Lutherans Celebrate Women in Ministry

From June 16 to June 19, members of the Lutheran Women's Missionary League (LWML) gathered in Tampa for their 31st Biennial Convention.

The official women's missions organization of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod gathered in Tampa recently for their 31st Biennial Convention.

From June 16 to June 19, members of the Lutheran Women's Missionary League (LWML) gathered under the theme "Live Joyfully as Salt and Light" based on Matthew 5:13-16.

Gunya Na Thalang, the international Asian area counselor of Lutheran Hour Ministries (LHM), was a guest speaker at a dessert reception hosted by LHM, focusing on women in the field of ministry. During her speech, Thalang shared her own experiences in coming to faith and relayed the important role women have in sharing God’s love.

To reinforce Thalang’s message, the international booth invited guests of the convention to take a scrapbook page commemorating the visit to Tampa. On one side of the page, five LHM directors from different regions of the world were featured.

One director, Rebeca de Franco of LHM-Guatemala, was quoted as saying, “I believe it is important for women to get involved in sharing the Gospel because God created us with a great capacity to love, to believe, to be patient, to be constant, to be preserving, to go on against the wind if it is necessary, to serve even in the secular world.”

On the reverse side of the scrapbook page were pictures and a brief description of a sample of ministries LHM provides around the world. These ministries include Global Work & Witness, drama, Bible correspondence courses, Project JOEL, Christian literature, Global Care Packages, and radio broadcasts. Convention-goers were given the opportunity to have their picture taken in front of a matching sunset backdrop and add their photo to the scrapbook page.

In addition, LHM distributed Awareness Ribbons, which conventioneers were encouraged to wear to the reception and to local churches on July 17, 2005. According to LHM, the Awareness Ribbon is worn in support and recognition of God’s work around the world and in appreciation of the men and women sharing His love.

“More than 400 women visited the booth to learn about ministries around the world,” said Leslie C. Tucker, LHM International Fund Development Manager. “I was touched when a tearful woman told me that after her mother passed away six months ago, they found a letter from Rev. Klaus in her mother’s Bible. She knows the letter comforted her mother in her last moments.

“I want to thank this woman and many like her in the LWML who made the convention a joy and a success.”

For over 60 years the LWML has been encouraging and equipping women “to live out their Christian lives in active mission ministries and to financially support global missions.”

With a membership of over 250,000, the organization focuses on affirming each woman in her relationship with Christ to enable her to be in ministry among the people of the world.