[A1] Christians Relating to Muslims
Great barriers of misunderstanding, prejudice, pain from the past, and current events divide Christians and Muslims around the world. Sadly, few American Christians have Muslim friends. As a result, when there is no dialogue between Christians and Muslims, each camp can easily demonize the other. Following years of mission work in Egypt and United Arab Emirates, Dan McNerney has led his church in Northbrook, IL, to build bridges of friendship with the local mosque. The results have been incredible. Dan wants to share their experience, offer you inspiration, and provide tools so your church can do the same.
[A2] Migration as Grace: A Theological Exploration of Immigration and a Call to Action
A broad review of Scripture reveals the principle of “migration as grace.” From the biblical accounts of Abraham, Ruth, Joseph, and Jesus and the Holy Family, we see that God often uses the migration process to extend His grace, care, and compassion to both migrants and their host countries. This workshop explores this theological principle, and applies it to U.S. immigration history and contemporary immigration policy. Utilizing the lens of “migration as grace,” this workshop will share practical ways in which churches and individuals can get involved to support immigrant families facing unjust deportation, as well as opportunities to get involved with foster care and the promotion of family reunification.
[A3] Local Mission Opportunities
There are many ways to participate in God’s mission without going far from home. In the Local Mission Opportunities workshop representatives of several Santa Barbara - Goleta missions will describe the ministries in which they engage. Each one of them welcomes volunteers. The ministries represented: Santa Barbara Rescue Mission, Alameda Park Collaborative, and Showers of Blessings. This workshop will be moderated by Dave Goss, pastor of Light and Life Isla Vista.
[A4] Living a Missional Lifestyle
Ruben and Holly Gil and their children live a missional lifestyle. Both of them teachers, Ruben and Holly met at church, married, and moved into a lower Eastside Santa Barbara neighborhood, a community largely Latino and low income. Sixteen years ago, when their first child was born, they started a kids club (“Querencia”) in their neighborhood. There they have witnessed to Jesus Christ by sharing their lives — joys and celebrations as well as sorrows and hardships — with their neighbors. In their workshop Ruben and Holly will relate how the Gil family lives their missional lifestyle.