FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(STAVANGER, NORWAY – July 6, 2023) In pursuit of its mission to “Network the Baptist Family to Impact the World for Christ,” the Baptist World Alliance (BWA) launched the Global Baptist Mission Network (GBMN) this week at its annual meeting in Stavanger, Norway.
Designed as a partnership embracing interdependence, collaboration, and cooperation, this new network will connect mission-focused organizations, mission departments, and individuals working with a focus on advancement of world mission. With representation from all six BWA regions, 23 mission organizations from 17 countries have joined as inaugural members. At the time of launch, the network’s membership comprises more than 7,000 missionaries.
Providing a space for relationship building, discussion, and networking, the GBMN aims to help its members work more effectively. The network will facilitate relationships among Baptist mission leaders and movements, provide thought leadership in the field of mission, identify and reach new mission fields, collaborate between agencies and mission personnel, and curtail resource waste.
As mission needs have changed in the 21st century, the essentiality of cooperation has grown.
“The missional frontiers have been reorganized with the shifting of the center of gravity for mission from the Global North to the Global South. This paradigmatic shift calls for interdependence not independence, collaboration not isolation, and networking not parochialism,” said Everton Jackson, GBMN Facilitator and BWA Director of Integral Mission. “Consequently, the GBMN will create a space for conversation around missional priorities that will require collaboration in response to 21st century missional trends.”
Each year the GBMN will gather during the BWA Annual Gathering with subgroups meeting in the interim to work on collaborative projects identified by the network.
The inaugural members by region are: All Africa Baptist Fellowship – Nigerian Baptist Convention (Nigeria), Ethiopian Addis Kidan Baptist Church (Ethiopia); Asia Pacific Baptist Federation – Baptist Mission Australia (Australia), Baptist Church of Mizoram (India), Korean Foreign Baptist Mission (Korea), Nagaland Missions Movement (India), Union of Indonesian Baptist Churches (Indonesia); Caribbean Baptist Fellowship – Jamaica Baptist Union (Jamaica); European Baptist Federation: Baptist Union of Denmark (Denmark), BMS World Mission (Great Britain), Living Word Society, The Convention of Lebanese Baptist Evangelical Churches (Lebanon), Russian Union of Evangelical Christian Baptists (Russia), Ukrainian Baptist Union (Ukraine); North American Baptist Fellowship – Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (USA), NBCA (INC) – International Foreign Mission (USA), American Baptist International Ministries (USA), Lott Carey Baptist Foreign Mission Convention (USA), Canadian Baptist Ministries (Canada); Union of Baptists in Latin America – Brazilian Baptist World Mission, JMM (Brazil), Confederación Evangélica Bautista – Evangelical Baptist Confederation (Argentina), Directorate of Missions and Evangelization – National Baptist Convention of Venezuela (Venezuela), The Administrative Mission Board, National Baptist Convention of Brazil (Brazil), Junta de missoes nacionais – Board of National Missions (Brazil).
“We’re at our best together as we celebrate diversity, as we cherish our unity, and as we partner together to do things we could never do on our own,” said Scott Pilgrim, Baptist Mission Australia.
With more than 7,000 people groups still unreached, the scope of the Great Commission call to “go and make disciples of all nations” remains great.
“In the last 10 years, the worldwide Baptist movement has grown 29%,” said Elijah Brown, BWA General Secretary and CEO. “But at the same time, there are still three billion people who are unreached with the good news of Jesus Christ. Whether it’s in hurting megacities in Asia or in rural parts of Africa or in places in Europe and North America where the church has been in decline, this is a time to step away from our traditional paradigms and to engage in new collaboration.”
To learn more, visit BaptistWorld.org/global-baptist-mission-network.
Inaugural members of the Global Baptist Mission Network gather together at the BWA Annual Gathering for a time of prayer led by BWA President Tomás Mackey.