More than 60 people from 30 different churches and agencies attended the inaugural SEND conference in Melbourne last week. Participants and presenters included representatives from Global Interaction, Whitley, Baptcare, Baptist World Aid, and the BUV’s own Church Health and Mission Catalyst Teams. Baptist ministers, Church planters, placemakers, social entrepreneurs, creative leaders, pioneers, and international missionaries gathered at the BUV offices to share experiences and find inspiration. Our theme was “Mission in the Neighbourhood” and Paul Sparks, a leading voice in the growing Parish movement, shared practical advice and stories of renewal from churches across the USA and the UK, helping conference attendees think about repositioning the local church for faithful neighbourhood presence.
The feedback from participants was overwhelmingly positive with many requests for more one-day events that help pioneers and pastors alike receive encouragement, foster networks, and reflect theologically on the relationship between church, mission, and place. We look forward to hosting more gatherings like this!