Ministry is better with relationships of trust and encouragement
December 17, 2018
A church doesn’t have to be wealthy to be a giving church.
That was the message that the Rev. Dave Carver shared as part of a panel on transformative partnership at the 223rd General Assembly (2018) in St. Louis. Carver is pastor of a Pittsburgh congregation, Crafton Heights First United Presbyterian Church. He shared how a three-way partnership in faith among the Pittsburgh Presbytery, the Synod of Blantyre in Malawi and the South Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church is transforming the lives of those involved.
Here’s an excerpt of his remarks:
“I was sitting with a Malawian colleague, a pastor who has a sincere heart for the Lord, for his people and for the communities in which he’s been planted. And this beautiful man was in tears. I asked him to speak about those tears, and he said, ‘Dave, the gospel came to Malawi in 1876 — well over a hundred years ago. And it has grown. And it has shaped me and my culture. But listen to this, Dave: My whole life, I’ve been taught that my church is filled with poor Africans who could only be recipients of mission. I’ve ‘learned’ that we don’t have anything to offer anyone, and in fact that anything good that happens is because some nice, white Westerner has been willing to bring it to us. But now, I have learned that my church — the African church — can be a giving church. We are a mission-sending church. Our brothers and sisters need something that we have — not what you have, Dave, but what we have. We can help. I am so happy. This feels so good.’”
Carver went on to say, “Partnership has taught me, again and again and again, that we all have something to give. And we all have something we need. And it works better when we share these things in relationships of trust and encouragement.”
In recognizing the mutually transformative benefits of international mission partnerships and guided by General Assembly policy, World Mission offers support and resources to all Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) groups involved in or considering connectional partnerships. This support is primarily provided through the office of Equipping for Mission Involvement in collaboration with area office coordinators and PC(USA) mission co-workers.
For more information on beginning or strengthening partnerships with mission co-workers, global partner churches, institutions and organizations in 70 countries around the world, contact Stephanie Caudill, mission associate with Presbyterian World Mission, at 800-728-7228, ext. 5279, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stephanie Caudill, Mission Associate, World Mission, Presbyterian Mission Agency
Today’s Focus: Mission Partnership
Let us join in prayer for:
Crafton Heights First United Presbyterian Church Staff
Dave Carver, Pastor
Bill Gracey, Parish Associate
PJ Winters, Choir Director/Organist
Kristen Knouff, Open Door Executive Director
Marla Barrett, Open Door Programming Coordinator
Cheri Mack, Crafton Heights Community Preschool Director
Tim Salinetro, Youth Group Contact
PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Let us pray:
Holy Trinity, you bring abundant life. We pray that your liberating love and word transform lives so that they may know your glory through partnerships. In the name of your great freedom, we pray. Amen.