The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) is offering two online resources designed to assist those involved in urban and inner-city mission and church planting. Both are available at no cost.
The first, a series of one-hour webinars from LCMS Urban & Inner-City Mission, will cover topics such as the theology of the city, mental health, community development, social issues, school ministry, campus ministry, multi-ethnic ministry and more.
The Rev. Dr. Steven D. Schave, director of LCMS Urban & Inner-City Mission and LCMS Church Planting, describes the webinars as “a great way to start the conversation” about the “challenging, rewarding and sometimes gritty world” of urban and inner-city mission.
Schave adds, “It is our prayer that these webinars will, in a way, become our urban mission community gathering place to learn from one another, encourage one another and find ways to impact and transform our inner cities through Word and Sacrament ministry and by loving our neighbors.”
The first webinar in the series, “Mission and Theology for the City,” led by the Rev. Dr. Jeffrey Pulse, associate professor of Exegetical Theology, Concordia Theological Seminary (CTSFW), Fort Wayne, Ind., is scheduled for Feb. 20. More information about it and future webinars, along with registration instructions, is available here.
The second resource, a series of podcasts from Mission Field: USA, will study various questions related to church planting within a Lutheran framework. Topics to be covered include ecclesiology and mission; the Synod’s threefold emphasis of Witness, Mercy, Life Together®; missiology; the effect of demographic trends on the church and its mission; discipleship through catechesis and assimilation; and ethnic church planting.
Podcasts will be released on the first Wednesday of each month, beginning Feb. 6. The first Church Planting podcast features the Rev. Dr. Detlev Schulz, CTSFW associate professor of Exegetical Theology, on the topic “God’s Mission is in the DNA of the Church.” For more information, see lcms.org/church-planting.
Schave notes that church planting “has long been considered the most effective way to reach the lost, to evangelize in places where we are not, and to bring vitality to the church-at-large,” yet only a small percentage of congregations are actively engaged in starting new missions.
Schave acknowledges that serving as “mother” to a “daughter” congregation “can feel as daunting as having a first child,” but he says the podcasts are designed “to alleviate the fears and obstacles” that may accompany the church-planting process and to provide “not just the ‘why,’ but also the ‘how-to’ of mission development in MissionField: USA.”
Posted Jan. 15, 2019