Friday, October 18, 2019

Sent to West and Central Africa...

The Lord has provided good health, visas, the resources, and has called me into His service as a missionary, so...I'm heading back to West and Central Africa!

Specifically, I'll be visiting Togo, Nigeria, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. I'll spend a little over a week in Togo working with Missionary Peter Evensen and the pastors and leaders of the Mission Evangelique Lutherienne de Confession du Togo (MELC-T). I'll arrive late on Saturday evening and then it's up bright and early on Sunday morning to preach and teach. While I'm there I'll have the opportunity to teach two different groups. I'll be teaching on-going pastoral training lessons to the pastors and then also to the students of the Mt. Horeb Lutheran Bible Institute. When not teaching I'll accompany Pastor Kossi and Missionary Evensen to the MELC land that is a few hours north of Lome'. This land was purchased with an MDF grant a few years ago. The land is currently being farmed as they raise funds to build a church and school.  

From Togo, I will fly to Lagos, Nigeria. With a population of 21 million and growing, Lagos is the largest city in all of Africa. Because of some sort of protest that was blocking traffic, the last time I was there it took me 1.5 hours to go 4 km to get from my hotel to the airport and I almost missed my flight home. I'll only be spending one night in Lagos and then I will fly to Akwa Ibom State to spend time with the pastors and leaders of the Nigeria-CLC at the headquarters and seminary in Efa. While I am there I will have meetings with the NCLC Board, the Seminary Faculty, the budget committee, the disciplinary committee, and the newly formed Children's Home committee. Because of the on-going security issues in Nigeria, I will be keeping a low profile while I'm there. I will be in Nigeria for a couple of weeks and will have the opportunity to preach in the two NCLC congregations and teach at the seminary. 

From Nigeria, I will fly from Lagos to Johannesburg, South Africa to Kigali, Rwanda, to Lubumbashi, The Democratic Republic of Congo where I will be met by Pastor Gaston Yumba Lumbala of the CCLC. This will be the first CLC visit to the CCLC since 2013. This will be my fourth visit to the DRC. Over the past 2 1/2 years, I have tried three times to visit but was denied a visa. No reason was given for the denial, but I have learned from others that they were denying all western visitors during the elections in late 2018. After twenty-one years of despotic rule, President Joseph Kabila agreed to open elections. Rumor has it that he did not want anyone from other countries to observe the election so that he could make sure the man of his choosing would replace him. Whatever the case may be, I was denied entry in 2017, 2018, and again in early 2019. With the advice of a few visa agencies, I made a trip to Washington, DC a few weeks ago and applied for a visa in person at the DRC embassy. The visa was granted in two days! So, the Lord has cleared the way for a long-awaited visit to our brothers and sisters of the CCLC.

Your prayers for safe and uneventful travel along with the blessings of the Holy Spirit on the preaching, teaching, and hearing of God's saving word are requested and very much appreciated. Please keep my wife and children in your prayers as well.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

OCT 2019 - CLC Mission Opportunities Prayer List

Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may run swiftly and be glorified, just as it is with you...

2 Thessalonians 3:1 (NKJV)

1.    Nepal – Pray that the Lord will grant patience and guidance as our brothers and sisters of the Himalayan Church of the Lutheran Confession of Nepal wait upon the Lord to provide the resources necessary to purchase a suitable and affordable piece of land to build or an existing building. They need a building that will serve as a worship facility, seminary classroom, library, office for the HCLCN and the Bible Institute, dormitory, and residence. The CLC Board of Missions is considering ways in which the CLC can assist with this effort.

2.    Nepal – Pastor Raju and his family were evicted from their apartment a few months ago for singing hymns and having prayers in their home during a birthday celebration with a few of the youth from the congregation. They are currently living with Raju’s parents while their possessions are in storage. Pray that the Holy Spirit will work faith in the hearts of the landlord through the Word of God that he has heard from Raju. 

3.    IndiaClasses at the CLCI Seminary, the Martin Luther Bible Institute of the BELC, and monthly pastoral training classes continue to be conducted among the 1,000+ pastors, students, and evangelists that with whom we are in fellowship in India. Pray that the Lord will keep all of them, and those they serve, strong and safe as persecution continues to increase.

4.    Bangladesh – As Pastor Monotosh continues Online Theological Studies with our missionary, plans are also being made for an official colloquy in early 2020. Our visiting missionary and a representative of the CLC appointed by President Eichstadt will travel together to Bangladesh to conduct the colloquy. Pray that the Lord will bless this important next step.

5.    Togo – Missionary Evensen is busy teaching the seven pastoral students of the Mt. Horeb Bible Institute of the MELC. He also continues to train four ordained MELC pastors as they continue to grow in their understanding of God’s saving word. Pray that the Lord will bless Missionary Evensen’s developing abilities to communicate and teach in French as he assists Pastor Kossi in preparing men to be faithful preachers and teachers.

6.    Togo – With a resident missionary now in place, Pastor Kossi is excited as they begin planning and conducting five evangelism campaigns throughout Togo over the next year. A CLC-MDF grant was recently approved to provide funding for this effort to preach the truth of God’s saving word in Togo, Ghana, and Benin. Pray for the Lord’s blessing on this effort.

7.    Liberia - Pastor John Hein, who serves as the visiting missionary to Liberia, will be traveling to Liberia in October. Pray that the Lord will provide safe and uneventful travel. Pray also for a productive visit as Pastor Hein and Pastor Joseph work together to spread the truth of God’s saving word in Monrovia and Bopolu.

8.    Tanzania – The four pastors who teach at the Wartburg Lutheran Theological Seminary are busy preparing for the third semester of classes that will begin in late January. The students are helping with the ministry at their home congregations for the next few months until classes begin again. Pray that the Lord will continue to bless this effort with all the resources necessary to train these men to be faithful preachers and teachers of God’s saving word.

9.    The Democratic Republic of Congo – Our visiting missionary has been granted a six-month, multiple-entry visa. He is planning a three-week visit November and will try to visit again after the first of the year. It has been six years since the CLC has made a visit to the DRC. Thank the Lord for providing the necessary visa and pray that the trip will go smoothly, and much will be accomplished for His glory.

10.  The Democratic Republic of Congo – Missionary Ohlmann will be in the DRC in November to see and report on the construction of a multipurpose facility that will serve as seminary classrooms, offices, library, chapel, and dormitory for the CCLC and the Holy Trinity Lutheran Seminary. This project was partially funded through offerings to the CLC Mission Development Fund (MDF). Thank the Lord for opening the hearts of His children to support His work of training more men to preach and teach His saving word in DRC.

11.  Nigeria – Missionary Ohlmann will visit our brothers and sisters of the NCLC in early November. He will preach at two congregations, visit the seminary, and meet with the various NCLC boards and committees. Pray that the Lord will bless this visit with productive and encouraging meetings that are focused on serving the Lord through faithfulness to the truths of His saving word. Pray also for safe travels.  

12.  Missionary Evensen in Togo – Missionary Peter Evensen has recently received a “Stay Card” which will allow him to stay in Togo for longer periods of time and will also allow him to more easily travel throughout West Africa. This is a big deal and the Lord was clearly behind the scenes making this happen. He has received a Nigerian visa and is hoping to have a DR Congo visa in time to join Missionary Ohlmann on his visit. Pray that the Lord will continue to bless this transition to Togo and the work he is doing to assist in training men to be faithful preachers and teachers of God’s saving word. You can read his blog at:

13.  Visiting Foreign Missionary – Missionary Ohlmann will be leaving soon on a five-week trip to visit our sister church bodies in the West African countries of Togo, Nigeria, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He is also preparing lessons, making travel plans and schedules for visits to Tanzania, Zambia, the DRC, India, Myanmar, Nepal, and Bangladesh in early 2020. Please pray for safe and uneventful travel, successful meetings with our brothers, and zeal to proclaim the truths of God’s saving word. Pray also for his wife Beth and their family while he is away. You can read his blog at:

14.  CLC Online Theological Studies – continue to pray for individuals in the following countries around the world who are studying God’s word through email correspondence courses as they continue to train to be faithful preachers and teachers of God’s saving word:

1.    Burundi, East Africa
2.    Senegal, West Africa
3.    D. R. Congo, Central Africa
4.    Liberia, West Africa
5.    Bangladesh, South East Asia
6.    Zimbabwe, Africa
7.    Myanmar, South East Asia
8.    Kenya, East Africa
9.    Uganda, East Africa
10.  Congo-Brazzaville, Central Africa