- Written by Mark and Megan Mantey Mark and Megan Mantey
- Created: May 31 2019 May 31 2019
Recently, I (Megan) had the opportunity to accompany fellow missionary, Rev. Dr. Mark Rabe, and Ambassadors of Reconciliation (AoR) President Dwight Schettler and Lead Ambassador Ted Kober to Rwanda. We had the joy of serving together at the first pastors and wives conference for the Lutheran Mission in Africa—Synod of Thousand Hills (LMA—STH).
Dwight and Ted taught about reconciliation in Christ Jesus and how this positively affects our relationships with one another. The conference was days before the 25th anniversary of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. Although intentional work has been done in the country and the Lutheran church to reconcile and rebuild relationships, the stories shared by church leaders reflected the immeasurable pain and challenges that are still a part of their narrative.
Yet, as I spent time with the women at the conference, it was the immeasurable joy in Christ that was ever present. I also witnessed an eager willingness to learn, practice and implement what AoR was teaching about forgiveness through Christ Jesus in daily life and ministry. Even with some trepidation, the women showed great fortitude as they shared their own stories and applied Scripture about reconciliation to their own lives.
As the women practiced coaching one another through the reconciliation process, there was some uncertainty. One brave woman even shared, “How can we do this? Who would listen to us?” After some time together sharing their stories, they reiterated that we are God’s children. If Christ has forgiven us, then we can forgive ourselves and one another! After this realization, the women’s apprehension shifted to joyful confidence.
They certainly can share that we are children of God capable of being forgiven, and also able to forgive one another! As women in their communities, they can help strengthen relationships by sharing the importance of the love and forgiveness we have in Christ Jesus.
Life and Ministry Update
During Holy Week, the Lutheran Church of Uganda (LCU) had several opportunities to share Christ’s love through worship and gathering together. Throughout the country, Lutheran churches hosted Good Friday services. In Nakabango, local musicians accompanied Lutheran school students in an Easter Carols service. This was held on the Saturday before Easter Sunday. Children and youth from the regional Lutheran Schools gathered to share their favorite Easter hymns as they prepared to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ. It was a unique opportunity for the nearby Lutheran schools to get together, reach out to the nearby community and share about what Christ has done for us through songs of praise and a drama.
New Missionary Family
The LCMS continues to work with the Lutheran Church of Uganda (LCU), especially as it fits within the mission, vision and strategy of both church bodies. As part of this strategy, the LCMS collaborates with the LCU for people to assist in training the next generation of pastors in Uganda.
Thus, we are pleased to welcome new missionaries, the Rev. Michael and Mrs. Karen Schempf to Uganda. Pastor Mike will teach theological education at the Lutheran Theological College Uganda, and joins us as our colleague at the seminary. The LCMS and the LCU are grateful the Schempfs are able to join in the Lord’s work in Uganda! Please keep them in your prayers as they acclimate to their new home and join us in walking alongside the LCU in life and ministry.
Mark and Megan Mantey serve the Lord through The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod as career missionaries in Uganda. Mark serves as the project manager for the seminary, and Megan is the seminary’s instructor of Christian education and counseling. You can follow their work at www.facebook.com/MissionMindedManteys.