Today, 21 new missionaries — along with their 44 spouses and children
— began an intensive two-week orientation held by The Lutheran
Church—Missouri Synod in St. Louis to prepare for service in 13
countries around the globe.
That number represents continued successful recruitment efforts
toward doubling the number of LCMS career missionaries on the field to
136 by 2016 — as called for by the 2013 Synod convention.
The missionaries — slated for East and West Africa, Latin America,
Eurasia, Asia Pacific and Southern Asia — will serve in diverse roles,
including as nurses, evangelists, deaconesses, theological educators and
“Missionaries are the people Christ has called to go out into all the
world and speak the Gospel,” said the Rev. Dr. Edward Grimenstein,
associate executive director for the LCMS Office of International
Mission (OIM). “These men, women and children have given up everything
they know to do this. For us at the Office of International Mission,
there is no higher priority than caring for those entrusted to us. They
are the very means by which Christ spreads His salvation so people may
believe and by believing have eternal life.”
In years past, missionary orientations have been held once each year.
But in response to such a great need, the OIM decided last year to add
more orientations to prepare missionaries more quickly to enter the
Missionary orientation is the first major step in a missionary
assignment. It provides information, experiences and study materials
that will help establish a solid foundation on which new missionaries
build as they prepare for missionary service. It provides specific
training for their ministry assignment and an introduction to the LCMS
staff and structure that will support missionaries during their
Because of the increasing number of missionaries now being sent
abroad, the LCMS began offering missionary orientation twice a year this
year — once in the winter and once in the summer, and the possibility
of a third one in the fall.
A new addition to this summer’s orientation is the introduction of
resources by Doxology, a Lutheran non-profit and Recognized Service
Organization, that would meet the needs of those deploying to foreign
fields and to give missionaries additional support and care. Also new to
this orientation is special programming for women and accompanying
spouses, with topics related to spiritual care, marriage and helping the
families deal with transitions.
The orientation will culminate with a special “sending service” at 2
p.m. July 2, in the International Center chapel. The special Divine
Service with Holy Communion, followed by a reception, is open to the
The LCMS has been involved in mission and outreach since 1851, when
it established its first mission board and sent its first overseas
missionary to India in 1895. Today, the LCMS trains, sends and supports
called and appointed long-term and short-term missionaries throughout
the United States and in various countries around the world, where there
are mission stations, partner churches, schools and mission
relationships. To find out more about the missionaries, or to support
their efforts, download their prayer cards at lcms.org/prayercards.
For more information about LCMS missionary opportunities, visit lcms.org/missionaries or contact the Rev. Dan McMiller, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 314-996-1341. Related video: The Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison,
president of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, shares the history of
LCMS missionary work and looks to the exciting future as LCMS
missionaries continue to share the Gospel of Christ around the globe.