We live in a time of constant change, a lot due to the on-going upgrading of technology! But changes have always been around, and Overseas Mission is no exception.
Our Baptist Missionary Society began in 1885 in a part of India that by 1947 became East Pakistan and then in 1971 Bangladesh. Also, in 1973 all our workers in the Tripura State had to leave because of changes in Government policy. At the time these changes challenged the way our Mission operated. But in both locations the church has continued to thrive as the local leadership stepped up with our on-going support.
There is still a need to support and strengthen the nationals especially at the leadership level in these areas. How can this be done? Here are a few past examples of how this has and is being done:
Our National Baptist Missionary Fellowship (BMF) had the privilege of sponsoring the current principal of the Bangladesh Theological College to obtain the qualifications he required to apply for this position.
On our Mission board there is a photo of Champa. Our local BMF is supporting her to do her MA in Christian Studies to enable her to step up in leadership.
Sponsored pastoral teams from NZ have attended and had input into the Tripura Pastors Conference which proved positive for all attendees.
Supporting this year’s Self Denial will help to make a difference to these national-led churches which over the years New Zealand Baptists have had a significant input.