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Nicaraguan church holds biannual convention

January 10, 2014 No Comment
Mission pastor Rev. Edmundo Retana of San Jose, Costa Rica, presents a handcrafted wall-hanging on a Biblical theme as a gift to President Bugbee for LCC's office in Winnipeg.

Mission pastor Rev. Edmundo Retana of San Jose, Costa Rica, presents a handcrafted wall-hanging on a Biblical theme as a gift to President Bugbee for LCC’s office in Winnipeg.

NICARAGUA – The Lutheran Church Synod of Nicaragua (ILSN) opened its Fourth Convention on January 9, 2014 at the Mission Centre chapel in Chinandega.  President Marvin Donaire, who is halfway through his four-year term, chaired the sessions.

The theme for the convention is “Let Us Walk Together in Proclaiming the Gospel.” Each day begins with Bible studies led by Rev. Dr. Glenn Schaeffer (Outreach Executive of LCC’s Alberta-British Columbia District).  Dr. Schaeffer’s clear presentations, supported by immediate, lively translation, set a positive tone for the gathering.

ILSN is a self-governing church body which arose from the mission efforts of Lutheran Church-Canada (LCC), which began work in Nicaragua in 1997.  In the meantime, 22 congregations have been planted, and the ILSN has begun mission stations in Costa Rica and Honduras.

LCC President Robert Bugbee brought greetings on the first day of the convention, highlighting the strong ties between the Canadian and Nicaraguan churches.  He expressed joy that the Church in Nicaragua is maturing, as evidenced by its own self-governing structure and its assuming responsibility for its own governance and the spread of the Gospel in the region.

Robert Granke addresses the ILSN convention, assisted by a translator.

Robert Granke addresses the ILSN convention, assisted by a translator.

President Bugbee also introduced Robert Granke, Executive Director of Canadian Lutheran World Relief (CLWR). CLWR has been especially active in supporting the extensive education program maintained by ILSN congregations, in which children come to local congregations two hours each day, five days a week, to receive tutoring in the Bible, Catechism, Spanish language, and mathematics.

As a result of these studies, students are well trained in faith matters, but also tend to excel their peers in the public school system. In addition, CLWR has provided resources for the medical and dental clinics being maintained on the Mission Centre campus just outside of Chinandega. “CLWR has shown great love to you,” President Bugbee told the convention, “and we love them for it!”

Elections were also conducted for synodical vice-president, outreach committee, and treasurer. Special guests were also introduced from Lutheran Hour Ministries, and from The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, which is planning deeper cooperation with the ILSN in its expansion into Honduras.

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