Stories from the Mission Field

June 2022

Mission Council in Leipzig

mission lives in relationships

For the first time after three years, the Mission Council of EBM INTERNATIONAL could take place in Person again. Almost 100 delegates and guests from 27 different countries experienced five wonderful days in the Baptist Church in Leipzig. Another 15 delegates attended online. Pastor Jaime Choque from Bolivia even organized his own translator and then participated in almost all sessions via zoom, even though they started at 3 a.m. for him due to the time difference.

Daily, the delight of real life encounters was visible. In every corner, people met to talk, laugh with each other, eat, and pray. With amazing sunshine on the wonderful Leipzig Baptist church grounds, a joyful and warm atmosphere was felt.

Bible studies: Lively and attractive churches

Real highlights were the Bible studies and creative evening services with inspiring thoughts around the verses in Acts 2:41-47. Together we were moved by what makes congregations attractive, healthy and lively and what how can continue to learn from the first church in Jerusalem. The President of EBM INTERNATIONAL, Emma Mabidilala (South Africa), her fellow countryman Paul Msiza, former President of the Baptist World Alliance, and Betty Köbernick from Argentina as an outgoing member of the Board of Directors (Executive Committee) called for a thorough study of the Bible and the guidelines for church life. This is enormously important for one's own life and for any spiritual community, they said.

New Executive Committee elected

In addition to the many reports from the work areas, a new Board was elected: In addition to Betty Köbernick, Christian Herbert also rotated off as treasurer. Elizabeth Mvula from Malawi will take over this task in the future. Stefanie Fischer-Desamours from Germany and Marc Dereoux from France were newly elected to the Board.

Mission and farewell

Pastor Christina Döhring, the new missionary, was sent out for theological education in Sierra Leone. She will leave with her husband Ralf and their son Nathanael in September. Pastor Regina Claas retired and gave a great sermon at the opening evening with an official goodbye. She will remain connected to Southern Africa and will coordinate the partnership between the German and Namibian Baptist Unions on a voluntary basis.

Thanks to the host church

We look back with gratitude toward the great team of the host church. Under the leadership of Pastor André Krause and Rita Penno, the mission council was not only excellently organized, but also managed to implement a viable hygiene concept in which everyone was officially tested every day. Thus there was only one positive Corona case. Thanks be to God and the team in Leipzig.

Turkey invites to Mission Council 2023

We are looking forward to next year when the Mission Council can finally take place in the city of Adana in Turkey. Since 2020, the arrangements for this have been postponed again and again because of the pandemic. Hürrem Cevik from Izmir (also a member of the Board) extended the warm invitation to Adana.