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This time of year in Uganda, you can look out at the many farms and see growth. We have had a later rainy season, but we praise God for his provision. The fields and gardens continue to grow. On the road to the Lutheran Theological College Uganda (LTCU), you will witness this growth. Fields upon fields you can see sugar cane, rice, potatoes and field corn growing steadily. In the midst of the bountiful farms, the LTCU is visible. It is a great reminder to know that there is a lot of growth happening at the seminary as well. Although it is different than that of the fields, there are men who are daily growing in their knowledge and understanding as they study to become pastors.

This June, twelve more students were commissioned as vicars in the Lutheran Church of Uganda (LCU), which means they will have a year of practicing and implementing all that they have learned so far at the LTCU. The vicars will grow as they continue to learn and serve in the congregations and preaching stations throughout their perspective regions in Uganda. Kugonza Cleophas and Otesa Anthony are two of the 2019–2020 vicars serving in the Midwestern Deanery. During this year of growth, Cleophas stated that "vicarage is a way to learn, practice and monitor what we have learned. It’s assessing how we are using knowledge to be servants in our congregations. We will also learn from congregants as we are sharing the Word of God with them.”

All the vicars know there are challenges during this time of learning, but they trust in God as He leads and guides them. During the vicarage process, the LCU and LTCU leadership work with the new vicars and share the expectations and support systems that are implemented during this integral year of learning. The vicars are called by God and sent out by their congregations. They have vicarage supervisors, LTCU faculty advisors and regional deans who provide oversight, direction, and educational opportunities during the vicarage year. We praise God for the protocols and systems in place that allow the vicars to learn, practice and serve.

Excitement and Prayer Requests

As Cleophas and Anthony shared with us about their vicarage year, they focused on the joys of serving in ministry. Anthony, who has a heart for the youth, stated that his favorite aspects are “sharing the Gospel with the youth and visiting sick.” He is grateful his vicarage will provide opportunities for these personal ministry connections. Cleophas has a more regional perspective, stating that he wants to “share the good news of Jesus Christ with those who haven’t heard.” He also stated he wants to spend time with congregations and help the pastors reach congregations more frequently. We are thankful the Holy Spirit continues to guide and lead the LCU as they prepare more workers for the field. We praise God for this year and opportunity of growth and learning.

As the vicars are sent out, please keep them in your prayers. In the words of Cleophas and Anthony, “please pray that we can be encouraged by the Holy Spirit to stay true in the faith and be faithful to God and the congregations. Also, that God continues to give us knowledge, wisdom and understanding on how to teach His Word.”

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