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Bridge Building… 2010 ACLAME Summit Report
By Rod and Sherry Boyd

2010 ACLAME Summit

Fifty-one missionary educators, representing 13 countries and a host of Latin America/ Caribbean ministries, gathered September 8-10 for the 2010 ACLAME Summit at the Lakeview Conference Center out of Waxahachie, TX. ACLAME (Association of Caribbean and Latin American Missionary Educators - exists to encourage and support AGWM missionaries in their involvement of ministries of teaching, training and discipleship.

In 2003 Rod was one of four missionaries that were invited to meet with the Latin America/ Caribbean missionary leadership to discuss concerns about supporting missionary involvement in ministerial training.  The ACLAME ministry was born and has now conducted four summits to encourage and assist our missionaries.  Rod has served as chairman of the ACLAME leadership team for the last two years.

“Bridge Building” was the theme of the 2010 Summit. The purpose of the Summit was to help missionary educators building bridges to resources, institutions, nationals and colleagues, especially the younger missionaries. The closing afternoon session was a synthesis of the various sub-themes discussed during the Summit. There were seven aspects of bridge building that were highlighted:

  1. Relationships and Friendships

  2. Changing Role of Missionaries

  3. Structures

  4. Communication and Teaching Styles

  5. Generational Bridges

  6. Resources

  7. Character and Competence

The Synthesis Chart provides the definition, importance and application of each of these expressions of bridge building.

We were honored to have Earl Creps with us for two sessions. He reminded us that things are changing rapidly and the need to building bridges between generations because of intense differences and a rapidly changing world. He shared about the importance of mentoring and challenged with the concept of reverse mentoring—the need to receive from the following generation.

Several months ago the ACLAME leadership team worked through Earl’s book Reverse Mentoring. We recognize that there are not enough younger missionaries involved in teaching, training and discipling ministries. We intentionally reached out to younger missionaries, inviting them to the Summit.

Dave Godzwa and Ryan Jordan, two of these younger missionaries, shared the two morning devotionals. Latin America/ Caribbean Regional Director Dick Nicholson challenged us with an excellent message. After enjoying s’mores around the closing bonfire, Caribbean Area Director Dale Coad encouraged us to trust God in the valleys of life.

We received several evaluations that included different comments about the Summit. These comments are included in the side bars. Several commented on the effective balance of teaching and inspiration in this year’s Summit. For me a special moment was listening to Kristi Northup sing You See Beauty, a song she wrote to contrast human and divine perspectives. Kristi and Tara Kenyon led worship in the two evening sessions. One line in the song says “I see Simon, You see Peter.” Perhaps the most important bridge we build is helping people realize their full potential in the Lord! We are truly privileged to be missionary educators.

2010 ACLAME Summit

The Summit helped me to
evaluate my own ministry
and think about my priorities
as I return to the field.

2010 ACLAME Summit

I enjoyed getting to learn from
the experiences of more
"seasoned" missionaries,
these lessons are invaluable
and in my opinion the greatest resource a forum like this
has to offer.

2010 ACLAME Summit

The Summit gave me a bigger
spectrum to help me evaluate
where I am and how I am
relating to the next generation.
It also made me more aware of
the importance and necessity to transfer to others down the line
those qualities that the Kingdom
needs and the Church requires
so that the Gospel remains
revelant to each generation
and can fulfill it's Heavenly

2010 ACLAME Summit