Mission Matters is a series of occasional papers on contemporary issues in World Mission. It is published on line by the Affinity World Focus Team. The purpose of Mission Matters is to stimulate thinking on significant issues in World Mission.
Here are the latest issue of Mission Matters.
In a postmodern western context in which individualism is flourishing and any form of authority is questioned, the idea of submitting to someone is not a popular one. Thus, there are challenges faced by missionaries when it comes to submission. Central is their position in relation to their sending church, mission organisation and receiving church/agency. This paper addresses questions such as "How do missionaries respond in contexts and situations where submission is either not exercised at all or where it is rather dormant"? "How do they respond if their own role is not clearly defined"? "How do they respond if they deal with various groups that expect submission from them?"
The enormous needs of our fallen world are very obvious to us. In the West, not only do we know of these needs, but we inevitably feel a certain obligation to meet these needs where we can, the more so because we should be motivated by Christian compassion because we have received the love of God for us in the Lord Jesus Christ. As various needs are brought to the attention of our Affinity family of churches, we need some clear principles to guide us in our giving. This paper provides comments that are intended to help our churches address this issue.
Mission is no longer seen by evangelical Christians as an activity going out from the West to the rest of the world. Rather, mission is understood as a global endeavour from everywhere to everywhere. This has resulted in many western evangelical mission agencies seeking to be more international and multi-cultural, partnering with mission agencies and missionaries from Africa, Asia and Latin America. However, there are also some problematic developments which have an impact on everyone involved in cross-cultural mission. This paper looks at these developments and the choices mission agencies, missionaries and local churches face.
The cities of Eastern Europe pose a particular challenge for evangelism in the 21st Century. While the focus of this paper is Belgrade, Serbia, there are comparisons that could be drawn with other Eastern European cities sharing a similar cultural, religious and political history. This paper indicates that effective evangelism must be culturally relevant and at the same time faithful to the Bible. Thus we have to understand people's worldview (in order to apply God's Word), the culture (in order to overcome barriers to receiving the gospel) and the people themselves (in order to apply the right strategy in evangelism).
In 2010 ReachAcross commissioned research to help formulate a strategy for the mobilisation of UK churches in the area of world mission. Questionnaires went to over 3,000 evangelical churches of all sizes and denominations/affiliations, including 1,000 churches affiliated to Affinity. The findings, from over 560 usable replies, were documented in a 34,000 word report. This paper is just a brief summary of the findings mainly related to the Affinity family of churches.
As long as religion and community are seen as inviolably linked there is no problem for how people live, but as soon as that link is broken issues arise. This is an issue that brings many dangers to the missionary movement. Our concern to be true to Scripture can lead us to forget how we should deal with brothers in Christ who differ from us. This paper approaches this issue by looking more closely at the nature of the church of Jesus Christ as a multi-cultural community.