When I ﬁrst learned of Massachusetts Baptist Multicultural Ministries (MBMM), I was drawn to the work supporting new immigrant ministries. The idea of welcoming the stranger and helping them to become established in anew land with a foundation of faith and support was a critical ministry to which I was drawn. As we helped new immigrants negotiate the complexities and bureaucracies of the U.S., as we provided clothes and shelter fort hose who did not have, as we made space to welcome the other, we were honoring God. And this work gave faith new expression.
But shortly after becoming a part of MBMM, I recognized that there was more to it than supporting new immigrants. At that time, I was serving as pastor of a predominantly Euro-American congregation in decline. It was clear that the vibrancy of immigrant churches and churches of color was needed in Eurocongregations as well. How were we to recapture the spark that is the light and love of Jesus Christ and infuse our work and ministry with this vibrancy? MBMM devoted itself to this kind of cultural exchange. I wanted to be a part of this rich work because it was life giving for all.
However, as I transitioned from local church pastor to denominational work, I recognized that leadership development was a pressing concern. We needed to devote time and energize to identifying and cultivating new leadership. We needed to provide resources to train and equip emerging leaders. We needed to help leaders be more eﬀective in their leadership, not only for their own communities, but also for the Kingdom.
This is the work of MBMM. Yes, we were established as an organization that would help refugees and new immigrants ﬁnd footing here in the U.S., but our work goes beyond this initial founding. We engage in intercultural exchange. We are involved in leadership development. We work so that the entire body of Christ is served. This is the work of MBMM and this is why it is important to me.
Rev. Dr. Debora Jackson
The Ministers Council, ABCUSA
Member, Board of Directors,