Nigerian Lutherans remember former vice-president

Funeral banner marking the passing of LCN Vice President Emeritus Sunday Obari Owateobe.

NIGERIA – On May 5, the Lutheran Church of Nigeria (LCN) held a funeral service for the Rev. Sunday Obari Owateobe, with members of the church in attendance from across the nation.

“The late Reverend was a gallant soldier of the cross,” the LCN noted on social media. “May his soul rest in peace and may the Lord protect and preserve the bereaved.”

Rev. Owateobe served as LCN Vice-President from 2002-2008. He was 80 years old at the time of his death, having been born in 1937.

The Lutheran Church of Nigeria is a member church of the International Lutheran Council, a global association of confessional Lutheran church bodies. Its membership numbers more than 80,000. The LCN is also a member church of the Lutheran World Federation.

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Nigerian Lutherans meet in convention, raise funds for university project

LCN Archbishop Christian Ekong gives the benediction during worship at the church's 2016 national convention.
LCN Archbishop Christian Ekong gives the benediction during worship at the church’s 2016 national convention.

NIGERIA – The Lutheran Church of Nigeria (LCN) held its Biennial Synod Convention in Obot Idim from January 6-10, 2015. Approximately 6,000 people attended the convention, which met under the theme “Christ Lives in Me, For Life Together,” based upon Colossians 1:27.

January 6 was a Choir Conference, and featured lectures on worship and liturgy. Dr. Isaac Udo of the University of Uyo presented on “Evangelical Church Music: Church Hymns and Anthems” in the morning while the Bishop S.O. Willie of the Rivers Zone presented on “Understanding Lutheran Liturgy and Presentation.”

The convention proper began January 7. Archbishop Christian Ekong took time to explicate the theme for the convention and lead prayer for a successful gathering. A major focus of the convention was the funding and development of the Lutheran University Nigeria Project. Nigerian Lutherans see great potential for the opening of a university, as education in the country is much sought after. The convention organized fundraising for the project and also broke ground near the LCN’s headquarters in Obot Idim.

Saturday evening saw Rev. Dr. Albert B. Collver give the convention’s keynote lecture on “Christ Lives in Me for Life Together.” Dr. Albert B. Collver is Executive Secretary for the International Lutheran Council and Director of Church Relations for The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS).

The event closed with a massive celebration of worship on Sunday. Approximately 6,000 people were in attendance for the eight-hour service. Dr. Collver preached on the Baptism of Christ for the event. The service saw LCN Archbishop Ekong consecrate two new bishops for service in the church, following which Holy Communion was celebrated for the thousands in attendance.

Archbishop Ekong consecrates two new bishops for the Lutheran Church of Nigeria.
Archbishop Ekong consecrates two new bishops for service in the Lutheran Church of Nigeria.

2016 marks the 80th anniversary of the Lutheran Church of Nigeria, which was founded in 1936 by missionaries from LCMS. Both the LCN and the LCMS are member churches of the International Lutheran Council.

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