Mission - Events

Provincial Co-ordinators Mission and Evangelism Consultation

Resurrection Gardens, Nairobi, Kenya 6-13 May 2002

Notes of Consultation Conclusions and Recommendations

The following points have been prepared immediately after the Consultation as a report of the major findings to remind Consultation members of the basic findings and to report to the Inter Anglican Standing Commission on Mission and Evangelism.

  1. Foundations
    1. There are many ways of describing and expressing God's mission.
    2. All mission is fundamentally God's mission, most clearly expressed in the sending of Jesus Christ and the Spirit.
    3. The Church is called to participate in God's mission and so has an essentially missionary character. ("As the Father has sent me, even so send I you" John 20:21)
    4. Mission is universal in scope - to all peoples in all situations. (John 3:16)

    1. The Anglican Communion needs a renewed vision for mission and evangelism.
    2. This requires continual, deliberate, prayerful and intentional reflection on how the Communion is both engaging and called to engage in mission.
  2. Prayer and Worship
    1. The Anglican Communion is part of a living Church in which the Spirit of God is moving.
    2. We need always to be open to how the Spirit is working in the Church and the world.
    3. We must remain in touch with God.
    4. In mission and evangelism we particularly need to take seriously the call to prayer:
      • for each other
      • for guidance
      • for inspiration
      following the example of Jesus.
    5. We often spoke of the importance of worship as a way of sharing the gospel and making Christ known.

    1. All our practice of mission must be rooted in prayer, worship and reflection on scripture.
    2. Provincial mission and evangelism co-ordinators need to connect with the liturgical committees and groups of their provinces to ensure that liturgy is rooted in God's call to mission.
  3. Contexts
    1. All mission must fit local situations and contexts. So mission and evangelism will be expressed differently in different places.
    2. We need to know and understand the different contexts in which we do mission and evangelism, and formulate appropriate strategies and ways of working.
    3. We recognise and accept that this will lead to a diversity of approaches and models in our Communion.
    4. In each situation, mission and evangelism needs to relate to the particular context, culture and people.
    5. In looking at situations/context we need to take account of:
      • the historical context
      • the socio-political situation
      • the internal context of the Church
      • global concerns and pressures
    6. We need to celebrate and learn from the diversity of approach to evangelism and mission within the Anglican Communion, as we have at this Consultation.

    1. The Consultation identified a range of specific situations and issues. Those involved in these situations need opportunities to share together their stories, experiences and insights so mission and evangelism might be taken forward. We call for opportunities to be created for that sharing. Situations and issues include:
      • Islam and Islamisation (particularly living under Shariah Law)
      • conflict and war
      • youth
      • poverty and abundance
      • trade
      • marginalised peoples
      • HIV/AIDS
      • people who do not yet know Christ
      • globalisation and urbanisation

  4. Partnership
    1. If all mission is God's mission, then mission must always be in partnership with God.
    2. In the same way, all mission should be open to partnership with all others in God's mission.
    3. In many situations, particularly of conflict and poverty, solidarity is one way in which partnership is expressed.
    1. We encourage an openness to partnership in mission:
      • among provinces, dioceses, individuals
      • with mission agencies
      • with other Christian Churches and Communions
      • all who share our common purpose
      • through international mission teams going from and to each diocese
    2. We commend the Anglican Communion's 'Ten Principles of Partnership' [found in 'Anglicans in Mission: a Transforming Journey' p 126; and in the booklet "Guidelines and Principles for Mission and Evangelism" available at the Consultation.]
  5. The Ministry of the whole People of God
    1. All Christians are called to be witnesses to Christ and to share in his mission and ministry.
    2. The Church is missionary by its very nature because this is the nature of God.
    3. All ministry, lay and ordained, shares in the missionary task. We have a shared ministry, and must have a shared vision of mission.
    4. It is vital to help and encourage lay people to be effective in witness and mission.
    5. We recognise the important role of clergy and bishops in leading and encouraging the witness and mission of all Christians.
    6. Clergy and lay people need to work together in the mission task.
    7. Bishops have a particularly important role in affirming the priority of mission and evangelism through their leadership, example and encouragement of others.

    1. We call for each province and diocese to review training in mission and evangelism and ensure that it fits the local situation.
    2. We call for mission and evangelism co-ordinators to ensure that there is effective lay training in mission and evangelism in their provinces.
    3. We encourage the sharing of courses of lay training across the Communion.
    4. We call for a rethinking of the orders of ministry and their role in the light of our missionary calling and situation. This includes:
      • the role of the Bishop in mission (see Lambeth Conference 1998, Report Section II)
      • the role, ministry and mission of priests and deacons
      • the role and recognition of other ministries/orders e.g. evangelists, catechists, readers etc.
    5. We call for bishops to reflect on how they are leading in mission and evangelism, and encouraging others.
    6. We call for the priority of mission and evangelism to be considered when making appointments at provincial, diocesan and parish level.
  6. Resources for Mission and Evangelism
    1. Resources do not just mean money. They include people, ideas, experience, prayer, spiritual gifts and insight, practical materials (e.g. literature, pictures, films etc).
    2. Since mission is at the heart of the Church, resources are held in trust for mission.
    3. Across the Communion there is rich diversity of these resources.
    4. But there is also a disparity and inequality in sharing resources across the Communion. There are often limited financial resources for mission and evangelism.
    5. We need to find ways of sharing resources (particularly money) to support mission needs and opportunities within the Communion.
    1. We call for provinces and dioceses to examine their budgets and funding for mission and evangelism to ensure that it reflects the priority of mission and evangelism.
    2. We call for guidelines to help in sharing finances for mission across the Communion.
    3. We call for practical action to direct resources to those in frontier situations of conflict, oppression and poverty (particularly Sudan, Myanmar, Congo, Palestine).
    4. We encourage greater sharing of people, ideas, materials etc across the Communion, in order to assist and strengthen mission and evangelism. We ask for practical ways to enable this to happen (for example, through a regular video documentary and/or through printed news about mission and evangelism).
    5. We call for creative use of the Internet to help share resources (for example, an Internet site and web editor for Anglican mission and evangelism).
    6. We recommend that every diocese should have a diocesan evangelist and/or evangelistic team.

  7. Training
    1. We identified training and encouragement as an important priority.
    2. Telling our faith story is a vital way of witnessing, but people may need help to know and tell their story.
    3. Training is important, but effective witness depends much on the integrity, Christ-likeness and authenticity of Christians.

    1. We call for a greater sharing of what is actually happening (courses, ideas, stories, materials and insights) in training for mission and evangelism, and for practical ways to enable this to happen.
    2. We affirm the work of organisations like the Church Army, the Mothers Union and others in equipping people for evangelism.
    3. We call for the further development of programmes and training centres to equip lay people and evangelists.

  8. Mission and Evangelism Co-Ordinators
    1. Mission and Evangelism Co-ordinators in dioceses and provinces have a vital role in sharing information, encouraging people and parishes, training others, advising bishops and clergy, co-ordinating action, and developing initiatives and strategies in mission and evangelism.
    1. Every Church/Province/Diocese of the Communion should be encouraged to appoint a co-ordinator for Mission and Evangelism.
    2. We recommend that guidelines be developed for the work of Mission and Evangelism co-ordinators. These will include an outline of their roles and tasks (our Consultation already has begun a list).

  9. Networks
    1. Meeting and sharing in mission is vital for exchanging news and ideas, developing initiatives, for prayer and worship, and for encouraging each other.
    2. Networks need to include provincial structures, mission agencies and other denominations.
    1. We recommend that the network of those at this meeting (and their regional equivalents) continue to work and meet. We intend to set up an e-mail network among ourselves as part of this process.
    2. We recommend that opportunities (conferences and consultative meetings) at various levels (diocesan, regional and world levels) be organised on a regular basis.
    3. We encourage the development of diocesan mission teams to work across boundaries (geographical, cultural etc).
    4. In particular we encourage development of networks to share insights about mission and evangelism in multi-faith situations and in the area of church planting
  10. Anglican Church Structure
    1. The structures of the Church should be orientated towards mission as the Church's first priority.

    1. We recommend that provinces rethink their provincial, diocesan and local structures in the light of the mission and evangelism priority. We recommend that mission and evangelism co-ordinators assist in this process.
    2. We call on provinces to continue the process of consultation we have so valued at this meeting.
    3. We affirm the importance of maintaining a Co-ordinator for Mission and Evangelism for the Communion within the Anglican Communion Office (see tasks listed in 'Anglicans in Mission: A Transforming Journey')
    4. We strongly re-affirm the Mission Commission's call for the inclusion of mission representatives on the design group for the 2008 Anglican Communion Congress. We affirm the Mission Commission's call for "mission" to be the theme of the Congress.