Eric Hoffer, known as the longshoreman philosopher, once said, "In times of change, learners inherit the Earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists."
Clearly, this Centennial year has been marked by significant changes that will leave a lasting impact upon the Church of the Nazarene. Relocating the global office of the church from Kansas City, Missouri, to Lenexa, Kansas, and renaming it the Global Ministry Center is only one reflection of the changes presently impacting our church. This important change is an indication of the ongoing recognition of the emergence of a new world in which many familiar elements are changing almost daily.
Even the landscape of an institution like the Church no longer can avoid the ceaseless winds of change as they sweep across its vast geography. In a concerted effort to avoid entrapment in worn-out strategies designed to address a world that no longer exists, the Board of General Superintendents chose to proactively address the challenges facing the Church of the Nazarene. As the 86th session of the General Board met in February, its members heard fresh, innovative ideas for reenergizing a century-old movement as it continues to "make Christlike disciples in the nations."
At the crossroads of history, Warren Bennis says, "The manager asks how and when, the leader asks what and why." And those latter questions were the focus of church leaders as they deliberated the impact of changes in the church.
While we are all weary of the arcane explanations of geopolitical and economic crises, true leaders step away from managerial oversight to grapple with the big issues of our times. In the Church of Jesus Christ, our mission is clear and the reason behind its urgency has never been more relevant. We know what we're to do, and why!
With all the change, adjustments, and realignments, we must assure the world that the Church of the Nazarene will faithfully remain a mission-driven church. The how and when are subject to change. The what and why that encapsulate our mission remain sure and steadfast.
The synopsis of the Board of General Superintendents' address reveals the heart of "The Missionary Spirit." Holiness Today invites you to explore the significant actions envisioned to address this new world with the biblical call to discipleship.
David J. Felter, editor in chief