The theme of the upcoming World General Assembly (WGA) 2021 of the World Olivet Assembly (WOA) will focus on the Great Commission as recorded in Matthew 28:18-20. There, Jesus says to his disciples: "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."
The annual WGA that will be held from October 28-31 will bring together mission leader from around the world to review and offer gratitude for the progress and growth that God has allowed over the past year. It is a time for fellowship, worship and reflection as well as a time to look ahead and strategize how to strengthen the mission efforts in order to reach more people with the hopeful message of the Gospel.
Though the pandemic has eased in some parts of the world, it continues to deeply affect the lives of millions of people in almost every country. The pain and suffering led many people to reflect more deeply on the meaning of their existence and open their hearts to God's Word that gives comfort to the mourning and strength to the weary.
Highlighting the Great Commission as the theme of this year's WGA serves as a reminder that the task that Jesus gave to his disciples is yet to be completed and that evangelism and discipling people remains at the core of global mission. It is in following Jesus that lives are transformed and suffering gains meaning, and it is Jesus' resurrection that serves as a reminder that death has been overcome and swallowed up in victory (1 Corinthians 15:54-57).
May the World General Assembly 2021 be a time of giving thanks to God for His faithfulness and love, and of renewing the determination to fulfill the Great Commission one day sooner.