While on holiday I read The Changing Face of Christianity: Africa, the West, and the World by Sanneh and Carpenter and Asian Church and World Mission by Ma and Ma. Both of these books are compiled of papers given at conferences and suffer from a lack of coherence as a result. Of the two, the Sanneh book which concentrates on Africa was the least satisfying: apart from one chapter on developing indigenous styles of worship music in the US Virgin Islands there was not much that I found new or particularly insightful. If you are a specialist in the area of African Christianity, you probably own this book already, if you are not then you probably don’t need to.
I know very little about the Church in Asia and so Wonsuk and Julie Ma’s book was a very interesting read. The papers cover issues such as pluralism, pantheism and short term mission. Many of the issues are applicable worldwide and not just to the Asian context. One particular paper, Partnersship Issues and Challenges in Asian Mission by Kham, is close to being a ‘must-read’ for mission leaders. This isn’t a book for everyone, but if you are involved in mission leadership or have a particular interest in the Asian church then you should buy it.