[FT] Address by Irish Quaker Missionary Physician

Joe Ginder joe.ginder at lbfc.org
Mon Oct 26 14:19:31 PDT 2009


 
Bill Rushby asks:
> With Larry, I also wonder about the part played by the 
> Evangelical Friends' mission efforts in Ireland.  Is it 
> legitimate for one Quaker denomination to establish mission 
> outposts on someone else's turf?  The Conservative Friends 
> have faced this issue, and some criticism, for establishing 
> meetings in areas where other groups enjoyed a monopoly in the past.

I don't believe there is any such thing as "someone else's turf".  It all
belongs to God, and he arranges his people through Christ as he sees fit.
If Christ says "go", then those to whom he is speaking had best go.

Of course, it is only a sign that we really love one another, as his people,
to communicate and work together as that makes sense.  This sensibility
should cross group boundaries, and respect them, between all groups of
Jesus' followers, not just among those who have one sort of historical
connection or another.

Then there are those who are descended in some physical way from some of
Jesus' people in the past, but whom no longer know him.  Jesus' people would
have to connect with these in a different way, but certainly not by
considering where they are to be someone else's turf.

>From the perspective of those who are already there, it is only a matter of
due diligence for newcomers to find out what God is already doing in them as
they come to the area and act appropriately.  Good missionaries who are
well-prepared know that God has gone ahead of them and that they work to his
agenda rather than inventing their own.  Followers on the ground have reason
to appreciate the arrival of new workers for the harvest, since such are
few.  Those working for the same Lord are not in competition, even though we
often feel as though we are - and act like it!

If everyone wants God's glory more than their own...

--Joe




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