On a Lutheran French-Speaking Congregation in Moscow

Celebrating the Fruits of Africa in Moscow


Michel Guerrier has begun his term as pastor of a French-speaking congregation


M o s c o w – The effort was worth it! After a week at his new location of service, Pastor Michel Guerrier has surprised himself by concluding that the fruits of Africa can also be celebrated in Moscow. He explains: “Back home in the Alsace (Eastern France) church members would sometimes grumble and ask: ‘What do we get from missions?’ Well, these persons in Moscow all stem from those newer, national churches.” Pastor Guerrier, who lives in Sarreguemines not far from the German border and Saarbrücken, intends to inform the congregations back home of his discovery. French Protestant mission work began in Africa more than 150 years ago; today the Malagasy Lutheran Church (Madagascar) alone has three million members.


Africa is in any case no stranger to the 67-year-old-pastor with the double mother tongues of French and German. His siblings labored for many years in Tunesia and Ivory Coast. Working with the missions department of his church, the 210,000-member Church of the Augsburg Confession of Alsace and Lorraine, the Hermannsburg Mission and the Lutheran World Federation’s Lutheran Service, he learned to know and love the Christians of Africa. He assures: “It’s wonderful coming to Moscow to serve a French-speaking congregation.”


Yet Rev. Guerrier, who studied in Strasbourg and Oxford, is only serving in Moscow for a limited period. He nevertheless has several goals in mind: “I want to help the congregation advertise itself and invite others. Of course a personal invitation is best of all, but we also want to produce invitations listing our meeting times. We also desire to list the city sectors in which we can be reached.”


The 60-member „Lutheran Protestant Church Francophone Section in Moscow” has been meeting since April 2001 in the chapel on the grounds of the St. Peter-und-Paul-Cathedral – presently at 3 p.m. on Sundays. The congregation is linked to the “Evangelical-Lutheran Church - European Russia” (ELCER) headed by Bishop Siegfried Springer (Moscow).


Dr. William Yoder

Moscow/Berlin, 16 November 2006


A press release of the “Evangelical-Lutheran Church - European Russia” (ELCER). Press release Nr. 15, 314 words