Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd had its first international travel experience in
1998 when 12 youth, accompanied by three adults, Pastor Larry and Cathy Kochendorfer
and Rod Jerke, participated in a nine-day trip to Mexico. Based out of the Lutheran
Centre in Mexico City, the seminar included presentations from guest speakers, a visit to
Acapulco and Renuncimiento (hurricane reconstruction), and several locally-directed
development projects. The primary goal of this trip to Mexico was to see and hear - to
experience firsthand – the realities of the people of Mexico.
In 1999, three women from Mexico City and Ecatepec came to Lethbridge in a reverse
exchange arrangement sponsored and hosted by Good Shepherd. Sister Dolores, Anabel,
and Anna Maria stayed with families and toured southern Alberta agencies, community
groups, and sights. Through their presentations and workshops, they shared the stories of
their community and their lives of faith.
This model of experiential education anchored two subsequent trips to Mexico, one with
adults in 2001, and another with youth and adults in 2006. Organized with Augsburg
College’s Center for Global Education, both trips included visits to self-directed sites of
ministry and mission (such as churches, co-operative projects, and Habitat for Humanity
sites), interpretive tours of historical and cultural sites, presentations by local speakers,
and home stays with families.
Travellers committed to participate in pre-education to prepare them for the experience,
plus reflection and and worship together throughout the trip. Upon returning, they
prepared follow-up events and articles to share their story and the stories of the people
The Sister Dolores Fund fund was created to continue this kind of transformative
international travel. It was named in honour of Sister Dolores, who died the year after her
visit to Lethbridge, and who inspired both youth and adults with her deep love and faith.
The Sister Dolores International Travel Fund is intended to encourage members of the
Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd (Lethbridge) to experience mission outside of
Canada. This mission should be either experiential (working outside of our community)
or educational (learning about the lives and faith of people outside of our community.)
The applicant(s) must be a member of Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd
(Lethbridge). They shall have exhibited a habit of regular attendance and giving in the
church. They will have been members of our congregation for at least two (2) years and
shall have demonstrated active participation within our church family.
Terms and Conditions:
The council of Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd will provide successful applicants
with funds to help meet expenses with the following conditions:
1) The applicant must match the funds provided by the church unless the
applicant is a youth member or unless there are extenuating financial
2) The applicant must agree to give a talk or presentation of some sort upon
their return, which highlights what they saw and what they learned, complete
with some suggestions for ways our congregation can assist in that area.
3) The applicant must submit a written report for the Bulletin of Reports
for the AGM for that year.
4) Prior to the trip, the applicant must come to council in person to request the funds
and explain how, when, and where the funds will be used.
5) Requests for funds will be decided based on the reasons presented for the travel
experience provided funding is available. When considering funding requests,
council may decide to limit the amount of money awarded.
6) This disbursement of the funds for the trip must comply with Canada Revenue
Agency (CRA) stipulations and guidelines