The Letter of Ivan Laptev, Bishop of The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ingria, to Juhana Pohjola, the new Bishop of The Evangelical Lutheran Mission Diocese of Finland:
St. Petersburg, July 28, 2021
To Bishop Elect Juhana Pohjola, ThD
Dear Brother in Christ,
It’s a great joy for me to greet you on my personal behalf and on behalf of the entire Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ingria!
You have received a call to the ministry of Bishop in a special time—in many ways an extraordinary time, not just a challenging, but a truly hard time.
However, it is God’s time and, first of all, a time of the Gospel.
May the Lord be with you in your ministry and help you do your duties both in a time of joy and hope and in a time of sorrow and oppression. Christ Himself supports us as He raises us, strengthens us, and saves us.
Beyond the cross we always see the main goal of God’s people: heavenly glory.
Therefore, we always live in a time of the Gospel as we rejoice, proclaim the unchanging Word of God given us in the Holy Scripture, and trust in the mercy promised in the Word.
“On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: ‘Fear not, O Zion; let not your hands grow weak. The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save.’” (Zeph. 3:16-17, ESV)
Blessings on you and your family!
With brotherly greetings,
Ivan Laptev, Bishop of The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ingria