Bishop Brown and Mission Collaboration Superintendent travel to Tonga

July 23, 2013

Bishop Warner H. Brown, Jr., Resident Bishop of the California-Nevada Annual Conference, and the Rev. Linda Caldwell, Conference Superintendent for Mission Collaboration, recently traveled to Tonga for the conference session of the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga (FWCT). 

Both Bishop Brown and Rev. Caldwell attended the session for the signing of the bi-lateral agreement with the FWCT providing the foundation for building a closer ministry partnership both within the California-Nevada Conference and in Tonga.  Bishop Brown preached at the Ordination Service and participated in the ordinations of new pastors for the ministry of the FWCT.  The signing of the agreement took place that same day. 

Rev. Caldwell also participated in a meeting with other mission partners in the Pacific who share ministry in Tonga.  Representatives from partner churches in New Zealand, Australia, and Singapore were present.  Together with the leadership of the FWCT, they were able to talk about challenges, the state of the mission for the FWCT, and reflect on the California-Nevada Conference's participation in and support of that mission.

"Our time in Tonga helped me to better understand both the struggles and the vision the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga has for mission and ministry," said Rev. Caldwell. "The values of celebration and hospitality were apparent and I give thanks for their invitation to be included as a part of their conference," she added.  

"My hope for what happens next here within California-Nevada is that pastors and lay leaders of both the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga and United Methodist and our pastors and laity in California-Nevada would forge a new partnership with each other and do the hard work of collaboration to receive even more opportunities to serve Christ and His mission."