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Bruce Ashford - What is the Mission of the Church?
Bruce Ashford explains the mission of the church, explaining what lies at the heart of God’s mission and how the church participates in that mission. He discriminates between the church as institute and church as organism and notes the significance of this for a balanced view of mission. He also explains the intimate relationship between word and deed and how to avoid the social gospel.
John Oommen - Intercultural Communication Principles
Dr. Oommen is a physician working in community health with tribal peoples in a remote area of India. He identifies many principles he has learned that are essential for working with people whose culture is very different from one’s own. He identifies the key ingredient as being love and respect for one’s audience, whether a single person or group. He continues by observing the importance of other factors to effective intercultural communication.
Platt insists that a pastor who believes that God is sovereign over all things will lead his people to be a death defying missional people. Our sovereign God holds the destiny of the world in the palm of his hand. Therefore, his shepherds should lead their people to pray confidently, give sacrificially, go intentionally and die willingly for the spread of the gospel message to those who have never heard.
Insights into Ecuadorian culture: physical contact, eating practices, sharing, contrasts with Western culture, cultural differences among Ecuadorians, hospitality, generosity, dress, driving practices, religious traditions.
Qualifications: (1) Female to female and male to female (not male to male) kissing on the cheek is a must and has to be followed. In rural areas follow cultural cues; some older people just shake hands (not the norm). (2) eating with hands is very rarely done; (3) in mountain areas change takes longer to effect but when it does it tends to be longer lasting (e.g. professions of faith in Christ)
Fun Facts About Ecuadorian Culture
Facial expressions, hospitality, openness, generosity, festivals: carnivale and New Year, poverty, physical contact, religious practices, family values.
Qualification: For many "God" means believing what the local virgin has done for them and they effectively place their faith in a doll. Many are currently becoming atheistic.
Top Ten Ways to Ruin a Mission Trip
Ken Chitwood: (1) Keep narrowly focused on spiritual tasks; (2) tighten up schedule; (3) stay organised and on schedule; (4) help host missionaries by publicly pointing out their mistakes; (5) get romantically involved; (6) don't try to learn the local language; (7) point out the faults of team members; (8) avoid eating local food; (9) use humour to make fun of other people on the team; (10) after returning home use your mission experience to make people in your church feel guilty.