Lutherans in Africa

Help Form African Lutherans to Be Teachers of the Faith

And Jesus said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest." (Luke 10:2)

The Need

  • There Is A Severe Shortage of Trained Pastors In Africa

    In Tanzania, for instance, there is on average 1 pastor for every 3,500 members. The Lutheran Church in Tanzania alone has over 10 million members, but the struggle is to provide each congregation with a trained and ordained pastor.

  • Most Pastors/Evangelists Have Little Or No Theological Training
    The average pastor serves 12 parishes but only visits one each Sunday. The other eleven are served by evangelists who have had little or no training. Even those who are trained have few books and limited opportunity for further formal study in the Living Word and doctrinal theology.
  • On Site Theological Training Seminars Spread Across 20 Different Countries Was Not Sustainable
    Each month, Rev. James May, the director of Lutherans In Africa (LIA), was traveling to other African countries to organize training seminars. Over time, several bishops repeated the same comment,

    "These seminars are great but they are not long enough to train pastors. You need to come back three of four times a year."

    Since Rev. May was already working in 20 countries across the continent, this just was not possible. So the bishops made the motion at the annual board meeting of Lutherans In Africa (LIA) to establish a faithful, sustainable, and accessible seminary in Nairobi, Kenya.

    This is how and why the Lutheran School of Theology was founded.

A School That Forms African Lutherans to Be Teachers of the Faith

Faithful, Sustainable, and Accessible Theological Training

The Lutheran School of Theology

  • faithfully teaches God's Word
  • is centrally located to reduce travel expenses
  • is united by the Lutheran Confessions
  • is sustainable and self-sufficient in design
  • provides longer, in-depth theological training
  • shows a long term commitment to the community
  • gathers around the historic liturgical practice of the Divine Service
  • equips students in their service through translation work
The Work of LIA

Forming African Lutherans to Be Teachers of the Faith

Founded in 2010, Lutherans in Africa (LIA) equips Africans to be teachers of the saving faith in Christ Jesus. This is done through training pastors, evangelists, deaconesses, and Sunday school teachers in the pure doctrine of the Scriptures, the Lutheran Confessions as contained in the Book of Concord, and the liturgy and hymnody of the historic Church. LIA also translates key doctrinal resources into African languages.

By training Africans to be teachers of the faith, Lutherans in Africa (LIA) is able to help fill the need for pastors and further spread the Gospel, allowing God to work through His Word. Lutherans in Africa does that work all over Africa.

When we bought our new property in 2015, students showed up immediately asking to be taught even though we had not announced classes nor constructed any buildings.

They are still coming.

All that is needed in Africa to teach the faith is a nice shady spot under a tree. Christians in Africa are hungry to be taught the Word of God.
(Rev. James May, Executive Director of Lutherans in Africa)

We began by teaching under a tree but, thanks be to God, many people joined in the building project of the Lutheran School of Theology. They helped with their prayers, volunteer work, and donations. We now have a more secure and sanitary mission center, offices, library, dormitories, cafeteria, seminary, classroom building, staff housing, and animal shelters. We have laid a foundation for generations to come as we are teaching even more students effectively.

That was the vision of our Director, Rev. May more than a decade ago. Thanks to your generosity, the first three of five phases of the building project are complete. It is now time to take the next step in forming African Lutherans to be teachers of the faith and move onto the construction of a sanctuary. The plan is to build a chapel that will serve not only the Lutheran School of Theology, but also the Maasai community around us.

Training pastors at the Lutheran School of Theology (LST) is the primary vision of Lutherans in Africa right now.

We are still doing seminars around the whole continent in addition to conducting classes on the seminary campus. We also have few buildings yet to build. God has been richly blessing us with your gifts to make this vision a reality.

Serve + Share + Enlist

The LIA Partner Pathway

Our desire at Lutherans In Africa is to provide a way for everyone, no matter what age or stage of life, to help us form African Lutherans to be teachers of the faith.

To do so, we've created an intentional partner pathway. We want to help move anyone interested in the work of LIA from ...

  • Unaware of the work of LIA to Aware
  • Aware of the work of LIA to Action
  • Action and service with LIA to Advocacy
  • Advocacy of the work of LIA to those who are still or yet Unaware
  • And then … by God's grace and provision, the process repeats.

Our prayer is that many will volunteer to serve with LIA for the sake of the Gospel, share their unique LIA story, and then, enlist others to partner with LIA so that through all of the Triune God's gifts we can form African Lutherans to be teachers of the faith.

We've outlined some ways that you can serve with LIA in the "Pray + Volunteer + Support" section of our website.

If you would like to learn more about how you can help form African Lutherans to be teachers of the faith, or, if you would like an LIA ambassador to present at your church, school, or group, you can contact us here.

Lutherans in Africa Video Series
The LIA media library contains "video logs" with Rev. James May (the executive director of LIA), Dr. Gregory Schulz, and Rev. Paul Arndt. If you would like to know more about the mission of Lutherans In Africa and its Lutheran School of Theology, this is a great place to start.
pray + volunteer + Support

How Can I Help Form African Lutherans to Be Teachers of the Faith?

There are many dangers and troubles we face because of the devil and a sinful world. These are combated by Christ and you can help by praying for our protection, the proclamation of the Word, and open hearts to receive the Gospel.
You can help us succeed by volunteering to serve LIA with your vocational skills and talents. You can also advocate for LIA by telling others about the work of the mission at the Lutheran School of Theology and encourage them to get involved.
Prayerfully consider a financial gift to LIA to further the spread of the Gospel in Africa. Encourage your church to add Lutherans In Africa to their mission budget each year. Donate Bibles, Catechisms, and other theological resources.

Hear How LIA is Forming African Lutherans to Be Teachers of the Faith
When you sign up for our emails, you'll receive monthly updates about Lutherans In Africa and the Lutheran School of Theology.
United States

Lutherans In Africa

7140 Tacoma Avenue

Mayer, MN 55360


Lutherans In Africa

PO Box 1230, 00208

Ngong Hills, Kenya

| 254-710-660-670


Lutherans in Africa - Australia Inc

C/O PO Box 6094

Shepparton VIC 3630

| 0402950596

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