On Wednesday, April 21, 73 students at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, received their calls to serve as pastors in The Lutheran Church — Missouri Synod (LCMS). In addition, 100 students received assignments to serve as vicars, a one-year internship experience that all students preparing to serve in the pastoral ministry must complete.
“‘Call day’ at Concordia Seminary is, in many respects, the most exciting time of the year,” commented Dr. John F. Johnson, President of Concordia Seminary. “On this day we witness the fulfillment of long years of education and formation in the lives of our students; but also, years of teaching and work on behalf of our excellent faculty. We are confident that those who have received vicarage assignments and calls into the public ministry of the church have been well prepared for the tasks of proclaiming the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ and administering His life-giving and life-strengthening sacraments.”
The “Office of Vespers and Assignment of Vicarages” took place at 4:00 p.m. in the Seminary’s Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus. Rev. Carl H. Krueger Jr., President of the SELC District of the LCMS, served as preacher. Officiants included Dr. John F. Johnson; Dr. Glenn A. Nielsen, Director of the Seminary’s Vicarage Program; and Prof. William G. Utech, Director of the Resident Field Education at Concordia Seminary.
Students received calls to serve as pastors at a 7:00 p.m. “Service of Praise and Assignment of Calls,” also held in The Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus. Dr. Theodore L. Laesch, President Emeritus of the Northern Illinois District of the LCMS served as preacher. His son, Theodore L. Laesch Jr. was one of the candidates receiving a call to serve as a pastor during the service. Dr. Laesch used Luke 4:18 as his text and urged the candidates to “preach the Good News, proclaim freedom to the prisoners and recovery of sight to the blind.”
The 73 students receiving calls to serve as pastors, missionaries and chaplains join nearly 11,000 who have been prepared to serve in these same capacities during the Seminary’s previous 159 years of service to the church.
The Reverend Arleigh Lutz, President of the North Wisconsin District of the LCMS and Chairman of the LCMS Council of Presidents, served as Presenter of Calls in the 7:00 p.m. service. Other officiants included Dr. John F. Johnson; Dr. David J. Peter and Dr. Arthur F. Graudin, Placement Counselors at Concordia Seminary; and Prof. Larry Rockemann, the Seminary’s Director of Placement.
For more information on the April 21 services, contact the Seminary’s Communications Department at 314-505-7375 or by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org ).