Assembly 2022 News #4 Special Edition, Mennonite World Conference
Published in August 2020
On 18 August 2020, the Executive Committee has decided to move the Assembly by one year to 5–10 July 2022.
Assembly 2022 News #4 Special Edition
Youth delegate becomes workshop organizer
“The memories are still in my mind,” says Estifanos Gedlu, workshop coordinator for Assembly 17 (a gathering of Anabaptist from around the globe).
A delegate at Global Youth Summit and Assembly 15 in Paraguay in 2009, Estifanos Gedlu left his home country of Ethiopia for the first time to attend.
“I was impressed by the culture of Paraguay: the way they worship; the way they welcomed us.”
Today, he is part of the team shaping this barrier-crossing experience for the Mennonite World Conference event in Semarang, Indonesia. From 5 to 10 July 2022, there will be daily mass worship, service opportunities, fellowship activities – and two workshop time slots – on the theme “Following Jesus across barriers.”
“We are looking for topics and workshop leaders that reflect the cultural and linguistic diversity of our global communion and are interactive and dynamic,” says Estifanos Gedlu. “In addition to theological and historical workshops, we are particularly interested in including cultural or creative workshops and stories of lived experience.”
A recent engineering graduate before he went to GYS, Estifanos Gedlu was working in campus ministry at Meserete Kristos Church, which led to his opportunity to go to Paraguay.
“From that moment, I read about Anabaptists, I received Courier [MWC’s magazine], I got Info [MWC’s monthly e-newsletter]. I was looped in.”
In Assembly workshops, “I heard interesting stories from countries with similar challenges to those from my home,” he says.
“I learned about different cultures. It is good to see we have this international church.”
He never returned to engineering. Now Estifanos Gedlu is deputy director of leadership transformation at Leadership Transformation Ministries. He works with rural pastors and is an elder in his local church, Debub Meserete Kristos Church.
The friends he made from around the world at GYS remained close for years, as they started careers and their own families.
“Some of my old friends from GYS may be coming with their children.” “I’ll do my best to make my part of Assembly interesting and relevant to various contexts,” he says.
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Mennonitische Weltkonferenz, eine weltweite täuferische Gemeinschaft. Mennonite World Conference Registration, Assembly Scattered, Indonesia. Gemeinschaft der täuferischen Kirchen, Mitgliederversammlung