The PSI Team is complete. Pastor Jon Bare accepted the call to serve as the International Recruitment Director this spring. He joins World Seminary Professor Brad Wordell and myself (PSI Director). This team’s assignment is to find ways to follow up on requests from groups around the world who want to align with confessional church bodies like the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod and the Confessional Evangelical Lutheran Conference.
These voices calling for our support and encouragement are coming from around the world. It is not an exaggeration to report that hundreds of men want to learn how to become pastors in our fellowship. As far as we can tell, four forces seem to explain growing interest in an unconditional commitment to the pure gospel of Jesus.
- Access to the internet allows people from every corner of our planet to find WELS and to read about our approach to Scripture and our respect for its teachings.
- Undiscerning ecumenism that refuses to distinguish between any teaching is extending its reach into new areas of the Christian church around the world.
- Church organizations that not only accept “alternative lifestyles” but also advocate and justify these lifestyles.
- Finally—and I might suggest most importantly—our own WELS brothers and sisters who joined our Stateside churches after immigrating to the US. They are urging us to take the gospel of Jesus to their homeland. How can we not respond to their pleas to help them take the saving and comforting truths of Jesus’ gospel to their people?
Our church body has responded by directing the PSI Team to find ways to bring these many groups into the blessed partnership of the gospel. The PSI Team collaborates with our WELS mission teams already in place around the world. We collaborate with our immigrant brothers and sisters in North America. And we ask the Lord of the Harvest to assist every weak effort of WELS Christians to lift the cross of Christ in new ways and in more ways. In the next few months, members of the PSI Team will be visiting groups in Kenya, Ethiopia, Liberia, Canada, Ukraine, Russia, Apacheland, Vietnam, and China. May God smile upon these gospel connections. Pray for the worldwide witness of WELS Christians.