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Time and Seasons – Transition

Last Thursday the Global Connections Council met for its twice yearly meeting to think and pray about the future. As I retire from GC in June, it was my last time with them. I had the privilege of sharing some thoughts about the last 13 years and my time here. My successor Anna Bishop was there and it was great to think through together some of the many challenges that she will face over the coming months and years.

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Global Connections Conference Reflections – Part 5

This is the fifth in a series of blogs on the Global Connections conference in May 2016, From Where I’m Sitting, where we sought to explore mission from different perspectives. You can listen to the talks on the Global Connections events page. I had the privilege to seek feedback on what was heard on the last morning and made a wide range of points…
Another key point raised was “churches need to be at the centre of mission”.
Our Global Options conference way back in 2004 focused on how to help the church be central to world mission. It resulted in our strapline: “Mission at the heart of the church, the church at the heart of mission”
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Global Connections conference reflections – Part 4

This is the fourth in a series of blogs on the Global Connections conference in May 2016, From Where I’m Sitting, where we sought to explore mission from different perspectives. You can listen to the talks on the Global Connections events page. I had the privilege to seek feedback on what was heard on the last morning and made a wide range of points.

Another key point raised was “Agencies need to collaborate, innovate and take risk”

Chris Kidd commented about hearing from so many competing mission agencies. “As a church youth worker, it is like being part of a rugby scrum”.

There has been an enormous growth in the number of mission agencies. There are many reasons for that, one of course is that the whole meaning of mission has changed as we discussed in an earlier blog. There is a plethora of smaller, one country or one project ministries. That is not necessarily a bad thing, some are dynamic and visionary. There is no time to think through the large number of reasons, both good ones and there are many not so good ones.

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Global Connections conference reflections – Part 3

This is the third in a series of blogs on the Global Connections conference in May 2016, From Where I’m Sitting, where we sought to explore mission from different perspectives. You can listen to the talks on the Global Connections events page. I had the privilege to seek feedback on what was heard on the last morning and made a wide range of points.

Another key point raised was “Agencies and churches need to do something about their Governance”

I was very challenged by Chris Kidd’s comment about trustees. It is vitally important that we are well run, but legislation is now taking that to an extreme. It is only a part of a trustees’ role whatever the Charity Commission says. Being well run and balanced books is not the “be all and end all”.

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Global Connections conference reflections – Part 2

This is the second in a series of blogs on the Global Connections conference in May 2016, From Where I’m Sitting, where we sought to explore mission from different perspectives. You can listen to the talks on the Global Connections events page. I had the privilege to seek feedback on what was heard on the last morning and made a wide range of points.

One key point raised was “The Gospel is Central” to all that we do?

One clear message that we heard during the conference was “Christ is sufficient”. The gospel is central to all that we do. It is not an add on to our social programme, but the core of everything.

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Global Connections conference reflections – Part 1

My role at Global Connections means that I have to be rather a conference junky. As a network we are committed to people learning from each other, and the best way to do that is to bring people together. Fortunately I love meeting new people at the many diverse events that we facilitate.

As well as the many day events, every couple of years we hold a residential conference where it is easier to spend quality time with others. This May we tried to do something different in terms of those we asked to contribute. Entitled From Where I’m Sitting we sought to explore mission from different perspectives.

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Let’s just carry on as we are

Some people are a bit strange – and I confess to being one of them. I enjoy serving on Charity Boards. Though often having to turn up after a long day at work, or take unpaid leave, when there are good meetings I come out energised and grateful to God. When the charity has clear direction and purpose, even more so.

But what makes a good Board of trustees? The Charity Commission seems to be putting increasing burdens on trustees in the areas of compliance, financial accounting, risk assessment, policies of an ever expanding nature – and I could go on. Sadly it means that this can often dominate meetings and take up disproportionate amounts of time. Who wants to be a trustee just to do this sort of stuff?

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