray with those who do not yet know Christ. Often, very often, people will listen and not respond to the Gospel. This means frequent frustration, disappointment, and sometimes depression. However, the missionary moves on to other homes and begins the process all over again, trusting in Christ and His Word. One thing that a mis- sionary learns is to rely upon the Lord for all things and that nothing happens before the Holy Spirit moves hearts and minds to believe in Jesus Christ. The mis- sionary must always remember that the Word of God always does what it is supposed to do. The greatest single joy that any missionary encoun- ters is when an individual comes to faith in Jesus Christ. I was privileged to continue the mission work that my former partner, the Rev. Richard Schlak, began. God has blessed our mission here in Maracay with 27 new brothers and sisters in Christ over the past two years. We have grown from a confirmed member- ship of 24 to 51 adults, in addition to 27 baptized souls. God is good and He is faithful as He continues to work throughWord and Sacraments. To Him we give all the glory. Challenges always abound on the mission field. Here inMaracay, we soon hope to build a sanctuary for our mission. Many churches established by missionar- ies over 15 years ago still do not have a church sanc- tuary. Funds are not quickly forthcoming when an individual here makes about $200 per month to sup- port his family. I ask that you would continue to pray for your mis- sionaries serving across the world. The struggles and challenges that they are faced with are daunting and difficult. Ask that the Lord would encourage, strength- en, and enable them to preach His Word clearly and with power. Pray that the Lord would empower them with an unconditional love for those to whom He has sent them. Pray particularly that His Word would fall on hard hearts in which the Holy Spirit might work repentance, confession, and true faith in Jesus Christ. Pray that our prayers might be linked in an endless plea for mercy unto yet unreached and dying souls. Pray that the glory of our Triune God may redound, and souls yet void of His love may brighten unto the joy of their salvation with never ending grace and love in Christ our Lord. Pray ceaselessly! Should you wish to contact me, please do so at email@example.com. The Rev. Theodore M. R. Krey is a Missionary Pastor, a church planter, and theological educator in Venezuela. 12 For the Life of the World A missionary will consistently visit, listen, proclaim, encourage, and pray with those who do not yet know Christ. Often, very often, people will listen and not respond to the Gospel. This means frequent frustration, disappointment, and sometimes depression. However, the missionary moves on to other homes and begins the process all over again, trusting in Christ and His Word. One thing that a mis- sionary learns is to rely upon the Lord for all things and that nothing happens before the Holy Spirit moves hearts and minds to believe in Jesus Christ. The missionary must always remember that the Word of God always does what it is supposed to do.