Автор: Peter Houston
Category: Личное свидетельство, Средства информации и технологии, Средства информации и технологии
Jon Hirst poignantly starts his Lausanne Blog (http://www.lausanne.org/lausanne-blog/) with the comment “How fitting that on the first night of the Congress they would sing the song sung 100 years ago at the Edinburgh Missions Conference - "Crown Him with Many Crowns!"
Rewind 100 years and 1,200 delegates from major Protestant denominations and missionary societies, predominantly from North America and Northern Europe, gathered in June of 1910 in Edinburgh, Scotland. The 1910 Edinburgh Conference was driven by the watchword of the Protestant missionary community at the time: "The Evangelization of the World in this Generation." Eight main tracks (commissions) were engaged with: Carrying the Gospel to all the non-Christian world; The Church in the mission field; Education in relation to the Christianization of national life; Missionary message in relation to the non-Christian world; The preparation of missionaries; The home base of missions; Missions and governments; and finally, Co-operation and the promotion of unity.
Fast forward a hundred years to 2010 and we have skipped over two major world wars, various other international wars, devastating Christian-on-Christian genocide in Rwanda and Burundi, increasing Muslim-Christian conflict, the entrenchment of secularism, spread of PCs, internet, and cell (mobile) phones, global economic booms and busts, and on the church front, yet further divisions, splits and pending schisms within the worldwide Church. Somewhere in the mix, the 1910 call to “Evangelisation of the world in this generation”, and the next, and the next generation, has continued in various degrees of faithfulness, success and glory (to God).
In June this year a Missions Conference was again held at Edinburgh, 100 years later. There were 300 delegates (a quarter of that in 1910), but described by the conference organisers as “experts in mission and mission studies.” In May, the month before, Christian mission leaders from 140 countries gathered in Tokyo for a Global Mission Consultation on the theme, "Making disciples of every people in our generation." The Tokyo theme built on the previous two watchwords of Edinburgh 1910 and Edinburgh 1980, which were the “Evangelization of the world in this generation” and “A church for every people by the year 2000.” Various issues were engaged with such as training, crisis response, technology and mission, global discipleship assessment, research and global mission coordination.
Jump to October 2010 and we now have delegates at the opening ceremony of the Third Lausanne Congress in Cape Town (not Lausanne) singing "Crown Him with Many Crowns", providing a point of continuity with the Missions Conference of 100 years ago... While Edinburgh in 1910 had 1,200 delegates mostly from the West, and the First Lausanne Conference in Lausanne in 1974 on the theme "Let the earth hear His voice” had about 2,700 delegates from 150 nations, this Third Lausanne Congress has some 4,000 delegates from 197 nations!
The Eight Commissions or tracks of the 1910 Edinburgh conference were prepared in advance, printed, bound and posted to delegates ahead of the conference; this 2010 Lausanne Conference saw Advance Papers for both plenary and multiplex sessions “posted”, but posted electronically online to the Lausanne Conversations site. Feedback from participants from all over the world has been given to the authors of the Advance Papers ahead of their presentation in conference sessions, allowing pre-conference participation and learning. Conversations will hopefully continue online after the end of the Lausanne conference, making these conversations far more living and dynamic than previous conference approaches would allow.
The 1910 Edinburgh conference was limited to a single geographical location in a single time zone; the 2010 Lausanne Conference is located in Cape Town but extends through GlobaLink sites to 90 countries. Social networking teams have been set up to ensure that the conference proceedings are blogged, twittered and facebooked in every major time zone, providing continual, 24-7 participation on the theme: “God in Christ, reconciling the world to himself” - how to bear witness to Jesus Christ and all his teaching in every region of the world and every sphere of society.”
But here is a profound irony. While much has changed in 100 years of Mission, the over-riding theme of Mission has not. So from Edinburgh to Lausanne to Manila to Tokyo (and back to Edinburgh), then on to Cape Town, and all the other places I’ve left out in my ignorance of such things, and in the midst of the Christian politics of co-operation, and competition, and compromise of various and different Christian movements since 1910, the basic theme, urgency and call to Mission remains the same.
On the one hand it is as simple as Jesus’ words, “As the father has sent me, so I send you”...”so go make disciples...” On the other hand, it is far more complicated, which is why we need this Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelisation. Let us sing, pray, teach and preach - "Crown Him with Many Crowns.” And may this Third Lausanne Congress in Cape Town truly be a watershed moment in the life, ministry and mission of the Church, both local and global, bearing witness to Jesus Christ and all his teaching in every region of the world and every sphere of society.