Some excellent news from the UK. CMS (The Church Missionary Society) has approval from the Church of England to prepare people for ordained pioneer ministry. In other words, an church organisation with a long history of missionary activity and training is authorised to prepare people for ordination in a 'pioneer' role (aka fresh expressions, to put it simply) in collaboration with a ministry college.
of course the Church of England constrains itself in particular ways, but nevertheless they have been pioneering in how the church might be engaged in fresh ways in local, contextual mission and how people might be equipped to lead and serve in this way. (the Methodists over there have not been idle either...)
of course jonny baker has had more than a little to do with this and blogged about it here.
i've concocted a couple of moroccan-inspired salad dishes in the last couple of days and thought I'd write them down before they fade from memory. They both seemed to work well.
Orange and sweet potato couscous salad
Cook 1 cup couscous as per directions on pack and allow to cool. Boil 1 1/2 cups diced sweet potato until it is softened but still crunchy. Slice one orange thinly, cut off rind and quarter each slice. Saute 1 small onion, diced, for 5 mins on low heat. Add 1 clove garlic, diced and a 2 cm piece fresh ginger, sliced thinly, and saute for another 4-5 minutes. Chop 8-10 dates, preferably good quality ones. Chop small handful of basil. Mix all ingredients along with 1 1/2 tbsp zataar.
You either need to warn guests about the ginger slices or remove them before serving.
Eggplant and sweet potato salad
Cut a medium eggplant into 1.5 cm slices. Cover both sides with salt and place on paper towels for 20 mins. Pat dry and cut into cubes. Place in a bowl with 2 tbsp crushed coriander seeds and 2 tsp sea salt flakes. Fry eggplant in oil in a hot pan until just browned but not soggy. Dice a zucchini into 1.5 cm pieces. Saute in a little oil over medium-high heat for 3-4 mins or until just starting to brown. Dont' allow it to get soggy. Rinse under cold water. Boil 1 1/2 cups diced sweet potato until it is softened but still crunchy. Rinse under cold water. Stir fry 1/2 cup raisins over medium heat in 2 tsp oil for 30-45 seconds, stirring constantly. Slice 1 lemon and then cut slices into quarters. Saute in a little oil over medium heat for 30 secs, then add 1 tbsp sugar and stir for 30 secs, then add 1 tbsp honey and stir for 1 min. Do not allow it to burn. Mix above ingredients in a salad bowl. Add 2-3 tbsp Morocann spice mix, 3 tbsp crushed pistachio nuts and a small handful of chopped coriander leaves.Add 2-3 tsp light olive oil.