We’re live blogging from Cape Town 2010 – tonight’s session is on Africa and the next generation: children and youth. Keep checking back for more:
We’re singing Uzey’ U Jesu (Jesus is coming) with lots of noise and vibrancy.
Jake and Grace are back on to welcome us after a great time of worship, praise and dancing. Tomorrow night we’ll be praying for 30-40 minutes so we’re going to sit in our Table Groups. Tonight’s has the Film Festival and Younger Leaders Reception (for those under 40). We’re about to have a surprise … receiving greetings from a Global Site in Ellenbrook, USA.
We’re celebrating Africa tonight – huge cheers and whoops! Back to the worship team. Awesome street dance by 7 dancers on stage. The dancers are now introducing themselves. Part of i-Themba which means hope. They travel all over the world sharing the message of hope through dance, drama and more. They’re being joined by Judy Bailey tonight for Spirit of Freedom. We’re all going to dance now!
David Bourdanne – telling us that the church of Africa deeply loves us; today we are all Africans – so we should rejoice and praise God as we have fellowship together; in Africa we don’t have watches but we have time!; Africa used to be described as a continent in crisis, e.g. HIV Aids, corruption, poverty – we still have some of them, but tonight we want to celebrate the grace of God – we are poor, we don’t have much money but we have a smile to offer to the rest of the world, we don’t have technology, we are corrupt but the grace of God is here through Jesus Christ, in the last century the church has grown 3000% in Africa! Wow!
Now a video on the “Hope for Africa”:
- Michael Cassidy “in the next century Africa will become a fulcrum for mission”
- Henry Orombi: “Africa was a great centre for Christianity, it is again growing”
- Much of the growth in Africa came from in-house evangelism rather than foreign missions.
David back on stage talking about how Africa is excited by its future with other leaders:
- Jose Abias (Angola): talking about how a politician had noticed the church’s division and lack of unity but how the church had responded to show their role to the government.
- Rene Daidanso: someone grabbed him by the collar, was tempted to hit him, but was reminded to turn the other cheek, and ended up bringing food for him later. The man apologised to Rene a number of years later when he was a civil servant. There is a challenge to extend God’s love to all – not just friends – but even to enemies – that deeply impacts other people. To love enemies is difficult, but by God’s grace and the help of the Holy Spirit we will do it.
- Zalelem Abebe (Ethiopia): the young generation is crucial to the church as a human resource and potential for a brighter future. The challenges are immense but Africans can see the light beyond the darkness. The million young Christians across Africa will be agents of transformation for holistic change.
- Margaret Mathiang (Sudan): all African countries struggle with corruption, a low level of human rights, and struggling with truth. Have had to rebut a number of offers to become a millionaire but as a Christian has rejected these. The government of southern Sudan has started dialogue between the church and the state. There is a referendum on January 9th to decide the future of Sudan.
Songe and Scott talking about Mission Africa on the big screen. Their vision is to: “Attempt something so great for God that it is doomed for failure unless God is in it.” 21 events in cities in 13 countries in stadiums, race tracks, open air markets, fields, universities, schools, tents, medical clinics, clothing distribution areas and more with over 488,000 attending and over 52,000 made commitments to the Lord. The next stage of mission will see these meetings continue and widen across the continent.
Gideon Para-Mallam from Nigeria reflects on those who committed at Edinburgh 1910 to come to Africa. Many of them died in the process, but their death was not in vain. Western Christians are asked to rise while others thank them for their previous generations. Now Africa 100 years later is a missionary sending continent! By the grace of God missionaries will be leaving for Europe, USA and so on. The joy of the church in Africa is that it is a young church – the potential is great – the church in Africa is the church of the future.
Now a time of worship led by Africa – starting we are Marching in the Light of God.
Cassie Carstens sharing a story of a man who watched his grandson being mutilated. Cassie cried out to God and realised that it was a fatherless continent, so he raised a generation of fathers through football coaching.
The average age of fathers is 19.5 years old, many children have no father – the church had to respond – football is a universal language that helps solve this. The football coaches are evangelists, disciplers, mentors, life coaches, spiritual fathers and more. Church happens on the fields, outside of the four walls, Monday to Saturday. Through sport effective discipleship can happen now.
Nkoainathi Sixabayi (South Africa) is sharing how he needed a coach, now there are over 2,300 coaches. John Yip (South Africa), 30 out of 40 will say they have an emotionally healthy relationship with their mother, it is only 1 out of 40 with relation to their father. Fatherless is a global crisis. Tonight we’re being given away a CD with loads of children’s and youth resources on it which can be copied and given away as many times as we can!
God is shaping the world and church through their children, the transformed lives of children are more compelling than the preachers who are elder.
We’re now watching about children in the world, one third of children in the world haven’t heard about Jesus.
We’ve been given prayers from children to take home with us!
We’re now hearing a 9 year old pray for us – bold and stirring stuff – she prayed for the big things.
How big is the task? A small sheet of dots represents 10 million we know, but there are 2 billion still left to go, with over half of them in poverty. If we don’t reach them, who will reach them before us. The next generation are a critical part of the whole gospel to the whole world, check out Psalm 72.
Children need modelling, Judges 2 is an exampe of this. The church can’t afford to ignore children. The challenge is enormous, but the potential is even bigger.
To equip us in shaping the next generation is a DVD containing resources for evangelism and discipleship with over 800 documents from over 50 countries. There is no copyright so you can freely share it as all the contributors have let go of their copyright.
2 billion children and God loves every single one of them – they are the shape of things to come.
Now a video on youth and technology. Karsten (a legenedary youth minister from Germany) sharing stories of faith from young people. Challenging us that if they leave their teenage years without Christ, they will generally live with out Christ and spend eternity without Christ. The majority of the world is young, 50% of the world is under 25, 33% of the world is under 15. Most of the world will come to faith by the age of 18.
We have a global technology revolution – young people using facebook, twitter and blogs to ask questions about faith. Youth today are shaping the world. They’re still at risk without a shepherd – biblically illiterate, lost, at risk, disconnected and so on. Around the world there are many stories of great transformation and shepherding.
Going on a journey around the world:
- Myanmar: Christian Endeabour in Myanmar have over 200,000 young people attending their meetings.
- South Korea: “Read” a magzine youth workers across Asia.
- India: Jacob sharing on the wide range of issues both in rural areas and cities.
- China: testimony of a young lad
- Story of transformation of a young girl from Southern Europe.
- Schools work: thoughts from America, what happen if we
- Jesus House: a project in 220 cities in Germany with over 1,200 churches partnering to share the gospel with young people for a week in their city.
- South Africa: i-Themba project is linked with Youth for Christ sending young people from South Africa to other countries: “Get with the times but anchor to the rock”. We need to start with our personal testimony, it’s not about starting from “this is the right way to do it” but to share your faith story.
- Prayer is the key to evangelism, 24 hour prayer, which started in England with young people now in over 50 countries.
Karsten challenges us to think over: “What specific action could your ministry take to reach more youth in your country or somewhere else?”
Now standing to prayerfully commit to working with children and young people. A good time of commitment for the church to young people.
That’s us finished here, hope you’ve enjoyed the live blog, we’ll be back tomorrow morning. God bless.