With less than a year to prepare and gathering limitations still in place, the Mennonite World Conference assembly’s national planning committee is training volunteers virtually. The committee has coached 60 people as volunteer trainers, with the hope each trainer will teach another 20 to 60 volunteers how to welcome guests and communicate.
Assembly volunteers come from all three Mennonite synods in Indonesia. Many are members of churches that will host Assembly Scattered — visits to other locations in Indonesia.
“We recruited trainers who are already conversant in English,” said Lydia Adi of Jemaat Kristen Indonesia (JKI). “This training is designed to enhance their knowledge of situations they are likely to face during assembly. Scenarios include welcoming guests, giving directions, expressing agreements and disagreements and explaining an emergency situation.”
The training program consists of six modules to be covered in 20 interactive classes, developed jointly by the national planning committee and volunteer English professors at Duta Wacana Christian University.
Each of the three synods then determines how the classes run. JKI is already scheduling weekly classes on Zoom, while Gereja Injili Tanah Jawa (GITJ) is making plans to hold some classes in person.
Another challenge the national planning committee faces is how to bring more awareness about MWC and the assembly — scheduled for July 5-10 — when the ability to visit churches is limited. Training assembly volunteers to promote the event in local churches has become a creative solution.