The second meeting of the Asian Methodist Mission Platform was held in Ho Chi Minh City from 23-26 July, 2019. This body was established by the Asian Methodist Council to bring together Methodist organisations and churches to explore partnerships and possible synergy in works of mission in Asia. This is the Methodist connectional system at work. In this way, the scope for working together, in the expansion and extension of His Kingdom in a particular region can be explored.
The Methodist Church in Malaysia was represented by Rev. Boh Che Suan, CAC Missions Board Chairman, Rev Grace Wong, SCAC Missions Director and Mr. Alan Yong, Chairman Council of Mission, MCM. Mr John Ling of SCAC was in attendance as a representative of the Asian Methodist Council. The other representatives were from the Methodist Churches of Korea, Singapore, Australia, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Philippines and Global Board of Missions of the United Methodist Church, USA.
An event that brought joy to the conference was the presence of several leaders of the different Methodist churches or groups in Vietnam. This is the first time that such a meeting had taken place for them. There are at least five groups of Methodist churches in Vietnam. The situation has arisen because in the early years groups from Korea and the US began separate works in the country. Also, in one case, a church leader chose to start another Methodist church! Seemingly, there is no law to prevent such an incident and under such circumstances it would not be wise to involve the authorities. The discussions led to the need to look at the different churches coming together. The recent establishment of a Methodist Church in Cambodia, which did take a long time, is an encouragement. Importantly, it would be up to the local leaders to find a way for unity. AMC will, of course, assist in any way possible, so that there is just the one Methodist church in the country. Incidentally, a missionary from a local TRAC church is working under the covering of one of the churches.
The situation in two restricted countries were noted and discussed. Rev Dr. DC informed the meeting of the existence of All Nations Theological Seminary established by the Korean Methodist Church in Siliguri, India. A local TRAC church will potentially be using the school as a location for training of leaders from nations bordering Siliguri.
Representatives shared on the major works in the different countries. An AMMP Directory of these works is available through the Council of Mission, MCM (please contact Alan Yong, firstname.lastname@example.org).
We thank the Korean Methodist Church and United Methodist Church for organising the conference.
The next Asian Methodist Mission Platform will be held from 30 June to 2 July, 2020.
By Mr Alan Yong