EMCM conference in Zeliv, Czech Republic 18-21 May 2023

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AMI President Matthieu Borsboom, his spouse Ernie Borsboom-Miga and 1st Vice President Frank Marcus participated for the first time in the conference of the Association of Military Christian Fellowships (AMCF) in Zelig, Czech Republic. Some 55 delegates from 22 countries took part. Among them also the new elected International President from the Philippines Major-General rtd Essel Soriano.


The conference was aimed at the European branch of the AMCF and focused on the theme “Sit, Walk, Stand”, drawing inspiration from the letter of the apostles to the Christians of Ephesus. This was presented and discussed in three sessions, in which there was plenty of room for input from all participants. 

Besides we were also briefed by the different international (supporting) organisations: MMI, ACCTS, MSO. Further briefings by different Military Christian Fellowships (MCF) from Ukraine, Moldovia, Netherlands, Czechia, Italy, Romania.

We also had a panel with the new president of AMCF, two VP’s of MMI, the director of ACCTS and the AMI president. Matthieu delivered a 10minute speech on AMI and the CMC app, which was also promoted by handing out cards with the QR code leaflets. We were also able to provide a lot of information material about the CMC app to the representatives of two Ukrainian Military organizations (Lay and Christian) to be distributed to their military. 

The program was well put together, with enough space to get to know each other better and to strengthen ties after two corona years with only Zoom meetings. A cultural evening was also organized by the host country – a good opportunity to celebrate the AMI presidents’ birthday!

We also had a meet up with the two presidents in presence of Mike Terry and Timo Vehvilainen, the two Vice presidents AMCF Europe, exploring possible fields and ways of collaboration. Several where identified:
1. To support each other in reaching into countries to Christian communities (Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant denominations).
2. To investigate collaboration supporting Christians in the Holy Land.
3. Reach out together to the Orthodox Church instead of both doing it 1 on 1. 

4. See where specific topics relevant for (young) military can be shared, like suicide prevention, PTSS/PTSD, Moral Injury etc.
5. They will look into the CMC app and are very excited about what AMI produced!


This was also a very positive and inspiring experience for the AMI delegation. Old ties were rekindled with Vice President Mike Terry and his wife Nicky Sue – known from our AMI conferences. But the meetings with many new friends were also very positive. 

-It appeared that there were various delegations representing large numbers of Roman Catholic military, especially from the Czech Republic (80%). It has been agreed to invite them to our conference in Mechelen and to see how they could possibly connect to AMI.


-We met with the Ukrainian delegation: one was the lead MCF (Vasyl Khimich Ltcol rtd Baptist), the other is president (Sergiy Lysenko Col army rtd) of the All-Ukrainian Interconfessional Religious Christian-Military Brotherhood, a,Military Lay Christian Organisation. While discussing it became clear that this organisation would perfectly fit AMI as member vehicle. Matthieu told about AMI conference in Mechelen and the relevant topic, they want to attend. Also introduced the CMC app. He invited me to Kiev tot further discuss and meet the Roman Catholic Bishop. After the conference he sent a letter already, expressing hit interest to to the Mechelen conference. He also mentioned a possible visit to Kiev.

-Matthieu also spoke with the Romanian delegation about the present situation, and how it is in being Christian in the Military. A very motivated young female captain leads MCF, inspiring young military personnel.

-We also met the Moldavian delegation. We talked to a volunteer (former Sovjet special forces) who now is advising in Ukraine: bringing first aid kits, medical training and bibles.

-Netherlands; discussed with Niels Woudstra (lead MCF and adviser to MMI) to intensify the contacts in order to better navigate in the AMCF circles.

Other possibilities of more intensive cooperation were discussed with the senior officials of the AMCF. For example, it was decided to exchange each other’s structure in order to see how we can establish new forms of cooperation at a local level. Furthermore, our Declaration of London has been left behind, whereby it has been agreed to cooperate again if a new Declaration has to be drawn up.

For more information: https://www.amcf-int.org/about.html


During these meetings, the necessary impulses were again given to various points from the AMI action plan. 

We look back on intensive days, which were very rewarding: filled with friendship, hospitality and the presence of the Holy Spirit (running up to Pentecost).

We have also realized that there are many opportunities for AMI to grow further, but that this requires more people and more financial resources than are available. We should definitely talk about that in Mechelen, Belgium.