Monday, November 20, 2006

National Missionary Convention

We got back from Indianapolis last night. The convention was great. I like the NACC, but I think I like the NMC more. I'll just write some highlights.

People I Saw. Dennis Bratton, Ron Ritchey, Vinton and Rachel Ritchey, Tom & Marilyn Chamberlin, Steve DeFor, Dick and Virginia Mangel, Gerald Holmquist, Wayne Shaw, Bill Crandall, Dale Meade, Bill Morgan, Susan Calderón, Ajai Lall, Marsha Relyea, Jack and Janine Swanson, and others that I hadn't seen in a long time, but have forgotten to list.

Workshops. I'll write about two workshops I attended. Dick Alexander related changes occurring in churches in the U.S. to the mission enterprise. Perhaps the most challenging thing is for current missionaries to find a venue within the local church. Gone are the days when the missionary was given the Sunday evening church service. I attended another one by a PBT missionary recruit who just finished a Master's degree at Lincoln Christian Seminary. His topic was a much condensed version of his master's thesis, on finding a way to communicate the Gospel to people in West Africa steeped in animism, focused on and operating out of a context where power is a deeply felt need. Kim and Kristy attended that workshop as well, and also liked it. He relied heavily on Rick Love's book Muslims, Magic and the Kingdom of God, and Ed Murphy's Handbook for Spiritual Warfare. He also cited the idea first expounded by Paul Hiebert on The Flaw of the Excluded Middle.

Preaching. My boss, Mark Scott, preached the first night. His text was John 4, and the message was phenomenal. I have never heard him preach poorly. I've heard myself preach poorly on numerous occasions. Over fifteen years ago, he preached a delightful message on John 4. This message demonstrated how rubbing up against missionaries and mission fields has impacted his life. Thanks, Mark! The final message, by Ben Cacharias was a challenge to the church to follow the example of Jesus in his kenosis and in his splaghna. It was a powerful message. All messages and workshop recordings may be purchased from Christian Audio Tapes.

Family. We stayed with Rose's sister, Patty, and shared some time with other family members, Richard McGill (nephew) and his daughters, Morgan and Taylor, and Linda McGill (sister-in-law). Bob and Melody (my sister) Voss and their two daughters were present on Saturday. We have a habit of eating at Steak n Shake with them during their 1-day visits to National Missionary Conventions.

One last note. When I got home (three days of no internet), I had an e-mail from Neil Cox in Indianapolis, wondering whether or not I would blog about the NMC. Neil has a pervasive presence on the internet, and I commend his pages to you, that already have other comments from the NMC in Indianapolis this weekend.

I'm back in the office, and will work this week, at least a few days. We'll enjoy Thanksgiving in Lamar, MO with Mike and Jacque (my sister) Gage, part of their family, Mom, Bob and Melody Voss, and part of our family. Greg and Emily will be in South Texas. We'll miss you!

Blessings on you all.



Mike said...

I'm waiting for an Alfonso Soriano blog. Glad the NMC was good.


David G. Fish said...

Hi, Mike!

It's coming!