Overseas Ministry Conference (OMC)-XIX
Temuwicara Pelayanan Mancanegara (TPM)-XIX

Opportunities to Transform Rural Area and Farming in indonesia

August 31 - September 3, 2012
Chicago, IL USA

 

This year mark the 19th annual gathering of Overseas Mission Conference or OMC. During the OMC, we strive to understand God’s calling for Indonesian Christians in United States by studying God’s word, the history and current events in Indonesia. This year the OMC will be held in Chicago, IL from 8/31 to 9/3/2012. This year TPM will focus on exploring the opportunities to serve and eventually transform the rural areas in Indonesia. Since majority of the rural population is tied to farming, we will highlight this sector of the rural area. Community building and transformation will be the focus of our case study; for it is the biblical and the most successful way to transform society.

Background on the Theme

More than half of Indonesian people live in the rural areas and most of them live below the poverty line. We know that poverty often breeds corruption, gambling, prostitution, terrorism, drugs, human trafficking, domestic violence, child abuse, alcoholism, sickness, disease, and dysfunctional families. Yet, Jesus said “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor” (Luke 4:18-19). How should we, the church, the people of God, responded to the misery and suffering of the Indonesian people? In last year’s OMC, Dr. Bob Moffitt argues that God intention is broader than evangelism, wider than church planting. It is deeper than spiritual discipleship. It is larger than addressing social injustices and feeding the hungry. God’s intention is to restore all things back to the original purpose and order.

The church represents a community of believers that has power to transform her society. With all her weaknesses, God still chooses His church, not individuals, as a mean to transform a society. In the church, broken people are redeemed and formed a community bonded by the blood of Christ. We are nurtured, trained, and equipped each other in the church before being sent to be the salt and light.

Similar to God’s blue print for transforming His people, a culture is transformed per a community. God’s people are tasked to transform our community when we are dispersing outside the church walls. We are equipped by God in community transformation through our involvement in local church and fellowship. This skill is essential especially in developing rural area because the main hurdle for growth and prosperity is the lack of empowerment of the people in these areas . The most efficient way to empower a person occurs in a community setting . With this consideration, we will continue last year case study theme to focus on skills to transform communities.

Since the majority of the poor in rural area are farmers, to transform the rural area in Indonesia, the church must focus its effort in transforming the farming communities. Majority of the poor in rural area are farmers. It is a noble vocation. The first occupation on earth was farmer when God planted a garden in Eden. Overtime, this vocation belongs more and more to the lowly. 2 Kings 25:12 shows these conflicting views between man and God’s on farming. Nebuzaradan, the Chaldeans captain, took the noblemen to exile and left the poorest of the land to be plowmen and vinedresser. It was Nebuzaradan intent to keep oppressing the poor by ordered them to be the farmer. He trusted them with the land because these poor would not stir rebellion instead work hard to provide incomes to his king.

God’s view is different. These poor became free and rich. They were free from the oppression because they were willing to work rather than oppress others. These poor became rich because they were willing to be stewards of God’s creation rather than master and abuser of God’s creation.

To conclude, the objectives of OMC 19 are as follows:

  1. To learn about the urgency in rural area in Indonesia
  2. To develop biblically based vision for rural development in Indonesia
  3. To learn biblical concept on transforming communities

Sessions Outline

Three major sessions will be held in TPM to address the objectives above. The sessions are:

  1. The urgency in rural area development in Indonesia:
    1. The current paradigm of Christian missions in rural area.
    2. The major player and the competing visions in rural development in indonesia (Pak Juri)
    3. The dire needs of rural area in Indonesia (Pak Surya)
  2. Vision in transforming rural area in Indonesia:
    1. Biblical model of rural development
    2. Local communities culture and structure in rural area in Indonesia (Pak Surya)
    3. The building blocks of rural development in Indonesia from Christian worldview (Pak Juri)
  3. The importance of community transformation in rural area
    1. Biblical worldview in community transformation and what are the roles of the church in the transformation process (truth and lies analysis)
    2. The challenges hindering the vision in developing rural area (Pak Juri)
    3. Examples of success stories of community transformation (maybe its effects on the farming industry): emphasis on how different individuals in their roles/vocations (play a part in community transformation. (Pak Surya)

Speakers:

  1. Dr. Jurianto Joe, Surya Enterprise
  2. Mr. Surya Hendrata, Community and Church Activist from Jogjakarta
  3. Dr. Bob Osborn, Wilberforce Institute

  1. 2001Rural Poverty Report, International Fund for Agricultural Development, United Nation, http://www.ifad.org/poverty/index.htm
  2. International Development Association Report, IDA at Work: Community Driven Development – Delivering Results People Need, http://siteresources.worldbank.org/IDA/Resources/IDA-CDD.pdf
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