Looks ahead with joy to see member churches’ life and witness
(LWI) - The country with the largest number of Lutherans in Asia, Indonesia, is home today to 13 LWF member churches, with a 14th one currently in the process of becoming a full member. An LWF National Committee (KN-LWF) supports coordination and nurtures relations among the churches, whose memberships are growing in the otherwise predominantly Muslim society.
“It is a true joy to be here, as I have been looking forward to this visit for quite some time,” said Burghardt upon arriving in the capital city of Jakarta.
On the agenda of the general secretary’s week-long visit, which follows not long after the conclusion of the LWF’s Thirteenth Assembly, are meetings with member church leaders, sharing in worship life, exposure to local diaconal work, visits to theological institutions and member church projects – many of which receive support through the LWF communion office in Geneva.
“The global LWF communion has a long history of accompaniment of the Indonesian churches,” Burghardt observes, recalling that Indonesia has lived through many crises and challenges in past decades, spanning economic, social, and environmental dimensions.
Yet Lutherans’ witness in the country remains vibrant and robust.
When visiting the Batak Christian Community Church office in Jakarta hosted by Ephorus Bishop Ramses Pandiangan on the first day of her visit, Burghardt stressed the importance of working together as churches, not only in a minority context but also globally.
“It is together that our witness as churches is the strongest,” Burghardt said.