“Do this everywhere!” That was the verdict of one of the participants in the Roving School of Theology which was held in Georgetown, Guyana November 8-11, 2016.
The first in the series of CWM’s Roving School of Theology for Transformation (RSTT) was held in the Caribbean. The RSTT programme has been developed as an effort to accompany member churches of CWM as critical partners in mission to enable them to address the need for theological training which enables transformative missional engagement. The Roving School in Guyana was shaped by the mission context of the Caribbean. It consciously focused on where people are in their living situations of crises such as high rates of poverty, violence, suicide and ethnic-socio-economic and political divisions, coupled with human rights violations.
Twenty-two (22) participants drawn from CWM Caribbean member-churches, namely, Guyana Congregational Union (GCU), United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands (UCJCI) and the Caribbean and North America Council for Mission (CANACOM) member-churches – Trinidad, Suriname, Curacao and Cuba – spent time learning together through presentations, group work and lively discussions.
Facilitators were drawn from the CWM global office, the Caribbean region and from North America. The CWM General Secretary, Rev. Dr. Collin Cowan, facilitated the foundational sessions, ‘Mission in the Context of Empire’ and ‘The Churches’ Role in Healing and Wholeness in Communities’. Rev. Patricia Sheeratan Bisnauth, Moderator of the Guyana Presbyterian Church (GPC,) followed with the discussion of ‘Gender Justice, Partnership and Sexuality’; and ‘Ecumenism, Outreach and Interfaith Relationships’ as well as ‘Contextual Theology: Understanding and Interpreting one’s Context’. Rev Nicole Ashwood, former CANACOM Education in Mission Secretary facilitated the sessions on Missiology, namely, ‘Developing Missional Congregations’, ‘The Interconnectedness of Mission and Worship’ and ‘Christian Education’. Rev. Cynthia Holder Rich, Pastor and Head of Staff of the First Presbyterian Church (FPC) in Findlay, Ohio led the sessions, ‘Theological Foundations for Transformational Ministry’, ‘Understanding our Communities: Asset Based Community Development (ABCD)’ and ‘Leading Healthy, Faithful Change in Communities’.
The school involved pre-course and final assignments and a project due for submission three (3) months from the end of the course.
Karen Francis – Mission Secretary, CWM Caribbean
December 14, 2016