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Stories from the ministry of Christ Church Plano

Joining God in Mission

Posted on January 30, 2017

My first experience with short-term missions was in 1996. In response to an invitation from the Anglican Church of Uganda, a small team from my seminary spent 28 days there, leading workshops for clergy. Our purpose was to help them develop strategies for spiritual formation and discipleship in their congregations. We quickly realized, though, that what we would do in the U.S. was not necessarily what they needed. So, much to everyone’s surprise, we led them through brainstorming sessions in which, together, we sought strategies that would work in their own culture.

That month opened my eyes to several important truths:

  • Different cultures are just that: different, not wrong. We can’t assume that our way of doing things is the only way—or even the best way.
  • I had much more to learn than to teach.
  • The Church of God is considerably bigger than we perceive it to be.
  • It is God’s desire, as shown throughout the Old and New Testament, for all the people of the earth to be brought into His Kingdom.
  • Personal connection and relationships are as important, if not more, than the aid we give.

I am grateful for that first opportunity to participate in the worldwide mission of God.

At Christ Church, we believe participating in global mission is an important part of being a follower of Jesus Christ. We plan short-term mission opportunities that allow our parishioners to be on mission, too. This summer we will take a team to Guatemala where we will do something simple and practical, but which will revolutionize the lives of families: build wood-burning stoves. These stoves are safer, healthier, and more fuel-efficient than the traditional open fires on which they currently cook.

I hope you will come to the Information Meeting after services this weekend to learn more. Please consider joining Fr. Paul and me in this venture.


The Rev. Jeff Rawn
Marriage & Pastoral Care

 


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