Immanuel Lutheran Church, 37515 Park Trl., Almelund, will be observing “Itonya Sunday” Nov. 18, during 9:30 a.m. worship service. In 2007, the congregation voted to support a Lutheran parish in Tanzania, Africa, through a program called, “Bege Kwa Bega,” which means in English, “Shoulder to Shoulder.” They support this congregation through the auspices of the St. Paul Area Synod, and yearly send monetary support to them. The youth sponsor two students who are now able to go on to secondary education. They have also been able to supply this parish with transportation, namely a motorbike, for the pastor and three regular bicycles for the three 3 evangelists serving this parish. This is their only means of transportation, along with walking; to get anywhere they need to go.
Itonya Lutheran Parish is located in the highlands of Tanzania and has four preaching points with a newly appointed pastor (first one they ever had!) and 3 evangelists who serve these points. Pastor Tom Nielsen, a member of Immanuel, returned Nov. 14, after a 3-month stay in Tanzania. He is one of the volunteer coordinators of this Bega Kwa Bega program and lives in Iringa, Tanzania, during this time. He was able to visit Itonya Parish in both 2007 and 2009, along with his wife JoAnn.
Immanuel invites friends in the community to worship with them Nov. 18 and celebrate our oneness with Itonya, Tanzania, Africa, as well as learn more about this mission. For further information, please call the church office, 651-538-2340.