Scott to attend elite mission consultation in South Africa

This month, David William Scott, assistant professor of religion and Pieper Chair of Servant Leadership at Ripon College, will participate in a consultation of the World Council of Churches, the largest ecumenical body for Protestants and Orthodox Christians in the world.

He will be one of only 29 scholars and church leaders from around the world invited to attend the consultation, which will run from Oct. 19-24 in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa. The meeting of the Committee on World Mission and Evangelism is focused on developing curricular ways to implement the WCC’s recently adopted statement on mission, “Together Towards Life: Mission and Evangelism in Changing Landscapes.”

“The World Council of Churches approved a new affirmation on missions and evangelism at their recent general meeting in Korea,” Scott says. “They are looking to develop curricula used to train missionaries, pastors and laity. This consultation is for the sake of helping develop those curricula.

“This is a great honor and a great opportunity. I’m probably going to be one of the younger attendants, so it’s especially an honor to have a chance to contribute to global conversations this early in my career.”

Scott was chosen to attend the consultation by Thomas Kemper, the General Secretariat of the General Board of Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church to go in his stead to represent the 12 million members of The United Methodist Church.

“He had asked me, in part, because of work I have done on the blog UM & Global (at umglobal.org) on behalf the United Methodist Professors of Mission,” Scott says. “It is intended to foster conversations about issues related both to mission and to the global nature of the United Methodist denomination.”

Scott says representations will attend the consultation from Africa, Europe, Latin America, Asia, Oceania and the Caribbean, and he is one of only two people from the United States who are scheduled to attend.

“This is a way for people from different countries and continents to get together, collaborate and share a common understanding of the sorts of outreach that faith leads them to,” Scott says.

“I have been assigned the task of being the recorder for one of four discussion groups, and hopefully I will have some ideas to contribute to the discussion, as well. I’m excited to be working on this document. It presents a lot of fresh and contemporary ideas about what it means to be in service to others.”


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