The Diocese of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, in the province of the West Indies, have launched a season of intentional discipleship, following the call of last year’s Anglican Consultative Council. Around 1,500 clergy and laity gathered at the Church Teachers’ College in Mandeville, Jamaica, yesterday (Sunday) to hear Bishop Howard Gregory explain the importance of discipleship.
Yesterday’s launch followed two two-day seminars for around 150 clergy and laity, presented by the Anglican Communion’s director of mission, Canon John Kafwanka, and Canon Mark Oxbrow, co-authors of Intentional Discipleship and Disciple-Making: An Anglican Guide for Christian Life and Formation.
The Bishop of Kingston, Robert Thompson, said that “intentional discipleship and the regular practice of making disciples are central to our understanding of salvation, mission, and ecclesiology.” He said that the seminars provided clergy and church workers and opportunity “to contemplate the biblical and theological tools needed for discipleship-making in the home, the community and the society as a whole.”
Commenting on the success of the launch, Canon John Kafwanka said: “Thank you for the leadership of Bishop Howard Gregory and the two bishop suffragan, Robert [Thompson] of Kingston and Leon [Golding] of Montego Bay, and for the energy and passion for Jesus among all who attended. May God grow and mature the seeds into fruits to God's own glory.”
The international call to intentional discipleship was made in a resolution at the last meeting of the ACC in Lusaka, Zambia in 2016. Pointing to the gospel imperative to make disciples, the resolution urged members of the Anglican Communion worldwide to “produce resources to equip and enable the whole church to be effective in making new disciples of Jesus Christ.”