Joint CommemorationGeneva, 24 October 2016
Respected church leaders, dear sisters and brothers -
Greetings to you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!
I write this email to you a week ahead of the Joint Catholic - Lutheran Commemoration of the Reformation to take place in Lund and Malmoe (Sweden) on October 31. [...]
Tragedy in Nice, France
LELCA stands united in its grief with all who have so suffered in Nice, as children, mothers, fathers, wives, husbands, grandparents, and friends were torn from their hands and hearts. We pray for each who struggles for their lives. The innocent suffer, they had gathered with no weapons. We know that there will be horrible consequences not only for those who are in mourning but for each that has witnessed that which no one should ever see. What can we say to those in Nice who have experienced such terror? At this time, let us acknowledge that we lack for words that would bring any real meaning. Far too often we have witnessed such atrocities, in Dallas, Orlando, and not that long ago in Paris, elsewhere. We have prayed, we must pray again - individually and in our congregations. We must pray God grants them all strength to endure. Let us pray individually and in all of our congregations, that God strengthen all those who have so horribly suffered. Let us pray as well for those that stand with them and lovingly care for one another. Let us give thanks for each that ran to help and still is doing all they can to help. Let us thank God for the countless good people, who offered their shoulders, so that another might cry and cry in their arms. Christ is in their midst. He is there, where we are not. He cries and stands with them, He comforts and consoles – through our prayers as well. May you be gently blessed this day as so much good must be done to counter so much pain.
Yours in Christ
Arch. Lauma Zušēvica
Vandals target St. John's Lutheran church in Aizpute
On June 22, 2016 we received news from Aizputes St. John's pastor Rev. Varis Bitenieks that someone had dragged a mattress up against the doors of the Church, doused it with gasoline, and set it ablaze. The doors of the sanctuary started to burn. This was done after those caring for the Church building had left. The burning mattress was seen by three who were passing by. They called the police and the firefighters arrived. Due to those swift actions, the damage was contained. Latvia's police experts concluded that the mattress was purposefully ignited.
The Latvian Evangelical Lutheran Church Abroad and its Church Council condemns this action and hopes that those responsible will soon be found and brought to justice.
Latvian Ev. Luth. Church Abroad