Members of the Anglican Church of Melanesia (ACOM) should “arise and shine for Jesus Christ,” the Province said this week as it launched a decade-long focus on evangelism and renewal. The programme was launched on Pentecost Sunday with a special service at St Barnabas Cathedral, in Honiara, in which the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion, Dr Josiah Idowu-Fearon, preached. On the eve of the service, the province held an open-air evangelistic crusade in the car park of Honiara City Council.
Writing on its official Facebook page, the province said: “It is believed that this program will significantly transform our lives to be renewed, revived, and reformed so that we can be able to live out the realities of the Gospel truths as we seek God’s Kingdom together.
“Therefore it is a Christian call to all ACOM member to arise, and shine for Jesus Christ and to continue in the work of equipping, mentoring, forming, teaching, discipleship and nurturing those who follow Jesus Christ, individually and as a Church. The way towards the eternal goal, is to honor and glorify God.
It says that the goal of its Decade of Evangelism and Renewal, which will run until 2027, is “to renew and revitalise the mission and ministry of the Church through renewing and strengthening all members of ACOM to become more committed with [their] time, money, manpower, knowledge, wisdom, courage, strength, understanding, patience, humility and . . . earthly possessions and properties, for the sake of the Kingdom of God.”
Sunday’s service came in the middle of a two-week programme of training and events designed to equip and encourage Christians in the province to move forward. In addition to Dr Idowu-Fearon, the Archbishop of Melanesia, George Takeli, who led some of the teaching events, invited the Anglican Communion’s director of mission, John Kafwanka, who spoke about intentional discipleship in a keynote speech.
“Discipleship is a way of life,” he told his audience. “Discipleship is not a course of study. . . Discipleship is not simply about personal and spiritual growth – me and my God. There is nothing like that in discipleship. It is not you and your god; because remember – the second commandment says: ‘love your neighbour as you love yourself’. That completes the circle. It’s about God, it’s about others, it’s about you. That completes our discipleship.
“So it is not about my personal faith and my salvation: no, no, no, no, no! It is about more than that. It is about the whole of life. It’s about my relationship with my neighbour and the person I meet on the street: the way I treat them, the way I speak to them, the way I relate to them,. That is part of my discipleship.”