CMP Visioning Trip to Jamaica, West Indies

CMP Visioning Trip to Jamaica, West Indies


2/13/2018

A group of 11 persons representing the Caribbean Mission Partnership and the First Flushing UMC and the Korean Caucus visited Jamaica from February 5 – 9, 2018. The purpose of the trip was to meet with some of the leadership in the Jamaica District of the Methodist Church, of the Methodist Church in the Caribbean and the Americas, and to visit one of the projects being supported in the District (Roof replacement at the Sterling Castle church and school) by CMP with generous assistance by First Flushing UMC and the Korean Caucus, as well as other opportunities for co-operation and possible future support.
 
We were given an overview of the various projects that the Church hopes to undertake, which include the development of a Camping /Retreat /Function facility; the strengthening of urban ministry in the revitalization of one area of downtown in the city of Kingston, the capital. This particular church has been the focus of a “peace making” ministry for several decades.
 
The trip included visits to several other areas of ministry that are crucial to the continuing ministry of the Church in the District. We visited the Jamaica National Children’s Home, which takes in children who are abandoned for various reasons, some with physical disabilities and no one to care for them, children who because of traumatic experiences have difficulties living in regular community/family settings. They provide counselling and care to their residents and opportunities for returning to regular living where possible. One of the programs in need of support there is for the employment of an agricultural teacher/enabler to help the Home become more food sufficient in feeding the Home’s community.
 
We had the opportunity to visit one of the successes of the District, that of the Excelsior Education facility which educate person from Pre-Primary to tertiary level. This community currently number over 6000 students. 
 
We also visited the United Theological College of the West Indies. This is the Ecumenical Seminary which the Methodist Connexion shares with three other denominations. It is the primary training place for Ministerial training for the Methodist Church in the Caribbean and the Americas. There are a number of areas which need to be upgraded to meet the needs of ministers in training for ministry in the twenty-first century.
 
We also had a chance to visit the historic downtown Coke Memorial Methodist Church, and museum, as well as a bee-keeping, honey producing, program at another local church.