Come over here and help us!

‘A vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us”’ (Acts 16:9).

The LCA might be a relatively small church in Australia and New Zealand, but God calls us to support his mission among churches of neighbouring countries. Answering that call will make an eternal difference for many people.

In 2020 the president of the Lutheran Church in the Philippines (LCP), the Rev Antonio Reyes, called on LCA International Mission, just like the man in St Paul’s vision. Rev Reyes asked us to come over and help LCP train pastors and deaconesses. LCP’s seminary in Baguio City had two faculty vacancies and needed support.

LCA International Mission was not in a position to respond to this request alone. But God provided the way through a funding partnership with the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod in the USA.

The LCA’s General Church Board called Rev Dr Michael Lockwood to serve as a missionary to the Philippines under LCA International Mission. Dr Lockwood accepted the call and, together with his wife Naomi and children Asher and Jadon, is preparing to take up teaching duties in July 2021 at Lutheran Theological Seminary, Baguio. ‘I am very excited about this opportunity to be part of what God is doing in the Philippines and within the region, and to be able to play a part in equipping pastors and church workers with a deep understanding of God’s word and the good news of Jesus Christ’, Dr Lockwood said.

Rev Reyes is excited about the arrival of the Lockwoods, as well as the developing partnership between our churches. ‘We are truly thankful to God and the LCA for sharing with us this precious privilege of learning from Rev Dr Lockwood’, he said.

Bishop John Henderson wholeheartedly endorsed this new partnership. ‘I see the call to Dr Lockwood to serve among our fellow Lutherans in the LCP and our region as a significant moment for the LCA’s participation in the mission of God’, he said. ‘We do not stand alone, but alongside others whom God has called into the same mission. Dr Lockwood’s service in the Philippines will enrich not only the LCP but also the LCA. The church is a connected community of believers. We will be the richer for his service through this partnership in Christ.’

This story was also published in the April 2021 edition of Border Crossings, the magazine of LCA International Mission.

Many of our partner churches are working in new territory for the kingdom of God; therefore, spiritual attack is their everyday reality. As a member of a congregation, school, or family, or a couple or individual, you are invited to commit to praying for our partners in mission. For regular prayer point updates, go to