Inclusiveness within limits
Known for their innovative approaches, OAC Ministries (Open Air Campaigners) aim to host conferences that challenge as well as inspire. The OAC Evangelists' Conference from the 4th to the 8th of November at Hebron Hall, Cardiff, welcomes everyone interested in proclamation evangelism. Yet speakers were selected for a provocative reason.
"We deliberately invited speakers from a spectrum of church expressions so that all of us will be challenged at some point," explains National Director Peter Kennelly.
"I've told them not to be 'polite' to us because they're our guests, but to tell it to us like it is in the Bible."
Inter-denominational, OAC has always been inclusive of diverse churches with the crucial limitation being what the Bible says.
Working together with local churches, Staff Evangelists equip individuals and teams to engage with their community in creative ways. Practical sessions on offer at the conference encompass activities such as evangelism and schoolwork. Director Amy Stock of schoolswork.co.uk heads an online community to train Christians who are passionate about reaching out to young people. At the conference, she will lead opening sessions on youth work.
This year, the Evangelists' Conference offers a mini-conference 'The Evangelist and the Church' on the 6th and 7th of November. People can book for the entire week or just for 'the conference within the conference'.
Compelling speakers include General Director of Gospel Literature Outreach Stephen McQuoid who grew up in Ethiopia; as a theologian and teacher, he has written numerous books. Author of the men's best-seller 'Diamond Geezers', Anthony Delaney leads a church meeting in a cinema, club, inner-city estate, a warehouse and even a church building.
With a PhD in Physics from Oxford University, Steve Jeffery, Minister of Emmanuel Evangelical Church, Southgate, has speaking engagements in Europe and America and writes books. A former Staff Evangelist with OAC Jamaica, Al Lambert now serves as the Pastor of Potters House Church, Reading, where his ministry extends to evangelism and church planting.
With such a strong line-up, Peter Kennelly notes, "If you come to the conference prepare to be taught, encouraged, challenged and a lot more".