First Presbyterian Church hosts 46th Annual World Mission Conference – Times-Enterprise

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Updated: February 14, 2022 @ 10:37 am
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Submitted photoLocal mission volunteers attend the 2019 dedication service of the Presbyterian Church of East Africa Morintat Church in Kenya, built in partnership with First Presbyterian Church of Thomasville. 

Submitted photoLocal mission volunteers attend the 2019 dedication service of the Presbyterian Church of East Africa Morintat Church in Kenya, built in partnership with First Presbyterian Church of Thomasville. 
A longstanding local tradition continues this week as First Presbyterian Church (FPC) marks its 47th Annual World Mission Conference (WMC), and the event committee is inviting the community to participate.
Beginning Thursday, February 17, and extending through Sunday, February 20, the World Mission Conference will host both global and local missionaries sharing how lives are being transformed throughout the community and all around the world.
“World Mission Conference is an exciting four days highlighting the power of the gospel around the world through the work of global and local missions,” said Chris Hart, who co-chairs the 2022 World Mission Conference with his wife, Amy. “We pray it is a blessing for not only our local church family but also the community as a whole,” 
“This year we will be learning how our mission partners have used their passion and gifts to meet the world’s hunger and serve as a part of God’s story,” he said. “We will have the opportunity to learn directly from both local and global mission partners about ways we can more fully engage in God’s mission.“
With a theme this year of “God’s Mission Has a Church,” visiting speakers include Don Ankenbrandt of Alliance Ministries, a mission that helps others discover their unique calling and connects them to ministries that fit their passions; Samuel Dumond of FPC’s Belloc Haiti Mission; and Todd Luke, mission partner in Mexico with the Outreach Foundation.
Speakers and panelists representing local missions include Jake Ankenbrandt and Rachel Arnold, Young Life-Thomasville; Adrian Burns, The Gathering Place; Dondell Green, Joshua’s Promise; Bryan Watt, One Heartbeat; Rev. Dr. Timothy Filston, senior pastor of FPC; and FPC members Wade Durham, Jay Stauffer and Richard Vann.
“This year’s conference offers a number of gathering opportunities, with the church hosting Thursday and Friday evening dinners with worship and missionary talks; morning breakfasts, coffees, and lunches highlighting ways to become more involved in various missions and ministries; a Saturday morning local outreach event; and Sunday morning service and programs highlighting specific missionaries,” the chairman said.
Over the years, many members of First Presbyterian Church — including the youth and more senior members — have traveled on mission trips to Africa, Mexico, Haiti, Cuba and many other regions investing their time and talents for the Kingdom of God. Today, FPC provides significant support for the work of its mission partners around the world, across the country and locally.
FPC’s World Mission Conference traces its roots to 1976, when then-Pastor Wilson Nearing encouraged the local church to bring a particular focus on its mission outreach activities. Church member Louie Porter volunteered to chair the first conference and, with a theme of “By all means… around the corner, around the world,” the church set a goal of $6,000. When gifts and pledges were tabulated following the event, First Presbyterian had raised $12,000.
This year’s base fundraising goal is $170,000 to support world mission partners and mission projects, with a challenge goal of an additional $5,000 to further support Young Life-Thomasville.  
The conference will be held at the First Presbyterian Church campus at 225 E. Jackson St.
A full schedule of conference events is available on the church’s website. To access the 2022 World Mission Conference calendar, log onto www.fpcthomasville.com/wmc or call the church office at (229) 226-2008.
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