ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP)--"We all came over on different ships, but now we're all in the same boat."
Photo by John Swain
That's what Chris McNairy, a leader on the North American Mission Board's multiethnic mobilization team, told about 40 pastors and leaders at the 2011 Ethnic Leadership Summit at NAMB's offices in Alpharetta, Ga.
Twenty-seven Southern Baptist Convention ethnic fellowships and networks encompass an array of people groups: African, African American, Cambodian, Chinese, Deaf, Filipino, Greek, Ghanian, Haitian, Hispanic, Hmong, Hungarian, Japanese, Korean, Laotian, Middle Eastern, Messianic, Multiethnic, Native American, Polish, Brazilian, Romanian, Slavic, Ukrainian and Vietnamese. Most were represented at the two-day summit.
Photo by John Swain
"We all are responsible for reaching the lost," McNairy said, referring to ethnic and Anglo Christian leaders alike. "The largest categories of people are just two: the saved and the lost. And at the end of the day, the saved are responsible for the lost." The "job description" of sinners, he said, is to sin, while the saints' job description is to lead sinners to Christ.
"Today, which one is not fulfilling their assignment?" McNairy asked rhetorically.
The ethnic leaders from across the U.S. and Canada also heard from Kevin Ezell, NAMB's president, and Sing Oldham, an SBC Executive Committee vice president, who underscored how important they are in their spheres of influence and in NAMB's new overarching Send North America strategy for planting churches.
"Send North America is a way for NAMB and our state partners to plant hundreds and thousands of more churches in North America," Ezell said. "But Send North America also gives us greater flexibility to work with groups like yours. We want to partner with you as we move forward. We need your help in encouraging your churches to step up to the plate and partner with us to plant more churches."
NAMB's Send North America strategy will benefit ethnic networks and churches more than other groups because "many of you are already established in the 26 'send cities' we're focusing on," Ezell noted. Read More