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Latin America Consultation on Integral Mission

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Tuesday to Saturday
22/04/08 - 26/04/08
 
Lima, Peru

 

Micah Network Latin American region presented their consultation on integral mission:

Integral Mission: Progress, Setbacks and Challenges

"A strategic and crucial event for the Latin American evangelical community that will orientate new commitments for strengthening integral mission in the region”

Latin America and Integral Mission

It is internationally acknowledged that in Latin America there is rich biblical and theological tradition in the literature on integral mission. It is also true that throughout the years there have been many new experiences in different fields, for example, with children, youth and women, but these often lack the necessary biblical reflexion and systematisation. For this reason, there is a need of deeper reflexion, based on these new experiences, in order to renew the vision of integral mission and articulate it with its practice.

In addition, few experiences of integral mission integrate an advocacy approach to promote justice, defend people’s rights, or seek political and structural changes. Many churches even question whether this kind of work is biblical or part of their mission, preferring to leave it to faith-based organizations. In that perspective we believe it is important that the church includes the promotion of justice and the search of peace as part of its mission towards the transformation of the whole of society.

Thirdly, integral mission in Latin America is still a foreign concept for a significant sector of evangelical churches. Faith-based organizations and Christian NGOs involved in development and justice projects seldom have a coordinated work with churches, nor are very critical with regard to their own theories and practices. This situation proves the need to have greater collaboration between the church and faith-based organizations, in order to take advantage of the already existing good practices and to develop new work models.

Due to all this, and bearing in mind the goals of incorporating elements of good practice, promoting greater openness towards working in strategic alliances between churches and organizations, and incorporating new approaches in our understanding of Mission, the Micah Network’s Latin American Coordinating Group organised a Regional Consultation on Integral Mission.

Micah Network Consultation

The consultation identified challenges to integral mission and how churches and NGOs in Latin America can work together to respond to these challenges.

The consultation focussed on the following key topics:

  1. Approaches to Integral Mission in Latin America
  2. Working with vulnerable sectors
  3. Peace and justice approaches
  4. Local development
  5. Collaboration between churches and faith-based organizations.

These topics were addressed through conferences and plenary sessions that included a critical evaluation on the progress made in relation to Integral Mission, as well as group work to discuss the topics from different perspectives. The aim was to reach a common understanding of the progress made, the main challenges for the future.

There was participation of renowned evangelical leaders from various Latin American countries.

The consultation took place in Lima, Peru from 22 to 26 April 2008.

The event was open to church leaders, theologians, representatives of denominations, seminaries, faith-based organizations, development and justice organizations representatives, and youth from Latin America, who have a commitment to implement Integral Mission in their local communities.