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Missionaries called to explore new world mission fields

The Board for World Missions, working alongside the various World Missions One Teams, has identified new world mission fields and is taking steps to deploy missionaries into three new areas. “Spreading God’s Word in any and every place is our high calling,” says Larry Schlomer, World Missions administrator. “We ask the Lord of the harvest to use us to bring many into his kingdom through our work.”

Missionaries asked to relocate to Australia

WELS outreach people in church

WELS outreach people out to eat sitting at round table
One of the new areas for outreach WELS is exploring is Australia. In December 2023, representatives from WELS World Missions traveled to Australia to explore outreach opportunities and the potential of placing full-time world missionaries there. They met with two independent Lutheran churches to discuss outreach partnerships. They also met with members of SALEM, WELS’ sister synod from Hong Kong, who have immigrated to Australia and are interested in reaching out to their Chinese brothers and sisters.

Two missionaries from the Asia One Team, currently based in Chiang Mai, Thailand, have been asked to consider relocating to begin outreach based in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. Schlomer shares, “People in Australia have asked us for help. WELS members who have moved to Australia, brothers and sisters who have had to move from Hong Kong, and long-time partners in churches in the Brisbane area have reached out. It is a joy to be able to meet these needs with WELS missionaries.” Both missionaries would remain on the Asia One Team as they also continue their work with contacts throughout Asia.

Calls issued for Muslim outreach in Senegal

Two calls have been issued to explore new outreach in the West African country of Senegal. The goal would be for new missionaries to spend up to six months living with a Muslim family from the Wolof tribe, immersing themselves in the culture and language of the people they are trying to reach with the gospel. Once they have a better understanding of the culture and Muslim influence, they would develop more specific plans for outreach. Schlomer says the prayer is that this knowledge also will be a resource for future Muslim outreach around the world. “The opportunity for learning, outreach, and immersion in this culture will help us grow in our understanding of Muslim influence,” he says. The Board for World Missions is committed to supporting this new mission field for a minimum of two years, to give the missionaries ample time to work within the culture.

New Native American outreach in Four Corners region

The Board for World Missions has approved a new missionary position to coordinate outreach to the Native American tribes in the Four Corners area of Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado. This new missionary will be tasked with developing a new model for Native American outreach, working closely with native Apache members who want to reach out to friends and family members from other tribes with the pure gospel message. He will work closely with Missionary John Holtz, who leads the discipleship arm of the Native Christians Network and is training Apache WELS members for service and outreach through the Apache Christian Training School (ACTS) program. This missionary also will coordinate with Christ the Rock, Farmington, N.M., to expand existing outreach efforts to Native Americans in the area.

“These new fields will allow us to bring the gospel to places where the announcement of pure grace is scarce or even nonexistent,” says Schlomer. “May God use these missionaries to bring joy in sadness and hope where darkness has hidden God’s face.”

Learn more about additional world mission fields that are being explored at wels.net/newworldmissionfields.

Author: FIC
Volume: 111, Number 03
Issue: March 2024

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