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Embracing intercultural ministry in your church

Tim McMahon is a SIM UK mission worker dedicated to ministry training

Understanding how culture affects community is vital when working in an increasingly diverse Britain and why SIM UK seeks to help churches and ministry teams develop in this area.

A team of united people from every tribe, tongue and nation celebrating and sharing their different cultures as they serve Christ, is a powerful witness and provides a close-up look at authentic Christian community for those we seek to reach with the good news.

SIM’s multicultural mission teams demonstrate the diversity of cultures the Lord has allowed to develop in his world, but we recognise that unity in diversity is not easy to do.

Until June, SIM UK is running intercultural ministry training workshops to help to churches, Christian organisations or ministry networks as they seek to become truly intercultural.

This training is both theological and practical and gives churches a great opportunity to consider how it might better reflect God’s kingdom of all nations. Adrian, Assistant Pastor of Woodford Evangelical Church

Dr Ken Baker, SIM’s Global Training Director

Dr Ken Baker, SIM’s Global Training Director, has many years’ experience helping churches and SIM mission teams as they embark on the transition from being largely monocultural to becoming truly intercultural.

He identified the biblical principles that motivate such change and developed the practical training resources to help churches and ministry teams make the transition.  

Insur Shamgunov

SIM UK mission trainer Tim McMahon and Insur Shamgunov, founder of a missionary training college in Central Asia and a change management consultant in the UK, then merged Ken’s training material with their experience to provide biblical and practical sessions on:

  • The biblical imperative for intercultural community.
  • Understanding culture and its effect on community.
  • The need for attitude change and the rejection of cultural supremacy.
  • Change of management principles and practice.
  • Case studies from practitioners of intercultural ministry.

By the end, each participant will be well underway to lead change in their church, organisation or network, by:

• Identifying the people group(s) in their locality that their church, organisation or network is seeking to reach,
• Making plans for cross-cultural ministry programmes and/or groups,
• Starting to see the beginnings of an intercultural ‘vibe’ develop, alongside some cross-cultural engagement.

We know that a church or ministry team becoming intercultural is a goal the Evil One would love to derail, so we pray the church and team leaders doing the training will have the faith and courage to pursue the intercultural ideal, despite any opposition and setbacks.

By Tim McMahon

Please pray

  • Give thanks that SIM has the people and experience to give biblical guidance and practical tips on how to be unified in Christ.
  • That participants will implement the biblical principles and practical wisdom shared during the training.
  • For churches and ministry teams to make the necessary changes so genuine intercultural community develops.

This was posted on 25 May 2021.

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