Reengage | Reimagine I Realign
theme for 2021:
Tasmania is a Mission Field
"We acknowledge Tasmania is a mission field, and that should change the way we think about church and do church," writes Stephen Baxter, Tasmanian Baptist Mission Director, ahead of this year's mid-year Assembly.
"Over the past half a century or more, Tasmania has changed dramatically. In the 2016 Census, 38% of Tasmanians, and 40% of Hobartians, said they had "No Religion". This is the highest of any State or capital city in Australia. For the first time since white settlement, Christians are a minority in Tasmania with just under 50% of Tasmanians, and only 47.3% in Hobartians calling themselves Christians. Plus church attendance is at an all-time low.
"In the past it has been a bit of a habit for churches to outsource their mission and evangelism to "parachurch" organisation," he writes in this month's Advance, "but that is changing."
Back at the 2009 midyear Assembly, Superintendent Ivan James exhorted all Tasmanian Baptists to be "intentional, innovative, relational, caring and involved in the community and not isolated and aloof from the people around us."
Moving on to 2021
In the 12 years since then, Tasmanian Baptists have endeavoured to take Ivan's challenge seriously, and listen to where God is leading. The result included looking for a "Mission Director" rather than a "Superintendent", and to trust God for pastors with a heart for mission.
At the upcoming midyear Assembly, Stephen will present a new strategic plan based around the words Reengage, Reimagine, Realign. These words "capture the need and our desire to be a movement of churches ready to adapt to the changing community and its needs," writes Stephen, so that we can be "salt and light" and our churches "centres of care, havens of hope, places of peace and beacons of light for all Tasmanians.
Stephen will present a new strategic plan based around the words Reengage, Reimagine, Realign
COME to midyear Assembly!
ALL ARE WELCOME - Here are the details
- The 2021 midyear Assembly begins at 7pm on Friday, 7 May 2020 at Riverlands, 159 Wellington Street, Longford. It will commence with a dinner, featuring keynote speaker Jeff McKinnon.
- Assembly will reconvene at 9:30am on Saturday, 8 May 2021 at the same location, commencing with Morning Tea.
- Churches are requested to send delegates, and pastors on our Registered Pastors list are encouraged to attend.
- To register for the Friday night meal, please contact Karen Buckney for catering purposes.
Stephen Baxter is the Mission Director for Tasmanian Baptists