Southwest Region

EMS 2022 Theme - Reconciliation: God's Mission through Missions for All

Reconciliation: God's mission through missions for all

April 2, 2022 from 8am to 1pm

Nightlight Christian Adoptions
1528 Brookhollow Dr, Unit 100, Santa Ana, CA 92705

And Online (register for the link)

Globalism, along with massive migrations, interethnic and racial conflict, and rapid growth in secularism/atheism all contribute to polarization and heightened levels of conflict and the need for the church to work for justice, reconciliation and healing. The world as it is has faced us with COVID, K-shaped recovery dropouts, people  confronting injustice, recognizing marginalized BIPOC … – but what and who defines our mission? The conflicts and troubles of this world?   

How can a truly gospel centered missio ecclesia be reimagined that derives from the missio Dei (as from the missio Spiritu and missio Christi) calling all people back to the heart of God that is rooted in the call to be reconciled reconcilers? David Bosch’s Transforming Mission shaped the beginning of a new mission paradigm–a missional church that is with the people, bears the creative tension of being in the world, but not of the world, persevering in conflict, but not being people of conflict and paving the way to be true reconciled reconcilers. But never did he mention “mission as reconciliation”. The Lausanne Cape Town Commitment then brought forth: “Reconciliation to God is inseparable from reconciliation to one another. Christ, who is our peace, made peace through the cross, and preached peace to the divided world of Jew and Gentile.”

The conference aims to address new ways of holistic mission for the future of the Church with the mission as ministry of reconciliation at its heart. Challenged with many societal issues and conflicts of people, the local churches seek to find answers and outreaches rooted in the gospel of Jesus Christ that bring people back into their initial calling to be in relationship with God. Doing shalom and reconciliation work according to 2 Cor 5 is not an add-on to missions but at the heart of God’s mission. God calls us to be reconciled with himself; the Church is sent to accomplish this calling. Being reconciled with God, means to live the love towards God, self, and neighbor in restored relationships including to steward creation and leads to enabling the local church to be (become again) a light in the city.

 Areas for consideration might be:

 Biblical/Theological Foundations

  • How can the concept of Kenosis help to understand the  contextual needs for reconciliation?

  • What hurts the most and what are the barriers to speaking out truth in love and setting a ground for forgiveness?

  • Bringing reimagining to an epistemological shift: What is an integral theology of the biblical mandate of  reconciliation?

  • How can a comprehensive theology of the missio Dei, missio  Christi, missio Spiritu help to understand the missions?

  • How does one’s ecclesiology shape congregant’s approach towards reconciliation?

  • How might eschatology influence our present perspectives and practice towards reconciliation?

  • What are some ways biblical stories model reconciliation?

Reconciliation in church planting, theological education or missionary training

  • What are the intersections between intercultural competence, diaspora ministries, and reconciliation?

  • How is a transformative disciple equipped with the tools for addressing the challenges of reconciling neighbors?

  • How can we explore and speak unbiased about the challenges of nationalism, tribalism, ethnocentrism (racism and privilege) in

  • How can we teach reconciliation in global missions but not be reconciled to our neighbor?

  • The role of an integrated approach to theological education in fostering reconciliation within cultures?

  • How might a polycentric view of missions lead to reconciliation?

Stories or examples of Reconciliation as Mission

  •  The Majority World and the West: Stories reflecting greater global community and collaboration in reconciliation

  • Where are stories of light? How are the missiological underpinnings represented in our ecclesial practices and what needs to change to let a local church be seen as the reconciliation “center” in their community?

  • How can creative, artisan approaches for trauma healing and concepts for healing wounds of ethnic conflict enable the journey for truth telling, leading to forgiveness, and creating a truly united future?

  • How does whole life or integral missions influence a ministry of reconciliation?

Final papers are to be 4500-7000 words and use Chicago Turabian author-date citation format. 

Strong papers from the Regions are forwarded to the program committee for consideration for presentation at the annual meeting, and with the strongest papers being published in our annual volume. 

2022 Call for Papers: “Missiology and the Black Experience” track

Missions and Reconciliation in the Black Missiology
Experience: Through narratives, case studies or theological exegesis, how can we explore the Black Church’s missions legacy to reimagine an integrated missions enterprise that addresses the Missio Dei through the lens of reconciliation?

Regional Vice President

Kenneth Nehrbass

The Southwest Region covers the following states: