Missouri Synod's Fan into Flame campaign raises $67 million
Churchwide initiative supports new global mission efforts
ST. LOUIS, May 24, 2012—In the seven years since The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) in convention launched the Fan into Flame campaign, about $67 million in gifts and pledges have been raised for new mission efforts worldwide in conjunction with the Ablaze! initiative.
The Fan into Flame "active" appeal phase ended Oct. 31, 2011, but the campaign continues through Oct. 31, 2017, to receive pledged funds.
"It is by God's grace that we have been called to a life together in the LCMS," said LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison. "He has given to us His great gifts in Word and sacrament, calling us to share in witness and mercy to a world bound by sin and death. We do this as Synod, working together, blessed by God, doing more together than we could individually do alone. The Fan into Flame campaign is but one example of this working together. Through Fan into Flame we have accomplished much."
Funds raised through Fan into Flame helped establish 38 new congregations in 12 states; distribute 24,000 audio New Testaments to teenagers and 700 Talking Book Bibles for blind and low-vision people; launch 29 career missionaries in Germany, Guinea, Hong Kong, Kenya, Macau, Peru and Slovakia; begin a Lutheran school in Hanoi, Vietnam; renovate historic St. Michael's Lutheran Church in St. Petersburg, Russia; and construct a Lutheran seminary building in Ghana, West Africa.
Of the 34 LCMS districts that took part, three—Texas, Michigan and Southeastern— pledged more than $6 million each to the campaign. More than 13,000 total gifts were pledged, including contributions from 1,521 congregations and 8,909 individual households.
Fan into Flame returned a portion of the contributions received back to districts and congregations for local outreach ministries. Its model for fund distribution was based on Acts 1:8: "... you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem [congregations], and in all Judea [districts] and Samaria [national work], and to the ends of the earth [international work]."
To learn more about Fan into Flame, download an electronic version of the campaign's "Final Update News" at www.lcms.org/fanintoflame. A more detailed "Final Report" is being prepared for release prior to the 2013 LCMS convention.
Gifts to Fan into Flame can still be made even without pledges. For information, contact Patty Mainer at 800-248-1930, Ext. 1661, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS), is a mission-oriented, Bible-based, confessional Christian denomination headquartered in St. Louis, Mo. Founded in 1847, the LCMS has about 2.3 million baptized members in more than 6,000 congregations and more than 9,000 pastors. Two seminaries and 10 colleges and universities operate under the auspices of the LCMS, and its congregations operate the largest Protestant parochial school system in America. The church broadcasts the saving message of Jesus Christ over KFUO Radio, and it has relationships and active mission work in 89 countries around the world. In the last five years, the LCMS has awarded more than $35 million through more than 900 domestic and international grants for emergency response and disaster relief. Today, the LCMS is in full doctrinal fellowship with 33 other confessional Lutheran church bodies worldwide and is a founding partner of Lutheran Services in America, a social ministry organization serving one in every 50 Americans. For more information, visit www.lcms.org.