Emanuel members have helped support our sister congregation in Grenada, as well as the Asian Lutheran Seminary in Hong Kong. The following describe our involvement.
Grenada Facts and History:
Grenada is an island about 22 miles long by 11 miles wide, located between the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean, north of Trinidad and Tobago, approxiamtely 60 miles off the coast of Venezuela. The population of Grenada is approxiamtely 100,000.The climate is tropical; tempered by northeast trade winds. The terrain is very mountainous and is volcanic in origin with central mountains rising from sea level to almost 3000 feet. There are two active and two extinct volcanoes on and around Grenada. The center of the island is extremely mountainous and is engulfed in rainforest. Grenada receives approximately 365 inches of rain per year. Grenada is rich in timber, spices, tropical fruit, and deepwater harbors. Grenada is often referred to as the "Isle of Spice" due to it's numerous and vast spice resources. Grenada is the second largest producer of nutmeg in the world!
Carib Indians inhabited Grenada when Columbus discovered the island in 1498, but it remained uncolonized for more than a century. The French settled Grenada in the 17th century, established sugar estates, and imported large numbers of African slaves. Britain took the island in 1762 and vigorously expanded sugar production. In the 19th century, cacao eventually surpassed sugar as the main export crop; in the 20th century, nutmeg became the leading export. In 1967, Britain gave Grenada autonomy over its internal affairs. Full independence was attained in 1974 making Grenada one of the smallest independent countries in the Western Hemisphere. Grenada was seized by a Marxist military council on 19 October 1983. Six days later the island was invaded by US forces and those of six other Caribbean nations, which quickly captured the ringleaders and their hundreds of Cuban advisers. Free elections were reinstituted the following year and have continued since that time. Hurricane Ivan struck Grenada in September of 2004 causing severe damage.
The Grenada Connection:
Emanuel has been excited to be involved in on-going mission efforts with our sister WELS church, Grace, on the island of Grenada since June of 2000. As of January 1st, 2007, there have been six short-term mission teams that have gone to Grenada to help with ministry efforts there. Five of the teams have consisted of both teens and adults, while one was only adults as it was a Hurricane Ivan relief effort trip to help families in Grenada rebuild homes after near total devastation of the island in fall of 2004. The other five teams worked towards efforts such as Vacaion Bible School, Teen Outreach Week, evangelism efforts, and provided a Christmas worship service at a point when no pastors were assigned to Grenada. There have been nearly 30 Emanuel members who have been a part of these times as we have built a lasting connection with many of the youth and families in Grenada.
Currently there is planning underway to return to Grenada with a team in the summer of 2007 to help with a youth retreat for teens. The link below is for Grace Church in Grenada. I encourage you to take some time and look around the site to better understand the ministry that Emanuel has been a part of helping establish.
The Hong Kong Connection
Former Emanuel Pastor Steve Witte is currently serving as president of the Asian Lutheran Seminary in Hong Kong. It is hoped that this page will be populated with information from the ministry, one that Emanuel helps to support financially, as well as through prayer.