Alliance World Fellowship – In Bangkok
Our District Missions Coach, Ron Brown reflects on his 5 days in Bangkok for the Alliance World Fellowship’s (AWF) Quadrennial Convocation 2016, held in Bangkok, Thailand from October 11–16. Every four years, representatives of all member churches and organizations of the AWF gather to celebrate Christ. It is a time of sharing, teaching, praying, and planning.
The following is his blog post from Day 3 in Bangkok
FOCUS ON SYRIA – 16 ALLIANCE CHURCHES
Habakkuk cried out, “O Jehovah, how long shall I cry and thou will not hear? I cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save.” With this scripture Pastor Edward opened his message which went on to tell of destruction and heart wrenching stories. We had tears in our eyes for most of his talk. We sniffled. We heard the pain in his voice. We felt his pain. The Syrian churches have united in prayer to ask God for deliverance, but nothing. Hope is being lost.”Lord, how long?” Five years ongoing war and no hope in sight. 500,000 casualties so far. One million people injured, many now handicapped.. We watched a painful video of the destruction in Homs. The Alliance pastor who had lived through the evil was sitting with us. Lord, how long? Half of the Syrian population of thirteen million are refuges either internally displace or outside the country. 50% of those are children, for the most part not attending school. Lord, how long?
Beyond the reality of destruction, pain and hopelessness, Pastor Edward told stories of God at work in unusual ways of people being drawn to the Savior. The works of God are evident. Though seemingly silent, He is at work. As he ended his talk, he thanked the Alliance family for praying for them and then made this remarkable, startling statement: “It is a privilege to be there at such a time.”
Pastor Edward Awabdeh leads a local Church in Syria’s capital Damascus and is president of the Christian & Missionary Alliance Churches in the country. The C&MA started ministering in the Middle-East more than a century ago and has presently 16 Churches in Syria. Although they suffer under the present war situation since 2011, they try to share God’s love by supplying spiritual and material support to people in need.
SEMINAR – HIGH IMPACT TAKE AWAY
- The Harvest – 7000 unreached people groups; 6.5 billion people not Jesus followers
- The Harvest Force – 5 million local churches; 700 million Jesus followers
- The Task in Perspective = 714 local churches for every one UPG; 1 follower of Jesus for every 10 non followers.
“The church exists by mission and therefore exists for mission” Sunder Krishnan
2019 – A SIGNIFICANT ANNIVERSARY
Albert Simpson, born on Prince Edward Island, became the founder of our movement, the Christian and Missionary Alliance. He died in 1919. As we come to the one hundredth marker of his death there is some interest growing on producing a new biography of his life for a new generation of the Alliance family. The vision for this has been growing in the heart of author David Jones an Alliance international worker in Brazil for many years and author of the book “So Being Sent They Went” the history of Simpson’s first team to the Congo. He is currently writing the history of the Brazil Alliance Church.
TODAY’S LUNCH MEETING
A group of us gathered around a lunch table to hear David’s proposal for this new Simpson biography. Some of those around the table will potentially become a peer review group of readers as they read the chapters through their eyes with the hope of this becoming a biography that serves the wider global Alliance family. At the table were four national CMA presidents: Congo, USA, Brazil and Canada as well as a couple of Alliance scholars from FATELA and Ambrose. Clyde Glass of Southview Alliance Church in Calgary has also agreed to be part of the reader group for this project. Clyde’s PhD dissertation is entitled: “Mysticism and contemplation in the life and teaching of Albert Benjamin Simpson“
Read more reflections of Ron Brown’s time in Bangkok on the Global Vault or click on the following reflection for each day in Bangkok.