Melpa Lutherans start 500th anniversary event


THE Melpa Lutheran Church yesterday launched its programme to mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and the establishment of the Lutheran Church in the world at its headquarters in Mt Hagen, Western Highlands.
The reformation anniversary which will fall on Oct 31 will be exactly 500 years after Martin Luther, a Catholic priest, broke away and started the Lutheran faith in 1517 in Germany.
Melpa Lutheran Church (MLC) Bishop Rev Stanley Mukati, presidents of the seven circuits, pastors, youths and Christians from the church districts opened the anniversary celebrations and will join Lutherans all over the world to observe the day on Oct 31.
The theme of the anniversary’s launching at the Kontkona church near Kagamuga airport is ‘I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God, for the salvation of everyone who believes.’ (Romans 1:16).
The MLC PNG will join the Evangelical Lutheran Church of PNG and Gutnius Lutheran Church to commemorate the day that changed the world.
The Lutheran World Federation has also outlined a series of events to mark the day based on the theme ‘Liberated by God’s grace.’
Bishop Mukati said the MLC thanked God for sending the early missionaries to PNG with financial support and prayers to provide services to the people.
The reformation anniversary events committee said it was a privilege to celebrate the 500th anniversary with the two sister churches and the Lutheran community at large.
“We need to celebrate the 500 years in ecumenical openness, togetherness in relationship as the spirit of Jesus Christ is meant for everyone to share and commemorate the events that changed the world,” the committee said.
“We thank God for using Martin Luther to bring the goodness into the world and exposing it to everyone.
Lutheran Church was first established in PNG on July 12, 1886 at Simbang, Finschaffen, Morobe.