Letter from International Director – May 2011
A regular TV programme in England is the Antiques Road Show. Here a group of antique specialists travel around the country inviting people to bring their belongings to be viewed and valued. I will never forget the series in which someone brought an old looking jug and the specialist valued it over £ 20,000!!! Why would someone pay that much for a jug? Who sets the value? Who establishes the worth of any item or commodity? The answer is scarily simple. We determine the value of any and every item in our world by our willingness to pay for it. If someone was willing to pay £20,000 for that jug, the value is established. Emotion, history, perceived beauty and the story of the item are often indicators that inform the price we are willing to pay, but it still comes down how much we are willing to pay.
Who sets the value of a human life? Jesus Christ paid the ultimate price – his life. Genesis 2:7 says "the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostril the breath of life, and man became a living being." We are made from dust and the living God breathed his life into us. Already at our formation we were given value through the life giving breath of God. Each one of us made in the image of God; each one of us valued; Christ paid the price for us.
These important facts are at the heart of integral mission. Now it is our turn to ask what value we place on the lives of the people around us, our communities, those who are oppressed and marginalised, poor or rich, in positions of power or in prison, young or older, healthy or unwell, male or female, doctor or murderer. As the antique specialist varies the value of different items, do we likewise vary the value of different lives dependent on our emotion, their history, their beauty, their story?
Jesus longs that each one will come to him and know his love and have life in all its fullness. We need to ask God to help us love and value people like that as it is transformational both for you and those we love. It is not a passive love but a love that is willing to go the extra mile, to engage in and with the lives of those around us.
They will know us by our love! (John 13:34-35)
Shaha Bahadur Gurung
It is with regret and deep sadness that we say good-bye to Shaha, who died of a massive heart attack on Monday 16th May in the evening while at home with his wife, Samjhana and their three sons.
Shaha has dedicated his life to serving God, drawing on his gifts and passion for integral mission, he has been a member of the Micah Network Asia Regional Coordinating Group, and has been the engine behind the set up and implementation of Micah network Nepal.
If you have had the privilege of knowing and working with Shaha you will know that he was a man of integrity and had great joy working out his faith and helping others in their walk. We will all miss you greatly.
We stand with Samjhana and her boys as they work through this terribly loss, and pray that God will hold his arms around you all.
Web Site Launched
After much expectation and lengthy postponements we have at last launched the new Micah Network web site: www.micahnetwork.org
You will notice that we are still populating and translating and so each day more information is available. Apologies for this, but we felt it was better to go live than delay any longer.
All members will receive a username and password, which they can use to sign in with on the web site. This will give you the following access:
• The forum discussions and member wiki pages
• 'The Network' page which will allow you to search for members around the world, filtering by country, by type of organisation and by speciality. By clicking onto the member you will be given information about what they do, who's who and how to contact them. We hope this creates some great networking opportunities.
• The database for consultants and trainers
• The Notice board – all members can notify the Network of vacancies, new books, events etc.
• News – any articles, news stories, interesting research etc. that you would like to share with the Network can be posted and shared.
• Annual membership contributions can be sent to us via the web site – see under "Contribute": www. micahnetwork.org/contribute
Registration and information on all Micah Network events are available on our website and we no longer have to use other website as we have in the past.
Forums will begin to move over to the website in the coming weeks.
Please do visit and start using the website as it is one of our main platforms to network and keep informed. If you find any glitches or have suggestions to improve, there is a feedback form that can be completed – this link can be found on the footer of each page on the website.
Global Triennial Consultation – hold these dates!
The Micah Network Global Triennial Consultation will be held in Thun, Switzerland from the 10th to 14th September 2012, with TearFund Schweiz acting as our host.
We are working on the theme, content and speakers, so now is the time for you to write to us and suggest what you feel is important to have at this special consultation.
Please send your suggestions to[email protected] - thanks.
More information will be on our website shortly.
4/14 Window West Bengal Consultation 2011
Theme: To reach and raise up children and the young generation together for transformation.
Dates: 19th to 21st October 2011
Venue: Seva Kendra, Kolkata - India
1. Children Ministry/Teaching Methodologies/Children's Church/Intercession
2. Preparing your church for effective children's ministry
3. Holistic Child Development
4. Our most personal 4/14 Window: Building godly generations in our own families, our children and grandchildren
5. Child Rights
6. Children Trafficking & Child Sexual Abuse
7. Child Care and Counselling
8. Platform Children
9. Child Health/Children living with HIV/AIDS
10. Leadership of Connecting and Facilitation in 4/14 Window
11. Child Labour
13. Understanding Children: Biblical, Contextual and Missiological Perspectives
14. Modern Technology
15. Children with Disabilities (Differently Abled Children)
For more information and registration please contact:
Empowering for Children – book by Ravi Jayakaran
Principles, Strategies, and Techniques for Mobilizing Child Participation in the Development Process
Empowering Children is especially designed for field practitioners seeking ways to encourage young people — particularly the marginalized — to become more involved in changing their circumstances. Through dozens of exercises and lessons, the book presents a variety of practical methods for engaging children in the development process — from assessments to evaluations. Discussions on issues such as personal empowerment, self-esteem, problem analysis, and child protection can equip leaders to help children serve as agents of change who understand how valuable they are. The book concludes with preparations for a community child participation plan.
From a Christian perspective, the realization that all children have dignity and are created in the image of God helps us to see that every child's input is valuable. The Bible's concepts of community, church, and mission further help us to see that God not only uses kids in his wonderful plan, but that he also wants all of his children — male, female, young, and old — to participate in his work in the world.
Author: Ravi Jayakaran with Jennifer Orona, Editor
Ravi Jayakaran is the vice president of Global Programmes for MAP International, a member of Micah Network.
Silent no More
Silent no more is a movement that has originated from a Tearfund report, 'Silent no More'. This report looked at the challenges and potential for the worldwide church to address sexual violence based on research commissioned originally in Liberia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Burundi.
Out of this report, a partnership was started between Tearfund, Lambeth Palace, The Anglican Communion, Christian Aid and Restored. We are all striving to work together, envisioning and mobilising the church to speak out against sexual violence, show strong and positive leadership and be a 'safe' place for people to go to.
We are all committed to seeing the untapped potential of the church be realised and would be delighted if you would commit to working with us to achieve this vision.
If you would like to show your support, please sign the pledge at www.wewillspeakout.org
For any further information please contact Sarah Reilly on[email protected] or +44 (0)208 943 7821
Asia: 17th to 21st October 2011 – Sri Lanka
Africa: 15th to 19th November 2011 – Zambia
Europe: 23rd to 27th April 2012 – Germany. This is in partnership with CCD
Latin America: The Integral Mission and Arts and Communication Consultation has now been incorporated into the CLADE V Assembly that will take place in Costa Rica in 2012 – more information to follow.
Integral Mission Conversation in Indonesia
From the 9th to 13th May 2011 Yayasan Sion Foundation, a member of Micah Network, hosted an Integral Mission Conversation in Salatiga, Indonesia. 44 participants attended this gathering coming from all over Indonesia.
Sion Foundation has been working in Indonesia since 1977. Just after the conversation we were taken to see some of the work done. Sion Foundation runs a senior school and a vocational training centre, which has had an amazing transformational impact on the lives of hundreds of young people, their families and teachers. One of the impressive aspects of this work was seen in, not just the programmes and training undertaken, but also in the environmental and sustainable approach Sion has taken. All around the property, recycling containers are found; the lighting and cooking fuel is bio-gas, created on site by their very own cows. The installation of this bio-gas system cost US $2,500 and yet not only covers the needs of the boarding school but also the immediate families living around the school. A mushroom cropping system is also on site and the community are astounded to learn how much mushrooms can be harvested every month. The income supplements the needs of the school.
What Sion have accomplished here is worth a visit to learn from and replicate. They welcome members to come and see their work and have an expert bio-gas staff member who trains others to develop similar systems.
Yayasan Sion Foundation can be found on our website atwww.micahnetwork.org/members if you are a member or alternatively contact [email protected] for their contact details.
Review of Micah Declaration on Integral Mission
Please take a look at the feedback so far on the website. The Review will take place in the UK from the 23rd to 24th June 2011 and will help us map out the way ahead. We encourage you to send in any feedback or comments prior to this meeting.
Read the Declaration:http://www. micahnetwork.org/integral- mission
Membership Contributions – 2011 – URGENT Request
We started this newsletter reflecting on the value we place on items and on people. We would like to end with a call to all our members and contacts that have stood beside Micah Network over the years. We acknowledge that the economic climate is such that many of us have had to tighten our belts and cut back. The impact is really being felt by Micah Network and so we have a number of requests to make of you:
1. If you have as yet not sent in your 2011 annual contribution please do so.
2. If you are able to engage in raising support or putting us in contact with people who would like to engage in supporting Micah Network – email[email protected]
3. If you are able to commit to supporting a specific need in Micah Network then please contact us. The most urgent need we have now is the support of our three regional coordinators, Ruth Alvarado, Sundar Daniel and Ben Akpera. We need US $2,000 a month per coordinator to keep them serving us all. If you are able to commit to a regular amount each month for this then please let us know. It can be any amount as together I am sure we can cover their needs.
Thank you in advance.