LCANZ Bishop’s Report to Synod 2023
Bishop Paul Smith opened his address with Luke 10: “The harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few.”
He invited Graduate Pastor Edwin Shoesmith from Hervey Bay to speak about his journey from Lutheran schooling into ministry.
He referred to the decision from General Synod 2023 to have ‘one Church, two practices of ordination’:
“When this resolution was passed, there was a strong conviction: ‘Let us go forward together’,” Bishop Smith shared, referring to Winston Churchill’s famous and oft-repeated phrase. The project team exploring the possible outcomes of this resolution desires dialogue in a two-way conversation, he said.
He touched on other matters including:
- The Voice to Parliament and the importance of NCLS mission data
- Australian Lutheran College has online sessions about programs on offer, including their Diploma in Ministry
- Congregations now only need to sign one call letter instead of three following a resolution
- International church life: Indonesian Lutherans are visiting in August, and then some Australian Lutherans are attending Lutheran World Federation general assembly in September
- A hope-filled venture is being undertaken by Pastor Greg Pietsch – Ministry Future Project.
Bishop Smith announced that General Synod 2024 will be held at Concordia College, Unley, SA on October 4-7.
He ended his message with Ephesians 2:8 “It’s grace that unites us…”
Synod also received presentations and reports from Churchwide entities and departments, including Brett Hausler, Executive Officer of the Church, Tania Nelson, for Local Mission, Emma Graetz, for Australian Lutheran College, Suzanne Jessen, Director of Leadership for Lutheran Education Australia, and Michael Stolz, Executive Director ALWS. Synopses of these will be available for viewing in the Synod Popular Report when it is released.