Making Ourselves Fit for the Future

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Dear Friends

Exactly 10 years ago AGiK – the Intercultural Working Group of the Swiss Evangelical Alliance – began its work. It was the follow-up of the previous AfA (Working Group for Foreigners). Today we are at a new threshold. This newsletter will inform you of our plans.

A New Name for AGiK


Before you read more in this newsletter about the results of of the  AGiK-Taskforce's work, I would like to talk to you about another matter. It's about our name: the "AGiK" was only meant to be a provisional working title when we started. But that's how it goes sometimes, the name stuck, even though we were never really satisfied with it. Now that we are reorienting, we would also like to work with the Romandie, the French-speaking areas of Switzerland. The German-language Schweizerische Evangelische Allianz (SEA) and the French-language Réseau évangélique suisse (RES, Swiss Evangelical Network) would like to work together in future for intercultural matters. AGiK sounds odd when pronounced in French. 

We would therefore like to ask you, dear friends, to help us. Who has a great idea for a new name? The name should work in both languages (German and French) or be simple and easy to translate into the other language. 

Please send in your suggestions via email to:  martin.saegesser@meos.ch

You can win a prize! We will invite the creator of the new name plus a companion to a meal, together with the new coordinator and other members of the management team. 

I look forward to your proposals. They will help us to promote intercultural cooperation of evangelical Christians in Switzerland in the future with a new name better and more clearly. In this way, God's kingdom will be built and God's name honored.  

Kind regards and blessings to you!


Martin Saegesser
Ad Interim Director of AGiK (which will soon have a new name)

 

"Migration, International Churches, religious asylum-seekers, intercultural cooperation" – We Face Challenges! United We Stand.

During the third Lausanne Congress in Cape Town 2010, the Swiss delegation had formulated a mandate in their final report to "promote reconciliation and unity with migrants in Switzerland. We do not consider foreigners as intruders, but seek fellowship and help them to integrate. In particular, we fellowship with our foreign brothers and sisters in faith." The leadership of SEA.RES was moved to focus on strengthening the work of AGiK.

Strengthening Partnerships

Last year, AGiK dealt intensively with its mandate and its structures. It wishes to intensify its work and strengthen partnerships. AGiK views itself as the SEA.RES's competency center in the sectors of intercultural cooperation, migration and integration matters. It intends to connect evangelical churches, ministries and training schools from different cultural circles and languages, whom it supports and motivates to live the Gospel and to transmit it to the multifaceted population of Switzerland. By doing so, AGiK also promotes intercultural encounters between Christians from any background.

From Geneva to Romanshorn

While the work was limited to German-speaking areas of Switzerland in the past, AGiK has consciously been working on a national level since 2014 and thus supports the activity area of Réseau évangélique suisse (RES). The sponsorship should become broader and more multilingual. Aside from ministries and churches, it should also include theological educational institutions. For this reason, an information and networking meeting took place in Bern with its partner organizationens.

New Coordination Office

Because of the new developments, another person will be hired in a part-time capacity for the area of coordination. Until now, these tasks were carried out by volunteers, and with very little time available to do so. The working group can fulfil its mandate better with a coordinator and make the current services as well as new initiatives more known and accessible.

Staff Changes

Within the framework of the further development, there will also be some staff changes. The previous AGiK co-directors Samuel Kopp and Carl Hardmeier are stepping down from their (volunteer) positions and Martin Saegesser will be leading AGiK during the period of transition and the implementation of the decisions taken.

On behalf of the AGiK-Partners and the SEA, we would like to thank the two directors for their commitment and their work these last years. They will continue to help out in the management team (Carl) or in individual cases (Samuel) and work for AGiK.

Marc Jost
General Secretary and national coordinator for SEA.RES