Urbana sat down with Dr. Fung as he prepares for Urbana 2015.
Bio: PATRICK FUNG, MD
Director, OMF International
Patrick Fung believes the Word of God is indispensable to the revival, transformation, and mission of God’s people. At Urbana 15, he will exposit passages of Scripture from the Gospel of Matthew.
Patrick is the 10th director of OMF International (formerly the China Inland Mission) and is the first Asian to lead the ministry. During his time as a medical student in Sydney, Australia, Patrick came to faith in Christ. He was later admitted to the Royal College of Physicians in the United Kingdom and the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine, and served as a doctor in Hong Kong specializing in internal medicine. He went on to receive a diploma in Christian studies from the China Graduate School of Theology in Hong Kong and a master’s degree in missiology from Fuller Theological Seminary.
In 1989, Patrick and his wife Jennie, a consultant gynecologist, joined OMF International and began working within the Muslim context. Patrick was appointed director of OMF Hong Kong in 1996. This role included mobilizing students and graduates for mission and training church congregations, particularly Chinese churches, for the role they can play. In 2001 Patrick was appointed OMF’s international director for mobilization. Now, as director, Patrick provides spiritual leadership for OMF, which currently has more than 1,400 workers from over 25 countries serving among East Asia’s peoples.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE MISSION OR MISSIONS?
Number one: missions is not about us. It’s not our mission. It’s God’s mission to the world. It’s God’s salvation to the peoples of the world. Basically, the core message of Matthew’s Gospel is about the lordship of Jesus. When Jesus says, “…all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me,” he’s claiming the lordship of the whole world. Missions is calling the world to obedience to him.
Missions may not begin directly with evangelism, but missions which does not end with calling people to obedience to Jesus Christ is not holistic missions. It’s defective missions. You can have different starting points, but the ultimate call is to call people to live in obedience to Jesus Christ. It’s not just conversion, but following him. Jesus’ first command to Peter—or, first call—was to “Come follow me.” That’s in Matthew. Jesus’ last conversation with Peter as recalled in the book of John (John 21) is the same phrase: “Come follow me.” That’s missions: come follow me. It’s very simple. Follow Jesus unconditionally.