LWF World Service and Young Reformers in Wittenberg

Training session of FC Okapi, the soccer team currently holding third place in Kakuma premier league. The team trains every weekday afternoon. As they have their own field, they have better training opportunities than the more informal soccer teams. Photo: LWF/ C. Kästner

Presence in Heaven’s Tent and youthPointreformation

The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) presence in Wittenberg at the World Reformation Exhibition in the last two weeks of July will feature the work of LWF World Service and the Global Young Reformers Network.

Humanitarian work

From 19-24 July, World Service, the communion’s humanitarian and development arm, will present its work with refugees and internally displaced people in the LWF Heaven’s Tent, located close to the Luther Garden and the Wittenberg Castle Church, just outside the southern city gate.

Under the theme “Here I stand… with refugees,” visitors can participate in a workshop and a call for action focusing on decisions refugees and other displaced people have to make when they flee. Experienced World Service staff, among them, former director Rev. Eberhard Hitzler, will be available to share experiences from the field in addition to an exhibition and videos featuring LWF’s humanitarian work.

“When the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) was founded in 1947, millions had been displaced after the Second World War. Every sixth Lutheran was a refugee. Ever since, LWF World Service has helped people displaced by natural and human-made disaster worldwide,” says John Damerell, World Service Chief Operations Officer. “Standing with refugees is part of our Lutheran identity.”

Every day at 4:00 pm, the team will screen the documentary film If we ever get out of here, featuring three refugees in Kenya’s Kakuma refugee camp, where LWF provides education and livelihood assistance especially to children and youth who fled conflict in neighboring countries.

Young Reformers

In the same week, 16 members of the LWF Global Young Reformers Network will present their projects at the “youngPointreformation,” next to the northeastern city gate and the Reformation panorama.

The youngPointreformation is a newly constructed youth church with a high-rope garden and the exhibition “In search of a Good Life for all.”

The Lutheran youth from 14 churches representing all the seven LWF regions will share about youth work in their respective churches, facilitate workshops on their Living Reformation projects and offer prayers, songs and games to visiting youth and confirmation candidates from various churches.

“It will be exciting to witness the global communion of Lutheran churches being shared, lived out and communicated in Wittenberg. These young reformers have been very engaged in youth work and youth-led projects in their own churches. Now is the time to harvest from their ideas and experience,” says Caroline Bader, LWF Youth Secretary, who will accompany the group.

A special feature will be the premiere of the documentary “Freed by God’s Grace” on Thursday, 20 July, at 6.30 pm in Wittenberg’s Central Kino. The documentary features the Youth Pre-Assembly of the LWF Twelfth Assembly in Windhoek, Namibia, in May this year.

From 26 to 31 July, the Young Reformers will present their work in the Heaven’s Tent. They will offer daily workshops about their ideas of ongoing reformation in the Lutheran churches, movie screening, and cultural presentations from around the world.