Setting a course for ministry in the 21st century:
Connect. Cultivate. Change.
ministrElife is a product of the American Baptist Home Mission Societies. American Baptist Home Mission Societies has a vision of a better world. A world transformed by the healing power of the Gospel. A world transformed by passionate American Baptist leaders and disciples who are creating and building ministries that meet human needs.
To bring the healing Gospel to our hurting world, we seek new and creative opportunities for cultivating Christian leaders from all walks of life, for equipping disciples who broaden the understanding of what it means to follow Jesus, and for working on behalf of freedom, justice and the biblical ideals of Beloved Community.
We are confronting the future of the Christian faith in the United States and Puerto Rico head on by asking the questions:
How can we cultivate strong, spiritually competent leaders?
How can we equip disciples as agents of change in God's name?
And how can American Baptist Home Mission Societies collaborate with these leaders and disciples—and all the passions and resources they bring to ministry—to heal and transform hurting communities in mission fields across the United States and Puerto Rico?
We are answering these questions by leading the way in convening and connecting various American Baptist partners into networks that address a wide range of missional needs and opportunities because we believe that we can accomplish more—and build stronger, more viable ministries—together.
The net of partners invited to join the networks is cast widely: We are engaging not only American Baptist Churches USA regions but also congregations, colleges and seminaries, along with Neighborhood Action Program Christian centers, specialized ministries, language group leaders (Asian, Indian, Latino, Haitian and others), volunteers and friends of ABHMS.
The future of ministry, we are convinced, will be found in a model of sharing that includes many partners thinking creatively about a combined inventory of assets, spiritual gifts, human and material resources, skill sets and more.
In these mission networks—which we call “aligned action networks”—teams of ABHMS staff are convening mission-minded partners committed to making an impact in their neighborhoods and communities. We are collaborating with historic and new partners in nine geographically informed areas that are assessing regional resources, assets, passions and ideas for action, along with identifying and inviting to the table local agencies, individuals and institutions who wish to contribute talent and resources.
We are encouraging network partners to jointly develop ministry and mission proposals that meet local needs and require collaboration among multiple partners. And we are excited about the connections we are making with our historic mission partners as well as the connections our partners are making with each other.
Through these aligned action networks, ABHMS is relating to larger numbers of partners than ever before in more regions of the country. We are discovering increased opportunities for both established and emerging mission partners to share resources, learnings and best practices. And the strengthened partnership connections are increasing our mission impact on the mission field exponentially.
Perhaps the most important discovery of all, however, is finding that there is no shortage of resources, talent or passion for mission when we and our partners combine these gifts for the sake of God's ministry.