Compassion Is the Church in Action
"For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me. ... I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!" (Matthew 25:35-40) As followers of Christ we are called to live lives of compassion. But what is compassion? Is compassion just feeling sad for those in need? Is it simply having pity for others? In Matthew 25:35-40, Jesus gives us a clear answer: Compassion is the church in action. Still not quite sure what that means? Then let’s learn together what it means to live out compassion in the margins of our communities. Come be part of Compassion Conference, July 14-16 at Olivet Nazarene University — an intentional space where you can connect, collaborate, and begin to change the world. We can no longer turn our heads to the needs in our communities. Now is the time to go deeper.
Reflect & Live
The Compassion Conference's plenary speakers come from diverse ministry backgrounds and different parts of the world. They will inspire deep reflection on how we live out Christ's compassion and what the church's role is in a local community.
Eugene Cho is the founder and lead pastor of Quest Church, an urban, multi-cultural and multi-generational church in Seattle, Washington, as well as the founder and executive director of the Q Café, an innovative nonprofit community café and music venue. He is also the founder and visionary of One Day’s Wages (ODW), a grassroots movement of people, stories, and actions to alleviate extreme global poverty. Since its launch in October 2009, ODW has raised more than $3.5 million dollars for projects to empower those living in extreme global poverty. He is the author of Overrated: Are We More in Love With the Idea of Changing the World Than Actually Changing the World?
Jo Anne Lyon
Dr. Jo Anne Lyon is the general superintendent of the Wesleyan Church. As the founder and CEO of World Hope International, she directed the faith-based relief and development organization into more than 30 countries to alleviate suffering and injustice. She currently serves on the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships through the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. She holds a master’s degree in counseling, continued graduate studies in historical theology, and has been granted five honorary doctorates.
Dr. Gustavo A. Crocker was elected the 41st general superintendent of the Church of the Nazarene in June 2013. Prior to his election, he had served as Eurasia regional director since 2004. Previously, he was senior vice-president for programs at World Relief. He joined World Relief after serving as director of field management for Compassion International. Other ministry included several years as administrative director of Nazarene Compassionate Ministries International in Kansas City, Missouri, and three years as regional coordinator of Nazarene Compassionate Ministries out of Quito, Ecuador. A Guatemalan by birth, he was ordained as an elder in the Church of the Nazarene on the Mid-Atlantic District. He holds a master’s degree in community planning from the University of Cincinnati, where he attended as a Fulbright Scholar. As a Latin American Leadership Scholar, he earned a PhD in organizational leadership at Regent University.
Deirdre Brower Latz
Dr. Deirdre Brower Latz serves as principal (president) and senior lecturer in pastoral and social theology at Nazarene Theological College in Manchester, England. She teaches in the area of practical theology and is particularly interested in issues relating to urban mission and ministry, John Wesley, Wesleyan theology, contextual and practical theology, and the area of social justice. She holds a master’s and bachelor’s in pastoral theology from Nazarene Theological College, Manchester, and a PhD from the University of Manchester. She writes regularly for Preachers’ Magazine and has chapters published in a range of books, mostly focused on helping us to understand holiness in the ordinary walks of life (Renovating Holiness, Conversations on Holiness). She has also written for a recent publication looking at the nature of the church (Essential Church: A Wesleyan Ecclesiology).
Dr. David A. Busic was elected general superintendent in the Church of the Nazarene in June 2013. At the time of his election, he had been president of Nazarene Theological Seminary since 2011. After serving as an associate pastor in Oklahoma and Kansas, he served as senior pastor for three Churches of the Nazarene: Vineyard Community Church (Livermore, California), Central Church (Lenexa, Kansas), and First Church (Bethany, Oklahoma). During his tenure at Bethany First, he helped initiate and establish the Swaziland Partnership in 2007 to help reduce the HIV/AIDS rate and assist vulnerable children in Swaziland, Africa. He has published numerous articles and books, including Perfectly Imperfect: Character Sketches from the New Testament. He is currently pursuing doctoral studies in theology and culture at Fuller Theological Seminary.
Rev. Celestin Chishibanji is an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene. He has served as NCM field coordinator in the Central Field of the Church of the Nazarene’s Africa Region for more than 12 years. Apart from coordinating compassionate ministries, he also trains leaders and local churches to engage in compassionate ministries, and he educates on HIV/AIDS prevention and management. He has also served as district superintendent for the Church of the Nazarene. Celestin was awarded his master's degree in religion from Africa Nazarene University in 2006.