Your Invitation to Integral Mission: “AIM” group 2015-16
We want to invite you to consider being part of a year-long process of learning with colleagues and applying fresh perspectives on your mission and ministry. Please read through this description and see if the AIM Group is something you would like to join.
What is the AIM Group?
AIM is a group of pastoral leaders meeting five times throughout the year (2015-2016) and travelling together on a two week short-term mission experience, for the purpose of growing in our understanding and practice of integral mission. “Integral mission” means “the proclamation and demonstration of the gospel.” According to one key proponent and advocate of integral mission, Tim Chester, integral mission recognizes that “our proclamation has social consequences as we call people to love and repentance in all areas of life, and our social involvement has evangelistic consequences as we bear witness to the transforming grace of Jesus Christ.” In short, we want to learn and grow together in our ability to lead our congregations or our ministry settings in greater and more meaningful engagement of our communities for the sake of the reign of God.
Who will make up the AIM Group?
The will be comprised of up to eight ministry leaders from within CBOQ. “Qualifications” include: an ability to commit to the STM experience, including the funding for that trip; ability to participate in the five one-day sessions throughout the year; willingness to assist other leaders with growth in integral mission, upon completion of this experience; good team member (having such values as: coming as a learner, not primarily a teacher; honouring points of view not necessarily your own); good health, particularly in light of sometimes challenging travel conditions; willing to participate in pre-gathering and pre-trip assignments; commitment to applying what we learn in your own ministry context. Particularly because the Cuban leaders have limited English, we hope to have several Spanish-speaking participants. Given that there is a limit to the number of participants, application does not guarantee participation.
What is the Short Term Mission Component?
The STM experience will be a trip arranged through Canadian Baptist Ministries to Cuba, May 7-21, 2016 (tentatively, to within a few days). On this trip we will learn from our Cuban colleagues of FIBAC (Fraternidad de Iglesias Bautistas de Cuba) about their integral mission efforts, which include community development work, evangelistic practices, theological education, church health and growth issues, etc. This will occur through visits to various churches and mission points. Specifically, we will work with them to create and participate in a Pastors’ Conference during that time, sharing with them in teaching and learning, but more importantly, building bridges between colleagues.
What are the other meeting events?
Three times before going to Cuba and two times after the trip, we will gather for one-day events to learn together, prepare together and care for each other around themes of integral mission. There will be content presented, some limited reading assignments, team-building opportunities, peer support around application of the concepts, prayer together and, obviously, orientation to Cuba and the STM experience.
Upon our return, we will support each other in our attempts to apply what we have learned from the STM experience. Some of the teaching components will be: a theology of integral mission; seeing our communities with cross-cultural eyes; redeeming our view of “pastor;” how our unique stories and gifts shape our missional living; global voices in missional expressions – and how they translate to our communities. Our suggested dates for these gatherings are: November 17, January 12, March 15, June 21 and one other date in the summer/fall TBD.
What costs are there?
The cost of the short term mission component will be around $2500-3000. This includes travel costs, accommodation, food while in Cuba; the only other costs for the STM will be your incidental purchases, such as souvenirs or personal items. Each participant will be responsible for this portion; this may be from your congregation or ministry group, or “fund-raised” by the participant. Since it is a mission trip, funds raised can usually receive a charitable receipt. More details on how this can be accomplished will be available.
CBOQ will cover the costs of the five other gatherings, including a meal while we are together. If your congregation or ministry group cannot/does not cover your travel to and from our meeting sites (which will be in Toronto) we will cover those costs as well.
Please consider whether this opportunity has your name on it! If so, or if you have further questions, contact Brian Craig (firstname.lastname@example.org; 416-620-2939) by September 16, 2015)