Close to 500 members of the Scottish Mission gathered together at The Vine Conference Centre in Dunfermline for the 2019 Scottish Mission Day of Fellowship. This day is always filled with good preaching, music, food and fellowship. This occasion lived up to the expectations. With so many members in attendance it is becoming clear that something is being done right. With the Scottish Mission membership slowly rising, it is no coincidence that the Day of Fellowship this year saw the largest attendance in recent years. The rise of membership in the Scottish Mission is greatly valued by the members of the Mission. In 2019, the Scottish Mission celebrates the addition of several new members through baptism and profession of faith.
One highlight of the Day of Fellowship was when Pr. Ivana Mendez stood on the platform and started to call out names and inviting these individuals to come forward. One by one, unsuspecting individuals started to line up on stage. Finally, the stage was filled with people from side to side. Pr. Ivana Mendez then explained why these people had been called forward. They make the list of all new members in the Scottish Mission this year. On stage were also those individuals who are currently preparing for baptism. A loud applause was followed by a prayer of dedication. This is what it is all about - the message of the gospel shared in our country to help people change their lives into a harmony with God.
Many musical items from individual artists like Hellevi Walker to group singing by the Crieff Ladies Choir, a children's mass choir, a group from Aberdeen, Testify from Edinburgh, and the worship team by the host churches, made the day a spectacle. The sermon was preceded by children's time, where Professor Noodlebrain (Cedrene Botha) spoke with the children about the shoes we wear. As she changed the shoes she had on for different pairs of shoes, she explained how we cannot always wear the same shoes for all occasions. Dr. Cedric Vine also explained in high detail how following God through Bible times had different approaches.
Lunch on any day of fellowship means that there is a variety of food on all the different tables. When visiting all the different tables you would not only get to see and taste some of the variety, but you also had the opportunity to speak with so many friends, old and new, and share in their stories.
The afternoon provided a variety of activities. In the main hall, Bert Smit presented an insightful lecture about the work of ADRA in the UK and around the world. Getting ADRA to work more closely with local churches is high on the ADRA agenda. ADRA is dependent on funding from our churches, but that is only a small portion of the working capital of ADRA. ADRA raises money from various other sources in government and elsewhere. A good practice for ADRA is to bring their mission to the local churches so that members can be more aware of and take ownership of some of the issues ADRA deals with. Membership involvement is vital to certain projects.
At the same time, while the adults were listening to Bert Smit in the big hall, the children, teens and youth were all participating in their own various activities throughout the centre. Dr. Anthony Bosman from Andrews University oversaw the teens and youth, while Cedrene Botha and her team lead the younger generation in activities. It was amazing to see how easy it is to make a low-cost mobile phone stand using little more than a toilet roll and some tape.
At the end of the presentations, it was time for the whole group to come together again, and this time for the finale of the day. It was time to recognise the good work many of the Scottish Mission children had put into studying the word of God. A graduation took place for a large number of children from various churches in Scotland who had completed the 'Let's Explore' Bible study series, together with their leaders in local churches. It is important to recognise these accomplishments to help our children feel a sense of achievement and ownership within their local church and community. We believe having that sense of ownership will also motivate them to make contributions to their own church services and to the work of the gospel in their outreach. As Pr. Maureen Rock handed out the certificates with Dr. Paul Tompkins, she also congratulated Mrs. Ifeoma Victor-Igwe on doing such an amazing job at motivating the participants and organising the graduation. What a worthwhile thing to do - energising and empowering our children to do greater things for God.
The day concluded with some thank-you's and the all-important clean-up. What a day! The Scottish Mission is indeed going in the right direction. A big thank you to all the members of the Scottish Mission for attending and participating in this big day. The team are already looking forward to the next Day of Fellowship in 2020. See you there!