Connecting lives to the gospel

By Nevin Nitschke

We thank the Lutheran Women of Australia, for their support of the LCA International Mission scholarship program. This has allowed the further training of pastors and lay people in Lutheran theology from our overseas partner churches. In the past year, the following people have been recipients of an LCA International Mission scholarship: Emmanuel Som Yalamu […]

We thank the Lutheran Women of Australia, for their support of the LCA International Mission scholarship program. This has allowed the further training of pastors and lay people in Lutheran theology from our overseas partner churches.

In the past year, the following people have been recipients of an LCA International Mission scholarship:

Emmanuel Som Yalamu continued his Doctoral studies through ALC. Emmanuel attends Australian Lutheran College (ALC) three times a year for one month at a time. Emmanuel is a lecturer at Martin Luther Seminary in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and his doctorate will help the seminary work towards running a Masters program.

Augustin Muthusami leads the lay ministry department for the Lutheran Church in Malaysia. He is undertaking long distance doctoral research studies through ALC.

Johnny Wong Giam Fui is the 2019 short-term scholarship holder who is soon to take part in various subjects through ALC during semester 2, 2019. His wife Rebecca will accompany Johnny during his stay in Australia.

Gloria Ndraha is from the BNKP church and is a lecturer at STT Sundermann Seminary in Indonesia. Gloria, the 2019 sabbatical scholarship holder, will use the ALC library to undertake further research during semester 2.

Deddy Farjar Purba and Kilber Simbolon took part in the reconciliation scholarship under Pastor Paul Kerber. The reconciliation scholarships, rich in Lutheran teaching and practice, are highly valued by the churches in Indonesia. The number of people trained under Paul continues to grow as they form the foundation for a ministry based in Indonesia.

One of the challenges this year with the scholarship holders, who have stayed in our LCA International Mission unit on the grounds of ALC, has been feeding them! The closure of the refectory at ALC has meant that meals are no longer provided for these guests. We give each scholarship holder a living allowance that covers the cost of purchasing food and it has been good to see them work together in the unit kitchen cooking a wide variety of Asian and PNG dishes! If you would like to provide meals that can be frozen, your help would be greatly appreciated by the scholarship holders.

The scholarships continue to provide an opportunity for our partner churches to be blessed by Lutheran doctrine and content through the courses they attend. Just as importantly, the scholarships build strong bonds of friendship with our partner churches and continue to provide us with opportunities to learn how our partners do ministry.

Deddy Purba, a recent Reconciliation scholarship holder, reflected on his time with Pastor Paul Kerber:

‘The seven week program of reconciliation has led us to a deep understanding of God’s love. Part of our seven weeks study was exposure to some of the Lutheran Churches in Australia. We got close to the grassroots of the church and observed how Reconciliation Ministry has become a practical way of life in the LCA congregations. The way this study program is designed fascinated us, as we encountered people who confess that their life has been changed by the power of the gospel, and by the recognition of Jesus’ blood shed for their salvation. They can then enact reconciliation as their way of life. Some said that they since have joy and peace in their life, and are experiencing a blessed life. They know God is kind and very near to them. What a marvellous and blessed life!’

The Australian culture was also very new to Deddy and Kilber. Deddy went on to say:

‘I found this study program very impressive. We were given opportunities to experience many new and different things we had not previously experienced through visiting the Lutheran Churches in Tasmania, Melbourne and Adelaide. We experienced a different culture with a different way of life. We were so blessed, as we experienced living life within those communities. Australia is a huge land blessed with many cows and ships, very good quality of bread and tasty foods, famous well known Australian Barossa wine, milky milk, butter, cheese, and varieties of vegetables. You have many gifts and blessing from God. We learned much from the LCA and the local Church Congregations we met.’

In seeing our blessings, through the eyes of our neighbours, may we remain thankful for the blessings God has given us.’

‘Most of all’ Deddy says, ‘we learned much more about what is the gospel and law according to our biblical and Lutheran identity. We were shown how to enact them in our daily life, and by doing so, how it is the way of life for people of the gospel.”


If you would like to know more about opportunities to personally support a scholarship recipient in your congregation during their stay in Australia, or ways in which you can financially and prayerfully support LCA International Mission’s scholarship program, you are invited to phone Nevin on (08) 8267 7300 or email nevin.nitschke@lca.org.au

Read more stories about LCA International Mission scholarships at http://www.lcamission.org.au/category/stories/scholarships/

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