IELB-Bolivia. 80th Anniversary Celebration
The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Bolivia, as an integral part of the Lutheran world communion, in this year 2018, commemorates its 80th anniversary of action and presence in ministry and missionary work.
On Sunday, September 9th, IELB worshiped giving thanks for their ministry over the last 80 years as a church in Bolivia. The celebration started on Friday 7th with lecturers y seminars held in the Bolivian Biblical Society. On Saturday 8th was organized in the central area of La Paz, plaza Alonso de Mendoza, a public exhibition of the activities and products of the many organized groups, foundations, projects and institutions that are part of IELB.
The IELB is a church with a strong Aymara and Quechua predominance that has built a Lutheran identity based on its identification as original people.
In 1938 the missionary pastors Ernest Weinhardt and John Carlson arrived in Bolivia, in the Mocomoco region with the support of the League of World Prayer responding to a call from the consulates of Peru and Bolivia to that missionary organization.
The IELB is a community of believers, a community of solidarity, obedient to the Word of God and committed to its people, with concrete aspirations and commitments to build a more just society, in solidarity and peace.
IELB expresses its Christian witness through the proclamation of the faith and growth of the evangelizing work, through service and diakonia in each community and the advocacy and defense of just causes.
IELB celebrates its 80-year journey, serving the Gospel amid the Bolivian people, and affirms in its actions the expression of Pastor Humberto Ramos: "We no longer have to stop being Lutherans to be indigenous, nor stop being indigenous to be Lutherans. "
IELB is today a growing church, expanding, deeply Lutheran and deeply rooted in their people. Bishop Jessica Crist and the delegation from the Montana Synod (the IELB companion Synod) participated in the 80th Anniversary Celebration.
Bishop Jessica Crist; Pastor Lindean Elizabeth Barnett; Pastor Stacey Lee Siebrasse; Pastor Stephen Dale Van Gilder; LPA David Lee Scholten; LPA Cynthia Skillingberg; LPA candidate Alexander James Tooley and Thomas Waldorf integrated the delegation.
Pastor David Wunsch, Director for Unit Operations and Programs, Global Mission represented ELCA/Global Mission.
Pastor Presidente Emilio Aslla expressed in his closing prayer:
We thank God for the blessings given upon us, as we continue to grow in God's Word, reach out with the Good News of Jesus Christ and serve the needs of our people in love. Go in peace serving the Lord. Thanks be to God