Mission as God's Spiral of Renewal

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In this remarkable volume covering diverse subjects, in a span of three decades, Kenneth R. Ross articulates his views on the meaning and practice of Christian mission and challenges the binary view of mission that prevailed before the 1950s. He further reflects on Scotland's experiences in the world-wide Christian mission and demonstrates the centrality of Africa in any discourse on Christianity. This volume is invaluable in its argument for a rethinking of Christian mission especially in relation to the West, which is now a new frontier for Christian mission. The book will be immensely beneficial to students of missiology and general readers who are interested in the subject of Christian Mission.

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Published 06 February 2019
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EAN13 9789996060656
Language English
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Kenneth R. Ross is a pastor, scholar and ac�vist who has served as Professor of Theology at the University of Malawi and General Secretary of the Church of Scotland Board of World Mission. This book brings together his seminal essays on the meaning of Chris�an mission. Ranging widely but with par�cular focus on Scotland’s missionary legacy, African Chris�anity and the future of the West, it invites readers to consider mission as God’s spiral of renewal. “At once crea�ve, pastoral, and prophe�c, this book confirms Ken Ross’s dis�nguished reputa�on as a major mission thinker. His gripping essays bring the past into the present, and point toward the future of mission. I recommend it very highly.”
Truman Collins Professor of World ChrisIanity and History of Mission Boston University, USA
“This remarkable volume … will be immensely beneficial to students of missiology and general readers who are interested in the subject of Chris�an Mission.” Philomena Njeri Mwaura Associate Professor in African Chris�anity, Kenyaa University, Kenya President of the Interna�onal Associa�on for Mission Studies 2004-08
“…an engagement with some of the core issues with which students and scholars of mission must be engaged … it’s innova�ve and brilliant! J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu PhD President, Trinity Theological Seminary, Legon, Ghana
Cover picture shows the dance and drama youth group at the World Council of Churches World Mission Conference, Arusha, Tanzania, March 2018. Photo taken by Albin Hillert and reproduced by kind permission of the WCC.
This book is part of Mzuni Press which offers a range of books on religion, culture and society from Malawi
Mission as God's Spiral of Renewal
Kenneth R. Ross
Mission as God’s Spiral of Renewal Kenneth R. Ross
Copyright 2019 Kenneth R. Ross All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any from or by any means, elec-tronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without prior permission from the publishers. Published by Mzuni Press P/Bag 201 Luwinga Mzuzu 2 ISBN 978-99960-60-64-9 eISBN 978-99960-60-65-6 The Mzuni Press is represented outside Malawi by: African Books Collective Oxford (order@africanbookscollective.com) www.mzunipress.blogspot.com www.africanbookscollective.com Cover Design: Daniel Neumann Printed in Malawi by Baptist Publications, P.O. Box 444, Lilongwe
Mission as God’s Spiral of Renewal
Kenneth R. Ross
Mzuni Books no. 38 Mzuzu 2019
“At once creative, pastoral, and prophetic, this book confirms Ken Ross’s distinguished reputation as a major mission thinker. His gripping essays range across such subjects as mission theology and practices of partner-ship, Scottish legacies in mission, and the Malawian church’s role in de-mocratization. This book brings the past into the present, and points toward the future of mission. I recommend it very highly.” Dana L. Robert Truman Collins Professor of World Christianity and History of Mission Director, Center for Global Christianity and Mission, Boston University “A splendid book, full of good things, and with much of importance to say on the Christian past and present, in relation both to Africa and to Scot-land.” Andrew F. Walls, University of Edinburgh, Liverpool Hope University, Akrofi-Christaller Institute, Ghana “In this rich collection, veteran missionary, churchman, and ecumenist Ken Ross brings together his warm humanity and gentle wisdom to shed new light and challenge to thinking about and engaging in mission. This is a harvest of two decades of reflection and service, and a tribute to both the Scottish missionary spirit and the African church.” Steve Bevans, SVD Louis J. Luzbetak, SVD Professor of Mission and Culture, Emeritus Catholic Theological Union, Chicago “A wealth of experience in Malawi, Scotland and on international mission and ecumenical bodies make this collection of essays by Ken Ross a per-ceptive contribution to reflection on contemporary Christian mission. Local and global concerns are deftly interwoven throughout the book.” Dr Emma Wild-Wood Senior Lecturer in African Christianity and African Indigenous Religions, Centre for the Study of World Christianity, University of Edinburgh
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“In this remarkable volume covering diverse subjects, in a span of three decades, Kenneth R. Ross articulates his views on the meaning and prac-tice of Christian mission and challenges the binary view of mission that prevailed before the 1950s. He further reflects on Scotland’s experiences in the world-wide Christian mission and demonstrates the centrality of Africa in any discourse on Christianity. This volume is invaluable in its argument for a rethinking of Christian mission especially in relation to the West, which is now a new frontier for Christian mission. The book will be immensely beneficial to students of missiology and general readers who are interested in the subject of Christian Mission.” Prof Philomena Njeri Mwaura, Associate Professor in African Christianity, Kenyatta University, Kenya President of the International Association for Mission Studies 2004-2008 “In this ‘ragbag’ of essays on Christian Mission, Kenneth R. Ross offers us something that is genuinely missional, contemporary and relevant. We have here in this volume an engagement with some of the core issues with which students and scholars of mission must be engaged, including how secularization, conflict and even Trumpism affects the life and work of the world church today. In short, the work looks simple, but it’s inno-vative and brilliant! J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu PhD President, Trinity Theological Seminary, Legon, Ghana. “This collection of papers and essays by Kenneth Ross, a well-known and st prolific missiologist, revolves around mission and evangelism in the 21 century. They engage the contexts of Scotland, Africa and World Christi-anity in a spiral movement. Each worthwhile reading in its own right, all together demonstrate how mission has become global and yet needs to reflect back into the interacting contexts in order to offer orientation in the many challenges Christian discipleship is facing today. From Edin-burgh 1910 to Malawi and to Arusha 2018 and back to Brexit: truly a spiral, which is thrilling to follow!” Dr Marina Ngursangzeli Behera Oxford Centre for Mission Studies
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To Jooseop Keum who provokes the missionary imagination and gives us friends.
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Contents Introduction 11 1. "Blessed Reflex": Mission as God’s Spiral of Renewal 16 2. "Give us Friends!" The Relational Dimension of Christian Mission 31 3. Like a Mask Dancing: Partnership in Mission Enters a New Mode 46 4. Beyond Religious Tourism: Twinning as a Missionary Method 55 5. Releasing First-World Wealth for Global Mission: What Levers can be Pulled Today? 64 6. The HIV/AIDS Pandemic: What is at Stake for Christian Mission? 78 7. Christian Mission and the End of Poverty: Time for Eschatology 96 8. Ethnic Nationalism, Violent Conflict and the Grace of God 112 st 9. Christian Mission in the 21 Century: Discerning Direction 122 10. Understanding Mission Today – Points of Convergence? 140 11. The World Missionary Conference 1910: Its Scottish Provenance 150 12. James Dougall 1896-1980: Architect of Post-War Scottish Foreign Mission Policy 175 13. Edinburgh 1910 and Scottish Experience of Serving in Mission 1950-2000 197 14. Non-Western Christians in Scotland: Mission in Reverse 214 15. The Scots Abroad: Migration and Mission 230 16. Understanding Mission: Two Centuries of Scottish Experience 246 17.Together Towards Lifeand Contemporary African Theology 258 18. Christianity, Decolonization and African Nationalism: the Case of Malawi 272
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19. No One Can Shave your Head in your Absence: Malawi, Scotland and a Relational Approach to International Development 283 20. "Worrisome Trends": The Voice of the Churches in Malawi’s Third Term Debate 298 21. What Theological Education for Africa Today? 320 22. Old Churches and New Evangelism: Christian Mission in Today’s Europe 341 23.Together Towards Lifein the Context of Liquid Modernity: Mission and Evangelism in the Age of Secularization 359 24. Còmhraidhean376: Doing Local Theology in Argyll 25. Brexit, Trump and Christ’s Call to Discipleship 400 Select Bibliography 423 Index 439
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Acknowledgements
Like many volumes of collected essays this one is a rather loose assembly of essays, lectures and articles that have been presented at different times and places over an extended period of time. There is no close pro-gression from one chapter to the next but they are held together, I hope, by a unifying concern with the meaning and practice of the mission to which Christ calls his followers in today’s context. Most of the chapters have previously been published in books and journals. I am therefore deeply grateful to editors and publishers who have given their permis-sion for their republication in this volume.
My debts are acknowledged as follows. Chapter 1 first appeared in the International Bulletin of Missionary Research Vol. 27 No. 4 (October 2003), pp. 62-68, having been delivered as the St Colm’s Lecture of 2001 in Edinburgh; chapter 2 in Casely B. Essamuah and David K. Ngaruiya ed., Communities of Faith in Africa and the African Diaspora, Eugene OR: Pickwick Publications, 2013, pp. 135-48 (used by permission of Wipf and Stock Pub-lishers www.wipfandstock.com); chapters 3 and 4 in theJournal of Re-thinking Mission, online journal, April 2008 (with thanks to United Socie-ty Partners in the Gospel); chapters 5 and 7 inMission Studies, Vol. 22/1 (2005), pp. 9-24 and Vol. 24/1 (2007), pp. 79-97; chapters 6 and 22 in Missiology: An International Review, XXXII/3 (July 2004), pp. 337-48 and XXXVII (October 2009), pp. 511-525; chapter 8 in Howard Mellor & Timo-thy Yates ed.,Mission, Violence and Reconciliation, Calver: Cliff College, 2004, pp. 99-107; chapter 9 in Kenneth R. Ross,Edinburgh 2010: Spring-board for Mission, Pasadena: William Carey International University, 2009, pp. 53-74; chapters 10 and 16 inTransformation: An International Journal of Holistic Mission Studies, Vol. 34.4 (October 2017), pp. 260-66 and Vol. 31.4 (October 2014), pp. 73-81; chapters 11 and 13 in Kenneth R. Ross ed.Roots and Fruits: Retrieving Scotland’s Missionary Story, Ox-ford: Regnum, 2014, pp. 38-56 and 91-104; chapter 12 in theRecords of the Scottish Church History Society, Vol. XXXVII (2007), pp. 183-206; chap-ters 14, 15 and 24 inTheology in Scotland, Vol. XII/2 (Autumn 2005), pp. 71-89, Vol. 20/1 (Spring 2013), pp. 25-41 and Vol. 25/1 (Spring 2018), pp. 35-59; chapter 17 in Kenneth R. Ross, Jooseop Keum, Kyriaki Avtzi and Roderick R. Hewitt ed.,Ecumenical Missiology: Changing Landscapes and
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