2023–2025 LWML Mission Grant #8

Expanding Gospel Proclamation Worldwide

Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, MO — $100,000 



Watch the video about this mission grant!

About This Mission Grant

The LCMS receives frequent requests from other Lutheran church bodies around the world to share theological knowledge and doctrinally sound practices. Supporting and expanding theological education is one of LCMS’s key mission priorities to ensure there will be well-educated pastors to lead these congregations. 

Very few of these church bodies have the resources to send students to the United States for advanced studies and there is a need for seminary professors who have advanced theological degrees to instruct and mentor pastoral students in their home countries. 

God has equipped our seminary professors to fill this gap. International students will come to Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, to complete advanced degrees, and they will return to their country to train pastors who will then shepherd their local churches. This grant will provide aid to international students completing their advanced degrees.


Rev. Aiji Komiyama is a Ph.D. student from Kobe, Japan. A pastor in the West Japan Evangelical Lutheran Church, he earned a Master of Divinity degree from Kobe Lutheran Theological Seminary in 2011 and a Master of Sacred Theology degree from Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., in 2020. From 2011-17, he served as pastor for Kita-Suzurandai Lutheran Church (Kita-Suzurandai, Japan). After he earns his Ph.D., he will become a professor at Kobe Lutheran Theological Seminary.

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Rev. Abraham Mengesha Mitku is a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) student from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. He earned a bachelor's degree in theology from Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus' (EECMY) Mekane Yesus Seminary in 1999 and a master's degree in theology from Norwegian Teacher Academy in Bergen, Norway, in 2006. His church service includes serving for 10 years as president of the EECMY's Central Ethiopian Synod. After he earns his Ph.D., he will become a professor at Mekane Yesus Seminary.

Alan Furst is a Ph.D. student from Ipiranga do Norte, Brazil. A member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Brazil (IELB), he earned a bachelor's degree in theology in 2013 from the Lutheran University of Brazil and, in 2016, earned a master's degree in theology from the IELB's seminary in São Leopoldo. After he earns his Ph.D., he expects to be called to serve a congregation. It is IELB policy that one must serve a parish for a minimum of five years before becoming a seminary professor.

Rev. Daniel Kofi Akoh is a Master of Arts (M.A.) student from Accra, Ghana. In 2001, he earned a four-year diploma from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ghana's (ELCG) Lutheran Seminary. He has served his church as head pastor for Ghana's Volta region and as national youth director. He says a main reason the ELCG urged him to apply to study at Concordia Seminary is that the church needs professors with advanced degrees to enable it to upgrade its seminary.

Futao Liu is a Ph.D. student from Kaifeng, China. In 2021, he earned a four-year M.A. in theology from the Cross-cultural Ministry Center at Concordia University, Irvine, Calif. After earning his Ph.D., he hopes to share the Gospel according to Lutheran doctrine in Asia, with a possible focus on evangelizing to those living in Asian countries with significant Mandarin-speaking populations.

Rev. Philip Kuya is an M.A. student from Kilgoris, Kenya. He earned a four-year diploma in theology in 2006 from Matongo Lutheran Theological College (now Neema Lutheran College), the official teaching institution of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Kenya (ELCK). He earned a bachelor's degree in theology from Neema in 2016. After he earns his M.A., he will serve in any position to which the ELCK assigns him, with one possibility becoming a professor at Neema.

Wondimu Mathewos Game is a Ph.D. student from Hawassa, Ethiopia. He earned a bachelor's degree in theology before coming to Concordia Seminary, where he earned an M.A. in 2021. He has taken part in planting 25 EECMY churches and more than 35 outreach centers/local missions in Ethiopia. "The EECMY is a mission church," he says. "We need the theological foundation that I'm getting here at Concordia Seminary to equip the church for this mission work."


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