Monday, 16 February 2009

The changing face of Asia - UBS Pune

The changing face of Asia

At our recent CMS co-mission partners CoMP conference we had people from all over india, north and south, Mixzoram, Nepal and other neighbouring Himalayan countries plus Singapore, Honk Kong and Korea. They came together for a week’s programme at UBS Pune. And they represented the changig face of CMS in Asia

This was followed by a day’s consultation with leaders and partners from all over India. We were listening to their voices regarding the future of CMS in Asia. We followed an appreciative enquiry cycle of Describing current reality, Dreaming about future possibilities, Designing a road map for the future and Delivering practical steps towards the common goal. It was an excellent day with a high level of participation. More of that another time.  

The overt purpose of the CoMP programme was for further (core) training but as always the main benefit was definitely relational. Fellowship over meals and trips out cement friendships. And friendships build community. These can be maintained by electonic means e-groups Facebook,  Flikkr. But face-to-face encounters are a must.   

I have been reading ‘God is rice’ by Masao Takenaka. He suggest it is through eating rice together that we build community and bring in the kingdom.  

As a part of the programme we also visited Satvana Home as well as Dr Lalita Edwardes work with Hijra in Pune  plus IMCARES homes for children of sex workers in Pune

We were meeting at Union Biblical Seminary  (UBS) Pune. Founded in 1953 by Dr Frank Klein a Methodist. They have been hosting an Annual missionary conference since 1977 and CMS consultation since 1992 - when initially 8 papers presented on Missiological issues in Indian context . These papers were published in 1994 ‘Doing Mission in Context’.

Other publications include:
'The Church in India: its mission tomorrow' (CMS 1996)
Consortium for Indian Missiologiocal Education (CIME 2002)
UBS journal and CD ‘Celebrating God’s faithfulness’ (UBS 2003)
10th CMS consultation in 2004 on ‘Nationalism and Hindutva: a Christian response’

The Centre for Misison Studies (CMS) was inaugurated - integrating the Dept of Mission, CES and Students wives programme It was supported through a bicentenary grant by CMS UK
I bought a ‘shelf’ of books, around 2000 Rs worth, for the Crowther mission centre library in OXFORD. This is part of changing the face of mission in Britain through hearing more Asian voices.

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