Many people have been enquiring over the weekend about news from the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Yolanda (known internationally as Haiyan) which hit the Philippines on November 7th.
The typhoon swept through the middle islands of the Philippines, and the missionaries serving with GBM in Manila were unaffected. Matthew Gamston was in Mindanao when the storm struck, but has been able to fly back to Manila safely.
The devastation is vast, and reminiscent of scenes in Aceh, Indonesia after the Asian Tsunami. Coastal areas have seen a death toll running into the thousands, caused by the large tidal surge, and it may take weeks to ascertain the total death toll. In many communities in the central Philippines the majority have been made homeless. It is going to take many months for bridges and roads to be repaired, for electricity to be restored, and for homes to be rebuilt, but the world aid and disaster response community is now working at full stretch.
For the first time in several years we are organising a weekend in Abingdon for anyone who wants to explore the challenges of cross-cultural mission. The weekend runs from dinner on Friday 2nd May to lunch on Sunday 4th May 2014. The weekend will include Bible teaching related to calling and sending, workshops with experienced missionaries that draw on their cross-cultural experience, and looking at case studies of the kinds of issues missionaries have to deal with. There will be time for prayer and each participant will have a one2one with the Mission staff, to help you explore how your local church might send you into cross-cultural mission.
The weekend costs £20, and a booking form can be downloaded here.
Our ‘A Heart for Mission’ Annual Meetings at Solihull on Saturday 26th October were packed, with some 750 people filling the Renewal centre in Solihull. Returning to a Midlands venue did not reduce the numbers at all, and in many sessions it was standing room only. We introduced new missionaries James Hammond and Daniel Caballero, and heard about the work in France from Fiona Steward and the work with street boys in Peru from Sarah Clay. Andrew and Danielle Gullett reported on the completion of their work in Kenya, and we had other presentations about work with Asians, training leaders in closed countries, as well as our Latin Link partners. The main afternoon presentation included a video which you can watch below. The final session saw John McDonald retire as Mission Coordinator, and hand over to Daryl Jones. Julian Hardyman of Eden Cambridge preached powerfully on Jeremiah 16:19-21.
GBM is delighted to be working with the Fellowship of Evangelical Baptists in Europe, a group of Reformed Baptist churches in Britain, France, Switzerland and Spain. FEBE is organising a second pastors’ conference next March, at a conference centre just outside Barcelona. The aim is to gather pastors from across Europe, to grow in fellowship and understand each other’s’ ministry situations. We have a fine line up of speakers. David Smith, former principal of Northumbria Bible College and a widely respected author, will give three papers on ‘The Church in a changing world.’ Pierre Constant, from Toronto Baptist Seminary, will give three expositions on ‘Jesus Christ, the fulfilment of the promises made to the fathers.’ There will be morning Bible studies led by three members of the FEBE committee, and two preachers workshops on the book of Micah. All preaching sessions will be either in English or French, with simultaneous translation.
The GBM Herald is our regular quarterly magazine, and after many years in a familiar format, for the June 2013 edition we went for a complete redesign, in a new size (B5), with cleaner lines and a better use of photos. Steve Devane, a Christian graphic designer from Epsom, Surrey, has done a superb job, and we are delighted with the feedback we have received so far. People who never read it before admitted to reading it cover to cover for the first time, and for those with sight-related readability issues, we were told it was much clearer and easier to read.
Many of the files on this website for downloading are PDF files. To access those files you will need to download Adobe Reader