Glocal Conversations: To Remember WellVol. 11 No. 1 (2023)
A year after her passing, the legacy of much-loved Queen Elizabeth II lives large in our collective memory. Her death and memorial in September 2022 generated worldwide media coverage and reflection on her life. This issue's research article by Brown, Fraser, Ball, and Kim reports on a study conducted in the weeks following the queen's death last year. The study of nearly 1800 consumers of popular media from 15 countries explores the late Queen’s social influence on the lives of consumers of popular media reflecting upon her death. Like in the biblical annals of the kings of ancient Israel and Judah, it is fascinating to note for what monarchs today are remembered, and how that memory shapes us. The article considers how audiences formed close psychological bonds with the Queen through the mediated processes of parasocial involvement, identification and what the literature of that field calls "worship." This is a conversation relevant to those concerned about discipling nations, as Brown's other research on the topic contends.
This issue also contains an extensive review of Anthea Butler's 2021 book White Evangelical Racism: The Politics of Morality in America. Butler's book and its review by Paul Miller are also about remembering well. Public recountings of our shared history reveal how diversely we remember the same stories. Butler's text points to painful aspects of American Evangelical history that leave each of us with something to repent of. While you can find other reviews more inclined toward soul-searching, Miller's review pursues a methodical examination of Butler's arguments and evidence. Miller contends that Butler's book "would not be problematic if Butler was decrying the racism in parts of American Evangelicalism’s past, where with other segments of America it shamefully supported both pre-Civil War slavery and post-Civil War Jim Crow laws. Her book is problematic only because she argues that this racism rages unabated today and, moreover, has been 'at the core' of post-WWII American Evangelicalism." Miller concludes that Butler fails in her claim to prove that race was a "central motivating factor" driving most of American Evangelicalism's efforts.
Glocal Conversations: Hinge Times in the Great CommissionVol. 9 No. 2 (2021)
Milestones are like hinges in time - they mark a shift, a contrast between what was before and what lies ahead, and like a hinge they suggest the possibility of change. The big-picture shift of the century in the global Church is the shift from north to south, from a largely Western leadership and orientation to an increasingly global leadership and orientation. One of the contexts slowest to change has been the academy: in spite of much written by mission academics and practitioners about the shift to the Global South, the bulk of the writing is still in English, and published in the "West." Ironically, my little editorial here is just that.
This issue marks a few milestones for us in this online journal of Youth With A Mission's University of the Nations. For the first time ever we publish an article only in Spanish, as we reach for something beyond anglocentric expression. We also have a Portuguese article with its English translation in this issue. And for the first time since our inception, we published two issues this year - a milestone I'm excited about as editor.
Correcting a previous imbalance, mission leaders in recent decades have made much of the need for nation-discipling: letting worldview perspectives and societal implications of the Gospel of Jesus Christ shape the contexts we minister into, as an expression of the Matthew 28:16-20 passage paralleling the "evangelize every individual" mandate of Mark 16:15. This issue's first article, by Sarah Jose, applies nation-discipling to education in India. The second, by Ana Roncal, pursues the recovery of a coherent biblical perspective on government and economics (our Spanish-only article, to be available in English in the next issue). These pieces are written by scholars with their feet on the ground.
2020-21 will likely live long in our memory as a hinge-time: the years of the Covid-19 pandemic. This issue also contains a four-part series (plus a Portuguese version of one of those articles), considering the impact of the pandemic on the advance of the Great Commission. The lead article by Steve Cochrane is followed by two responses from the Global South - one by Jose and Rosana Liste, Argentinians ministering in London, and the other by Gleyds Silva Domingues, a Brazilian theologian. The series concludes with Cochrane's rejoinder.
As always, we welcome your feedback. Each article contains the author's email address for you to write a note in response. Feel free to contact me as well at [email protected].
A big "thank you!" to those who have authored, reviewed, or edited submissions. To one and all, may you enjoy some Christmas reading, accompanied by hope for the world.
Glocal Conversations: Keeping it GlobalVol. 9 No. 1 (2021)
How global is the Church? How global has it always been? This issue of Glocal Conversations addresses that with four great articles and two book reviews. In the first article, Asian missions veteran Steve Cochrane considers business as mission - BAM - in the first 1500 years of Church history in Asia. BAM is not new! Monk merchants of the Church of the East have been doing this for a long time already. In our second and third articles, Tiago de Melo brings Brazilian perspective on the hyper-relevant complexities of Christian engagement of cultural plurality, with two (identical in content) articles, one in English and one in Portuguese - a first for us. Finally, Paul Miller delivers a mic drop critique of the hermeneutic of Greg Boyd's recent book Cross Vision. More than a book review, this article engages an ongoing trend of grave concern, especially in the West.
We continue to include book reviews. Steve Cochrane reviews Vince Bantu's highly-acclaimed A Multitude of All Peoples: Engaging Ancient Christianity’s Global Identity, and Cleber Paula Santos reviews Christian Egalitarian Leadership: Empowering the Whole Church According to the Scriptures, edited by Aida Besançon Spencer and William David Spencer. Both books are worthy of your thoughtful reflection. Enjoy the reading.
As always, we welcome feedback to this issue. Please feel free to write the authors at the addresses indicated on their files, or write me at [email protected].
For the Editorial team
Glocal Conversations: For Such a Time as ThisVol. 8 No. 1 (2021)
Students of history know that 2020 holds little that qualifies as "unprecedented." And students of Scripture know that God is always "up to something." Leaders who will be faithful to our mission in society must be good students of God's redemptive purposes in history, able to "understand the times and know what God's people should do." This issue of Glocal Conversations brings us to consider history redemptively. We observe with William Brown and Asbjorn Simonnes the finger of God in the story of Norway and Denmark, in the lives of Hans Nielsen Hauge and Soren Kierkegaard. What might we learn from their proactive stand in a difficult hour? Then with Jessica McFalls we consider how Jesus beats Karma - spiritual praxis in discipling Tibetan Buddhist-background followers of Jesus. Then, again in South Asia, with Kosam Ramroop we consider the redemptive mercy of God in the history of Indentured Servitude in the British Empire.
This issue also contains book reviews, a first for us. Three experienced missions leaders review for us From Jerusalem to Timbuktu by Brian Stiller, The Significance of Singleness by Christina Hitchcock, and Three Pieces of Glass by Eric Jacobsen. We trust you will appreciate the perspectives given - and find yourself adding new books to your Christmas reading list!
As always, we welcome feedback to this issue. Feel free to write the authors at the addresses indicated on their files, or write me at [email protected].
For the Editorial team
Glocal Conversations: Four Snapshots of Business as MissionVol. 7 No. 1 (2019)
Jesus said you cannot serve both God and money. Can missions and business get along in the Great Commission? This issue's four snapshots of Business as Mission (BAM) answer in the affirmation - with caution. Yes, . . . but. The caution is timely, based as it is on the mixed bag of business as mission in 19th century Hawaii - as we approach the 200th anniversary of the arrival of the missionary band at Kona in March 1820.
This collection of articles was brought together by guest editor Mary Miller. Together with her husband Paul, Mary has had extensive involvement in BAM on multiple continents. This issue includes a guest editorial, an encouraging report from entrepreneurial training in India and Africa, a case study from Latvia on how a fruitful BAM initiative evolved there, and a two-part summary of historical research drawing cautionary lessons from missionaries who engaged in business in 19th century Hawaii.
The editorial team thanks Mary Miller for her work as guest editor, and each of the authors for their work in bringing this to publication. Business as Mission is a powerful strategy - that carries risk. In Paul Miller's words in his second article herein, BAM "has a two-edged quality: it can bring blessing and wholeness to a nation, but it can also bring hurt." Each of these articles points to specific elements to attend to, so that we may, quoting Miller again "bless others through our business, even as our God has blessed us."
Glocal Conversations: Learning from History: Missional Community, Institutionality — and The Benedict OptionVol. 6 No. 1 (2018)
A movement that aspires to multigenerational missional impact must know how to reflect on and learn from the past, even as it innovatively pursues relevant expression of the next thing God is doing. In this issue YWAM leaders with decades of experience consider lessons for YWAM from Benedictine monasticism, in their reviews of Rod Dreher's bestseller The Benedict Option. Meanwhile the lead article by John Mraz considers the importance of recording our own history in University of the Nations' records system. As U of N co-founder Howard Malmstadt often said, "No records, no university." Mraz's article investigates a gap in U of N records in South Asia, and makes recommendations toward the future.
Glocal Conversations: Formation and Discipleship in Youth With A MissionVol. 5 No. 1 (2017)
This issue addresses spiritual formation, discipleship, and leadership development in Youth With A Mission. All six articles are edited versions of research recently completed in master's programs in University of the Nations. Authors welcome additional dialogue by email. These articles bring tremendous global breadth to this issue, with author nationalities and context of field research representing every continent except Antarctica.
Glocal Conversations: Learning from the Past, Living the LegacyVol. 4 No. 1 (2016)
This issue explores lessons to be learned from the past for effective forward engagement. Global in implication, the first two articles consider the missions involvement of the 9th century Church of the East, and the understanding of the Great Commission in the 20th century Latvian Church. The final two articles draw on the one hand leadership principles from Jesus' leadership selection example, and on the other hand keys for the creation of multi-generational family legacies. How will we effectively pay forward what we have received? These articles point us in the right direction.
Glocal Conversations: Measurement in MissionsVol. 3 No. 1 (2015)
The first two articles of this special issue of Glocal Conversations take a particular look at how measurement in missions has been affected by postmodernism and the advance of technology. The final two articles look at ongoing issues of concern, the church and multiculturalism, and the persona of charismatic versus transformational leaders. We trust you will enjoy the guest editorial, and the letter to the editor that keeps the conversation going from our last issue.
Glocal Conversations: Considering the Destiny of the UnevangelizedVol. 2 No. 1 (2014)
Inclusivm, exclusivism, pluralism - what are we to make of the question "What happens to those who have never heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ?" This issue explores the subject via a dialogue between the author of the lead article, Paul Miller, and three respondents. Miller does get the last word, responding to their papers.
Glocal Conversations Inaugural IssueVol. 1 No. 1 (2013)
A few words about the content of this first issue. We decided to organize the Table of Contents according to the author’s last name, in alphabetical order. This happens to mean that the first two articles touch the subject of using entertainment media for prosocial messages. The potential for nation-shaping here is phenomenal. We are grateful to be able to strike this note in our first issue. The final three articles share a common theme, the sphere of law and civil government. The first addresses good government as being the will of God for the advancement of the Great Commission. The second argues for the legitimacy of the modern state and our engagement in it. The third takes a look back at the roots of English common law and the influence of the Bible. Click on any article name, its pdf link, or the Editorial for more information. Welcome!