The Rev. Patricia Cuyatti, a Ph.D. student in systematic theology at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, received the first T.H. and Ruth Rossing Scholarship for an international student pursuing a post-master of divinity degree. Pastor Cuyatti is a member of the Peruvian Lutheran Evangelical Church (ILEP), which was established in 1993. She is one of the first five pastors ordained by the Peruvian Lutheran Church in 1999. Her dream is to be able to better prepare leadership for the young and growing Lutheran church in Peru.
"The Lutheran church in Peru has a goal to develop more leaders," she said. "And my personal goal is to develop my knowledge to help the church as an educator but also as a pastor."
As a leader in ILEP, Cuyatti was invited by the ELCA's Global Mission unit to pursue graduate study in the United States. In consultation with Dr. José David Rodríguez, director of graduate studies at LSTC, Franklin Ishida, the Global Mission unit's director for leadership development, chose Cuyatti for the award. The T.H. and Ruth Rossing Scholarship will provide half the funding for Cuyatti's graduate study during her first year at LSTC.
"This gift from the Rossing family represents their commitment not just to theological education, but to the development of global church leadership," said Ishida. "With this endowment, we can add to the continuing legacy of providing scholarships to church leaders from ELCA companion churches. These leaders represent a presence of the global church among us and in our seminaries. The Rossing endowment is a means toward deepening our mutual understanding of the world and of doing global mission together."
The T.H. and Ruth Rossing Scholarship, which is administered by the ELCA Foundation, was established by the family of Pastor T.H. and Ruth Rossing. Pastor Rossing was a small-town minister with a deep interest in the church-at-large. He chaired the Foreign Mission Board in the Evangelical Lutheran Church (ELC) and later the World Mission Board in the American Lutheran Church (ALC.)
The scholarship will be given each year to an international student from an ELCA companion church who pursues post-master of divinity degree study at either LSTC or Luther Seminary.Barbara Rossing, professor of New Testament at LSTC, is the granddaughter of T.H. and Ruth Rossing. "My grandparents really loved the church - they loved missions and they loved God," she said. "Setting up the scholarship fund was an extension of their lives. I think they would be very pleased."