The LCANZ’s New Horizons local mission conference program is heading to Sydney in May. This follows a successful 2021 launch at which more than 50 people attended a two-day workshop in Adelaide.
Co-hosted by the New and Renewing Churches and Cross-Cultural Ministry departments, the conferences are being staged across Australia and New Zealand, as the teams work together to engage with new arrivals and support congregations wanting to be more embracing of newcomers. The conferences aim to:
- build capacity for meaningful cross-cultural engagement at the local (congregational) level, and
- shape and support congregations and leaderships for multi-ethnic/cross-cultural mission and ministry.
The next event will be held on Saturday 29 May at St Paul’s Lutheran Church, Darlinghurst, under this year’s New Horizons theme of ‘Bridging cultures with the gospel’.
Craig Heidenreich, the LCANZ cross-cultural ministry facilitator, said the conferences were for anyone who ‘longs to see Jesus honoured in our society’.
‘Australia and New Zealand have always been nations of immigrants, but lately, those arriving are people from non-European backgrounds who have had less exposure to the gospel’, he said. ‘Forty years ago, around one in 20 members of the Australian population was of non-European heritage – now it is one in four. In a city like Sydney this would be an even higher percentage.
‘There is an increasing desire within the LCANZ church family to better engage with our changing society.
‘We believe this changing demographic is a good mission opportunity, as these newcomers are less “inoculated” against the gospel and are probably more receptive.’ Craig and Pastor Nathan Hedt, the LCANZ’s New and Renewing Churches department manager, will speak at the Sydney conference.
A New Horizons conference is also planned for Melbourne on 24 and 25 July 2021, with Brisbane, New Zealand and Perth events slated for 2022.
Registrations for the Sydney workshop on 29 May are open. For more information or to register for the Sydney conference, go to www.lca.org.au/new-horizons