Volunteering to serve God overseas can be life-changing for you and the people you serve. Serving others in another country, and being a living example of God’s word, is faith in action which can produce incredible fruit for the Gospel.

Throughout the Lutheran Church of Australia’s history, many different people have served as full-time workers or volunteers – for various periods of time – particularly in Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.

God uses people from a huge variety of backgrounds to humbly do his will overseas. Doctors, nurses, teachers, mechanics, accountants, research assistants, students, retired people and even young people wanting to fill a gap year – have been able to join pastors in serving God and his people in other nations.

You may be:
Young and looking for a Gap Year opportunity
Looking to volunteer during a holiday period
Part of a friendship group wanting to engage with the wider church
Retired and keen to unpack God’s prompts
Someone who would like to help LCA International Mission at the local level
Anyone – just ready to serve!

If so, please consider offering your time to serve in a wide range of exciting ministry areas with our overseas partner churches and here in Australia:

  • Teaching English
    Location: The Rainbow Student Hostel (Phnom Penh)
    Time frame: at least 3 months
    Accommodation: at the Rainbow Student Hostel
  • Community Musicians and Teachers
    Location: Tang Krang, a small rural community about 1 hour drive from Phnom Penh. The Lutheran Church in Cambodia has established a Community Centre where church and education mix
    Time frame: at least 3 months
    Accommodation: on site
    Volunteers are asked to become a witness of Jesus to the community they serve and live in
  • Setting up a Youth and Children’s Club
    Location: Tang Krang Community Centre located in a rural setting
    Time frame: at least 3 months
    Accommodation: on site
    Volunteers become a part of the local community
  • Medical Missions
    Next year the focus will be on an eye surgery medical team. Projects are divided into three phases – screening, surgery, post ops care.
    The team works with Khmer sight foundation which helps with customs and provides a medical venue. Local pastoral personnel are involved in follow up at pre ops and post ops

  • Teaching English
    Location: Adbi Sabda seminary, located in Medan, North Sumatra
    Time frame: during July and August
    Accommodation: available at the seminary
    The seminary has 160 students and 16 lecturers who take part in the program. Teaching qualifications are preferred. Volunteers who teach English here are also often asked to teach a 4 week block of English to the students of the STT Deminary in Siantar (about 2 hours drive from Medan)
  • Teaching conversational English
    Location: Bible Frau school, situated in a small rural town in North Sumatra
    Time frame: at least 1 month
    Accommodation: on site (2 bedrooms, basic kitchen and bath area)
    The school has a strong choral focus and trains young women to teach and preach the Word of God in their local communities. Qualifications are not essential. You shop for and cook your own meals
  • Assistance to Develop the Library and Teaching English to the Students
    Location: Deaconess School, in the heart of Sumatra.
    Time frame:
    Accommodation: three rooms and a toilet are available for volunteers. Meals are taken with the school community but shops are nearby
    It is very well run, efficiently structured and organised. This would suit individuals or small congregation groups. Visits to the communities where the women come from is part of the experience of living in this community.
  • Teaching English to students and staff
    Location: Lutheran schools in Indonesia (including vocational training schools). If interested, placement is negotiated before the volunteer arrives
    Time frame: 2 months
    Accommodation: if interested, accommodation and meals are negotiated before the volunteer arrives
    Best suited to current or retired teachers looking to experience education in another setting

  • Teachers with Special Education qualifications, Speech and Physical Therapy; pastors or people able to provide spiritual care and encouragement for the staff and children
    Location: Bethany Home, in rural Malaysia serving young people and adults who have disabilities
    Time frame: 2 or more months but not over the Christmas break from December 15 to January 4
    Accommodation: at Bethany Home (RM20/night). Meals are available from the Cafe at Bethany Home or from shops located across the road
  • Teaching English
    Location: 4 schools for ‘undocumented children’, Sabah (East Malaysia)
    Time frame: at least 2 months
    Accommodation: provided. Often meals are prepared and eaten with the live-in staff of the school
  • Farming Knowledge and Practical Skills
    Location: Rural areas of Sabah (East Malaysia) where many of the local people are poor and struggling to make an income for their family
    Time frame: 2 months
    Accommodation: provided free of charge. The volunteer would pay for the cost of meals
    Ideal experience for an individual, a family or the beginnings of a congregational partnership
  • Teaching English
    Location: Grace Centre, a kindergarten to secondary students—Indonesian migrant children whose parents work in nearby
    Time frame: 2 months
    Accommodation: provided by the school

  • Teaching English, IT or Business Management to assist training staff
    Location: Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Yangon
    Time frame: 3 – 6 months
  • Farming
    Location: Rural Myanmar
    Time frame: at least 2 weeks
    Accommodation: in a local village
    Farm or agriculturalists keen to learn about traditional farming in Myanmar and keen to help plant crops with local villages while sharing skills and taking part in conversational English. Six months prior notice is to be given for this volunteering role
  • Teaching Worship Music
    Location: Myanmar Institute of Lutheran Theology, North Dagon (with Lutheran Church of Myanmar)
    Time frame: minimum 2 weeks
    Accommodation: Damadi Home or nearby hotel. This will need to be covered by the volunteer.

  • Builder/handyman able to help with maintenance, and construction of houses
    Location: Ogelbeng Seminary
    Time frame: 1 – 2 weeks
    Accommodation: provided but food costs would be covered by the volunteers
    An ideal opportunity for a men’s group, some of whom are experienced in building maintenance. Would involve fellowship with the staff and students of the seminary
  • Teaching Theology and English
    Location: Martin Luther Seminar in Lae or Ogelbeng Seminary at Mt. Hagen
    Time frame: 2 – 4 weeks
    Accommodation: available at the seminaries through negotiation. Food costs are the responsibility of the volunteer
    This role is also suitable for secondary teachers with a DipTh
  • English Teachers
    Location: available at both rural and city schools
    Time frame: generally a stay of more than 4 weeks has greater impact on the learning achieved
  • Gaubin Hospital repairs
  • Location: Karkar Island
    Time frame: 2 or more weeks
    Accommodation: negotiated with the hospital
    The hospital is staffed by several German doctors and is in need of repair. This would suit a larger team with building skills

  • Helping Hand and Listener
    Location: Home of Grace, a home where unmarried women and their infants can be cared for
    Time frame: 2 – 3 months so that relationships can be built
    Accommodation: on site and free but you pay for the electricity used in the room
    Useful skills for a volunteer to have include: Handcraft, conversational English, cafe skills. You need to be independent as you will also spend time by yourself
  • Teaching, Special Education, IT Support
    Location: Home of Praise, a day-care centre for infants and children living in the slums of Bangkok
    Time frame: 2 – 3 months is preferred (not over Christmas or in April)
    Accommodation: available at an ELCT church building. Costs apply
    Skills needed would include music, art, teaching English, Special Ed and IT competence
  • Teaching English
    Location: Schools in the Nan province in the mountains near Laos
    Time frame: At least 1 school term. You would teach in two or three schools over 2 or 3 days
    Accommodation: Food is provided
    No qualifications needed but you will need a sleeping bag
  • Conversational English
    Location: Lutheran Seminary in Thailand
    Time frame: 3 months
    Accommodation: provided on site. Volunteers need to provide funds for their meals (50 BTh per day)

  • Scholarship Holder supporters
    Caring for scholarship holders who live for several months in a flat on Archer Street, North Adelaide.
    Part of this role would involve taking the guests on day trips to experience Australian culture.
    Providing transportation and company are also part of this role.
  • Border Crossings Mail-out
    Helping to pack the Border Crossings magazine into envelopes to be distributed three times a year.
    The mail-outs are done from LCA National Office, North Adelaide
  • Editing articles and stories
    Editing of the stories and articles which are then used for our
    publications, newsletters, eNews and promotions of mission. This person could be based anywhere in Australia as the writings can be sent via email.
  • LCA International Mission Congregational Representative
  • Being a volunteer Congregational Representative for LCA International Mission in your home congregation involves encouraging others in mission by sharing resources with your congregation, promoting LCA International Mission opportunities.
    Information is regularly emailed to LCA International Mission Congregational Representatives to help them in their role.

Preparing Well

It's important that you are well-prepared for your international mission experience, and that we keep you as safe as possible. So, if you think God might be calling you to be a volunteer, here is the background information you'll need, including our procedures. Please download these documents and follow the steps outlined in the Volunteer Application Process document:

Once your Volunteer Application has been accepted, please fill in the following documents and return to the LCA International Mission office

Want to know more?