“The Reformation must continue”

LWF president Archbishop Dr Panti Filibus Musa speaking at the VELKD General Synod in Bonn, Germany. Photo: epd/Norbert Neetz.

LWF President Musa speaks to VELKD General Synod

(LWI) – “The Reformation must continue as a living experience of the people of God.” Speaking about the ongoing reformation in his morning devotion, The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) President Archbishop Dr Panti Filibus Musa, brought this message to members and guests of the 12th General Synod of the United Evangelical Lutheran Church of Germany (VELKD), which took place from 9 to 11 November in Bonn, Germany.

He said exploitation, greed and abuse of power still showed up as central problems of society and the church, and had to be addressed responsibly. “Both the church and the world desperately need leaders that take more seriously their responsibility to care for the people they are called to lead and do not misuse their positions for selfish ambitions,” he said.

“We are called to seek the lost and reach out to people who are brutalized, discriminated, violated, undermined and violently dismembered. Liberated by God’s grace, we are bound to Christ as agents of liberation in a broken world.” From the bond to Christ followed a clear mission – to “feed the people with God’s truth” and to be “living examples of what we preach and teach”.

In a panel discussion with Prof. Dr Wilfried Hartmann, president of the General Synod, President Musa highlighted advocacy for gender justice as being one of the current priorities of the LWF.

In view of the political situation in Nigeria, his home country, he said that it was the task of the church and all Christians to oppose violence: “We share a world as fellow human beings, as fellow creatures. It is our duty to raise our voices against violence in the world.” Even though the churches were facing challenges there was still no cause for despondency, the LWF president  concluded. “God has so far guided us by divine grace and will continue to do so. The best is yet to come.”

Around 30 ecumenical guests from Europe, Asia, Africa, the USA and Latin America attended the synod proceedings.