January 2022 Update – Tiews Family (Germany)

News from the Tiews Family

Sharing the Gospel in Germany

Latest posts from on 12/26/2021

Fröhliche Weihnachten

By Lula Tiews on 23/12/21

Wishing you and your family a most wonderful Christmas and a blessed 2022 with these German Winter impressions. Jesus Christ is indeed the Light of the World!

The Light of the World

By Rev. Tiews on 21/12/21

In the Land of Luther, where today only some 6% of the population have an active Christian faith, how would you go about connecting people with the centrality of Christianity? You could hardly do better than In the Land of Luther, where today only some 6% of the population have an active Christian faith, how would you go about connecting people with the centrality of Christianity? You could hardly do better than what the Liebfrauen-Überwasser church in Münster has done in their temporary LUX3 exhibition. For starters, this 800-year-old church is in a very picturesque part of town, full of buildings centuries old. Right now there is a Christmas market all around it, drawing thousands of people, including the Tiews family. We had heard there was some kind of art exhibition there, so we decided to check it out. Even in the cold and frosty air (31 F), there was a long line to get in. Once inside, I looked up to see thousands of differently colored Plexiglas squares and laser beams emanating from the altar. A familiar tune wafted through the ancient building: “The Power of Love” by 1980s pop group “Frankie Goes to Hollywood.” (Really? 🙂). What a contrast…I had to make my way to the front of the church to see the apex of the laser beams: a beautiful larger-than-life crucifix, behind which was a huge, pixelated tapestry. If you squinted at it, you could make out the famous image on the Shroud of Turin (this is possible even in the video posted here). What a clever way to draw people from the busyness of the world and focus them—like lasers—on “the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation” (Colossians 1:15). What does all this mean? Our triune God came down to earth and manifested Himself for you in the flesh of a little Baby, born in a manger over two thousand years ago. He would grow up to redeem all of humanity on the cross of Calvary and apply His salvation to you *personally* in your Baptism—guaranteeing you the forgiveness of all your sins and even eternal life. That is the Power of His Love for you!

Watch a video of the installation here:

My Heart for Very Joy must Leap

By Rev. Tiews on 19/12/21

As Lula’s, Lillian’s, and my first year as missionaries draws to a close, we are so grateful for all of you who continue to pray for us and support us as we share the Gospel here in the Old World—in German and Persian (Farsi). But we have even more to be thankful for: While we LCMS, SELK, and Finnish missionaries have our “boots on the ground,” so to speak, bringing the Good News of Jesus Christ to individual Persian speakers across Germany, a brand-new opportunity to share the Gospel “from above” has presented itself. A task force consisting of Rev. Dr. John Bombaro, Rev. Dr. Gottfried Martens, Rev. Dr. Arthur Just, and yours truly (see pic, courtesy Trinity Berlin) recently met in that city to kickstart a project in which, with God’s help, we hope to create and broadcast Persian-language catechetical videos on key teachings of Christianity and distribute them via the Internet to Persian speakers worldwide. In collaboration with various partner churches in the ILC (International Lutheran Council), our goal is to share the love of Christ with the people groups of Central Asia—including Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan—in their native tongues. Sharing the Gospel and hopefully expanding the curriculum to include additional topics of Christian teaching is only the first of several steps envisioned in this multi-layered strategy. Please pray for this wonderful project to bear much fruit, which also adds a brand-new meaning to the closing verses of Martin Luther’s “From Heaven Above to Earth I Come: “My heart for very joy must leap; My lips no more can silence keep. I, too, must sing with joyful tongue That sweetest ancient cradlesong: Glory to God in highest heav’n, Who unto us His Son has giv’n! Whole angels sing with pious mirth A glad new year to all the earth.” Merry Christmas to all, as we celebrate the arrival of God in the flesh over 2,000 years ago, who brought forgiveness of sins and everlasting life to everyone around the world—past, present, and future!

The Cost of Discipleship

By Rev. Tiews on 07/12/21

Have you ever concealed the fact that you are Christian? Perhaps because at your place of work or in your social circles being a follower of Christ is “not cool”? Some people are not afraid to stick their neck out for Jesus—or their arm. I recently met a young man who hails from a Muslim country and has become a Christian. Take a closer look at that tattoo. Notice how Jesus’ arm extends and into the man’s arm? An incredible piece of artistry. In some Islamic countries converting to Christianity can cost you: beatings, life in prison, or even death. Sadly, this man is in danger of being deported back to his homeland because the German authorities think he converted only to facilitate his immigration—and is not a true Christian. Would anyone get a tattoo like this and risk repercussions (even in Germany!) from Muslims and yet be a fake Christian? Seems very unlikely. Some people accuse us Lutherans of not doing good works—a strange accusation because Articles XX of the Augsburg Confession and the Apology of the AC explain in detail that good works are necessary for all Christians (as a *result* of our salvation, not in order to attain it). But also strange because every day Lutherans and Lutheran churches all over the world are doing very good works for their neighbors—helping them, loving them, and taking a stand for Christianity. Case in point: This man’s Lutheran (SELK) pastor and congregation are granting him and dozens of his countrymen church asylum, allowing them to live in their fellowship hall for six months until the legal issues are sorted out. Which brings us back to our brother: He, too, is doing a good work—bearing witness that Jesus Christ is His Savior and Redeemer. Even at the risk of severe persecution, he is most certainly “not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16). Thank you, brother, for confessing our Lord and Savior in your own unique way.

Receive the Lord’s Gifts Often

By Rev. Tiews on 02/12/21

Things are kicking into gear now with my ministry to Persians. Last week I rented an apartment (photo) in a Hamburg neighborhood with a very dense population of Iranians and Afghans. Considering my still modest Persian language skills, I am very grateful for the patience and support of my brother pastor Rev. Marko Turunen, sent to Germany by the Lutheran Evangelical Association of Finland (LEAF), and his lovely wife Siiri. They have been doing Persian ministry for years and are quite fluent in Persian (as are my fellow missionaries in Germany Kim Bueltmann, Rev. Hugo Gevers, and Rev. Dr. Gottfried Martens). In Hamburg, I am now immersed in that language—in Bible studies, individual catechesis, small groups, and in the Persian language Divine Service, in which last Sunday I was invited to read the Apostles’ Creed—in Persian. What are my first impressions? I am supremely impressed with the commitment of these new Christians who are willing to give up *everything* to become followers of Christ. Their experience is like that of 1st to 3rd-century believers who risked their lives to be washed in the waters of Holy Baptism. When your Christian faith costs you something—potentially estrangement from your (non-Christian) family, prison, or even death—that prioritizes what is important in life. Someone might say, “But where I live, everyone is (at least nominally) Christian. It’s nothing special around here…” To that, I would respond: “True, but Christianity in the U.S. and certainly among native Europeans is on the retreat. Sooner or later, you too will be persecuted for being a Christian. So, receive the Lord’s gifts of Word and Sacrament often and don’t take them for granted. And support your church while you still have it. It is the only place in this sinful world where Christ comes to you in Word and flesh and blood for the forgiveness of your sins—regardless of where you live!”


Recent Articles:

Thanking God for His Gifts!
Do I HAVE to Forgive?
Riga Luther Academy Intensive
Paths to Lutheranism
Largest Persian-Speaking Congregation

Thank you to all who have already supported the wonderful mission work that is being done by our many LCMS missionaries in Eurasia and around the world. Thank you also for partnering directly with us—the Tiews family. If you are not yet partnering with us, below are various ways in which you can do so.
Praise the LORD that
Jesus took a sinful agnostic guy, forgave him, and is now using him to bring the Gospel to a land in which so many people do not know Jesus Christ.

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Giving by Check: You can also make a donation towards the Tiews’ ministry by check. Mail your check, made payable to The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod and designated with their last name, to: The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod P.O. Box 66861 St. Louis, MO 63166-6861
(Or call 888-930-4438 to speak with someone.)

Another option is giving through:

Mission Central
40718 Highway E16
Mapleton, IA  51034-7105
Include “Tiews-Germany Support” in the memo line or 
give online at Mission Central.




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