From Feb. 7-9, presenters from around North America and the world spoke to those who attended Mission and Ministry, an annual three-day event at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, Mequon, Wis., that introduces seminary students to the worldwide work of WELS.
Under the theme “Plant the Enduring Word,” 31 presenters spoke to participants. As they hear from world and home missionaries, as well as congregational leaders, these future pastors get a big-picture view of synod work. Because assignments, calls, and ministries will vary, three breakout sessions are offered each day, allowing students to learn more about areas of personal interest. Some of these topics include transitioning to and from missionary life, revitalizing your church, using teens in outreach, sharing Christ in crisis, creating small group Bible studies, reaching out to the military, and using the new edition of Luther’s Catechism.
In addition, 30 WELS organizations set up display booths. This allows students the opportunity to learn more about what synodical resources are available. “It made me realize the willingness of all the synod to put together something for the promotion of the kingdom,” says senior Ben Schone, one of the event organizers. “We have a lot of people with very good ideas, abilities, talents, but most of all a desire to serve our Savior Jesus. It brings me joy and confidence to be a fellow worker in God’s vineyard with them.”
Not only does Mission and Ministry help students learn more about their synod, the organizers learned personal lessons that will carry into their ministry. “A lot of details hang in the balance, and I had to learn to be efficient and clear in setting up the registration process,” said senior Eric Melso. “There’s a lot of communication that needs to take place. Being timely in responding to e-mails is something I’ll have to do as a pastor, and Mission and Ministry was definitely good practice!”
Seminary students are not the only ones who benefit from the event. On Tuesday, the junior class of pastor track students at Martin Luther College, New Ulm, Minn., attended presentations and the entire student body of Bethany Evangelical Theological Seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod (ELS) attended sessions on Wednesday and Thursday. In all, almost 200 students, professors, and guests participated.
For photos of the event, visit the seminary’s Facebook page.
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WELS churches and schools featured in their local media.