Major Meetings and Conferences held and forthcoming
In this section we report on major Communion-wide events organised by the Commission, or in which members have contributed to planning.
Sponsored by IASCOME this was the first ever Consultation of Provincial Co-ordinators of Mission and Evangelism within the Anglican Communion. It brought together forty representatives from provinces in Asia, the Pacific, Australasia, the Middle East, Central, West, and Southern Africa, North America, the Caribbean, Britain and Ireland. Over two-thirds had never attended an international Anglican Communion consultation before. It was a deliberate follow-up to the Decade of Evangelism. The Conference was funded by special gifts from individuals, congregations, agencies and provinces of the Communion.
There was much exchange of stories, ideas and encouragement in a conference that was full of energy and vitality. A full report of the Consultation is under preparation. Appendix 4 provides a summary report and lists the major findings and recommendations. These have been circulated to Primates, Provincial Secretaries etc. They have also been considered by the Commission which has agreed how the recommendations should best be taken forward.
An email network has been established to pursue the connections made at the Consultation. Participants have expressed a strong desire to maintain momentum by meeting again and plans are being put forward for a second meeting early in 2004.
This Conference was recommended by the previous Commission and will be the first gathering of representatives of mission organisations of the Communion since Brisbane 1986. Its aim is to explore new dimensions of our common mission. This Conference is being arranged and organised by IASCOME.
Objectives of the Conference
To bring together diverse forms of Anglican mission agencies and organisations that express the comprehensive nature of world mission today;
To bring together the current generation of lay and ordained mission leaders in the worldwide Anglican Communion, to share their experiences;
To gain a better understanding of contemporary mission issues and changing patterns in mission (for example, outreach to immigrants and web-based evangelism);
To renew our vision for mission through biblical and theological reflection,
worship and prayer;
To be challenged by new church models in mission and evangelism;
To encourage the development of new networks among mission organisations, dioceses and parishes in the Communion.
The planning group has prepared a detailed programme. Speakers
have accepted. Invitations to mission organisations are in the process
of being sent out. It is anticipated that about 150 representatives of
voluntary mission agencies, organisations and synodical boards of the Anglican
Communion will be present both to look back, learning and reflecting on
the past and consider the emerging mission movements and organisations.
The Conference is self-funding but because of problems of funding in parts of the world, a programme of bursaries will be offered.
(See also Communion in Mission and Appendix 5)
Along with many other parts of the Communion, the Commission, at its first meeting in Johannesburg identified the HIV/AIDS pandemic as one of the major challenges to the mission of the Communion and so strongly supported the Primate of Southern Africa’s initiative, supported by the Primates, to call a conference in South Africa in August 2001 on HIV/AIDS. A member of IASCOME was a member of the planning committee of the conference as well as representing IASCOME at the conference. The report of the conference was tabled at our meeting and discussed.
The Conference had two distinct tracks. Track One for Anglican Communion representatives from all levels of the Anglican Communion across Africa, as well as a delegation of People Living With Aids (PWAs) from a number of African countries.
Delegates participated in sessions to:
Track Two was for representatives from partner organisations and included international donor agencies, AIDS service organisations, civil society groups and representatives from government departments. They too were asked to:
The main purpose of the Conference was to engage the Anglican Communion in a process of strategic planning to guide its response to HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa. The outcome of this process was a model of planning that the delegates could adapt and use at parish, diocese or provincial level.
At the end of this conference the Primates from Africa met and commended the work done and resolved to create an AIDS Board in the Council of Anglican Provinces in Africa (CAPA) with the Archbishop of Southern Africa, as chair to ensure that the strategic planning process is implemented in all the dioceses in Africa.
Strategic planning workshops have been run in every diocese of the Church of the Province of Southern Africa. Appendix 8 consists of the Statement ‘Our Vision, Our Hope’ made by the Conference.