Lusaka and Kitwe
26 - 29 July 1999
It was a unique gathering of emerging mission minded Zambian Church leaders united by a common commitment to the Church's highest calling to "make disciples of all nations (ethne). "It was a time for worship, praise and thanksgiving, confession and rededication to God. It was also a time for crucial decision-making and planning that will carry the Church into the next millennium more effectively and able to respond to the challenge of reaching the unreached people groups using every possible resource to become a mission force.
In two separate consultations the sense of anticipation and purposeful involvement in the vision, which had lingered on, some how looking for a new movement was strongly felt. As the more than 120 participants from various Church denominations and ministries assembled for the historic Zambia AD 2000 & Beyond Movement Consultation, first at Mulungushi International Conference Centre from 26-27 July 1999 and at Mindolo Ecumenical Foundation from 28-29 July 1999.
The programme for the consultations was intensive with each day having a packed schedule including stimulating plenary speakers followed by group discussions which focused on the vision and core values of mission, National AD 2000 Initiatives; African models. Much discussion centered on what the Church in Zambia should do to develop a more effective church planting strategy to complete the task of evangelizing the least unreached people groups within its borders and beyond.
Delegates were privileged to hear challenging presentations from the International Director of the AD 2000 & Beyond Movement, Luis Bush, and the AD2000 Senior Associate for National Initiatives and Africa Regional Coordinator, Ross Campbell. Luis spoke passionately about the birthing of a vision and the need to seek a fresh sense of the will of God for Zambia right now. He went on to explain some of the barriers which arise when such a vision is birthed and called on the churches to wait upon God for a breakthrough. Ross undertook a wide-ranging overview of AD 2000 National Initiatives and models stressing the need to develop the vision into a clear cut statement. He drew the attention of participants to the fact that Zambia was the first and only nation to have declared itself Christian. But asked the Church whether they have assessed themselves as to how Christian they are and to what extent.
In the opening address in Lusaka the Moderator of the Reformed Church in Zambia, Rev. Japhet Ndhlovu, said that there was urgent need for unity among Churches in Zambia if the mission of making disciples was to be achieved. He pointed out that the central thrust of the mandate the Lord gave to the disciples was to ensure that the gospel penetrated all the peoples of the world. Pastor Sky Banda of Maranatha Church, Kitwe called on leaders to arise and move together by releasing every possible resource available towards reaching the least unreached people in Zambia and beyond because of the need and the danger for the unreached. Pastor Barry Ilunga of World Outreach Team presented a challenging plea for the Zambian Church to move from "mission field" mentality to becoming a "mission force".
One of the desired outcomes of these consultations was to see the emergence of a broad based national initiative which would advance the implementation of the vision of "a church for every people and the gospel for every person" become a reality in Zambia. The consultations also sought to provide a forum for interaction and networking of plans for more effective church planting. I believe that these objectives were reached in a large measure and will be carried forward by the ongoing working groups established.
In both Lusaka and Kitwe Coordinating Committees were formed together with specialized working groups to focus on: (1) the sensitisation of Christian leaders to the challenge of the 'unfinished task'; (2) the mobilisation of prayer and intercession; (3) research to provide accurate up todate information on the challenge of evangelism and missions; (4) the training of new workers and missionaries; (5) the development of effective strategies for evangelism and missions and (6) to facilitate an ongoing process of consultation.
AD 2000 National Coordinator for Zambia
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