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Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon

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Title: Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon  
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Subject: Lutheran World Federation (The), List of Christian denominations by number of members, Protestant Hospital of Ngaoundéré
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Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon

The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon (EELC) (French: L’Eglise Evangélique Luthérienne au Cameroun) is a Lutheran denomination in Cameroon. The EELC was registered as a religious body in Cameroon in 1965[1] and currently has approximately 253,000 members[2] in 1,300 congregations[3] nationwide.

The current bishop of the EELC is the Rev Dr Thomas Nyiwe.[4]

History

The EELC traces its beginnings from the work of independent American mission known as the Sudan Mission led by Adolphus Gunderson and the Norwegian Missionary Society (NMS) led by Jens Nikolaisen in the 1920s. The Sudan Mission established itself among the Gbaya people while the NMS worked among the Mbum people in the Adamawa Region in 1923 and 1925 respectively.[5]

In 1925, both the Sudan Mission and the NMS cooperated in their mission and a hospital was established in Ngaoundéré while a seminary was established in Meiganga.[5]

With a framework of collaboration firmly established, discussions were initiated in 1950 for the establishment of a national church in Cameroon.[1] In 1960, an agreement was reached and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon and the Central African Republic French: Eglise Evangélique Luthérienne du Cameroun et de la République Centrafricaine) was established. In 1965, the Church was registered as the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon[1] and in 1973, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Central African Republic formally separated as an independent national church.[6]

Structure

The EELC comprises congregations, districts, parishes and episcopal regions. The overall coordination of the EELC is conducted by the Executive Board (French: Le bureau exécutif) convened by the Bishop. The Executive Board comprises the Bishop, the Assistant Bishop, the Secretary General, the Financial Controller, and the Coordinators of the three National Departments; Evangelism and Christian Education, Communications, and Diaconal Services.[7]

The highest decision making body is the General Synod of the EELC, composed of delegates from the various congregations. The General Synod elects a Synodal Council which is led by a lay President.[7]

Bishops of the EELC

  • 1960-1963
Rev Andersen
  • 1963-1977
Rev Paul Darman
  • 1967-1977
Rev Joseph Medoukan
  • 1977-1985
Rev Paul Darman
  • 1985-1997
Rev Songsare Amtse
  • 1997-2000
Rev Philemon Bari
  • 2000–September 2013
Rev Dr Thomas Nyiwe

Since September 2013: Rev. Dr. Ruben NGOZO

Medical work

The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cameroon has been active through much of the twentieth century and has been responsible for collaborating with other institutions to pursue development in Cameroon. One such program in which the church is involved is the Protestant Hospital of Ngaoundéré that was set up in the 1950s. The Health Department of the EELC, (French: Oeuvre de Santé de l’Eglise Evangélique Luthérienne au Cameroun) or OSEELC, is a large and vibrant ministry operating three large hospitals and fifteen health centres.[8]

The three hospitals operated by the EELC are:[5]

Affiliations

The EELC participates actively in ecumenical work through its affiliation with:

  • Lutheran World Federation
    • Lutheran Communion in Western Africa
  • Council of Protestant Churches in Cameroon
  • Federation of Evangelical Churches and Missions in Cameroon
  • Joint Christian Ministry in West Africa

References

External links

  • Official site

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