Sounds of thanksgiving to God flowed from Martin Luther Chapel as the pastors and deaconesses of Iglesia Luterana Sinodo de Nicaragua together with family and friends celebrated the graduation of 5 pastoral and 9 deaconal students from “Seminario Teologico Reforma Luterana (Theological Seminary of the Lutheran Reformation). This was the third seminary program held by the Mission in Nicaragua. But this class was unique. Three of the students did not come from the mission and churches of Nicaragua. Three (two pastoral and one deaconal) came from the Lutheran Church of Panama.
Following the graduation rite and sermon, President Luis conducted the rites of consecration and ordination. The eight deaconesses who had each received a call to serve in her home congregation were consecrated and the three pastoral candidates also receiving calls were ordained. Linda Mayan, on behalf of LWML-Canada, presented each deaconess with a cross and I had the privilege of presenting pectoral crosses to the three pastoral candidates. Stoles that had been handcrafted in Nicaragua were placed upon the three pastoral candidates by Dr. Roger Humann. Letters from President Bugbee (LCC), from Milton Castillo Arosamena, the president of the Lutheran Church of Panama, and Mrs Judy Grande, LWML-Canada were also read. The graduates from the Lutheran Church in Panama were not ordained or consecrated at this event. They will be received their own church and in a service of celebration in Panama will be ordained and consecrated for service. Each of the graduates however was presented with the appropriate cross in anticipation of this special event.
The Nicaragua theological program held in co-operation with Concordia Lutheran Theological Seminary, St Catharines, was coordinated by Dr. Roger Humann. During this past theological program, some 15 different professors and pastors including one deaconess were involved in preparing these gifts of God for the church. The church thanks them as she gives thanks to God for the services of Dr. Humann and our seminary partner, CLTS. A word of thanks is also expressed to the Marvin Schwan Foundation for their financial support of the program.
Guests at this years graduation were Dr. Roger Humann from Concordia Lutheran Theological Seminary, Mr. Eric Burgdorf from the Schwan Foundation and Dr. Jorge Groh, the Regional Director for Latin America of LCMS World Mission. We pray God’s blessing upon these new workers in the kingdom. May He strengthen them with the “grace that is in Christ Jesus.”