Chuncheon, South Korea – U.K. Anabaptist leader Stuart Murray explored the basics of Anabaptist theology, history and ministry with Mennonites in South Korea during a country-wide speaking tour 20 April-3 May.
During his visit Murray – author of the popular book The Naked Anabaptist (Herald Press, 2010) – engaged in conversation with Anabaptist leaders about ministry in a postmodern age.
“Stuart’s lessons had a great impact,” said Kyong-Jung Kim, director of the Korea Anabaptist Center and the Mennonite World Conference General Council member from Jesus Village Church, an MWC associate member-church. “Everyone walked away with something of value.”
For Kim, lessons about how the church can approach a post-Christendom era were important. “Even though Korea was never influenced by Christendom,” he said, “it was Christendom-influenced Christianity that western missionaries brought to Korea about 200 years ago.” The theologies of both the Catholic and Protestant churches in Korea were developed under the auspices of Christendom, which differs from the Anabaptist free, peace church tradition, he said.
“No wonder it has been so difficult for Korean churches to adapt a different understanding of theology and practices from an Anabaptist perspective,” Kim noted. “Stuart Murray’s insights and teachings helped us to find different approaches to understand what it means to be a church and how to live out accordingly.”
Mennonite Church Canada – an MWC member-church – cooperated in bringing Murray to South Korea for the speaking tour.
Adapted from a Mennonite Church Canada news release by Deborah Froese