LWF general secretary meets church leaders in Sumatra
(LWI) - Bringing together 14 Lutheran churches, a church leaders meeting held in Tarutung, Sumatra, on 23 November served to nurture and strengthen relations between the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) member churches in Indonesia.
Held during a member church visit by LWF general secretary Rev. Dr Anne Burghardt, the meeting was convened by the LWF National Committee for Indonesia (KN-LWF) – a body that supports coordination among churches today representing more than 8.6 million Lutherans in the country.
“This is a day to deepen communion relationships both within Indonesia and globally,” reflected Rev. Dr Philip Lok, LWF regional secretary for Asia. “And also, to continue the good conversations started at the recent LWF Assembly in Krakow, Poland, on questions of unity, spirituality and hope in a world burdened by conflicts and war.”
For general secretary Burghardt, the day was an opportunity to learn and reflect together on the unique gifts and challenges of the different member churches.
“The LWF is about bringing local and global together.” Burghardt said as she spoke on the day. “Only this way, we can see how best to serve the Lord and turn our faith into action.”
In a greeting after morning devotion in the chapel of the HKBP head office, Burghardt mentioned the importance of upholding unity in reconciled diversity, a principle that guides the LWF Communion but also has a special meaning in a secular Indonesian context where it is reflected in the state ideology called Pancasila. “There is a lot to learn from our Indonesian member churches who are witnessing in a minority situation in a predominantly Muslim country,” she said.
During the church leaders’ meeting that followed, Burghardt recalled the four founding pillars of the LWF – theology, mission, search for Christian unity and service to the needy – and said “our task is to see how we ‘translate’ these four pillars into the life and ministry of our churches today.”