From 28 August to 4 September, the eighth International Conference of Reformed Churches (ICRC) will be held in South Wales. Over 100 representatives of Reformed and Presbyterian Churches from every continent will gather in Cardiff.
They will be hosted by two congregations of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church in England and Wales, Immanuel and Bethel. The main conference venue will be the University of Glamorgan Campus, in Treforest.
The ICRC was first planned in 1982 as a Reformed alternative to the ecumenical movement. ICRC member churches each hold to a historic confession of faith, such as the Westminster Confession.
The conference has met every four years since 1985, each time in a different country. The aim is to develop the unity and fellowship of the churches, to foster co-operation in mission and theological education, and to promote a common witness to the world.
The main focus this time is the preaching of the Word of God. At the present time, some are losing confidence in preaching as the way to reach the unchurched community, and instead are tempted to try other, novel methods.
By examining the subject of preaching, it is hoped to strengthen confidence in it, knowing that it has pleased God to appoint preaching as his instrument to call men and women to himself.
Conference speakers include Ian Hamilton, Dr Bob Letham, Dr James Visscher (Canada) and Dr Ho Jin Jun (Korea). It has been an encouragement that interest in the conference from Africa, India and Pakistan has been growing.
The main addresses are scheduled for the evenings, to enable members of local churches to attend if they wish. More information from: icrconline.com and epcew.org.uk
Peter J. Naylor