On Thursday 12th July, the Archbishop of Dublin, the Most Revd Dr Michael Jackson, will join CMSI's Mission Director, Jenny Smyth and former CMSI Trustee, Revd Dr Paddy McGlinchey (Church of Ireland Theological Institute) on a partner visit to Burundi.
After visiting a Christian Aid project in Makamba Diocese (supported by the Diocese of Cork, Cloyne and Ross), the team will spend time with one of CMSI’s global partners: the Diocese of Matana.
A number of Church of Ireland parishes support theological education in Matana as an expression of their partnership links through CMSI. The team hopes to meet with some of the student pastors, to bring greetings and share encouragements.
The team will also spend time at Bujumbura Christian University, where Archbishop Michael and Paddy will lead teaching sessions around the Anglican Communion’s Five Marks of Mission. During this time, Jenny will visit Gitega Diocese, CMSI's other global partner in Burundi.
Both Gitega and Matana Diocese's have seen the appointment of new bishops in the last year. Both Bishop Seth (Matana) and Bishop Aimee-Joseph (Gitega) are well known to CMSI supporters, having visited Ireland previously.
Speaking ahead of this week's visit,
Archbishop Michael said:
“My hope and my prayer for this visit are that links will be strengthened and deepened between Ireland and Burundi in the areas of Discipleship, Justice, Reconciliation and Ecology – all of which fit with the Five Marks.
“I’m looking forward to meeting people in Burundi and worshipping with them; listening to their story of faith and their passion for the Gospel in word and deed.”
This is the second 'Archbishop visit' that CMSI has facilitated in 2018. In January, Archbishop of Armagh, Most Revd Richard Clarke, joined Jenny and CMSI's Chair of Trustees, Revd Adrian Dorrian on a partner visit to Zambia.
Speaking about this week's visit, Jenny had this to say:
"Central to CMSI's work is a commitment to make connections between different parts of the Body of Christ. By facilitating visits and face-to-face encounters, we hope to nurture greater understanding, deeper relationships and mutual sharing in our common task of mission. We're delighted that Archbishop Michael and Paddy have chosen to visit our partners in Burundi. Our prayer is that, as they bring encouragement and blessings to our partners, they will themselves be inspired and blessed."
Please pray for this small team as they help to deepen and develop the relationships between the Church in Ireland and Burundi. We encourage you to use the following prayer, which Archbishop Michael has written for the team:
A Prayer for the Burundi Team
Almighty God, we pray that through the forthcoming visit, You will strengthen and uphold Your servants, who go as partners in mission in Your name. Give to each of Jenny, Paddy and Michael a heart for understanding and lips for praise of You. Give to all who will meet one another for the first time, an openness to be guided by Your son, Jesus Christ, in plans made, visions shared and projects completed.
This we ask in the power of the Holy Spirit.