In making Discipling the Church the focus our mission, CMS-Africa has taken a crucial shift in missions which has often been expressed in terms of salvation of souls.
We ought to understand salvation to be more than just deliverance of the soul. In a context such as ours, flooded with socio-economic and political crises, propped by insecurity and the high rate of poverty, why wouldn't people seek and find solace in religion?
Consequently the Church has strived to offer solutions to all these problems. Through messages on deliverance from problems and special programs, the church has provided utopian escape from deteriorating socio-economic and political conditions. If we are to survive, we will need to look beyond what the church should be SAVED FROM and ask a penetrating question with Professor Mbiti: Salvation into what? Not what evil needs to be removed but what good should salvation realised.
Our programmes at CMS-Africa seeks to make the church resilient and deep in teaching by reflecting Christ in everyday life so as to invite our society into this space. It is to this end that CMS-Africa has continued to expand its Samaritan Strategy Training program in one particular country- Tanzania. VISION Conferences organized in partnership with World Vision Tanzania have become the core agent of community transformation across the Tanzania Republic.
In South Sudan, the Financial Freedom for Families (F4) programme; a personal financial management training geared towards better stewardship of God given resources is taking root in Juba and Wau. CMS-Africa is making inroads in this new nation with some of the training materials now under translation into Arabic and Dinka languages.
At the continental level, CMS-Africa took an active lead in organising the Care of Creation Conference for East and Central Africa in Kenya. The conference served as a platform for stimulation of creation care movement across the countries of East and Central Africa. The participants from over 14 countries were exposed to a wide range of biblical approaches designed to help them engage in environmental conservation as a new frontier for missions and church ministry.
Throughout Africa, Christians are experiencing great pressure from persecution. Journalist John Allen sees followers of Jesus as “indisputably…the most persecuted religious body on the planet.” So he writes in his latest book, The Global War on Christians (Random House, 2013), which cites such authorities as the International Society for Human Rights, noting that the group identifies 80 percent of religious freedom violations worldwide as targeting Christians.
Therefore, CMS-Africa’s design of programmatic interventions and mobilization of resources for sustainability is indicative of success in our mission. In the last financial year, the focus has been on rallying resources locally and globally under the footprints campaign in a bid to ensure sustainability of the transformative agenda spearheaded by the church.