Our ties to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania go back to Mission Festival 1996 when Pastor Elias Kitoi Nasari was our guest preacher. Pastor Elias came to our Greater Milwaukee Synod in 2003 to serve as a missionary and guest pastor. He joined our staff for the 2004-2005 year as half-time pastor, and half-time missionary throughout our synod. (He now serves as a pastor of our ELCA at Galilee Lutheran/Pewaukee.)
The Meru Diocese of Tanzania is a companion-synod to our Greater Milwaukee Synod. Many relationships and partnerships in ministry have developed over the years. The Lutheran church is growing rapidly in Tanzania, and both we and they are enriched by getting to know each other and working together.
Ulong’a Parish is our sister parish in the Meru Diocese. It’s located on the western slopes of Mt. Meru and consists mostly of small subsistence farmers who grow coffee, corn, and beans. We sent a delegation from St. John’s to visit there in June 2009. A portion of our Sharing God’s Blessings appeal gifts are going to help the people at Ulong’a with school tuition, emergency food needs, and perhaps a small building project.
We also support a missionary family in Tanzania–Steve and Bethany Friberg.