I recently had the opportunity to help plan the worship for the upcoming Council for World Mission’s Assembly that will meet in Korea. The Council for World Mission (CWM for short) is an organisation with roots stretching as far back as 1795, but more recently formed as CWM in 1977. The 31 member denomination of churches are located in the Caribbean, Pacific, East Asia, Europe, South Asia, and Africa. The hope is to share resources “globally to carry out God’s mission locally” (see http://www.cwmission.org/). Every four years 200 representatives meet to worship God and to discuss what is happening around the world and how they can help each other. A worship planning committee was formed to plan the worship for the next gathering, and at the last minute, I was invited to help out.
How can one “plan” worship?
Before we all met in London, another group of people had met, prayed and discerned the themes of the assembly. The main theme will be “Healing: Hope in Action”. Is that the action of healing bringing hope? Is it is the hope that we have in Jesus resulting in us acting in ways that heal? Is it that hopeful action heals? There are many ways this phrase can be interpreted. I won’t give any “worship spoilers”, as the assembly has not happened (and who can predict what God will do or say??), however we read the theme notes given to us and each played our part in bringing something together which hopefully will enable the people gathering in Korea to hear from God together and to discern God’s will.
In the world, but not yet a part of its CWM mission
I am thankful for my time (albeit brief) with the group who met to plan the worship. We had representatives from Jamaica, India, Hong Kong, South Korea, and the UK. (Sadly, our African colleague was unable to come.) In those 48 hours, I know I have met friends I will keep in contact with, possibly future mission partners! However as someone who was not born in any of the regions that are acknowledged by the association, yet still considered a CWM member by membership into one of the member churches, I can’t help but wonder if the organisation will need to consider how it acknowledges the various ethnicities represented? The world is changing as people move for jobs, safety, love… As people move from one nation to another and join the 31 member churches, I wonder if the Assembly will change to include the wider world church that is actually beginning to gather? Like I said before, I daren’t predict what God will say or do!
God (via London) was calling!
When I arrived in London, I hadn’t a clue why I was there. I just wanted to help.
I soon discovered I wasn’t the only one wondering why I was there! But God sorted us out and put something together that I am convinced He will use to speak to His beloved that meet in Korea. God brought an amazing diverse group of people together to plan the worship, and I cannot wait to see what God will do when the Church meets in June!