A light to the nations (Isaiah 42:6)
We are immersed in – and for many overwhelmed by – the daily accounts and experience of violence, war, planetary destruction, and injustice. In conversation last week, a Lebanese brother said, ‘we have lost hope!’ In such times we may hesitate to speak for fear of being trite or platitudinous. But speak (and act!) we must, digging deep within our community of faith to find the words that stimulate hope and courage. Words of passion such as those in Isaiah 42, though ancient in origin, cut to the heart of our malaise calling us once again to faithful and active participation in Christ: Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice in the nations”.
A Reflection from Ukraine
‘War is when you wake up in the morning, if you managed to fall asleep at all, not from the alarm clock or birds singing, but to the sounds of sirens, or bomb explosion that make you tremble. War is when your emotional state shifts from optimistic to pessimistic more often than in peaceful time, and the emotional range itself is much wider.’ – Fyodor Raychynets, IBTS PhD Student.
During a week in mid-March, on a visit to Kazakhstan, we were inspired by the ministry and hospitality of everyone at Almaty Bible Institute. Alexander Karyakov, the dean of ABI welcomed a team from IBTS including Mike Pears, Ingeborg te Loo and Ross Hamilton, and also joining the visit, Alan Donaldson, General Secretary of the European Baptist Federation. We are encouraged by the fruitful and growing collaboration between the Institute and the IBTS PhD programme and the Learning Network and the practical implications for ministry and mission in Central Asia.
Seminário Teológico Baptista (Portuguese Baptist Seminary)
At the end of March, we were warmly welcomed by Fernando Ascenso, the President of Seminário Teológico Baptista (Portuguese Baptist Seminary) and Baptist Convention of Portugal. It was inspiring to meet graduates from IBTS from the 1970s and 1980s who are still actively engaged in ministry (check our social media). These meetings reminded us of the way that Baptist Seminaries and Unions share together a deep sense of mission and values stemming from our common life in Christ. They testify to the importance of open-hearted participation across national borders. As IBTS we are looking forward to deepening international participation and creative relationships!
IBTS Centre PhD Research Programme
Do you know someone who is interested in PhD work? We are now open to applications, and we would urge all who are interested or have queries to get in touch. We would especially like to encourage applications from women who are considering taking a step into doctoral research.
There are two application deadlines - the beginning of June and later in the year.
Call for Papers: Journal of European Baptist Studies
The next edition of JEBS, autumn 2022, will be a non-themed issue and therefore open to a range of contributions from the world of European Baptist studies. As the journal of IBTS our primary fields of research are summarised as identity, mission and practice.
We invite all those who wish to submit papers for consideration to send an abstract of 200-300 words by email to the JEBS editor Toivo Pilli firstname.lastname@example.org Please do not hesitate to contact Toivo for further information and please circulate this call for papers as widely as possible to others in the field.
If accepted, papers should be submitted for publication by 31 July 2022.
IBTS Ethics Conference: 4-6 May 2022, Amsterdam
The programme is now set for our IBTS Ethics Conference, compiled with a breadth of exciting and challenging topics and papers from contributors across the globe. Do you want to sign up? Dr David McMillan has been a crucial part of the planning process, and you can watch his invitational video by clicking here.
4-6th May, 2022 – Amsterdam and online.
This conference also coincides with the inauguration of Dr. D.P. Gushee which is scheduled to take place on Wednesday 4th May at 15:45, in the aula of the university’s main building.
Finding Unity in the Heart of Christian Ethics - Baptists Together, Paul Hobson
Paul Hobson looks ahead to our IBTS Ethics conference, writing: ‘I applaud leaders at IBTS, notably Mike Pears, Ingeborg Te Loo, and David McMillan, for their innovative design of the conference. The conference will bring fairly brief presentations reflecting on lived experience together with somewhat longer academic presentations – then the group will collectively do some theological and ethical reflection on the entire conversation using the World Café discussion approach. This makes the conference accessible to both laypeople and scholars and brings Christian people together in important conversation.’
Read the full article here.
Reimagining Mission & Learning in Community
There is still time to sign up to our Reimagining Mission & Learning in Community course! Last week we spoke to Nuno and Sara Soares who have each completed the course, and you can listen to their short reflection by clicking here.
Starts 26th April, 2022.
Youth Leadership Course
We are all made of stories – Online course starts 9 May, residential in UK 17-19 June
Youth, Children and Family Network
The world in which we live seems to be getting more and more polarized. It seems we struggle to listen to people who are different to us – and listening to understand someone else, instead of arguing with them or proving them wrong, is even harder. How can we listen to the story of others?
In this course, developed by a group of youth and children workers from EBF, we start with key skills around telling our own story and listening to others’ stories.
Full details on how to register can be found here.
We have two promotion dates upcoming both in Amsterdam and online:
Dale Stairs promotion date - 15th June - online
Caleb Hutcherson promotion date – 30th June – Aula, VU.
Theology and Action Research Network (TARN)
On the 27th and 28th April, the Theology and Action Research Network will be hosting training designed to equip participants with the knowledge and skills to embark on their own theological action research project. This will be ran by Dr Helen Cameron, Research Associate of the Centre for Baptist Studies at Regent’s Park College, Oxford and Dr James Butler, postdoctoral researcher at the University of Roehampton and MA lecturer at the Church Mission Society, Oxford.
The training runs over two days. 9am to 12.30pm (UK time) on 27/4 and 9am to 11.15am on 28/4. It will be interactive and conversational and take place over Zoom.
This is the link to the booking page.
TARN will also be running some workshops in the summer aimed at those supervising students using theological action research and the four voices. The dates and more details here.
BIAPT Mission Studies Day Conference - 12 May 2022
The first in-person BIAPT Mission Studies Special Interest Group for three years meets at the Queen’s Foundation in Birmingham on Thursday 12th May.
The Revd Dr Peniel Jesudason Rufus Rajkumar and Dr Eve Parker will be leading their reflection on Mission & Lament (and Joy).
More details and a Call for Papers can be found here.
Nigel Rooms, Mission Studies SIG Convenor, writes ‘you are very welcome and don’t need to be a member of the SIG to come along and find out about our lively and active missiology network in these islands.’