MISSION AND EVANGELISM
5.2.Dioceses Under Mission Thrust Areas
There are four dioceses under the program of Mission Thrust Areas. These include Eastern of Lake Victoria Diocese, Diocese in Mara Region, Morogoro Dioceses and Eastern and Coastal Diocese. Each of these four dioceses have designated and mapped areas of operation as focal point for Mission work for the period of three years 2004-2006.
What has been done so far is to put in place the modus operandi of the entire program, by forming committees to implement the program action plan, identification of centers, highlight the needs of people and determine the potential ELCT has. The mission outreach program has already started in Morogoro and Eastern of Lake Victoria Dioceses. The progress is at a low pace as we got less money than we budgeted. In Zanzibar the progress is encouraging as the Eastern and Costal Diocese has taken serious initiatives for evangelization. They still need support from outside since the area of operation is pre-dominantly Muslim. In Mara Diocese the progress is still basic. Mapping has been done and funds earmarked for the work has been disbursed. We received no response from any of our partners for the Second phase 2007 - 2009.
To start with in mission field is to engage in case study of each culture of the people concerned. The focus in this regard will be understanding of traditional beliefs, ideology, culture, customs, formalities, rules, protocol and structure of the community.
There after the process will concentrate mainly in investigating the methods the dominant churches in those areas that have been applied to evangelize. For example the area where Catholic Church is dominant the enculturation methodology has been applied, hence the gospel never judge, and transform the culture of the people. From there we concentrate on the evangelization of the gospel door to door.
5.3.Why Only These Four Dioceses Are Under Mission Thrust Areas?
There are numerous areas in the ELCT that could be identified and placed under Mission Thrust Areas. With the limited resources we have it was prudently decided to begin with few areas.
However we embarked on identifying these four areas because they had serious challenges which called for urgent attention of the church. Almost all four dioceses under mission thrust areas share many things in common, though there are some of those that are unique and exclusively related to one diocese. To give clues and glimpses, the explanation of the Eastern of Lake Victoria Diocese will serve as an example: