VANCOUVER – In the midst of convention work Sunday, attendees heard greetings from Lutheran Church–Canada’s first two presidents: Rev. Dr. Edwin Lehman and Rev. Dr. Ralph Mayan.
Dr. Lehman is still recovering from surgery earlier this year and was unable to attend in person. He therefore sent his well-wishes in the form of a letter, which Third Vice President Rudy Pastucha read aloud to the convention.
“It is a fortunate coincidence that our synodical convention is being held over the Pentecost weekend,” Dr. Lehman wrote. “As the delegates hear reports about the challenges facing our congregations—and, for that matter, churches around the world—it is important to remember that it is through the work of the Holy Spirit that God’s Church is created, strengthened, and preserved. Our most ambitious resolutions, inspiring speeches, and far-reaching resolutions can only be tools which the Holy Spirit might choose to use. The power to face whatever the world and its culture throw at us is not within ourselves but is a gracious gift from God.”
His letter goes on to assure delegates that will he keep them in his prayers. Dr. Lehman served as LCC’s President from its founding convention until 1996.
Later on Sunday, Dr. Mayan addressed the convention. Drawing on the words of St. Paul in the second chapter of 1 Timothy, Dr. Mayan encouraged convention-goers to see the connection between prayer and mission. It is the Church’s job, he said quoting St. Paul, to pray for ‘all people.’ “No one is to be excluded from the Church’s prayer list,” Dr. Mayan explained. “Our God is a God who wants to save all people…. We pray for all people because God wants to save all people. To pray is to be in mission, and to be in mission is to pray.”
“Pray for the world,” he continued. “Pray for the mission of the Church. Pray for our missionaries, in country and out of country. It pleases God, because our God is a God who desires to save all people.”
Dr. Mayan served as President of Lutheran Church–Canada from 1996 to 2008.
President Bugbee thanked Dr. Mayan for his words, and encouraged LCC members and congregations to hold him in prayer. Dr. Mayan has just been diagnosed with bone marrow cancer.