What is the first image that comes into your mind when you hear the word "Mission?"Do you picture a rescue mission for homeless people in a decaying neighborhood, or a 19th century missionary in a pith helmet and khaki shorts? Perhaps you think of a mission statement which your church labored to produce and now is struggling to implement (or has forgotten about).
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You may have noticed an exchange in the "How is it?" suggestions section about the absence of local mission from this site. If not, I hope you take a look and offer your thoughts. At the risk of oversimplification I'll venture a few thoughts on the relation of local and global mission as a former pastor and a former missionary...
Dr. Randy Rowland has produced several articles on clustering that will be appearing over the next weeks here. I hope you will read them and that they will spark ideas and action as we seek to be a denomination that plants churches which help people meet the Lord Jesus.
A popular book on church development uses sticky church as its title. The book is largely focused on practices and programs that make suburban and sub-rural attractional style churches grow more quickly and retain more members. What qualities make ministries sticky if they are done just right?
The staff at Christian Reformed World Missions produces a number of materials on Pentecost and missions. We hope that local churches and mission committees are also exercising their creativity to inspire and remind their members to be involved in God's missions.
Pentecost is past; the school year is winding up; and summer is upon us. Before you know it fall will be here. Many churches have a mission emphasis celebration between mid-September and mid-November, and now is a good time to plan those events. The scope of mission emphasis celebrations runs all the way from prayer and the collection of Faith Promise pledges to a nine day period with four worship services and mid-week events that cover ...
Although there is still much that North American churches can contribute to the world in terms of ministry among unreached peoples, leadership training, and the application of Christian worldview, there is also much that we can learn and receive from our brothers and sisters in the Majority World (Asia, Africa, and Latin America).
The uniting general council meeting of the World Communion of Reformed Churches is now history. It's hard to know what impact this merger will have on the mission effort of the 80 million Christians who belong to one of the member denominations. Concepts of mission certainly vary within and across denominational lines.
Many churches which have done a number of short term missions trips have been struggling with some common questions. "We have done construction or other tasks. Is there more? Is there a way for us to develop a relationship with another church or community? What are the pitfalls to avoid and the opportunities to embrace in doing joint ministry? What about serving together in a third location?
Interest in missions seems to vary considerably by generation. For many in the Builder Generation (born 1928-45) missions was seen growing up as an exotic activity done by a few spiritual giants. For many Millennials (born 1982 and after), it is something that they do, not that they support financially. OK, those are caricatures, but they do bear some resemblance to reality, right? Several people recently have talked to me with deep concern about missions committees at churches with which they are familiar.
Christian Reformed World Missions and CRWRC provide a series of webinars whose presenters come with a variety of expertise but under the heading of Global Mission. By using the internet and an 800 number, you can engage in this learning community free.
What is a denominational missions agency supposed to do? When they began the idea was that all the international mission effort of the congregations was to be channeled through their denominational agency. And it worked a lot like that for many years, but times have changed. These days congregations of all denominations are doing lots of ministry through lots of agencies and directly. In response to this Christian Reformed World Missions has
Several years ago Pastor Dan Ackerman made a statement that really struck me. He said that today short term missions is what Catechism instruction was: our basic method of discipleship. Short term mission trips went from being an oddity, to an add-on, to something integral to the process of raising our young people as Christians. How do we make the most of them?
Today in South Africa 4,000 mission leaders are gathered to dream and plan for how to complete the task of world evangelization. Most of them are Africans, Asians or Latin Americans, demonstrating that God has changed the face of world Christianity in the last century. Among the speakers at this conference is Ruth Padilla DeBorst, a missionary with Christian Reformed World Missions.
I am in the midst of a tour on the West Coast which aims to resource the churches, schools and mission leaders in this area. Yesterday, we were in Portland, Oregon at Park Lane CRC. Pastors and others from the area who are interested in missions