In 1840 a soc. (Verein zur Unterstützung der lutherischen Kirche in Nordamerika) was organized in Dresden, Ger.; active only a few yrs. As a result of pleas for help by F. C. D. Wyneken,* L. A. Petri* and others est. a Gotteskasten in Hannover 1853, primarily to help provide spiritual care for Luths. in N America. Other similar organizations followed. A fed. of Gotteskastenvereine was est. 1880. Preachers, teachers, and religious literature were provided for diaspora Luths. In 1932 the name Martin-Luther-Bund with subtitle Lutherisches Hilfswerk der Gotteskasten und Martin-Luther-Vereine was adopted. Since 1947 it is called Diasporawerk der ev. luth. Kirche Deutschlands. Areas served have included N. Am., Brazil, Australia, S Afr., and predominantly RC, Ref., and Ev. territories in Eur. See also Diaspora, 3.
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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