Programme

On this page you’ll find detailed information of the programme at the International Mission Partnership Consultation in Cultural Centre Sofia in Helsinki on 26 30 August 2024.

Daily programme

You can access the programme timetable here (pdf) and the timetable together with written detailed programme here (pdf).

Time Programme Place
12-14 Arrivals & Registration Sofia Lobby
13.30-14.30 Coffee & Snacks Sofia Lobby
14.30-15.30 Introduction & Welcome Sofia Auditorium
15.30 Bus to Vuosaari Church Sofia main entrance
16-17.30 Opening Service Vuosaari Church
17.30 Bus to Sofia Outside the church
18-19 Dinner Sofia Restaurant Xenia
19- Reception by Sofia Cultural Centre & Socialising Sofia Lobby

 

Time Programme Place
8.30-9.15 Morning prayer Sofia Auditorium
9.15-10.30 Plenary: Church in Changing Landscapes Sofia Auditorium
10.30-11 Coffee break Sofia Lobby
11-12.15 Panel: Mission in Changing Landscapes Sofia Auditorium
12.15 Mid-day prayer Sofia Auditorium
12.30-14 Lunch break Sofia Restaurant Xenia
14-16 Workshops
Peace and reconciliation (FCA) TBC
Truth and Trauma (FELM) TBC
Forgiveness and reconciliation (FLOM) TBC
16-16.30 Coffee break
16.30 Optional cultural activities TBC
18-19 Music: Make Perttilä & Group and Evening Prayer Sofia Auditorium
19-20 Dinner Sofia Restaurant Xenia
20- Sauna & Swimming (optional) Sauna and swimming in the Baltic sea

 

Time Programme Place
8.30-9.15 Morning prayer (orthodox) Sofia Chapel or by the Baltic sea
9.15-10.30 Plenary: Creation in Changing Landscapes Sofia Auditorium
10.30-11 Coffee break Sofia Lobby
11-12.15 Panel: Creation in Changing Landscapes Sofia Auditorium
12.15 Mid-day prayer Sofia Auditorium
12.30-14 Lunch break Sofia Restaurant Xenia
14-16 Workshops
Migration and Displaced People (FLOM) TBC
Disability inclusion (FELM) TBC
Bible, Peace and Reconciliation in The Holy Land (FiBS) TBC
16-16.30 Break
16.30 Bus to Helsinki city centre Sofia Main Entrance
17-18.15 Visit to Helsinki Cathedral, prayer, group photo Helsinki Cathedral
18.15-19.30 Free time in the city centre Helsinki
19.30 Bus to Sofia Helsinki Cathedral
20- Dinner Sofia Restaurant Xenia

 

Time Programme Place
8.30-9.15 Morning prayer Sofia Auditorium
9.15-10.30 Plenary: Church and Society – Changing Landscapes Sofia Auditorium
10.30-11 Coffee break Sofia Lobby
11-12.15 Panel: Society and Church – Changing Landscapes Sofia Auditorium
12.15 Mid-day prayer Sofia Auditorium
12.30-14 Lunch break Sofia Restaurant Xenia
14-15 Workshops
From Mission Church to Church with a Mission: Global Cooperation in Mission (LEAF, ELY, SLEAF) TBC
Finnish Lutheran Mission agency in partnership (FLM) TBC
Innovative Media Tools in Mission and Church Work (Sansa) TBC
15-16 Concluding Panel: The Future of Mission Sofia Auditorium
16-16.30 Coffee break
16.30 Bus to Östersundom Church Sofia Main Entrance
17-18.30 Closing Service Östersundom Church
18.30 Bus to Sofia Outside the church
19- Closing dinner & Thanksgiving Sofia Restaurant Xenia

Time Programme
7.00 – Breakfast & departures

Livestream

The plenaries and panel discussions from the International Mission Partnership Consultation will be livestreamed online to Youtube. Access the livestream playlist through this link.

Livestreams on Youtube

Monday

Introduction and Welcome

14.30-15.30 in Sofia Auditorium

After settling into your hotel room and refreshing with some coffee and snacks, the day will begin with an introduction in the Sofia Auditorium. The event will be opened by Archbishop Tapio Luoma, followed by an overview of the missionary work of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland, presented by Bishop Jari Jolkkonen. During the introduction and welcome, you will also have the opportunity to meet personnel from the Department for International Relations of the ELCF. Words of welcome will be delivered by Global Mission Director Rev. Dr. Risto Jukko and project coordinator Ms. Maria Mountraki.

Vesistöä kulttuurikeskus Sofiassa.

Tuesday – Your will be done

Plenary: Church in Changing Landscapes

Plenary 9.15-10.30 in Sofia Auditorium. Follow the online stream here.

The plenary will focus on the changing landscapes of the first decades of the third millennium. The Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 was a shock for Europeans. However, war is raging in many other countries of the world, too. Wars, violence, and conflicts are not the only problems of humankind in the 2020s. Global problems also include, e.g., poverty, hunger, lack of quality education, migration, climate change. In these changing and turbulent landscapes, what can the Church of Jesus Christ say to people?

Jerry Pillay, Kirkkojen maailmanneuvoston pääsihteeri.

Keynote

Rev. Prof. Dr Jerry Pillay is the ninth Secretary-General of the World Council of Churches (WCC). Pillay was previously Dean of the Faculty of Theology and Religion at the University of Pretoria. He is a native of South Africa and a member of the Uniting Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa (UPCSA). He served as President of the UPCSA from 2004-2006 and then as General Secretary of the same church from 2009-2014.

When he became part of the leadership of the Uniting Presbyterian Church, he was appointed a member of the WCC Central Committee and was also appointed to the Board of the Council for World Mission. He also served on the National Executive Committee of the South African Council of Churches for several years and was the first President of the World Communion of Reformed Churches from 2010 to 2017.

Comment to the keynote is given by bishop Teemu Laajasalo from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

Panel: Mission in changing landscapes

Panel 11-12.15 in Sofia Auditorium. Follow the online stream here.

The panel will focus on the first decades of the third millennium. Global problems include wars and conflicts, poverty, hunger, lack of quality education, migration, climate change, etc. Mission is facing all these problems in various ways in different contexts. In these changing and turbulent landscapes, what does God’s mission mean? How is the Gospel message relevant in today’s world? Does the good news of God’s love in Jesus Christ touch and change people’s lives? How can Christians be more credible in their words and acts? Is there a hope for the future? How will global Christianity look like in 2050?

In this panel discussion Rev. Prof. Dr. Jerry Pillay from the World Council of Churches, Rev. Selma Chen from the Lutheran Church of Taiwan (LCT), Dr. Rosalee Velloso Ewell from United Bible Societies will come together to discuss the theme of the day. The panel is moderated by Rev. Johanna Björkholm-Kallio from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

Workshops on Tuesday

Workshops 14-16, only for the participants of the consultation. Locations of the workshops are updated later.

In this workshop on Peace and Reconciliation, the Finn Church Aid, the Network for Religious and Traditional Peacemakers and the South Sudan Council of Churches invite the participants to consider the role of faith-based actors in societal reconciliation.  

Reconciliation processes are needed in contexts where individuals and communities are or have experienced pain and suffering. Reconciliation can be understood as a process that includes the sharing of experiences and enables humanizing the other, reducing bias and ultimately changing the relations of people and communities involved. Without reconciliation, there is no hope for healing and sustainable peace.   

In this workshop, the participants will examine how reconciliation in societies looks these days. Especially, this workshop aims at zooming in and jointly reflecting through participants’ and organizers’ experiences on the current and potential role of faith-based leaders and actors in reconciliation processes in different contexts. The workshop will apply cases from contexts perhaps less known from the news but still dynamic such as South Sudan. 

Kirkon ulkomaanavun logo

Riina Isotalo (FELM) and Ibrahim Azar. Updated soon.

Lähetysseuran logo

In our conflict-ridden world, forgiveness and reconciliation are in high demand. At the heart of Christianity is the Gospel message of forgiveness of sins and reconciliation with God. Forgiveness and reconciliation are fundamentally theological realities grounded in the being, work, and aims of the Triune God. In light of this, how ought the reconciling ministry of Jesus inform and shape the ministry of reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:17-21) individual Christians, Christian organizations, and Churches are called to? In this workshop, we will examine these questions in light of the practice of holistic mission. Special consideration will be given to the case study of the Mongolian Evangelical Lutheran Church. 

Kylväjän logo

Kulttuurikeskus Sofian kappeli

Wednesday – Give us our daily bread

Creation in Changing Landscapes

Plenary 9.15-10.30 in Sofia Auditorium. Follow the online stream here.

The plenary will focus on the fact that a liveable future is threatened by environmental crisis. Everyone has noticed the rise of temperature and other effects of climate change. Every year there are news of extreme heat waves, droughts, and floods. Christian church and mission were complicit in the exploitation of the earth’s resources that drove the colonial system. In today’s world, churches and missions need to take God’s creation seriously and mission urgently needs to re-think of its relationship with nature.

Kuzipa Nalwamba

Keynote

Rev. Dr Kuzipa Nalwamba is the WCC Programme Director for Unity, Mission and Ecumenical Formation (UMEF). She is ordained in the United Church of Zambia (UCZ) and has served as congregation minister, school chaplain and as theological educator. She also worked for the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES) and the Council for World Mission (CWM) in various capacities. Her research interests are in eco-theology and history of Christianity and mission.

Comment to the keynote is given by Rev. Martin Lalthangliana, the president of the The Lutheran Church in Myanmar (LCM).

Panel: Creation in Changing Landscapes

Panel 11-12.15 in Sofia Auditorium. Follow the online stream here.

In this panel discussion Rev. Dr. Kuzipa Nalwamba from the World Council of Churches, Ms. Riina Nguyen from Orthodox Church Aid and Missions Filantropia and bishop Sani-Ibrahim Azar from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land (ELCJHL) will come together to discuss the theme of the day. The panel is moderated by Rev. Vesa Häkkinen from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

Workshops on Wednesday

Workshops 14-16, only for the participants of the consultation. Locations of the workshops are updated later.

Today there are nearly 100 million people forcibly displaced from their homeland. As a result of political, religious, ethnic, and economic pressure, we are witnessing an unprecedented movement of people groups around the world. Migrant churches are being planted in and diaspora communities are revitalizing post-Christian Europe. What theological, missional, ecclesial, and practical issues does the phenomenon of migration and displaced people raise? What possibilities, opportunities, and challenges for Christian mission does it pose? How does growing nationalism and xenophobia challenge the Church’s mission and witness? What models of mission (as hospitality, as diaconal care, as witness, as dialogue) are needed to meet this challenge? 

Kylväjän logo

 

God created all people as image of himself. Everyone should be treated and respected equally. Inclusion of persons with disabilities essential to make sure that all people can enjoy their human rights and be a meaningful part of their community. As persons with disabilities have been marginalised for a long time, many kinds of changes have to be made.

In this workshop, we explore disability and discuss ways to make it happen. The workshop is led by Amu Urhonen from FELM and Anjeline Okola.

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Arab-Israeli people live in a war zone and the country is tense. Arab citizens of Israel are double minority they live as second class citizens and are considered as a demographic threat by many. At the same time they are ignored in most political solutions when people talk about a Jewish state and a Palestinian state; they usually don’t address the 1.7 million Palestinian citizens of Israel. Many Arab citizens in Israel are below the poverty lines and the Arab community in Israel suffer economically in comparison to the standards of the state.  

Though Christian community has diminished during last decades there are Christians who represent “a bridge” between Israelis and Palestinians, because they belong to both communities.  

There are very few Christian women in leadership. In addition, many women are not able to engage the Bible from a family oriented perspective in their churches due to a strong patriarchal society. The presence of a female leadership for AIBS is much more than providing leadership for one organization. It is also providing a model for a Christian ministry in which both men and women can lead Christian organization. This is important at the national level. 

Piplian logo

The International Mission Partnership Consultation participates in the Thursdays in Black campaign. Read more information from the World Council of Churches website or Finn Church aid website.

Thursday – Forgive us our trespasses

Society and Church – Changing Landscapes

Plenary 9.15-10.30 in Sofia Auditorium. Follow the online stream here.

The plenary will focus on relations between society and church. In most contexts, the political cycle is short. This often hinders any serious action on global problems. Governments and political institutions often are detached from society at large, and in particular from the grassroots. No wonder that people are losing confidence in political parties, trade unions, global and national institutions, including ecumenical movements and organisation and churches, as well as other religions. This would necessitate theological reflection on the role of mission of public space.

Anne Burghardt

Keynote

Rev. Dr. Anne Burghardt is General Secretary of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). She is an ordained pastor of the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church where she used to serve at the EELC Institute of Theology and at the EELC Head Office. From 2013 – 2018, she served as Secretary for Ecumenical Relations at the LWF and was responsible for coordinating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. She has done research on Orthodox liturgics and has a doctoral degree from Friedrich-Alexander-University in Erlangen, Germany.

Comment to the keynote is given by bishop Kaisamari Hintikka from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

Panel: Society and Church – Changing Landscapes

Panel 11-12.15 in Sofia Auditorium. Follow the online stream here.

In this panel discussion Rev. Dr. Anne Burghardt from the Lutheran World Federation, Rev. Frank-Dieter Fischbach from the Conference of European Churches and Rev. Dr. Yonas Yigezu from Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus (EECMY) will come together to discuss the topic of the day. They will focus on relations between society and church. The panel is moderated by Rev. Laura Huovinen from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

Workshops on Thursday

Workshops 14-15, only for the participants of the consultation. Locations of the workshops are updated later.

A young church founded through mission work, is in the beginning and still rather dependent on its spiritual mother, the foreign mission agency. The role of the mission is – or should be – from the very beginning to nurture and encourage the young church towards increasing autonomy and even to become a church that has its own mission both within and outside the borders of its own country.

In this workshop, leaders from three churches, from Ingria (Russia), Myanmar and Kenya, discuss the growth of their respective churches to become churches with their own mission, reflecting the role of the mission agencies in this development.

SLEYn logoELYn logoSLEFn logo

The workshop will address the biblical basis of mission cooperation, reflect on criteria influencing partnerships, and marvel at the transformative power of the Gospel both in the context of individual lives and broader mission partnership.  

The question of what the purpose of mission work is being challenged in various ways today. Because of this, it is critically important to evaluate the need, the purpose and the content of the Gospel in mission partnership.
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This workshop will highlight three key media forms—television, radio, and social media—and explore their use across three different target groups: children, women, and congregations. We focus on practical methods to effectively and impactfully meet the needs of each group.  

During the workshop, you will hear examples of how children are reached through satellite television in the Middle East, how hope is offered to women through radio programs and prayer groups globally, and how congregations are strengthened through the use of social media and media players in Bible study groups in India. The presenters, Marianne Awaraji (Sat 7), Susie Pek (Women of Hope global leader TWR international), and Dipendra Halder (TWR India), will share insights from their work, their discoveries, and best practices.  

Additionally, on display will be a portable emergency radio station and a versatile radio receiver, essential tools in the event of an accident or natural disaster. The workshop will be led by Mikko Matikainen (CEO of Media Mission the Messengers). Sansan logo

 

Concluding Panel: The Future of Mission

Panel 15-16 in Sofia Auditorium. Follow the online stream here.

The plenary ties together the International Mission Partnership Consultation Your Will Be Done 2024. The panelists for this concluding plenary include Ms. Whitney Gerdes from the Refugee Highway Partnership and bishop Alex Malasusa from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania. The plenary is moderated by Rev. Dr. Risto Jukko from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

Contact

projektikoordinaattori

Maria Mountraki

+358503464218

Eteläranta 8
00130, Helsinki

kesäteologi

Saara Alamäki

+358405378049

Eteläranta 8
00130, Helsinki

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