A new Web site launched by the Lutheran Society for Missiology could be dubbed “everything you always wanted to know about LCMS missionaries — and more!”
The Web site, which has been “live” for about two months, profiles 54 veteran LCMS missionaries, most of whom have served for 20 years or more. It will eventually include information on as many as 1,000 missionary alumni with at least five years of service.
Known as the “Missionary Profiles Project,” the data was originally intended for print as well. But until adequate funding is found, the resource will remain online only.
Each missionary entry includes information about family and service, as well as a biographical summary.
Each missionary also provides information in the following categories:
- Biggest missiological issue faced?
- Most significant contribution during missionary service?
- Connection to today’s mission?
- Lessons learned.
- Best practices.
- Inspiration for entering mission field?
- Quotation by/about or brief story.
Dr. Allan Buckman, executive director of the Lutheran Society of Missiology, says the project is “entirely unique.”
“It’s a niche in Lutheran missionary resources — the whole Lutheran picture has not been shared by any other group.” The Web site provides a valuable “information base” about veteran missionaries, Buckman says. “Not just to know about them, but to have access to an information base that has a relevance that carries from yesterday to today and that provides information and insight.”
Most valuable, he says, are each missionary’s “best practices and lessons learned,” which will benefit those missionaries who are just starting their service. Says Buckman: “Missionaries who are contemplating service in these countries can go [to the Web site] and see what the missionaries’ learnings and best practices are.”
The site also has a “wiki” feature that allows registered users — missionaries and their family members — to update entries and make changes. Those changes must be approved by a site facilitator before they are added.
Re-posted Sept. 8, 2009