Eersterust Education and Community Center Dedicated December 18, 2011
The Eersterust Education and Community Center was dedicated on December 18, 2011. More photographs of the event are available here.
Letter from Bishop Miller read at the dedication -
Dear Bishop Phaswana and members of the Central Diocese:
Congratulations on behalf of the Metropolitan Chicago Synod, ELCA, on the dedication of the Eersterust Christian Educentre that will take place on December 18, 2011. I remember visiting in 2008 and hearing about the plans for this project that now, because of your faith, dedication, and perseverance, is now a reality.
I am glad that the synod was able to participate in helping to make this dream a reality with funds from Wilmette Lutheran Church (proceeds from the sale of their building), and other congregations. We are grateful for our partnership with the Central Diocese, and look forward to other ways in which we can share with and learn from each other. May God continue to bless this project as it works in the community - making God’s love made known in Jesus Christ a reality for a world desperate to hear of God’s grace, mercy, and compassion.
I look forward to being able to visit the center next year.
Wayne N. Miller
Good News, and a Challenge
The Eersterust Education and Community Center
October 14, 2010
Dear brothers and sisters is Christ,
I write you today with good news, and a challenge. As you know, Wilmette Lutheran Church closed after 88 years of ministry. From the sale of their property, they have been able to give gifts to many ELCA ministries, including our companion synod, the Central Diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Southern Africa.
Approximately $200,000 will be sent to help with many needed services. One project, in particular, is a new school on the grounds of Eersterust Lutheran Church in Pretoria, South Africa. It is not just building a school, though; it is ministering to children in Jesus' name. Here is the challenge. We are considering this gift from Wilmette Lutheran to be seed money and are asking the congregations of the synod to match these funds.
With $400,000, not only could we fund the cost of the building (bricks and mortar), but also, we could help fund an endowment that will help this school and the other diocesan schools to continue to function after the bricks and mortar are in place. (continue reading letter...)
Information about the Eersterust Education and Community Center
Central Diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Southern Africa (ELCSA)
Within the global Lutheran family, the ELCA has bilateral "companion church" relationships with many national Lutheran church bodies. These global relationships are deepened by the ELCA Companion Synods Program, which connects 65 ELCA synods in over 120 international companion relationships.
The Metropolitan Chicago Synod’s companion synod is the Central Diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Southern Africa (ELCSA). The Companion Synod relationship exists for the purpose of strengthening one another for life and mission within the body of Christ. It offers us the privilege of participating in the life of another church through prayer, study, communication, and exchange of people and resources. It opens our eyes to the global challenge that Christ offers us today and calls us to deepen our commitment and discipleship as individuals and as a community of faith.
Diakonia AIDS Ministry
Download Diakonia AIDS Ministry Presentation 2009 (PowerPoint 4.8MB)
(This PowerPoint gives an overview of Diakonia AIDS Ministry, a key component of our relationship with the Central Diocese.)
Our synod maintains a strong partnership with our companion synod, strengthened by Bishop Miller’s recent trip to tour the four circuits of the diocese (Eastern, Western, Pretoria, and Soweto). Here, he met with The Rt. Rev. N.P. Phaswana, Bishop of the Central Diocese, and other diocesan leaders, gathering information about projects supported by the synod, including the Diakonia AIDS Ministry (DAM), and Project Education that assists students at Mapetla High School.
Read more about the Bishop’s trip.
Accompaniment: A Lens and Methodology for Global Mission
Accompaniment is a response to the changing context of global mission. For many years, North American and European church bodies established, funded, and directed mission around the world. Today, the churches they helped found are independent and self-governing. As a result, global mission is an endeavor shared by mutual participants in the body of Christ. Learn more on the Global Mission section of ELCA.org.