LCMS Global Seminary Initiative

Global Seminary Initiative

International Student Scholarships   •   The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod

GSI strengthens international Lutheran theological education

Many years ago, The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod laid a strong foundation and example for enduring mission by investing in international theological education. The LCMS started international missions more than a century ago in India (1895) and later in Brazil and Argentina.

The LCMS then spent the next several decades teaching Lutheran theology and training future leaders in half a dozen more countries. This is part of our strong legacy as an orthodox Lutheran church body.

Through the Global Seminary Initiative (GSI), the LCMS continues to vigorously make known the love of Christ in a renewed commitment to solid, global pastoral formation and leadership today. GSI is another facet of a visible, strategic partnership between the LCMS (Pastoral Education, the Office of International Mission and Mission Advancement) and both of our world-class seminaries: Concordia Seminary in St. Louis and Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Ind.

GSI brings to our LCMS seminaries qualified pastors from the international Lutheran community who are candidates to serve one day as partner church presidents and seminary faculty in their own country or region. They study to earn the advanced degrees required for those types of roles after each LCMS seminary alone has granted admission.

The Global Seminary Initiative also underwrites the sending of LCMS seminary professors and other qualified pastors for short periods to teach at international seminaries and schools around the world, as requested by our international partners.

For emerging, small, and even well-established partner church seminaries, LCMS faculty and pastoral expertise are precious resources. GSI helps fill knowledge gaps among select international partner church seminaries and ensures that students studying in them are as well-equipped as possible to proclaim God’s Word in its truth and purity.

As with everything our Synod does in the name of Jesus Christ, GSI is possible because God’s people freely choose to provide program-designated gifts and grants to support this work. We earnestly invite the entire Synod to prayerfully consider voluntary gifts to underwrite GSI grants and continue supporting GSI as a growing number of people and groups have over the past several years.

Your personal GSI donation will supply scholarships for qualified international students admitted to our seminaries for advanced studies, and donations also make it possible to send LCMS seminary professors and qualified pastors to teach overseas.

Gifts given to the LCMS are awarded annually as GSI grants to both LCMS seminaries, which are committed to using the funds for the purposes described above as each seminary’s needs and priorities determine.

  • You will help ensure GSI resources are available to our seminaries each time you give to the Global Seminary Initiative.
  • You will help our international church partners educate and send their own theologically equipped pastors into the Lord’s harvest fields.
  • You will help them walk the path to self-sufficiency and mission fervor.

To learn more and plan your involvement, please contact LCMS Mission Advancement or the LCMS seminary of your choice.

Learn more

Information sheet

Ways to give



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To offer support using a credit/debit card, please call LCMS Donor Care toll-free:



To offer support via personal or organizational check, please make payable to The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Designate Global Seminary Initiative on the memo line.

Mail to:

The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
Mission Advancement
P.O. Box 66861
St. Louis, MO 63166-6861


To learn how you can champion our Synod’s Global Seminary Initiative efforts
as part of your personal or organizational philanthropy, contact:



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The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod Inc., including Mission Central (in Mapleton, Iowa), is an IRS registered 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity.

A contribution designated (restricted) for a specific purpose, when accepted, will be used only to fund expenses related to that purpose. Occasionally, we may receive more in contributions for a particular purpose than can be wisely applied to it in the foreseeable future or the purpose may cease to be feasible. In these situations, the LCMS will make reasonable attempts to contact contributors to apply their contribution toward another aspect of ministry that aligns closely the contributor’s goals and values. If a contributor cannot be contacted, the LCMS will use the gift to meet a similar pressing need that most closely matches the contributor's original intent.

Consistent with Synod Board policy and in recognition of a more challenging economic and philanthropic/fundraising environment due to inflationary pressure, not more than 12.5 percent of any charitable contribution will be allocated to administering gifts and communicating with contributors. Contributions received and accepted by the LCMS are deemed to be in agreement with this statement.

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