Concordia Theological Seminary in Nagercoil, India, rebuilds solid walls as the IELC rebuilds upon the Word of God at the Pastor’s Refresher Course.
In 1895, The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod began mission work in India — the first “foreign” mission field in the Synod’s history. Over the ensuing decades, the LCMS invested human and financial resources in developing a total Christian ministry of congregations, pastoral training, lay training, school education and human-care ministries. The India Evangelical Lutheran Church (IELC) became an LCMS sister/partner church in 1959. It also is a member of the International Lutheran Council. A large LCMS missionary presence continued until the 1980s. The last full-time LCMS career missionary retired from service in 2003. Nevertheless, the LCMS has continued to offer support for the IELC in these and other areas: complementary funding for church planting, schools, hospitals and other institutions; disaster-relief work (e.g., tsunami relief); theological education through support for Concordia Theological Seminary, Nagercoil; and complementary funding of theological conferences, scholarships and stipends for vicars.