We give thanks to the Lord for the opportunity he has given us to accompany the Round Table for Mission Development, formed by the Christian Church Disciples of Christ of Argentina and the Christian Church Disciples of Christ of Paraguay. The objective of this collaborative and fraternal work space is to consolidate efforts for the development of God’s mission in the contexts of both countries.
We give thanks to the Lord for the opportunity he has given us to accompany the Round Table for Mission Development, formed by the Christian Church Disciples of Christ of Argentina and the Christian Church Disciples of Christ of Paraguay. The objective of this collaborative and fraternal work space is to consolidate efforts for the development of God’s mission in the contexts of both countries. Some of the themes that both national churches wish to cover are the following: Pastoral and laity leadership development, strengthening of congregations and development of new congregations, reaffirmation of diaconal actions, reaffirmation of the prophetic voice of both churches in the contexts of new democratic participation, and post dictatorships.
God has given us many privileges in the pilgrimage of our lives and one of them is being able to accompany the Table. Precisely, the greatest privilege from God for us is to have been called, trained and commissioned to carry out His project with these beloved two national churches. So that God’s purpose can take place, it has been necessary for God to mold and transform us in his grace to try to understand and discern His direction, and in this way to accompany in solidarity each one of the communities. It’s wonderful to know that we are part of the people that God has placed his trust to walk with the people, to learn on mutuality and to know that it’s God who is glorified in our daily walk.
The experience of being with the Disciples of Christ Churches of Argentina and Paraguay has been enriched and much learning. Both churches, with their respective characteristics, capacities and needs, reaffirm their desires to continue fulfilling God’s mission in an integral way.
The biggest challenge during our first year with these sister churches have been ourselves. Our own experiences, knowledge and experiences that we have brought would be excellent, but the development of God’s mission has to be done from our own praxis, in the consensus and in the process of searching for the best within their criteria, experiences and processes of collaboration of these two national churches and not ours. We have learned in this year the importance of understanding the context. This is precisely what allows us to be enriched from other cultures, other people and other ideas that complement the missionary work entrusted by God.
The Church of Argentina and Paraguay will hold an annual bi-national meeting with the intention of strengthening fraternal ties. The Round Table proposed that the bi-national meeting will be held in 2014, outside of teenagers and young adults of the Disciples Church. The purpose is to be able to strengthen their relations of life, of church, in a holistic manner and promote experiences of growth and spiritual affirmation, allowing them in the future to become the next leaders and pastors who will take the leadership of the church at the moment. It is for this reason that we will be celebrating a Bi-national Meeting of Youth, who are the young and adolescents of the Bi-national Church, that will be held in July of this year at the Jack Norment Camp in Paraguay.
Today, God continues calling, training and inviting us to be collaborators of the kingdom. We pray for the churches of Argentina and Paraguay to continue strengthening their fraternal ties, and opening the doors to youth that arrive with new strengths, a new vision and very committed with the Kingdom of God, in the church and in their communities.
God Bless you,
Amelia Casillas serves with the Round Table for Mission Development of the Disciples of Christ Church in Argentina and the Disciples of Christ Church in Paraguay. She serves as consultant for Mission Development.