On the opposite side of the world from Montana, young Latvian children are learning that they are members of God’s family – thanks in part to a mission grant from the Montana District LWML.
At its 2012 convention, the Montana LWML voted to send funds to the Lutheran Heritage Foundation (LHF), a recognized service organization of the LCMS dedicated to translating and publishing Lutheran books around the world.
LHF has used the LWML mites to help cover the printing costs for 3,000 copies of God Makes Me His Child in Baptism for the country of Latvia, a small nation located on the Baltic Sea in Eastern Europe.
“Latvia was once part of the Soviet Union, an oppressive atheist government that tried to stamp out the Christian faith within its borders,” said Rev. Matthew Heise, LHF executive director. “Though Latvia is now a free nation, generations of religious persecution resulted in more than 40% of the people today saying they are non-religious.”
But God has not abandoned His people in Latvia. In 1991, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Latvia was founded, and today it has grown to 40,000 members. These young converts are eager to share Jesus Christ with parents and children, other family members and friends. But they lack good teaching materials for children.
“This is why the God Comes To Me series is so important,” said Rev. Heise. “The books are a valuable resource for helping parents, who are often new converts themselves, to tell their children about their Savior, Jesus Christ.”
The ELCL has also established 160 Sunday Schools with over 5,500 children enrolled. God Makes Me His Child in Baptism will be used to teach children how God joined them to His family through the Sacrament of Holy Baptism.
“With this book, children will learn how much God loves them, and how He will never let them go,” Rev. Heise said. “The Holy Spirit is using the mites of the Montana District LWML to share this powerful Gospel message with Jesus’ littlest lambs in Latvia.”
LHF is at work in more than 80 countries and 90 languages worldwide, translating and publishing books like Luther’s Small Catechism, The Book of Concord and A Child’s Garden of Bible Stories. The books are given free of charge to the churches, missionaries and families who otherwise cannot afford them.