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Confidence to Take the Gospel to Council Estates

This article is taken from Issue 2 of our Sphere magazine. To order your own copy of the magazine click here.

Blogs are a rich source of thought-provoking comments and articles. The following was taken from a blog written by Steve Casey, using abridged content from Pete Jackson: www.reachingtheunreached.org.uk/category/fuel/(link is external)

…Something strange has happened in conservative evangelical circles in recent decades. It seems that a strategy for gospel ministry has developed that goes something like this: Let’s reach the brightest and most influential people in society, because if we reach them we’ll reach the nation. And so there has been a concerted focus for the evangelisation of our nation on university cities and towns (but mainly the bits of those cities and towns where the predominantly middle-class students and graduates live). To our shame the working class and, for want of a better term, the ‘benefit-dependent underclass’, have by and large, been ignored by our constituency.

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‘Integration’ or ‘Social Cohesion’ – which will it be?

Analysts have concluded that the notion of ‘multi-culturalism’ led to Britain looking more like a ‘community of communities’. Since then the government was still getting to grips with the routine levels of immigration when emergency migration to Europe began. It seemed to destroy any hope of healthy inclusion. Since then the debate is over what we should be aiming for – “integration” or “social cohesion”? What is the difference and is either actually achievable? Read more

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‘Differences and Disagreements’ Member Care Forum – a member care worker’s reflections

18 years ago, I began my journey into HR and member care in a mission organisation in Nepal.  I thought it would be a walk in the park compared to HR in the NHS.  Surely there would be no workplace disputes or team issues?!  How wrong I was.  However, I’m clearly not the only one who recognises that conflict is alive and causing dysfunction in mission today, given the full house at the recent GC Member Care Forum which looked at ‘Differences and Disagreements’.

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Hospitality and Mission: Food for thought. 

I admit to a degree of smug enjoyment when teaching a class on missions and asking the class what they think are important tools that God has given us to do mission.  (I try and reward the students with chocolate).  There are multiple answers but there is one answer I’m waiting for in particular: food.  Yes, food is incredibly important in doing mission.Read more

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Hearing the Gospel Once or Twice?

No one has the right to hear the Gospel twice while there remains someone who has not heard it once. (Oswald J. Smith)

This is the second post in what may become a series on famous sayings about Christian mission (the first one is here). This quote by Smith is one that turns up in lots of missionary writing and at first glance it seems to make sense, but like many things that make sense at first glance, it is actually rather problematic.Read more

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Regaining a Passion For Mission

Reclaiming our Imagination

It is said once you reach 40 the imaginative side of your brain begins to die and life is increasingly navigated from the bearings of previous experience. In my 20’s I was very hopeful about my personal future impact on mission and had a tremendous vision to see thousands of churches and individuals taking their place in the Great Commission. With youth and inexperience I charted out an adventurous course which saw some modest successes and many deflating disappointments. I am now 39; this is not necessarily a scary age when I will suddenly deplete in personal vision and begin to live out of set programming. Yet I see the potential to lose my fire and passion for the Great Commission as the self talk of so called ‘maturity’ informs me of what supposedly can and can’t be realistically achieved.Read more

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Multi-cultural co-workers

 Multicultural teams are a key feature of global mission, and so too is the conflict and misunderstanding that they can bring!  Today we’re going to look at some different characteristics that we can consciously look to develop in ourselves to help us contribute to the smooth running of the team.

When we think of multi-cultural teams it is often tempting to focus on nationality or heart language, but there are also many other factors that contribute to the cultures that individuals bring into a team, like ecclesiology, socio-economic background, gender, marital status, level of education and generation.  These all affect the often-unconscious assumptions people bring to how things should be done, and what is valued.Read more

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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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