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Concordia Seminary Receives Endowed Faculty Chair in Hispanic Ministry

Werner and Elizabeth Krause, longtime friends and neighbors of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, have provided a gift to establish The Werner R.H. and Elizabeth Ringger Krause Chair for Hispanic Ministries at the Seminary. It is the first endowed faculty chair in Hispanic ministry at Concordia Seminary and in The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS). Rev. Dr. Leopoldo Sánchez M., associate professor of systematic theology and director of the Seminary’s Center for Hispanic Studies, is the inaugural occupant of the Chair.

The Krause’s desire to establish an endowed faculty chair in Hispanic ministry resulted from a process of observing a need and discovering a way to address that need. “In our travels to Mexico, we often saw a great need for the Gospel of Jesus Christ when, for example, we saw people doing penance by hobbling on their knees across cobblestone courtyards to reach a shrine on the other side,” wrote Werner Krause in a statement about their reasons for establishing the Chair. “In 2006 we learned of the need to reach the Latinos, as well as the impact of proposed Hispanic Ministry budget cuts being considered by the LCMS. In one of the Seminary’s FOCUS magazines that year was an announcement that a faculty member had been named to a Chair of a different program. This crystallized our thinking. Why not set up a permanent Chair for Hispanic Ministries at Concordia Seminary?”

Mark Hofman, the Seminary’s vice president for philanthropic support, reflected on the implications of the Chair and the blessings it will provide. “The Krause’s gift is a stunning affirmation of Concordia Seminary’s commitment to share the pure Gospel of Jesus Christ with one of the fastest growing cultural segments in the world,” commented Hofman. The annual revenue stream generated by this endowment ensures that the Center for Hispanic Studies has a bold, committed leader serving as its director, and that the Center has a stable source of financial resources available to carry its vision forward.”

The endowed faculty chair was announced by Dr. Dale A. Meyer, president of Concordia Seminary, during the worship service opening the 2007-2008 academic year at the Seminary. At a reception following the service, Elizabeth Krause said, “I hope others will join us in supporting Hispanic ministry in the LCMS and the Seminary’s Center for Hispanic Studies.”

For more information about the Center for Hispanic Studies, or to learn about opportunities to support the Center, call the Seminary’s Office of Philanthropic Support at 1-800-822-5287.