Communication(s) is at the heartbeat of God’s interaction with humanity. God has communicated with us by revealing himself through his Word (the Bible), becoming flesh as the Word (Emmanuel) and empowering us through the Holy Spirit with gifts and means of communication(s), enabling us to participate in his mission to others.
Communication(s) connects with mission and all that it entails through a vast diversity of avenues. Artists, evangelists, monks, preachers, and missionaries express themselves through a multitude of devices and vehicles of communication. Anthropologists explore the process of communication within and across cultural and social boundaries. Bible translators explore how to make the Word available in heart languages. Historians explore ways God’s people have integrated communication(s) with mission throughout the story line of the Church. Biblical scholars engage with God’s revelation, theologians with the impact of a communicating God and humankind made in God’s image. At the personal level Christians communicate God’s Good News polycentrically with others across the world, share the evangel with others in mentoring and discipling relationships. All of these are viable ways in which communication and mission intertwine.
Given the multidimensional integration of communication(s) with mission, the Evangelical Missiological Society invites you to consider how your particular strengths and interests might intersect with the annual theme and impact missiology, and to frame a proposal to present a paper. Possible topics include but are not limited to:
- How language affects communication of the gospel message in one’s own, intercultural or multicultural societies
- Contributions from theological disciplines (biblical studies, systematic theology, Christian history, homiletics, pastoral theology, missiology, pastoral counseling) that connect communication(s) with mission
- Contemporary challenges of mission stemming from communication(s) practice, ideology or world view
- Explorations of key global missiological thinkers and practitioners connecting communication(s) with mission; contextualization is a prime example.
- Communication(s) vehicles and mission such as art, music, orality, media, preaching, storying, and social media
- Global case studies examining communication(s) and mission, including stories of success and failure
In addition to presentations on the theme of this year's conference, at the regional level we also welcome proposals on other themes and have a special interest in student presentations.
To propose a paper, submit your topic title and a 150-200 word abstract by January 15 here: https://tinyurl.com/EMSSouthCentralAbstracts2021. Please include your name, affiliation (school or organization) and contact information as you would want it to appear in the conference materials.
Selected papers presented at the regional meetings will be invited to be presented at the annual EMS meeting in Dallas, September 17-19, 2021, leading to the possibility of being published as a chapter in the EMS Annual Compendium for 2021. These accepted papers going to the national level should be 4500-7000 words in length and use Chicago Turabian author-date citation format. 2021 conference chairs and editors are Dr. Sue Russell (Asbury Seminary), Dr. Rochelle Scheuermann (Wheaton College), Dr. Scott Moreau (Wheaton College) and Dr. Marcus Dean (Houghton College).
2020 - This year's regional turned into a Zoom conference, due to COVID-10 restrictions. By God’s grace, it ended up being our largest regional yet! We had 110 registrants from 7 states in the US and one person Zoomed in from Poland. These attendees represented over 40 organizations. The two plenaries were co-presented by Dr. William (Bill) Taylor and Dr. Michael A. Ortiz. In addition, the conference schedule featured 25 papers presented in 5 concurrent sessions, averaging 60+ people in attendance. Break times and lunch featured topic-focused discussion and prayer in each of the five Zoom rooms. We offered Zoom training for attendees, presenters, and the ten Zoom room monitors who facilitated the meeting. Those Zoom training documents are available at this Google folder. Only a few of the 28 presenters had connection difficulties, and they were still able to present their material, just with limited PPT capability. We experienced a great deal of joy as we saw the blessing of God on this conference.
2019 - The 2019 regional conference for South Central EMS was held on March 2nd. There were 19 papers presented plus a plenary session by Dr. Werner Mischke on “An Honor-Bearing Gospel for Shame-Fueled Crises” and a closing panel on "In Contexts of Crisis, Does the Gospel of the Kingdom Better Address the Question of Identity?" Conference attendees numbered approximately 75 people, from 8 states and 25 organizations/schools. Thank you to our volunteers and campus hosts who helped us make this event possible. (Submitted by Robin Harris, PhD, South Central VP)
2018 - The 2018 regional conference for South Central EMS was held on April 7, our second "stand alone" conference for this region. The conference featured 17 papers plus a plenary session by Dr. Raphael Anzenberger on and a closing panel on "The Impact of Honor -Shame Issues on Mission and Evangelism." Conference attendees numbered approximately 70 people, from 4 states and 15 organizations/schools. Once again, strong participation from volunteers and the EMS Logistics Coordinator, Bill Harris, made the conference run smoothly. (Submitted by Robin Harris, PhD, South Central VP)
2017 - The 2017 South Central EMS regional conference in Dallas took place on March 4 and was the first "stand alone" conference for this region of EMS. We were delighted at the outstanding level of participation! The conference featured 21 papers and 2 plenary sessions, plus vibrant multi-cultural worship and opportunities for networking. There were 85 registrants from 8 states, 7 schools, and 35 agencies, organizations, and/or churches. I'm grateful for the support of Dr. Robert Priest, EMS president, who agreed to come as a plenary speaker, for the large number of volunteers that helped things run smoothly, and for the logistics coordination provided by EMS Logistics Coordinator Bill Harris. (Submitted by Robin Harris, PhD, South Central VP)
2016 - The EMS South Central Regional meeting was held in conjunction with ETS and EPS Regional Meetings at Dallas Semianry on April 1-2. Overall there were about 300 people in attendance for all three societies. EMS members had about 70 people participate in our sessions where we had fourteen papers presented on the theme of "Missions and the Local Church." Several papers were recommended to the national committee for the selection process for the annual EMS meeting in October and for possible selection for our national publications.
2015 - The South Central Region held its regional annual meeting in conjunction with the ETS Regional Meeting at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary April 10-11, 2015. We had two EMS tracks at our regional meeting - one being the national theme of "Controversies in Missions;" the other was "General Important Topics in Missions." We had about 55 members in attendance and nine excellent papers presented, with six chosen as possible for presentation at the national meeting in September.
2014 - The EMS South Central Region held its regional meeting together with the Evangelical Theological Society Southwest Region meeting at Southwestern Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, TX on March 7-8,. Several papers were presented on the national theme for 2014 - Diaspora Missiology. There were about 90 in attendance for this joint conference.