Missionaries are not immune to a difficulty afflicting many kinds of people all over the world today -- the economic crisis. But it has affected us in a drastic way. Ten years ago we were 15 WELS missionaries working in Latin America. At the end of February we were eight. LATTE has gone from five to six, then back to five. Last November our team was cut again when Prof. Ralph Martens (top) was called to serve in Mexico with no replacement on our team.
Now we have just received word that Prof. Philip (bottom) will be cut and sent back to the United States. And depending on how our Synod votes in its biennial convention in July, Latin America could lose yet another missionary.
The pain comes from saying goodbye to friends and co-workers of many years. The loss to God's kingdom comes from losing two valued, experienced missionary-professors, both of whom have decades of experience serving His church in Latin America. They will both be sorely missed in the training and preparation of future church workers all over Latin America.
We are grateful to God that he has seen fit to call Prof. Ralph to Mexico so that is expertise is not lost to our mission effort in Mexico. And we pray to our Sovereign Lord for Prof. Philip to receive a call at the opportune moment so his service to the church may continue, all according to His will. To Him alone be the glory and honor.