Saturday, 25 July 2009




CMS is a carpet shop in Woking:  Coffee Machine Services (used to maintain the machines at partnership house) , Centre for medical services  in US,  Convention on Migratory species,   College Music Society   CMS energy  and computer maintenance services   and  Content management systems;  The Catholic Men's Society 

Most excitingly Compact Muon Solenoid    - Nuclear research in Switzerland 

On a Google Search  CMS UK is now No.4 under CMS. 

The possibilities are endless !  which has inspired me again!!    Sorry  



This is Tim Dakin’s favourite (other than his famous talk  ‘Complexity Made Simple’!)  It is a term originally coined by John Taylor  Community has become a major theme.  CMS is now an Acknowledged community (ref CMS website statement)

In addition we also have had an assessment by the Charity Commission  on  Public Benefit (ditto) . CMS was one of 4 religious organisation that were assessed

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Life has been hectic in CMS with a lot of meetings of the Senior Management Team to look at the implications of the Global Financial Downturn .  
We have had to make lots of cuts again this year  in mid stream   because we are £750k in deficit already  (there was a planned deficit of 500k for the year). So this has been very hard as it has meant some redundancies. So you can imagine the atmosphere at present
It also means people are watching expenditure like hawks and seeking to make savings wherever possible.

In was recently reminded of a timely quote by  Hudson Taylor

 'God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supplies'

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Rev Simon  in Seoul reports that they have reached a level of maturity now that they are 3 years old.   The presence of CMs has helped to catalyse the Anglican Church . The Bishop of Seoul Paul Kim has set up the Korean Internation Mission (KIM).

And there are many Anglican Priests now considering mission. Zinkoo and family in N Cyprus. Rev Peter is investigating a teaching placement in China. And a retired  Bishop also wants to go to Mongolia and China. Dominiq is planning to go to India. Others are looking at the Mekong Delta, Philippines  N.Korea  Japan.     

Bp Kevin of GLOBAL TEAMS  reported on an ANGLICAN CONFERENCE in Seoul:  

‘5 years ago there was a conference in the Anglican Church of Korea sponsored by GLOBAL TEAMS and Koram Deo along with a few congregations. The organizers felt it was the first such conference in the Anglican Church, at least the first they knew of. About 40 or 50 attended.  Last week there was a second such conference held at the Vision Centre of Disciples Church (also known as St. Columba's). CMS and GLOBAL TEAMS helped develop it.   There were over 100 to 150 people in attendance.   7 missos from CMS and GLOBAL TEAMS reported on their ministries in places like S.Korea, Nepal, India, China, Mongolia, Japan, and Vietnam. There was worship and prayer and a challenge to either GO or SEND. The involvement is growing among the Anglicans there....’



As part of the development of NETWORK MISSION, we have been experimenting with various social networks  

Facebook; incluing abgroup for CMS Asia and SACYN;  and now CMS has a Kindling community.  And we have registered a Website  address,, which we hope to activate in the Autumn / Fall

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One of the most encouraging meetings I have attended recently was the  Christian Muslim Forum and the launch of ethical guideline   for  evangelism – 10 commandments. They represent a hopeful sign of being able to work together  See details

I used them as part of a talk I was doing at the Guildford Diocesan Summer School  entitled  ‘Common Ground: being Deeply rooted and Profoundly open’=


The ASIA PROCESS has been engaging with partners and people in Mission around Asia. This has been an Appreciative Inquiry into the future, based on the 4-D cycle:  Describe Dream Design Deliver. It is about co-constructing reality together and so far we have had a lot of buy-in to and ownership of the process.

We have had meetings in Bangkok, Islamabad and Karachi in Pakistan, Pune India.  We have also had a follow up meeting in Islamabad and half process in Colombo.   We have a further 2 meetings to go  - in Oxford and Seoul

Peter of ALL Singapore  has conducted a survey of 10 Asian cities

At the SACYN Sri Lanka Core group  meeting we were able to conduct a mini process gathering stories and themes. 

There is a a commitment to report to trustees in October and a final report in January 2010. We had a SMT & Trustees where the go ahead was given to look at the Malaysian Peninsular as a coordinating office and continue to develop office  in Seoul and a base  in India alongside the Pakistan one.  So that’s generally going well.  KST, a CMS Trustee,  is visiting Malaysia soon and will make contact.   The enquiry process still has 2 more meetings  one in Oxford and one in Seoul, both in Sept.   We are trying to get all the write ups done of the process so far

Now we have
 appointed John as  part time Project Manager, we hope to be able to get more stuff done.  

The old boys are leaving

I remember the Runrig song 'The Old boys are leaving'  (full lyrics here). Marking the end of an era and the passing of the 'old guard'. Harri Patch who died today aged 111 was the last survivor of WW1.  You can see his life in BBC Photo Essay  According to a BBC article 

Harry Patch

Mr Patch was conscripted into the Army aged 18 and fought in the Battle of Passchendaele at Ypres in 1917 in which more than 70,000 British soldiers died.

He served in the Duke of Cornwall Light Infantry.
I have visited Ypres or 'Wipers' as it was coloquially known, to see where 2 of my Great Uncles are remembered in the carnage of the treches. It was a very sobering experience. ... 

Another WW1 survivor Henry Allingham  died recently (22 July) aged 113.   A survivor of the bettle of Jutland and a founding member fo the RAF. he is also rememebr in a portrait  by Dan Llywelyn Hall

Peter Kuhfeld - Portrait of Harry Patch (2009)

The second portrait is of Harri Patch by Peter Kuhfeld.   it's a great way to remember them. 

BOTH of their stories is told in Max Arthiur's Book The Last Post: The final word from our First world war survivors  
Another book worth reading is  Forgotten Voices of the Great War by the same author. They make the WW1 conflict 'come alive' or maybe I should say made the WW1 become more 'realistically dead'.   

Forgotten Voices of the Great War: A New History of WWI in the Words of the Men and Women Who Were There (Forgotten Voices/the Great War)The Last Post. The Final Word from our FIRST WORLD WAR Soldiers

The old Boys
Are all leaving
Leaving one by one
Where young birds go flying
Spread your wings and run
But over the fields
By the drystone walls
An eagle will come no more

We will remember them .....

Bethlehem art

'Freddy' is back in Bethlehem as a community artist. As ever her emails are a delight to read. She would make a great blogger...

This being Bethlehem nothing is as expected as regards the job. The American artist, Don, is in residence, and I am now his assistant. So original plan to paint the sky behind his relief sculpture art work, has not happened, nor the employment of my own team. However I am sublimely happy and working myself to exhaustion from 8 am-4-30 pm, on a huge and rickedy scaffolding, following his instructions. We are quite a sight he is nearing 80 years old and as you are aware I am not a wee spring chicken, and oddest of all, to all around me, am female. The site is huge and excessively noisy, with 20-30 workers at all tasks mostly involving cement mixers, jack hammers and drills. (I will send pics later, as the work is hard to explain.) 

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After work, a rest and a shower, I go for lovely long walks in the beautiful hilly streets of the city, retuning to my comfy flat around 9 pm, for supper and bed. It is so quiet and 'safe' walking about at that time. With little traffic, there is only one set of traffic lights in the whole city! My first night while catching up with a local RC Christian, who has a shop and a tiny bar, I found myself opposite a large security ring of plain clothes and soldiers, but they were there because the Palestinian Prime Minister was inside the building. when he came out to get into his white limosine, he gaily waved at me! He is popular here I believe. 

My bar friend and I had a lovely chat in Spanish (our only mutual language, as he spent 2 years in Argentina) about things I had missed like the Pope's visit, Christmas, and the Gaza war. 

Tomorrow I shall go to church in Jerusalem, and have a lunch date with my former hosts, back here. Tonight I may finally meet up with the `Palestinan artists in the refugee Camps that I know. Loving every minute, hard work though.
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The Sick Rose William Blake

William Blake is famous for his many illiustrations  but also his poems : 

O Rose, thou art sick!
The invisible worm,
That flies in the night,
In the howling storm,

Has found out thy bed
Of crimson joy;
And his dark secret love
Does thy life destroy.

This poem was shared by someone some time back in a consultancy group I attend. All sorts of Freudian interpretations must I am sure abound (see  Wikipedia for some interpretations) . But I thought it might be appropriate in these days of swine flu and gnawing doubt in our society. Witness the obsessive attack by the press over expenses claims and the gnawing away at confidence in our MPs durring that particular 'howling storm'.  And then there is the erosion of confidence in the established Anglican church and the endless debates over sexuality. 
These certainly seem to destroy life.

So since its been sitting on my Blog unposted posts for ages, like a little worm, I thought I'd better post it now........ 

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Missional Obliquity Ben Edson Blog

In our CMS directors meeting we were talking about Missional Obliquity, as you do !! And we were given the following link. The basic idea is that we can achieve objectives by aiming at someothing more indirectly.......... 

I also came accross this pic which  is about obliquity of the planets 


Missional Obliquity

I've been pondering this for sometime now and thought that I'd go public with it and see whether it resonated with people.  I came across the principle of obliquity a few years ago and since then have been wondering about it in relation to mission. John Kay writes this in an article on obliquity in the Financial Times: 

'Strange as it may seem, overcoming geographic obstacles, winning decisive battles or meeting global business targets are the type of goals often best achieved when pursued indirectly. This is the idea of Obliquity. Oblique approaches are most effective in difficult terrain, or where outcomes depend on interactions with other people.

It seems to me that within the emerging church in the UK we have many oblique approaches to mission.  Whether that is using arts as a tool for mission, Night Cafes, providing hospitality at Mind Body Spirit Fairs, meeting with other faith groups or club nights - these are all oblique approaches to mission.  They do not preach the good news in a narrow way, they are not overtly evangelistic, however through the approach that they take they offer an oblique approach to God. 

Oblique approaches recognize that sometimes the best way to achieve your goal is not through directly aiming at it, but rather by taking a journey that is not direct route but one that gets you to the same destination.  If you stare directly at the sun there is the danger that it can blind you, whereas an oblique approach allows your eyes to gradually adjust preventing us from being blinded.  Due to the perceived urgency of the evangelistic task direct approaches have been dominant, an oblique approach allows indirect approaches that take longer but are arguably more authentic.

However, the challenge is not to make the angle of obliquity so narrow that the focus becomes the oblique process rather than that which is being aimed at.  I'm quite convinced by the importance of oblique approaches to mission but am fully aware that they are far more long term, far less direct and not as easily quantifiable.  They can easily be dismissed as they are not obviously focused on a target and hence not directly evangelistic.  The challenge with oblique approaches to mission is to make sure that they remain focused on the goal rather than themselves, if they are focused on themselves they loose their oblique approach and hence direction.

My Photo

from Ben Edson's blog

Blogged with the Flock Browser


Tuesday, 21 July 2009

No excuses !

A colleague of mine shared this inspirational thought

No more excuses now!   God can use you.  He can even use me! 


Monday, 20 July 2009

'One small step for (a) man: One giant leap for mankind'

The Apollo 11 crew portrait.  Neil Armstrong,Michael Collins, and Buzz Aldrin

I remember the Apollo 11 moon landing vividly. I stayed up all night to watch it on our  B&W TV  in 1969  and I still have the scrapbook I made with all the newspaper and magazine cuttings. It was a defining moment for  a generation. In the age of Lunar landings and Concorde, we could do anything. The world (and space) was our oyster.  

You can watch it yourself on this You Tube clip or another version on the  BBC News  and see that moment when Neil Armstrong stepped out from the Eagle lunar module onto the lunar surface - 'the sea of tranquility' (2oth July) and spoke the immortal words: 

'One small step for man one giant leap for mankind' 

Now 40 years later, do we still feel the same ?  Are we as optimistic?  or a little more jaundiced?   There have certainly been many technological advances  The BBC website has a nice clip on 'What the moon landings did for us'.  So many things we take for granted. But the effect of the whole space programme being 'grounded' may have done more to limit our visiion than we realise. Do people really talk as much about 'reaching for the stars' or is our vision also more 'grounded'?

The Russian cosmonaught Yuri Gagarin , the first man to orbit the earth  (he has a statue in Moscow called 'Rocket Man')  is supposed to have said that he looked but  "I don't see any God up here."  But it seems this statement is unfounded.  Another myth.   Rumours that Neil Armstron heard the sound of the Azan and subsequently became a Muslim are also unfounded.  However James Irwin felt the power of God on his Apollo 15 moon walk and according to TIME magazine founded an evangelical organisation  and tried to find Noah's Ark on Mount Ararat.  

'Where there is no vision the people perish', according to Proverbs (29:18), 'but happy is he who keeps the Law' 

Maybe that is where vision comes from. More from the Creator of the stars than the stars themselves.

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Turning Point - Kenya

Jon and Jo are from our church,  Christchurch Woking  (CCW).  They are also linked to CMS through the Salt Programme.   They are with us this weekend reporting on their work in Kibera with Turning Point Trust. 

TPT works in Kibera, the biggest slum in Kenya, 'home' for more than a million people tightly packed in 3 square kilometres. They run 2 centres in Masumau and Kianda, helping to improve the quality of life for families there. It is child-focused community development.  As well as 2 centres in Kibera itself, there are Micro-Finance projects to help families start up small buinesses and a 30 acre Farm Project in Kinangop, 120km northwest of Kibera, to rehabilitatea dozen  single mamas and their many children and to help them with a new life out of the slum.  As Jon said  'It is easy getting them out of Kibera, but it's hard getting Kibera out of them'.

Graceworks is sending a team to work there again this summer running the summer camp for 121 chldren in a boarding school for 2 weeks.  It is being hosted by 'Em', also from CCW who is a volunteer working for TPT. And my son Andy is part of the team.

Have a look at the video materials on the Turning Point website on Kibera,  Camps  and Farm 
and also a video my son Jonny made of one of an earlier camp Project Kenya 2007
I have visited the project a couple of times and met up again earlier this year in Nairobi. It's a great project and Jon&Jo are doing a  fantastic job. 

Saturday, 18 July 2009



Gerard Kelly's Twitturgies are great. They are 'Tweets for the soul, personal liturgies in 140 characters or less'.   prayers for the mobile 

Here is a selction from July   and they are also archived.  Follow Gerard at BlessatBethanie 

God give me empathy more emphatic than my ego. Grant me poverty more perfect than my pride. Squeeze self. Reduce me to love    from mobile web

When circumstances are hard and heavy, God give me a weightlifter's strength. When challenges are steep and high, make me a mountain-climber    7:12 AM Jul 17th

On every plan and dream, I ask your blessing, God. Every call and conversation. If my schemes flail may your will yet be done   from web

Know your own mind. Hear your own heart. To your own self be true. But connect with your creator. Let the gardener who has grown you own you  from mobile web

Jesus isn't a patch on the old religion. He won't hold a candle to dark empty rituals. New fabric. New wine. New wineskins.  from mobile web

If love is in the air, give me lungs to breathe it God. If I can feel it in my fingers, give me faith to touch a broken world  from mobile web

God make me an ex-believer: created ex nihilio, freed by your exodus; sustained in exile; burned by extreme love; living in expectant hope   from web

Friday, 17 July 2009

Go Goa go

The 'Goa Team' 

We took the 'India Team' to LHR4 to fly off to Goa for a 3 week summer project.   
They are part of Graceworks and their summer misison projects.  They will be working with Martin and Beena who run Bethesda Life centre ministres. I visited earlier in the year as you may have read on a previous blog.   

My daughter Jo is part of the team, returning for a 2nd year running. She was really looking forward to working in the boys home again.  Pictures   of the kids adorn her bedroom wall. 

They seem to have spend the past I-don't-know-how-many-months fundraising and completed the task on Wednesday with a pub-quiz style event at church which raised £600. 

The connection with CMS is that all the leaders have done the orientation and training module that CMS runs for short term teams. I was also involved in the oprientation weekend running the Bafa Bafa cross cultural experience simulation game. Lots of fun. 

Go Goa go ! 

'Encounters' Redcliffe's Mission ezine


'Encounters'  the Redcliffe College ezine is an excellent free resource for poeple interested in misison  
Produced to resource the mission community, Encounters Mission Ezine is a topical mission magazine / mission journal published online every two months.  Encounters is a place to discuss issues being faced in mission and provides a unique space where those involved in mission can respond and express their views.

I want  to draw your attention to 2 editions in particular, which focus on Asia:  

Crucial issues facing Asian mission  ezine No 16 (Feb 07)

  Crucial Issues facing Asian Mission  ed Kang San Tan   a variety of issues facing Asian missions reflected through different approaches spanning North Asia, South Asia and South East Asia   You can download the full issue  or individual articles 

  • Article 1:  The Problem of an Alien Jesus for Asian Christianity with Special Reference to Chinese Buddhists.
    (Dr Kang San Tan, 3782 words) 
  • Article 2:  Mind the Gap: The Ongoing Need for Language Learning in Missions Training.
    (Dr Paul Woods, 2963 words)
  • Article 3:  There and Back Again: Reading an Exilic Text for the Post 1987 Operation Lallang Malaysian Church.
    (Rev Anthony Loke, 2522 words) 
  • Article 4:  Reconciliation as Mission.
    (Rev Dr Pervaiz Sultan, 2299 words) 
  • Article 5:  The Malaysian Dilemma: Where is the Racially Reconciled Community?
    (Peter Rowan, 1661 words)
  • Article 6:  The South Asian Diaspora: A Missed Opportunity?
    (Robin Thomson, 2549 words) 
  • Article 7:  The Growth of Christianity in Asia and its Impact on Mission.
    (Dr Julie Ma, 2730 words) 
  • Book Review 1:  A History of Christianity in Asia.
    (By Samuel Hugh Moffett; Orbis Books)
  • Book Review 2:  Shining Like Stars: The Power of the Gospel in the World's Universities.
    (By Lindsay Brown; Inter-Varsity Press)

Encounters Mission Ezine - Issue 24: Partnership Issues in Asian Mission  ezine No 24 (Jun 08) 

Partnership issues in Asian Misison    ed Jonathan Ingleby  consiting of the papers at the Redcliffe/OMF/CMS conference  Growing Asian Mission Movements: Issues and Models for Partnership   You can download the full issue  or individual articles  

  • Article 1:  China and Beyond: Issues, Trends and Opportunities - The Redcliffe Lecture in World Christianity, 2008.
    (Dr Patrick Fung, 7507 words) 
  • Article 2:  Asian Mission Movements from South Asian Contexts.
    (Robin Thomson, 3031 words)
  • Article 3:  Who is in the Driver's Seat? A critique of mission partnership models between Western missions and East Asian mission movements.
    (Dr Kang-San Tan, 3060 words) 
  • Article 4:  Mission Asia: Practical Models in Mission Partnership - a summary.
    (Dr Patrick Fung, 2083 words) 
  • Article 5:  Mission in Partnership: A Response.
    (Mark Oxbrow, 722 words) 
  • Article 6:  Reflections on a Conference: Putting partnership at the top of the agenda.
    (Dr Jonathan Ingleby, 640 words) 
  • Article 7:  A Dilemma for Obedience: An analysis of Japanese Christian Ethics in Silence by Shusaku Endo.
    (Rev Shuma Iwai, 3431 words) 
  • Book Review 1:  Just Walk With Me: A True Story of Inner-City Youth Work.
    (by Jude Simpson and e:merge; Authentic Media) 
  • Book Review 2:  The New Conspirators: Creating the Future One Mustard Seed at a Time by Tom Sine.
    (by Tom Sine; Inter-Varsity Press, USA) 

Redcliffe's ezine has many supporters and contributers, and CMS is one. I have written an article for the next issue based on a paper at the recent conference on Asian Mission Movements. It highlights some of the changes weare going through. I'll keep you posted on its publication.