Sunday, July 26, 2009

Praise the Lord, all nations!

LMF (Lærerinnenes MisjonsForbund) is a mission organization founded in 1902, by women, for women, consisting of female school teachers. They do not send out their own missionaries, but they support other mission organizations in prayer and offering.

At the moment LMF consists of about 2000 members in about 90 groups all around the country. Of these members nearly 100 attend their general assembly this weekend, and I am one of the missionaries they support. All together LMF supports 16 female missionaries. 4 of us are with the Norwegian Lutheran Mission.

LMF's motto is "God, Your Glory on All the Earth".

None of the first members from 1902 is still there, but I guess the average age is quite high. Most of the participants have already retired from their teaching post. Quite a few retired missionaries were also here. And even if it is an organization run by women some men were observed. They obediently followed their wives.

Yesterday we had something called "Missionary mosaic". We were 5 missionaries who had got 10 minutes each to tell about our work. Because I was here for the first time, they gave me 15 minutes, but I think I even exceeded my given time...

Anne Helene Gundersen represented Bangladesh, and I came from Japan, as you may see.

Anne-Lise H. Baltzersen informed about her work in Mali, assisted by her husband Torstein.

Therese Glendrange did not show pictures, but she told very vividly from what she had experienced in Mali, so we could easlily imagine what she told.

There were also a report from Papua Ny Guinea, and another missionary gave us some glimpses from a Bible School in Bolivia later yesterday night. Quite an interesting mix. Cultures are quite different, but our message is the same: The love of God in Jesus Christ.

Even if most of the LMF members are elderly people, we had some young guests. On the grand piano 16 candles represent the 16 missionaries LMF supports. (I am one of the 16).

The topic for this year's general assembly was "Praise the Lord, all nations!" We sang many songs about heaven. Even the elderly ladies joined in singing a children's song: "Alle, alle vil vi ha med, vil vi ha med til himlen" (We want to bring everybody to heaven!).

The youngest one attended with her mother and grandmother (behind).

One women (2nd from left) brought both her husband and her two sons.

This charming young guy impressed all the women by his brilliant guitar play. I was impressed, too! (Included in the women, maybe...)

Two of us had met in Japan earlier. Solveig Handeland worked at the Norwegian School in Kobe when I came to Japan in March 1993.

Praise the Lord, all nations! That was the topic for this year's summer meeting. The purpuse of LMF's faithful work is that all people from all nations can praise Jesus Christ in heaven:

"And they sang a new song: "You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. "
Revelation 5:9

"After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: "Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb."
Revelation 7:9-10

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