Missionaries vs. the Monster

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Christ the Redeemer looks out over Brazil, the country that has the most Catholics in the world. Photo: http://interlochenpublicradio.org

There are a whopping 425 million Roman Catholics in Latin America – almost three-quarters of the region’s total population. Of the globe’s estimated 1.2 billion Catholics, more than 40% call Latin America their casa. This raises the question: why do Lutherans bother sending missionaries to the most Catholic region in the world? Continue reading

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Truly Blessed

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Seminarians from the Concordia Reformer Lutheran Seminary after making visits in Pueblo Nuevo. Photo: missionary Johanna Heidorn.

Español | I recently had the privilege of meeting three Dominican ladies that are truly blessed. I met them while I was tagging along with a group of seminarians from the Concordia Reformer Lutheran Seminary for their weekly pastoral visits in the barrio (an underprivileged neighborhood) of Pueblo Nuevo. Their names are Doña Ana, Doña Sylvia, and Señora Jinet. Continue reading

How to Prepare for the Mission Field

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Our youngest preparing for missionary service at his Baptism on July 8th. Photo Credit: Christel Neuendorf

Remember Your Baptism– When you were baptized “in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,” you received the most important things you’ll need on the mission field. At your Baptism, God gave you an identity as His precious and dearly loved child. He gave you His Name to call upon in every trouble. He gave you faith to trust in His promises. He gave you His Holy Spirit to sanctify you in the one true faith. Your Baptism is the single most valuable thing you’ll take with you on your journey. Don’t forget it! Continue reading

Vicarious Atonement in Peru

 

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Jamie, Katie and I at the Huaca del Sol y la Luna (The Temple of the Sun and the Moon) in 2011.

Facebook recently reminded me of a fun trip Jamie and I took five years ago to Peru’s Northern Coast. While there, we had the opportunity to visit the ruins of two pre-Columbian civilizations, the Mochica (100-800 AD) and Chimu (900-1470 AD). Recent huaca (sacred temple) discoveries have revealed that both were theocratic civilizations led by a class of priests that represented the people before their pantheon of gods, the most prominent of which were the sun and the moon. Continue reading

The Cross Alone is Our Theology

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Cristus am Kreuz by Cranach. Photo: gnesiolutheran.com

Español | Regardless of the particular capacity in which they serve or the amount of formal theological training they’ve received, every missionary operates with a certain theology that profoundly affects everything they do. What sort of theologians are Confessional Lutheran missionaries? Continue reading

“Other Christs” in Latin America – Slave Master Jesus

In a previous post I described one of the many “other christs” that were introduced to the natives of the New World through the words and actions of the Conquistadores. The “other christ” I highlighted there was the perpetually weak and defenseless Baby Jesus sitting on the lap of his mother Mary.

Another such “christ’ was the Encomendero or Slave Master Jesus.

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“Other Christs” in Latin America – Baby Jesus

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According to theologian and missionary John Mackay (1889 -1983), the Christ brought to the New World by the conquistadores was not the Christ of history revealed to us in the Scriptures. Instead, he argues, there were various “other
christs” introduced to the natives through the words and actions of their conquerors. Continue reading