Seminary to explore 'hope' within ethnic communities

Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, is sponsoring a first-ever multi-ethnic symposium, “Expressions of Hope,” Jan. 28-29 on its campus.

The event is beind conducted in partnership with the Synod’s National Mission Affiliates, an LCMS World Mission umbrella organization that represents 10 ethnic and specialized mission task forces.  The symposium is designed to “present various expressions of the theological, sociological, and economic hope that are evident within the various ethnic communities of the LCMS,” according to a seminary news release.

Speakers will present examples of hope from their respective ethnic communities.  They include:

  • Dr. E.J. Rethinasamy, director of the Concordia Institute for World Religions and Evangelism at Concordia College, Bronxville, N.Y., and pastor of two New York City congregations — Immanuel and St. Matthew.  Rethinasamy was born and raised in India.

  • Dr. Dien A. Taylor, pastor of Redeemer Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Bronx, New York City; a circuit counselor for the Atlantic District; and an accomplished musician who has served as song leader at Lutheran Women’s Missionary League conventions and LCMS National Youth Gatherings.  Taylor is from New York.

  • Dr. Jonathan N. Lengar, associate professor of anthropology and geography at Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon, who also is leading efforts to help victims of the war in Sierra Leone, West Africa.  Lengar is from Sierra Leone.

  • Dr. Leopoldo Sánchez, director of the Center for Hispanic Studies in St. Louis, and a Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, professor.  Sanchez was born in Chile and raised in Panama.

Preceding the symposium at 3 p.m. Jan. 27 will be the fourth annual “Celebrating the Black Lutheran Experience” worship service in the seminary’s Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus.  The service will feature participants from LCMS congregations in the St. Louis area.

Registration for the two-day symposium is $60 and includes a Monday-night banquet and breakfast and lunch on Tuesday.

For more information or to download an online registration form, visit the seminary’s Web site at  Or, contact Rev. Lloyd Gaines at (301) 717-3882 or

Posted Nov. 20, 2007

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