Mission practitioners from across the United States and around the world gathered this past week in Raleigh, North Carolina, USA for the Christian Community Development Association’s (CCDA) national conference. The theme for this year was “Flourish,” and speakers and workshop leaders guided conference participants in ways to faithfully follow God’s call in Jeremiah 29 to “seek the peace and welfare of the city.” Among the plenary speakers, INFEMIT’s own Ruth Padilla DeBorst spoke on the need for community development practitioners to look beyond their own neighborhoods in order to understand and take responsibility for the ways in which the local and the global are interconnected.

Though CCDA is located in the United States and is primarily focused on neighborhoods, issues, and policies directly related to North America, there has long been a vibrant group engaged in community development beyond U.S. borders. Ruth and INFEMIT assistant, Chris Wilson, met with community development representatives from around the world and CCDA’s Global Connections Committee.

The Global Connections Committee of CCDA exists “to build relationships, network with existing work around the world, learn from Christian community development (CCD) practices in other contexts, and give input into how CCDA can most practically engage overseas.” CCDA representatives in the meeting acknowledged that while the strengths of their association lie in North America, there is much that their member individuals and organizations can learn from the community development work that is taking place in communities in the rest of the world. INFEMIT, as a network of regional fellowships of theologian practitioners, has the opportunity to contribute to future CCDA events the robust theological reflection necessary to sustain their ministry.

Ultimately, INFEMIT’s presence at the national CCDA conference took place through the distribution of theological materials (particularly FTL journals and PRISM magazines), through meeting with strategic leaders on the Global Connections Committee, and especially through Ruth’s reflection on what Jeremiah 29’s call to seek the welfare of the city means in a global context.

INFEMIT looks forward to future collaboration with CCDA members in the United States and globally. Thank you to the organizers and the Global Connections Committee for making international theological engagement a priority for your conference, and for your gracious invitation to INFEMIT!

2014 Stott-Bediako Forum

John Stott and Kwame Bediako were both scholars crucial to the development of mission theologies in the Global South.  To remember the contributions of these great men and inspire others to follow the paths they walked, INFEMIT partners with the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies each year to present the Stott-Bediako Forum on the Gospel and World Today.  Theologian-practitioners representing each of INFEMIT’s regional fellowships share their work and respond to their sisters and brothers in dialogue about continuing the mission of God in the world.

The 2014 Annual Stott-Bediako Forum on the Gospel and World Today will be held October 15-17, 2014 in Anyang City and Seoul, South Korea.  This year’s theme will be “New Horizons in Mission Studies II” continuing the conversation from last year’s forum.  Featured speakers include Dr. Melba Maggay, Bishop Joshua Banda, and Dr. Al Tizon.

Wednesday, 15th
Anyang First Presbyterian Church

16:00 Registration
17:00 Welcome Dinner: Sung-Wook Hong (host)

19:00 Worship (with the Congregation)

Thursday, 16th
Torch Trinity Graduate University, Seoul

7:30-8:30 Travel to Seoul
9:00 Greetings: TTGU leader
9:30 1st Keynote Address: Melba Maggay – Room #304
10:30 Break
11:00 Reflection: Maqsood Kameel & a TTGU member
12:00 Lunch
13:30 2nd Keynote Address: Joshua Banda – Faith Hall
14.30 Tea break
15:00 Reflection: Menchit Wong and Dan Brewster
16.00 Chapel
18.00 Dinner
Travel to Anyang City

Friday, 17th
Anyang First Presbyterian Church

9.00 Prayer
9.30 3rd Keynote Address: Al Tizon

10.30 Tea break
11.00 Reflections (TBA)
12.00 Q & A, Conference conclusion
13:40 Lunch

Saturday, 18th
Anyang First Presbyterian Church

INFEMIT Asia Meeting

Those interested in learning more about attending the 2014 Stott-Bediako Forum can email for more information.