But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect
1 Peter 3:15
As part of our vision to see churches deeply engaged in cross-cultural mission, CMS offers apprenticeships to train and mentor Australian Christians in cross-cultural ministry.
Mentac is currently running in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, through CMS NSW & ACT, CMS Victoria, and CMS QNNSW. Mentac seeks to help people explore whether to continue on the path to long-term cross-cultural ministry through one-on-one mentoring and weekly meetings to share, pray and learn. Some ‘Mentacers’ go overseas to study language and culture for a few years, and be involved in ministry there.
R, a former CMS missionary and one of the program coordinators in Victoria, describes Mentac as an “active apprenticeship program, where trainees learn cross-cultural ministry through doing it”. Trainees in Victoria are reaching out to neighbours of other faith backgrounds, students on campuses, or migrant and refugee populations through local churches.
CMS QNNSW has also started to do the groundwork to offer Mentac apprenticeships. Richard Shumack, who has extensive experience in ministry among Muslims in Australia, is working with the branch to help train and mentor churches and individuals involved in outreach to Muslims. This year he ran a series of coaching sessions for people already involved in ministry to Muslims. About 20 people attended, including some students from Queensland Theological College. They shared about their ministries, discussed strategies and issues, and prayed for each other. From these humble beginnings, we hope to see people equipped for long-term cross-cultural ministry and reaching out locally to people from other cultures.
CMS is seeking to work with churches to see this ministry continue to grow. We are currently working on offering training and mentoring for those interested in ministry to Buddhist as well as Muslim people. We are also developing plans to offer Mentac apprenticeships overseas, such as in Indonesia, where we are hoping to start a Mentac program that combines language and culture learning whilst exploring existing Muslim outreach ministries.
Mentac is designed to help people who want to be mentored and trained in ministry to Muslims.
Mentac stands for ‘Mentoring across cultures’. It is a cross-cultural ministry apprenticeship designed to equip trainees to relate to Muslim people, share the gospel with them and disciple believers from a Muslim background to maturity in Christ.
The programme is designed around your needs and the areas in which you want to grow and develop. The full programme is for two years including review and opt-in/out at the completion of every six months. There is also a part-time option if this is more suitable.
Mentac includes formal and informal learning and hands-on ministry. It is based on immersion in Muslim communities here in Australia, with the option for some overseas experience in a Muslim country during the apprenticeship.
You will work with a Mentor, who will help you determine your learning objectives and suggest appropriate resources, and a Ministry Supervisor who will work with you in practical ministry.
We will also help you bring together your learning and ministry experience and reflect on how God is growing you.