28. 11. 2012 | News, Archive 2012
New EMS is a sign of hopeEvangelical Mission in Solidarity calls for concrete action in solidarity
Herrenberg/Stuttgart. The transformation of the old "Association of Protestant Churches and Missions in South Western Germany" into the new "Evangelical Mission in Solidarity" (EMS) is a "sign of hope in world mission", according to Dr. Jooseop Keum, Executive Secretary of the Commission on World Mission and Evangelism of the World Council of Churches. In future the former "partner churches" in Africa, Asia and the Middle East are also full members of the EMS Fellowship with equal rights and obligations together with churches and missions in Germany and Switzerland.
The Korean theologian was speaking to the 50 international delegates at the Constituent Meeting of the EMS on the conference motto "Mission in Solidarity - in the Power of the Holy Spirit" (Acts 1:8). "We are gathering together here at Herrenberg, beginning a new journey as a missional community in solidarity, seeking and nurturing transformative spirituality in mission", said Keum. Such spirituality had the power to "encourage and strengthen people, so that they can stand up for 'fullness of life'."
At the EMS General Meeting Keum expounded the "Mission of the Holy Spirit" as a new paradigm of mission theology, in which diversity, transformation, dynamics and solidarity are key concepts. He stressed the link between the salvation of humans and the salvation of the planet. In a troubled and globalized world, said Keum, "a new transformative spirituality of mission, and of transformative solidarity in mission can provide one of the greatest sources of hope for healing these broken relationships."
EMS General Meeting directed message to members and friends
At the conclusion of its inaugural session, the General Meeting addressed a message to all friends and members around the world. It says: "By the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, who moves, transforms and strengthens us, we are called to be witnesses of the Gospel and bearers of the Good News for people all over the world. We want to be good stewards of our human and material resources, whether we are givers, recipients or hosts."
The delegates from 28 churches and mission societies in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Europe declared further: "We live in pluralistic societies and in a very complex world that is torn by hatred, violence, hostility and injustice and in which creation suffers and groans. Therefore, we stand up for one another in solidarity and work for peace and equality, for justice, reconciliation and harmony between all men, women and children and for the integrity of creation."
With a call for concrete action in solidarity the message concludes: "Dear sisters and brothers, let us reaffirm our common vision, to be a true 'Evangelical Mission in Solidarity'. We invite you to support our common witness with your prayers, your advocacy, your resources and your participation in our programmes and projects. Let us go along this path together. May God bless us all."
Ulrike Schmidt-Hesse, Head of Department and Partnership Mission / Deputy General Secretary,
Phone +49 711 636 78 33,
Gerd Sander, Press Relations Officer,
Tel. +49 711 636 78 85, mobile +49 178 636 78 33,