Friends of Partnership: General Annual Meeting on 6th June 2018

Memory of deceased members

The general meeting commemorates the deceased members Ernst-August Gausmann (Barkhausen Rabber) and Wolfgang Striesche (Bennien). Both members have supported the partnership work for many years.

New board elected

In its general meeting, the association elected a new board on June 6th, 2018 and rethought the awarding of the funding. The board has been elected for the next 2 years:
1.    Chair: Elke Eilers (Bad Essen Parish)
2.    2nd chair: Henning Enge (Melle-Petri Parish)
3.    Scripture: Susanne Storck (Ahrenshorst Parish)
4.    Cashier: Simone Koch (Ahrenshorst Parish)

The general meeting thanked Rev. ret. Duscha for his great energy, which he has invested in board work for so many years (photo). Together with Eckhard Eilers Rev. Duscha will continue to design the Friends of Partnership newsletter.

New funded projects

Pastor Duscha reported on his visit to the partner circuits in South Africa in October/November 2017. Afterwards the project Bishopstowe was discontinued by the South African side. Friends of Partnership regretted this step very much, as initial progress was evident. It was also regretted that the investments for the development of the site by the Diakonisches Werk in city and district Osnabrück were lost. Due to the closure of the Bishopstowe project and due to the good experience with the Bursery Fund, the General Assembly, at the request of the Board, decides on the following new rules for awarding the funding:
"In future, the association will promote various projects in ­South Africa and Germany. For this purpose, the Executive Board is commissioned to develop criteria for the approval of project applications received and to apply them provisionally. At the next general meeting (June 2019), the members will discuss the criteria catalog and the experiences made and vote on the list of criteria. The maximum subsidy amount should not exceed € 1,000 per project."

The Executive Board is currently working on the eligibility criteria. Irrespective of this, we would like to ask you all for grant applications in order to gain an overview. From now on, all parishes in South Africa and Germany can send project applications to Friends of Partnership through their parish councils. Requests for strengthening of faith, social contacts between parishioners or parishes, applications for social integration of marginalized groups or initiatives against racism will receive special attention in accordance with the statute of Friends of Partnership. Applications for construction measures will currently not be considered. The precise award criteria will be officially announced by the Board following its meeting in January 2019, through the partnership bodies of the circuits and partner parishes, as well as the Friends of Partnership website. Please send the applications with name and contact details of the project management to the mail address of the chairlady:

Bad Essen, 16th December, 2018

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Dear friends of the partnership work,
The last 12 months have passed very fast. Our intense life in the north and south has filled the days. Did the annual watch word 2018 fulfilled us?

GOD says:
I will give to the thirsty
the springs of the water of life
– as a gift.

The Revelation 21,6

Somehow we have remained "thirsty". The desert of missing humanity and the veld fires of war, displacement, corruption and hunger are spreading again. Did we actually think in the "good years" that we could control or even control injustice and strife? Maybe, they just took a break and we did not influence them? To be a Christian, to be a Lutheran Christian, is and remains a challenge.
I admit that sometimes I am very ­tired about the efforts my conviction sets on me. And then there comes a year-long watch word for 2019 on the plan, which calls me again actively to act:

Turn from evil and do good; seek peace an pursue it.

Psalm 34,14

I should not only seek, find, promote and preserve peace. No, I should chase after him. Does peace, the peace of justice, run away from us? Is something missing that we had already? Are we too slow or too tired to hold it? Don't we have enough strength and energy to shape it? Do we point out the discord, which does not emerge consistently enough through ­false allegations, disinformation and corruption? GOD, does our faith in Jesus Christ and belonging to the Lutheran Church give us the permission or even the commission to become active? How much democratic disobedience do we have to apply as Lutheran Christians to chase after those who disturb peace?
Jesus drove the moneychangers out of the temple because they deeply disturbed the peace of the church. He himself has shown us that there are values for which we must actively participate, even if things become uneasy and uncomfortable for us.
Let's stay on the ball and fulfill our mission. To chase peace means not to give a meter of space to those­ sowing the seeds of strife. It remains true: Peace arises through justice. Racism, aggression and corruption lead to strife. God grant us in 2019 the strength and per­severance to chase after His peace and the wisdom to be consistent and emphatic at the right moment.
Elke Eilers, Chairlady

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Good news in December 2018: Our newest Friends-of-Partnership-newsletter No. 18 is online now. On 18 pages we tell what happened in matters of lutheran church partnerships of Bramsche circuit, Durban circuit, Melle-Georgsmarienhütte circuit, Pirna circuit and Umngeni circuit. Your can download the pdf-file just here: FOP_Newsletter_18

Enjoy this new edition and send your comment to elke(at) or h.duscha(at) or eckhard.eilers(at)

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.
Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Ernst-August Gausmann died yesterday,

After a long fight against illness, our friend and member of „friends of partnership“, Mr. Ernst-August Gausmann, died yesterday in an age of 71 years. We are mourning together with the Gausmann family.

DSC_8985Ernst-August was very much engaged in our lutheran church. Since long time he was a voluntary worker in his home parish Barkhausen-Rabber. He was a member of the parish council and represented his parish in the synods of the former Melle-circuit and in Bramsche circuit. Since 2013, he has been the chairman of the Bramsche circuit synod. The last five years, he was additionally a member of the Lutheran Church of Hanover to represent the Osnabrück reagion.

Ernst-August got an education as a lay preacher in our church and helped the pastors with services in many parishes and old-age-homes. His very interest was on the history of „his“ home church, St. Kathrine in Barkhausen, which is one of the oldest churches in the region with roots which are more than 1000 years old.

Ernst-August Gausmann had (not only) a special view on the partnership relation between Barkhausen-Rabber parish and Chatsworth parish in Durban circuit. He was a member of the Melle circuit partnership committee from 2007 till 2012 and the same in the circuit partnership committee of Bramsche from 2013 till yesterday and he represented his parish in the membership meetings of „friends of partnership“ with high engagement.

When he visited Chatsworth in 2012, he was fully “enlighted“ for the churches partnership and helped to revive this parish relation and made it (together with the friends in Chatsworth) a living relation. He was in the parish team to prepare the delegation visit from Chatsworth in June 2014. He planned to visit Chatsworth again early this year, but had to cancel he trip shortly before the start because of his illness.

We have lost a brave and strong co-worker for Gods work in this one-world.

From South Africa Nathi Myka, Dean of Umngeni circuit, wrote: “Condolences to the bereaved family and to all who moarn his death. May he rest in peace.”

The chairman of the Durban circuit partnership committee and the co-ordinating partnership committee of Durban and Umngeni circuit, Mr. Khumalo wrote: “Condolences to the family friends and the church especially the Bramsche circuit. May he rest in peace.”

2012 10 02_3 Chatsworth Chatsworth_1 DSC_3492



Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Before year's end, the second newsletter of Friends of Partnership has been published. It contains again a lot of information about the association and meetings of circuits and parishes in the second half of 2016. Further on you find reports about  events in all the circuits Bramsche, Durban, Melle-Georgsamrienhütte, Osnabrück, Pirna and Umngeni.

If you like you can download this new edition right here. You find it also under documents.

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Consult_RefugueesParents_e_Seite_01The German chamber of psychotherapist (BPtK) has edited a booklet to help refugees parents, having traumatized children.

It contains answers and tips under the following toppics:

  • How can I help my traumatised child?
  • Parent Tips for Helping Infants and Toddlers after Disasters
  • Parent Tips for Helping Preschool-Age Children after Disasters
  • Parent Tips for Helping School-Age Children after Disasters
  • Parent Tips for Helping Adolescents after Disasters

Please download the booklet here.

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Good news: The Friends of Partnership Newsletter No 15 is online. It contains news about the Partnership in the circuits Durban, Umgeni and Umvoti in South Africa and Bramsche, Melle-Georgsmarienhütte, Pirna and Osnabrück in Germany - and very new - the circuit Hamburg West/South Holstein. On 14 pages we show with informative texts and photos what happenend in the first half of 2016. Have o look at documents in the navigation!

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Ecumenical partnership weeks in Osnabrück region to prepare the reformation jubilee in the year 2017

Partners of the Evangelical Lutheran Circuit in the region of Osnabrück (Bramsche, Melle-Georgsmarienhütte and Osnabrück circuits) are invited for about 3 week to come together in Mai 2016 in Osnabrück region. The partners are coming from Südafrika, Estonia, Litvia, Hungary, England – and from the Lutheran Church in Saxony (Germany).

The coordinating partnership committee of the circuits in Osnabrück-town and county under the leadership of Anke Meckfessel has prepared a (public) program under the main theme

“Fight against Global Reasons of Flight”.

There will be many festive and enjoyable events to meet the partners. The following date may be very interesting:

Welcome party of all worldwide partners
Wednesday, May 11th, 2016, 18.00 h in the Luther-Church in Old-Georgsmarienhütte

Discussion on the topic “world-wide flight”
Thursday, May 19th, 2016 and Friday, May 20th, both meeting will be in the morning hours.

Main Partnership Service with musical and culinary main topics
Sunday, May 22nd, 2016, St. Martin Church in Bramsche

Days of introduction and appreciation of the partner countries
Monday, May 23rd, until Wednesday, May 25th, 2016

Farewell party in St. Petri parish Melle
Thursday, May 26th, parish hall, 16.00 h

Inauguration of the Nelson-Mandela-Place in Osnabrück
Saturday, May 28th, 15.00 h

Service in St. Mary’s Church Osnabrück at the kick-off of the Africa Festival Osnabrück
Sunday, May 29th, 2016, 10.00 h

Parishes will send out invitations for these and other events. If you are willed to take part in one or more events: Please contact your circuit partnership chairperson or Anke Meckfessel:

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

Logo_ReiseElke Eilers, chairlady of Friends of Partnership, and her husband Eckhard Eilers will start a South Africa blog to report about experiences during their holidays in South Africa from 7th to 18th of April 2016.

The blog will be hosted on the homepage of EILERS-Media. Cklick here for the direct link.

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.

The latest newsletter of Friends of Partnership is available right now. You find it here or by clicking in DOCUMENTS above.

The editors greet you with the following words:

Thandeka abangame,
dear Friends of Partnership,
liebe Mitglieder und Freunde sowie Freundinnen von
This is our Newsletter No. 14, Christmas 2015

Friends of Partnership greet you all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Friends of Partnership sinakhonza yonke egameni leNkosi wethu uJesu Christu.

We all are preparing for Christmas to welcome our saviour among us. Despite all the commercial and different other distractions which are not only in Germany connected with these weeks before Christmas we prepare thoroughly for the days  of Christmas. Ten thousands of refugees from Middle East and African countries come to Germany, Christ­ians, Muslims and followers of other religions. German people welcome them, nevertheless it is a huge challenge to host them all. In these days we remind and celebrate this unique present which God gave to all human­kind when sending Jesus Christ into this world. Our Lord himself encountered a hostile, dangerous world. We should never forget!

Elke Eilers and Heribert Duscha

Please feel free to share this site with your friends and partners by using your favoured network shown below.