At the National Black Presbyterian Caucus (NBPC) biennial convention in Charlotte today, Presbyterian World Mission and NBPC signed a historic covenant aimed at strengthening World Mission’s recruitment among African-American Presbyterians for service as mission co-workers and Young Adult Volunteers around the world.

“The 120-year legacy of African-American Presbyterians in global mission shows us that our church cannot be faithful to God without the insights and the active participation of African-American Presbyterians,” said Hunter Farrell, director of World Mission.

Farrell said the two groups have been in dialogue through a joint working group for over a year in developing this covenant to enhance World Mission’s work and its understanding of mission through the experience of African-Americans.

In the document NBPC and World Mission agree to several key objectives:

  • “targeted education and recruitment efforts bringing the African-American reality and experiences of African-Americans into the denomination’s mission education efforts to increase the number of African-Americans within the PC(USA) answering God’s call to mission and justice work as mission co-workers and young adult volunteers;
  • authentic truth and reconciliation, mission education, and process building among PC(USA) congregations to encourage African-American mission participation, especially among youth and young adults;
  • development of strategies and components for orientation and ongoing care to retain and motivate African-American mission personnel, including YAVs.”

The NABC covenant highlights just one of many key World Mission partnerships. In fact, the document itself draws attention to the crucial role partnerships play in guiding the whole connectional church. “As Presbyterians,” the covenant says, “we believe that doing mission in partnership broadens our awareness of how interconnected God’s mission is locally, nationally and globally.”