ST. LOUIS, November 14, 2014—Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison announced today a new initiative to deliver aid to combat the spread of Ebola.
“The LCMS has kept our focus on this epidemic and has continued working through our partners since the outbreak began in West Africa,” he said. “I’m pleased to announce that the LCMS is now making travel scholarships available for LCMS medical professionals who go to Africa to work with our Lutheran brothers and sisters to assist in the fight against Ebola.”
The Rev. John Fale, associate executive director of LCMS Mercy Operations, explained how the scholarships will work: “We will provide up to $2,500 for reimbursement of personal expenses for travel — airfare, lodging, food — for the first 20 applicants. Applicants must be preapproved and demonstrate that they are part of an established group, such as Doctors Without Borders. This will ensure that they have appropriate licensure and insurance to practice. Following the trip, they will complete an expense report form and submit receipts. They may direct correspondence to my office at John.Fale@lcms.org.”
Harrison also encouraged congregations to pray for and commend Lutheran medical professionals who choose to respond personally in Africa.
Today’s announcement follows a commitment in August of $51,175 to disease prevention in Liberia and Guinea. Two previous Ebola grants totaling $16,554 were distributed to the Synod’s partners in Sierra Leone and Guinea earlier this year. The Synod also has partnered with the LCMS Atlantic District to match up to $50,000 that will enable one of its pastors, who is from Liberia, to deliver needed supplies to outlying areas of Liberia.