Seventh-day Adventists will contribute to an historic mission conference in Edinburgh, Scotland, June 2 to 6. The Edinburgh event marks 100 years since the last Edinburgh World Missionary Conference when more than 1,200 Christians representing numerous faiths and countries gathered to discuss the future of mission. One hundred years later, the 1910 conference is recognized as a significant event in modern mission.
Among the 250 delegates attending the conference will be Seventh-day Adventists Cheryl Doss, director of the Church's Institute of World Mission in Berrien Springs, Michigan, and John McVay, New Testament scholar and president of Walla Walla University in Washington. Ganoune Diop, director of the Adventist Church's Global Mission Study Centers, has been invited to co-chair the Foundations for Mission session during the conference.
Andrew Anderson, chair of the 2010 conference, said Adventists have been invited to participate because "it has been recognized that Adventist missionaries have been making a very significant contribution to missionary work worldwide."
"Adventists can bring to the event their reflections on how their own movement has been influenced by the success of its missionary outreach worldwide -- the diversity of nationality, race, and language," Anderson said. 'The Adventist vision for the future shape of mission will be particularly valued at Edinburgh 2010."
The Adventist Church "holds in high esteem other Christians who are also engaged in sharing God's love with the world," said Gary Krause, director of the Office of Adventist Mission. "It's a privilege to contribute our distinctive approach to the agenda of this historic mission event and help place a higher emphasis on the commission He has given us."
Edinburgh 2010 organizers say their goal is to explore the best ways to share the gospel in the twenty-first century. Nine study themes have been chosen to aid discussion, including post-modernity, relating to other faiths, unity, spirituality, discipleship, and mission and power. Diop, a theologian who focuses on the integration of theology and mission, said, "I'm grateful to be part of a venue that explores ways to present Christ to our contemporaries."
Several Adventists attended the original Edinburgh conference as delegates.
"They were deeply interested in mission," said Jon Dybdahl who preceded Diop as the Adventist representative on the Edinburgh 2010 planning committee. "Now, 100 years later, we have been asked to be a part of the planning and actual conference because we are perceived as a key part of international Christian mission."
For more information visit www.edinburgh2010.org.