Theological Reflection: Mission
There is church because there is mission, not vice versa.
– David Bosch in Transforming Mission.
The Mission of God is the mission of the church. Bishop Michael Doe argues that this is true and quotes David Bosch as above. Even if that’s true, and I certainly wouldn’t argue against it, mission is still something the Church is meant to do. Whether it is our task to figure out and work toward or God’s task in which we participate, the world we live in and the lives we live affect mission. Money issues, for example, can affect mission as can interfaith relationships. Rev. Chacko, of Bangalore, looks at how religious fundamentalism has impacted the mission of the church in India; and the Revs. Mung’ong’o and Magomba of Tanzania point out that money, both minimal resources and where it comes from, can define and change the Church’s mission. These issues have not been something readily apparent to the church in the western world, but are of great importance when it comes to building or strengthening relationships across the globe. Those relationships are also affected by differing points of view.
In order for our relationships across the Anglican Communion to grow and flourish we have to be able not only to recognize the issues that influence those relationships, but to talk about them without our conversations devolving into mutual name-calling. Continuing Indaba works to establish and strengthen relationships in order to build community so that genuine conversation about matters that are crucial to the life of the church can energize mission. Listening, really listening, to the experiences and understanding of people different from ourselves is key in building relationships.
Read with an open mind and open heart these papers give you the opportunity to begin.
Religious Fundamentalism and Christian Witness in a Pluralistic Context – Rev. Dr. Mani Chacko; Bangalore, India
The Impact of Economic Realities on the Mission of the Church – Rev. Canon Phanuel L. Mung’ong’o; Tanzania
Mission in a Context of Poverty: Lessons from the Bible – Rev. Mote P. Magomba; Tanzania
The Mission of God in the Anglican Tradition – Rt. Rev. Michael Doe; UK