The challenge of ‘being global churches’ was the theme of this year’s North of England church officers’ conference held at Castle Hall School, Mirfield, from Friday evening to Saturday, 13-14 March.
Nearly 100 men gathered to hear addresses from Keith Walker (Director of SIM in UK and northern Europe) and Peter Milsom (Director of UFM). Keith reminded us that, like the early church in Acts 1:8, the local church is to have a big vision. The world is our parish and we are to engage practically with overseas churches and workers by prayer, giving and personal contact.
Peter challenged us to send out our best men as pastor-teachers and be proactive in encouraging young people to consider cross-cultural mission. It was stimulating to hear specific examples from several church representatives of their church’s involvement in Europe and beyond.
There was opportunity for further discussion in small-group seminars. Lunchtime and refreshment breaks also gave opportunity for informal fellowship; Banner of Truth and EP Books supplied good books at discounted prices. Members of Mirfield Evangelical Church once again catered for the conference and gave us generous overnight hospitality in their homes.
Next year’s conference is planned for 12-13 March, when the theme is ‘Building a caring church’. This year’s messages are available on http://www.northern-conference.info