The CWM Members’ Mission Forum (MMF) for the Caribbean region gathered 14 delegates, resource persons, and an ecumenical partner for empowering discussions, collective discernment, and mobilisation on mission priorities under the theme “Rise to Life: Radical Discipleship and Transformative Spirituality”. Hosted by the Guyana Congregational Union (GCU) in Georgetown, Guyana, Mrs Rose Wedderburn extended warm greetings on behalf of the Board of Directors of CWM in the Caribbean region, and Dr Sudipta Singh, Deputy General Secretary for Programmes, presented an overview of CWM’s programmes and structure on 28 May 2023.
The next day, the keynote address was delivered by Rev. Dr Michael Jagessar, who delved into moments of rising, including costly discipleship and transformative spirituality within the contextual setting. He emphasized the power of re-envisioned discipleship and its role of effecting positive change in communities and all creation, as well as the need to acknowledge and resist legacies of colonialism and promote justice, peace and flourishing life.
One of the highlights of the MMF was exposure visits to significant historical sites such as the 1823 Monument, where participants paid homage to Quamina, a key figure in the 1823 Demerara rebellion. Assistant General Secretary of the GCU, Rev. Leander Warren shared the inspiring history of Quamina, an African slave in Guyana, and a freedom fighter in one of the most substantial slave revolts in the British colonies before the abolition of slavery. They also visited the tomb site of Hermanus Hilbertus Post, who established the first Congregational church in Guyana, the Bethel Congregational Church.
Miss Ominell Boyce, a GCU youth delegate said that she was delighted to participate in the MMF, stressing the value of listening to stories shared by the UCJCI and identifying the similar challenges in both churches’ contexts. Miss Boyce committed to using her platform in youth leadership to collaborate with other young people in making desired changes within their churches a reality.
The 2023 CWM Caribbean MMF concluded with a closing charge from CWM Mission Secretary – Discipleship and Dialogue, Rev. Dr Graham McGeoch, urging attendees to rise up from metaphorical Babylon and celebrate God’s liberation. The gathering proved to be a transformative experience, fostering a sense of fellowship, worship, and learning among the members.