Places at MEC 2017 are filling up fast. If you are planning to attend MEC this year, and have yet to apply [or have had your application approved but have not gone on to register] please do so as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.
IMES’ Middle East Consultation [MEC] has developed a fantastic reputation for providing a unique context in which the MENA and global church can come together to address the critical issues facing the Body of Christ in the context of the Middle East and North Africa. As always, MEC will include creative presentations from diverse perspectives, practitioner interviews and witness accounts, roundtable discussions, workshops, interfaith encounters with leading Muslims leaders, Biblical reflections, prayer and worship, and an opportunity to visit a local community to see firsthand some of the challenges faced by certain communities in the region.
However, we are changing our methodology slightly for 2017. For each of the four main themes being addressed under the banner of “Disorienting Times” – Persecution and Suffering; Minoritization; Hopelessness and Despair; and Emigration – we will include a range of contributions. After a time of corporate worship, the following sessions will be included each day as they relate specifically to the daily topic:
The daily keynote presentation, which includes also a keynote paper to be made available during MEC, will be presented by a top leader and thinker from the region. These leaders include:
Theological & Pastoral Response to Keynote Presentation
Each day, at least one local or regional leader will be invited to respond to the keynote presentation/paper. During these sessions contributors will seek to address questions such as:
At least two people from different contexts will share about their firsthand experiences of the issue being addressed that day. These will be in the form of a presentation, interview, or panel discussion. The sorts of questions we would like to reflect on within these times include:
Global Cross-Check Presentation
MEC provides a unique opportunity for the MENA and global church to learn from each other and grow together in unity and solidarity, as we together seek to discern the mind of Christ for our diverse contexts. As such, at least one person each day from beyond the MENA will seek to make connections across diverse global realities as it relates to that day’s theme. The type of things that might be explored within these presentations include:
Morning Devotion and Corporate Worship
Dr. Gary Nelson will be sharing Biblical reflections on the theme of leading prophetically through disorienting times. Gary is the author of Leading in Disorienting Times: Navigating Church and Organizational Change and President of Tyndale University College and Seminary in Toronto, Canada.
Workshops and Additional Consultation Papers
Finally, IMES has partnered this year with the Commission for Theology and Education, and the Commission for Freedom and Justice of the European Baptist Federation. During the two workshop slots of MEC 2017, the two commissions will be presenting papers exploring the following topics:
Additional presenters include:
During MEC 2017, IMES is very excited to host the launch of an important new book by two people closely associated with IMES. Dr. Rupen Das [Lead Faculty for History, Politics and Economics] and Brent Hamoud [recent graduate of our Master of Religion in MENA Studies program and contributor to the IMES Blog] will launch their new book, Strangers in the Kingdom: Ministering to Refugees, Migrants, and the Stateless, to be published by Langham Global Library. We are delighted that the book will be available for sale this year at MEC. One of the highlights of MEC 2016 was Brent’s ‘Ted Talk’ exploring the issue of statelessness, an issue directly related to many of the themes we will be exploring during MEC 2017.