Igrea Evangélica de Confissao Luterana no Brasil
THE EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN SISTERHOOD
The Evangelical Lutheran Sisterhood (Irmandade Evangélica Luterana) of the Casa Matriz de Diaconisas (Deaconess Motherhouse) in São Leopoldo, Brazil, is a group of 52 Sisters, 27 of these being retired. Currently, 11 candidates are interested in becoming members. Since the Church assumed the responsibility for all ministers in the Church, including the diaconate, the Sisterhood offers community life for women who want to become members. The community is open for all women who are ordained or on the way to be ordained: catechists, deaconesses, pastors and missionaries. The community’s bylaws say that the condition for membership is identification of oneself with diaconia.
The Motherhouse in São Leopoldo was founded in 1939. From 1913 on deaconesses from the Motherhouse in Wittenberg, Germany worked in Brazilian parishes and institutions. These faithful pioneers were important for the development of a diaconal consciousness in the country.
Annually a “Nacional Seminar of Diaconia” is held in Igreja Evangélica de Confissão Luterana no Brasil (IECLB). Delegates from the diaconal institutions and organizations report on many and diverse projects. Following one of these meetings concerns are being raised about diaconal formation and training, and the future of the positions of diaconal ministers. Proposals for this training are being made to the national church.
DIACONAL COMMUNION OF THE IECLB (COD)
Themes / Concerns / Difficulties / Challenges Diaconal Ministry:
The Church is discussing how to continue the Diaconal Ministry issue at the IECLB. The General Secretariat of the Church has set up a booklet explaining difficulties and strengths and proposing new paths to the subject. We are concerned because the new proposal is that everyone will be called pastors (with the second name catechist, deacon or missionary). This issue is currently under discussion.
We know that changes will be necessary, because since 2015 there are no ordination to the diaconate in the IECLB, but we believe that this is not the solution.
We wish, as a communion, to propose to the IECLB a new model of formation for the diaconal ministry in the Church.
– The Casa Matriz de Diaconisas continues to be our partner in promoting events and dialogues on diakonia. We continue to have an apartment loaned by CMD for a symbolic value, which became our headquarters.
-The German Partner Communion – SBEJ is of importance for the life of the COD. In addition, we are already planning an interchange trip to 2020. Our German partners will come to Brazil in June 2020, participate in our General Meeting and the COD-SBEJ Partnership Seminary COD-SBEJ.