The following is a report from the Rev. Dr. Titus Presler of St. Matthew’s, Enosburg Falls, who represented the Episcopal Church in Vermont at the 2016 Global Episcopal Mission Network (GEMN) Global Mission Conference in May. GEMN, of which the Episcopal Church in Vermont is a member diocese, brings people together to exchange ideas and best practices, encourage each other, and provide resources to those who are exploring their call to engage in global mission. Presler serves on the GEMN Board of Directors.
“Evangelism and reconciliation are two sides of the same coin,” declared Presiding Bishop Michael Curry at the Annual Global Mission Conference held May 18-20 in Puerto Rico by the Global Episcopal Mission Network (GEMN).
“I do thank God for you, both for GEMN and those that serve as missioners and missionaries on behalf of the Episcopal Church in the context of our global community,” said Curry in his keynote address. “The truth is that what you do and what we do matters, and how we do it matters. It matters significantly, temporally and eternally. It matters.”
Over 120 people from Episcopal dioceses in the USA and Latin America attended the conference on the theme of Mission amid Migration in the context of the record 60 million migrants, refugees and displaced persons around the world. Episcopal Migration Ministries offered a keynote, and the conference closed with a panel of Latin American and Caribbean church leaders discussing migration challenges in their region.
About 20 Episcopal Volunteers in Mission (EVIM) and members of the Young Adult Service Corps serving in Latin America and the Caribbean attended the conference. GEMN’s Mission Formation Program, which trains people to advocate for world mission, drew 15 people for the two-year formation process, including four people each from the dioceses of Ohio and Belize, which share a companion relationship.
I offered two workshops: “Not Alone but in Companionship: Anglican Resources for World Mission,” and “Reconciliation: Testing our Mission by God’s Vision.”
GEMN is a freestanding network of dioceses, congregations, seminaries, organizations and individuals who support one another in world mission and advocate for the Episcopal Church’s deeper global engagement.
Interested parishes and individuals in Vermont are invited to be in touch with me: 802.326.3157 or via email. GEMN’s 2017 conference will focus on reconciliation in mission and be held May 24-26 at Camp McDowell in the Diocese of Alabama.