VBS in Czech Republic
Pastors Martin Vrsecky and Petr Krakora are preparing for this summer’s Vacation Bible School at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Plzen, Czech Republic. For the past few years, volunteers from St. John’s Lutheran Church (WELS), Jefferson, WI, have staffed the VBS, which serves students from Martin Luther School (which hosts the session) and children from the congregation’s neighborhood. It will be hard to top the 2015 VBS – when the Christian-rock band Koine participated – but the enrollment grows annually and no doubt God will bless the program again this year. Thoughts of Faith has sponsored mission work in the Czech Republic for many years, and in 2009, the ELS Board for World Outreach assumed responsibility for mission-ministry in Czech Republic, Latvia and with the humanitarian ministry Gift of Life in Ukraine.
Big News in Bell Gardens, California!
Christ the King Lutheran Church, Bell Gardens, California and the Board for Home Outreach (BHO) jointly requested a Candidate of Theology be assigned to Christ the King Lutheran Church in Bell Gardens, California. The request was recently filled by the Seminary Assignment Committee. They assigned Candidate of Theology, Matthew Behmer. The purpose for the BHO’s involvement is to help the congregation begin work in the Hispanic community of Bell Gardens and the surrounding communities. Upon his ordination and installation, Pastor Behmer will serve Christ the King as pastor, and conduct exploratory mission work in the community with the purpose of bringing together a Hispanic congregation. Candidate Behmer and his wife, Elizabeth, and daughter, Emma, had the opportunity to visit Bell Gardens and the congregation at Christ the King.
Ordination and installation are scheduled for November 27th. In the meantime, the Behmer family is relocating to Puebla, Mexico to attend the Puebla Language Institute. Both Candidate Behmer and Elizabeth will be involved in a full language immersion program. They will be residing with a local host family to help them learn the customs and traditions of a typical Hispanic family, and attend four to six hours of intense language study five days a week. Upon graduation they will have native fluency in the Spanish language. Once a core group gather from among the Hispanic community around Bell Gardens, Pastor Behmer will be conducting Divine Worship services and Bible Studies in Spanish.
Your prayers and support for this mission are requested. The Evangelical Lutheran Synod is truly blessed to have this opportunity and to have men such as Candidate Behmer to reach out and help reap God’s harvest from Bell Gardens, California and the surrounding communities.