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Motivated by Faith: Working in Secular and Faith-based Environments Ray Martin, Nick Henwood.

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Presentation on theme: "Motivated by Faith: Working in Secular and Faith-based Environments Ray Martin, Nick Henwood."— Presentation transcript:

1 Motivated by Faith: Working in Secular and Faith-based Environments Ray Martin, Nick Henwood

2 1: Where are you between A and B? A - I love participating in active workshops at the CCIH conference. B - I hate active workshops where I’m not sure what to expect next! We welcome you to our workshop - which will be quite conventional - but we hope everyone will participate in a practical activity for the first 5 minutes.

3 2: An organisation’s philosophy… A - I'm not very concerned about the philosophical principles of my work-place, rather, my goal is to be salt and light for Jesus wherever I am. B - I am keen to work where I fully agree with the organization's aims and values. Well-discerned Christian calls do include service in a variety of settings, but it is well to ascertain the level of integrity of institutions that you could associate with.

4 3: Christian fellowship A - Close Christian fellowship is very important to me - I need to spend time with Christian brothers and sisters every day. B - I can survive, and even flourish through times when the fellowship is just God and me. In order to live out a call faithfully and wholeheartedly, Christians need to identify structures of support and accountability (the "2 or 3 gathered in my Name") but practicalities will vary among settings.

5 4: At Nick’s interview for a secular organisation, the interviewer suggested that he should limit the expression of the ‘faith side’ of his life to evenings and weekends! A – I am happy for my faith to take a low profile at my work-place – I can show Jesus through the integrity of my life. B – I want to be permitted to be explicitly Christian – perhaps praying, or sharing a verse of scripture with someone – at any time. Know yourself and the expectations / open- mindedness of an organisation.

6 5: Long-term / Short-term? A - I'm interested in the long haul... getting engaged with language learning, and serving in a place for 10 years or more. B - I'm interested in variety, in working alongside lots of different people, perhaps serving in several different locations over one or two years. Some Christian organisations have short-term vision, some secular organisations make long-term commitments. However the Christian organisation Nick worked with gave time for language learning and encouraged long-term thinking, while the secular one did not.

7 6: Just a job… or more? A - I am primarily looking for an organisation to employ me in a job. I can take care of my family’s needs, plan our involvement in a local church, and explore possibilities for Christian service myself. B – I am looking for an organisation that will support my whole family, and help us to link in with a church and find our roles. Christian organisations often give more attention and support for your wider life and family than secular organisations.

8 7: Consider your main workplace today: A – I work for a secular organisation that frowns on overt expression of faith. B – I work for a Christian organisation that encourages overt expression of faith. We wonder if you will opt to work with a similar organisation in the future – or are you ready for a change?! This is what we aim to explore in this seminar.

9 Buzz in pairs Tell your partner one thing that’s struck you from the exercise.

10 Ray Martin Experiences of different work environments

11 Nick Henwood (Nepal) Contrast between United Mission to Nepal (Christian umbrella agency) (1995-1999) - Rural Community Health and Development work. And Medecins du Monde (Secular Humanitarian aid agency) (2000-2004) - Community / government health-post TB / HIV support.

12 UMN Time to learn about Nepali culture. Emphasis on language learning. Encouragement towards involvement with the Nepali church. Like minded colleagues. But… I never had my own bank account. I never bought a stamp at a post office or spoke with customs or visa officials.

13 Medecins du Monde I was the only long-term expatriate in the project. Hands-on role with government negotiations for M.o.U.s, visas, etc. Poor pastoral support, my family were ignored. However, great opportunities for independent action. We thrived… on the foundation we’d laid when working with UMN…

14 A biblical model… Sent by their church… In the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen and Saul. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off. Acts 13:1-3 (NIV)

15 …but engaged in a commercial enterprise in their new context After this, Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. There he met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had ordered all the Jews to leave Rome. Paul went to see them, and because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them. Acts 18:1-3 (NIV)

16 Futher examples…

17 Discussion in pairs Where are you now? How will you decide what kind of organization to work with in your next cross-cultural assignment. One thing you’ve learned from this workshop.


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