Church Mission Society today announced the appointment of Paul Tester to the role of mission development manager for Latin America. In this role, he will facilitate and encourage the growth of mission in Latin America. For the first time the role of leading CMS’s work in Latin America will be based in the region itself – in Peru – as CMS looks to strengthen relationships with the Anglican Church and other strategic partners.
Following the retirement of Bishop Henry Scriven, who led CMS’s mission work in Latin America over the last nine years, CMS has taken the opportunity to reshape its approach in view of the way mission has changed over recent years. Consequently, the new role of mission development manager for Latin America reflects the facilitating and complementary nature of mission in the 21st century, where mission organisations like CMS work predominantly with local partners who are already based in the region.
Originally from High Wycombe, Paul went to university in Durham and then worked in the construction industry. Since 2007 Paul has lived in Lima, Peru, serving as a CMS mission partner, working alongside young people and the Anglican Church in various ministry roles.
Paul, who began his new role with immediate effect on 1 January, said, “First and foremost my intention will be to discern God’s direction rather than follow our own intuition as we seek to develop mission growth in Latin America, through both the traditional models of sending missionaries from the UK to Latin America but also enabling, advocating for, and inspiring mission within and from Latin America.” Looking forward, Paul expressed his excitement for the potential of this new role to change the future of Latin America, developing a mission movement that is ‘Latino’ in nature, bearing in mind the geographical size of the region and the need for life-changing discipleship within and beyond the church.
Paul Thaxter, director of international mission at Church Mission Society, said: “I am delighted to announce Paul Tester as the new mission development manager. He will enable CMS to grow its mission work in and from Latin America in collaboration with the Anglican Church of South America, and other strategic partners in region. It is a privilege to be part of the dynamic growth that is sweeping through the church in Latin America.”
Paul is married to Sarah, and they have three children.