Intercultural Church
Becoming One People

Laidlaw College in association with OMF New Zealand warmly invites you to save the date of Friday 11 May (evening) and Saturday 12 May 2018 for a conference exploring the theme of becoming an Intercultural Church.

With many New Zealand churches reflecting our increasingly multi-ethnic society, how do we move from diversity to inclusion? Many churches rejoice that they have members from a variety of ethnicities but the way they worship when they gather often reflects a western framework which is not always welcoming to those seeking to participate. How do we move towards becoming intercultural?

With speakers and workshop leaders reflecting on their own experiences, this conference is designed to be practical and to resource churches as they grapple with the challenge of becoming intercultural.

Further details about the conference and how to register will follow early 2018.

Please save this date and join us for what we hope will be a challenging and inspiring conversation.

Where Henderson Campus
When 6:00pm - 3:00pm
Cost TBA

Friday 11 May

6-9 pm Dinner with speakers Emma & Mark Keown

Saturday 12 May

9:30 am – 3 pm Plenary speaker Steve Maina, and workshops


Rev Dr Emma and Rev Dr Mark Keown

Rev Dr Emma KeownEmma is the minister at Glenfield Presbyterian. Over her 12 years at the church she has seen a huge shift in the ethnic and cultural makeup of the local community. The church has embraced these changes and seen this as a wonderful opportunity. As a result, the ethnic and cultural makeup of Glenfield Presbyterian has changed and this has come with its challenges, trials and tribulations, as well as its joys. The reality is that living together as one in Christ, whilst a biblical mandate, is not always as easy as it sounds. The early church struggled with it and so do we. How can we address this, how can we understand this, embrace this and flesh-out our oneness in Christ when we are often so different?

Rev Dr Mark KeownMark is Senior Lecturer in New Testament at Laidlaw College. His publications include the EEC commentary on Philippians, Congregational Evangelism in Philippians, and What’s God Up to on Planet Earth. He specialises in Pauline studies. An aspect of NT study that fascinates him is the cultural struggles of the early church, an issue which dominates most of the New Testament. His presentation will focus on Galatians and reading it from the lens of multiculturalism. Its message calls for both a celebration of cultural diversity and the breaking down of all racial divisions in the people of God constituted in Christ.

Steve Maina

Steve MainaSteve Maina (National Director, NZCMS) Steve describes himself as a Kenyan Missionary to Aoteaora, New Zealand. Since 2009 Steve has served as the National Director of the New Zealand Church Missionary Society (NZCMS) and spends time encouraging mission partnerships in New Zealand and globally. You’ll often find Steve in pulpits around the country passionately advocating God’s mission. His interests include family, discipleship and mentoring, church planting movements and mission mobilization. He also loves fixing cars, running and eating roast goat meat! Steve is married to Watiri, a Counselling psychologist, they have two daughters and live in Christchurch. As someone who comes from a non-Western context, Steve is uniquely placed to give his insights into NZ churches and culture, the obstacles non-Westerners face, and some suggested pathways forward for churches seeking to become intercultural.


The day will also include three sessions offering a variety of workshops led by NZ local church and mission practitioners, and will conclude with a panel of local church pastors reflecting on “the good, the bad and the ugly” in their efforts to become intercultural.