Tag Archive for: Called to Prepare 2022

Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary

Pictured above: Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary class of 2021

On May 21, 2021, 28 men graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary (WLS), Mequon, Wis., and began their pastoral ministries. 

WLS prepares men for pastoral ministry by providing them with spiritual, theological, and professional training. Students attend classes for two years, serve as full-time vicars during their third year, and then attend classes and write a thesis in their fourth year. Throughout their time at the seminary, students receive opportunities to serve in a variety of ministries and to experience other cultures to help prepare them for their future calls. 

The seminary also provides pastors with opportunities for continued growth in all their callings through the Grow in Grace Institute. Grow in Grace offers continuing education courses, a mentoring initiative for new graduates, a clearinghouse of resources for pastors, and an annual retreat for pastors who are celebrating milestones in their ministries. 

The Pastoral Studies Institute, a partnership between WLS and WELS Missions, guides and assists non-traditional students through their pre-seminary and seminary training so they can become pastors. This includes second-career students as well as cross-cultural students. 

For more information, visit wisluthsem.org. 


To carry out its purpose, Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary has established the following objectives:

  • to lead theological students and pastors in a reverent study of the inspired and inerrant Word of God so that they are able to understand and apply its Christ-centered message of law and gospel;
  • to encourage theological students and pastors to grow in their personal faith through daily contact with the means of grace;
  • to teach all the areas of the theological curriculum in a thorough and scholarly fashion, in full harmony with the Holy Scriptures and in conscious agreement with the Lutheran Confessions;
  • to train theological students and pastors in the skills required for ministry in an ever-changing world;
  • to instill in theological students and pastors the kinds of attitudes that will assist them as they carry out their ministry in the contemporary world, e.g., confessional in stance, evangelical in approach, mission-minded in spirit, culturally sensitive, appropriately flexible, and zealous both to nurture and to equip the saints.

Pictured: Prof. Robert Wendland teaches church history and homiletics.


International Experience

Each seminary student spends an internship year as a “vicar,” learning and serving under experienced pastors and mission-minded congregations. At the seminary’s vicar assignment service on May 19, 2021, Zach Satorius (left) was called to serve in Medellín, Colombia, under Rev. Henry Herrera (right) of the Colombian Lutheran Church. It has been 12 years since a Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary vicar was placed in Latin America. Satorius arrived in Medellín in August 2021 and will return to Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary for his final year of study in August 2022. 


Pastoral Studies Institute

The Pastoral Studies Institute (PSI) guides and assists spiritual leaders around the world through preseminary and seminary training. Team members spend much of their time visiting and teaching PSI students. Occasionally, a PSI student visits the seminary campus. Pictured is Prof. Jonathan Bare, director of the Pastoral Studies Institute, with a student who visited the seminary in fall of 2021.


Did you know?

Since the school began in 1863, more than 3,500 men have graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. Photos of the students from each graduating class as well as the faculty members from that school year line the hallways and hang in classrooms.  

Martin Luther College

Martin Luther College (MLC), New Ulm, Minn., is committed to training a corps of Christian witnesses who are qualified to meet the ministry needs of WELS and who are competent to proclaim the Word of God faithfully and in accord with the Lutheran Confessions and The Book of Concord. In fall 2021, 714 students were enrolled as undergraduates. 

To meet the current ministry needs of WELS, Martin Luther College: 

  • prepares men for pastoral training at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary;
  • prepares men and women for service as teachers and staff ministers in the synod’s churches, schools, and other institutions;
  • prepares men and women for other church ministries, both full- and part-time, responding to the needs of WELS;
  • prepares international students for ministry in partnership with WELS mission fields; and
  • provides programs of continuing education that meet the ministerial needs of WELS.

For more information, visit mlc-wels.edu.

International Education Week

In November 2021, Martin Luther College’s Cultural Engagement Center sponsored activities for International Education Week to help students learn more about the international students on campus and the opportunities that are available for them to serve in other countries. During the 2021–22 school year, 12 international students are attending Martin Luther College from 7 countries. Pictured are some of those students during an international and third culture student panel offered to the student body. 

Megan Kassuelke, MLC’s director of cultural engagement, notes, “What our students learn at MLC impacts the entire synod. We need culturally competent people in our classrooms and churches who show Jesus’ love by making sure that everyone in their care feels seen, heard, and valued.”



Commencement 2021

On May 15, 2021, 158 students graduated from Martin Luther College, including 94 from the teacher track, 33 from the preseminary program, and 1 from the staff ministry track. Teachers and staff ministers were also assigned to their first calls that day. 






Student Teaching

Luke Schultz began his day as a student teacher by listening to memory treasures in his fourth- through eighth-grade classroom at Immanuel, Hutchinson, Minn. Each Martin Luther College student completes a student teaching assignment in a Lutheran school and a public school. 






Did you know?

Martin Luther College offers three graduate degrees for teachers and staff ministers—Master of Arts in Theological Studies for teachers and staff ministers, Master of Science in Education, and Master of Science in Educational Administration. 


October 2021 WELS Connection


Preparatory Schools

Pictured above: Six Michigan Lutheran Seminary students participated in this Project Titus trip to help with a science-themed vacation Bible school at Messiah, Johns Creek, Ga.

Luther Preparatory School, Watertown, Wis., and Michigan Lutheran Seminary, Saginaw, Mich., prepare high school students for future service as pastors, teachers, and staff ministers. For the 2021–22 school year, Luther Preparatory School has 425 students and Michigan Lutheran Seminary has 182 students. 

Both schools offer “Taste of Ministry” opportunities for students, which include shadowing called workers to learn more about their work. Students also are given firsthand gospel ministry experiences on campus and during mission trips. 

For more information, visit lps.wels.net or mlsem.org. 

Abram Steinbrenner and Benjamin Felgenhauer shadowed Rev. Jordan Ertl, pastor at St. John’s, Baraboo, Wis., for Luther Preparatory School’s Taste of Ministry.





Ethan Buege and Isaiah Schlomer volunteered for this Project Timothy mission trip to Divine Savior, West Palm Beach, Fla., through Luther Preparatory School. 





Megan Beardslee, a senior at Michigan Lutheran Seminary, visited St. Paul’s, Saginaw, Mich., for Taste of Ministry.