The Evangelism and Church Growth Initiative (ECGI) core group met in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 14 – 17 February 2011. The groupi was chaired by Bishop Patrick Yu from Canada, and hosted by Bishop Moon Hing Ng of the Diocese of West Malaysia. It included members from Melanesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, South Africa, Kenya, England and the USA, with staff from the Anglican Communion Office.ii
Reflecting on different stories of the growth of the early church in the Acts of the Apostles, the group shared stories of evangelism and church growth from around the Communion and affirmed that all were working in a variety of different contexts and had much to learn from each other’s experiences, and received a report on work amongst least evangelised peoples.
They were able to review the progress made since the core group first met in January 2010 and sharpened its goals for the coming year. Time was spent compiling a collection of over sixty different resources for evangelism that will be available on the ECGI resource pages on the Anglican Communion website by mid March; these will be arranged according to the type of context they are most appropriate for, as well as a section of general reference.
They agreed to establish a Facebook group for practitioners to increase interaction among those involved in evangelism and church growth: to share stories; best practice; resources; prayer; encouragement. The frequency of the ECGI newsletter, renamed Witness6.7iii, will increase from four to six issues each year.
The core group were deeply grateful for the sense of God’s leading and fellowship which was enhanced by the overwhelming hospitality shown by the Diocese of West Malaysia.
i. The full group comprises:
Bishop Patrick Yu - Canada – Convenor; Bishop Bill Godfrey - Peru; Mrs Linda Jones – Liverpool, England; Revd Anthonio J. Kibwela Kifwambwa – DR Congo; Rev Canon Rosemary Mbogo – Kenya; Rev Trevor Pearce - South Africa; Bishop Irfan Jamil – Pakistan; Bishop Ng Moon Hing – West Malaysia; Revd Patterson Worak – Melanesia; Bishop Ken Okeke - Church of Nigeria Missionary Society; Rev Canon Mark Oxbrow – Faith2Share – UK; Rev Dr Julian Linnell - Anglican Frontier Mission- USA; Captain Judy Douglas – Church Army Australia and is serviced by Revd John Kafwanka and Mr Stuart Buchanan of the Mission Department, Anglican Communion Office.
ii. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and see http://www.anglicancommunion.org/ministry/mission/ecgi/index.cfm
iii. Acts 6.7a - The word of God continued to spread