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Making Disciples among the Unreached

“ . . . the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.� LUKE 1:78b-79

A MESSAGE FROM KURT NELSON As followers of Jesus, we are fighting the most vicious, relentless opponent of any war in history. But, we have a guarantee that we will overcome our enemy and that our mission (His mission!) will be victorious (1 Cor. 15:57). Therefore, East-West continues to daringly take risks to join in God’s mission . . . that the Kingdom of light may overwhelm the kingdom of darkness through Jesus Christ. As we embrace the realities of the Word of God, we recognize that billions of people are living in utter darkness apart from Jesus Christ. Our passion is to carry the light of Jesus into areas of spiritual bondage to break down strongholds by expelling the darkness. Jesus Christ has sent us on a spiritual rescue mission to the ends of the earth —that the lost may be reached, that leaders may be empowered, that their communities may be transformed, and that churches may multiply for the sake of making known His glory among the nations! PRESIDENT AND CEO

Our unrestrained passion has generated an unprecedented sense of urgency to carry the light of Jesus into our dark world. We invite you to read the pages that follow to learn more about God’s new vision for East-West and how you may take part in this great work of dispelling spiritual darkness throughout the world. Because of Him,

THE STORY OF EAST-WEST East-West Ministries began because two men couldn’t resist the call of Christ’s great mission . . . go into the world and multiply His disciples. Through their work behind the Iron Curtain in the early 1980s, East-West Founders John Maisel and Bud Toole recognized the profound need to train church planters and pastors in nations with severely restricted Christian activity. In April 1993, East-West Ministries International was established to train and mentor faithful and reliable national pastors to become catalysts for indigenous church growth—reaching the lost with the gospel, equipping new believers and multiplying reproducible churches. Today, East-West works primarily in limited access countries and among unreached people groups throughout nearly 40 countries worldwide . . . so that a growing number of disciples will continuously multiply.





Depending solely on the leadership and power of the Holy Spirit

Developing authentic relationships that move us toward spiritual maturity

Pursuing servant leadership and faithful stewardship in a Biblically healthy organization

Extending grace through our lives, our relationships, and our ministry





Equipping indigenous leaders for ministry that is culturally relevant and easily reproducible

Honoring Jesus Christ by aggressively pursuing His Kingdom agenda through partnerships and collaboration

Leading a ministry with flexibility, creativity and courage

Mobilizing and multiplying the church to fulfill its mandate for bringing the gospel to the world

“Go and make disciples” Matthew 28:19

GO. MULTIPLY. Making Disciples among the Unreached Through God’s power, East-West goes and creatively multiplies disciples and churches in the world’s spiritually darkest regions of the world. God’s radical transformation in our own lives ignites a passion and an urgency within us that compels us to GO. Going to the remote and to the unreached . . . the most spiritually dark of places. Because of God’s presence and power, we are unafraid. We are not

willing to play it safe. We GO where we’re lead. We know God and the power of His Word— it will not return void. Instead, it ignites because it is powerful and living. There is a world waiting to know Jesus. For that reason, we will take God’s Word to the world. We’ll do whatever it takes . . . to see followers of Jesus MULTIPLIED through the power of His Spirit.


The vision of East-West is to glorify God by multiplying followers of Jesus in the spiritually darkest areas of the world.

OUR MISSION East-West exists to mobilize the Body of Christ to evangelize the lost and equip local believers to multiply disciples and healthy churches among unreached people and/or in restricted access communities.



the Body of Christ





local believers



disciples and churches East-West exists to mobilize the Body of Christ to evangelize the lost and equip local believers to multiply disciples and healthy churches among unreached people and/or in restricted access communities.

We Go Where We’re Led… Our passion is to be a part of God’s work in the most remote and restricted areas of the world where there has been no church established in over 2,000 years. To that end, we seek the direction of the Holy Spirit to lead us to unreached areas of the world where He is capturing the hearts of people—that we may join Him in that work. Therefore, we boldly step out in faith to fulfill God’s desire to make Jesus Christ the Hope of glory among every tribe, every tongue and every nation of this world . . . no matter the cost. We are currently engaged at two distinct levels of involvement among our various ministry areas:

MINISTRY INITIATIVES are the regions in which an East-West staff member provides ministries such as church planting training or business training.

MINISTRY FIELDS are the regions that have a long-term, ongoing commitment by East-West; a field leader; an involvement in evangelism and equipping that facilitates national initiatives in evangelism, equipping, and church planting and growth; and normally having East-West related staff on the ground or regularly visiting the field, unless prohibited by conditions in the field.

We go to restricted access countries We target areas of the world that have restricted access to the gospel. These regions are typically characterized by heavy persecution of believers due to political tyranny and/or religious oppression. Open Doors International, a like-minded missions organization, works among the persecuted throughout the world and has prepared a ranking of 50 countries where persecution of Christians for religious reasons is worst. The following map depicts these top 50 most heavily persecuted countries of the world.

Persecuted country

Persecuted Countries with Restricted Access to the Gospel (Map of 50 most heavily persecuted countries listed in Open Doors’ 2012 World Watch List)

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WHERE WE GO. Ministry Field Ministry Initiative


A NEW VISION Throughout our history, God has faithfully used East-West to accomplish many “impossible” tasks by human standards. Tasks that could only be accomplished by God’s power. Passionate about His Son being clearly proclaimed among the unreached, God continues to use East-West as a catalyst for the spread of the gospel by setting extraordinary goals for its ministry. Focused on living out its mission statement, East-West pursued God’s direction for His vision for the next five years of ministry.

Send 200 long-term missionaries Reach 120 million people with the gospel

Engage 500 church partnerships Send 1,000 annual short-term mission trip participants Engage 5,000 daily prayer partners

Baptize 1 million new believers




Plant 50,000 new churches, of which, at least 50% will be among unreached people groups

Equip 250,000 local church leaders



Mobilize Short-term Mission Trip: Purposeful Obedience

FIVE YEAR GOAL Send 200 long-term missionaries Engage 500 church partnerships Send 1,000 annual short-term mission trip participants Engage 5,000 daily prayer partners

OUR STRATEGY The leadership of East-West has always been passionate about mobilizing the Body of Christ to be a part of God’s work around the world (Acts 1:8). In recognition of the strategic importance of engaging the entire Body of Christ in worldwide ministry, mobilization is now a unique strategy focus within East-West’s mission statement.


od has been calling me to India for the past two years. It’s the one place on earth that I told God I wouldn’t go. But God kept putting India in my life . . . it was all around me.” When this young woman learned that her church was going on a short term mission trip through East-West, she finally relented to God’s leading. Nervous but eager, she was willing to understand God’s purpose for her in India. On the second day of her trip, she and her translator were welcomed into a home where they shared the gospel with an older man and his family. As she shared, the older man

stopped her and said, “I’ve been waiting for you. Keep going.” Completely amazed at his words, she continued with the message she had come so far to share. Before she could finish, the man asked, “How can I give my life to Jesus? What do I have to do?” That day, the older man and four of his family members surrendered their lives to Christ. The young woman came to understand the result of her obedience: “I was exactly where God wanted me to be to fulfill His purpose. I simply had to follow His leading.”

“Our task is to do everything we can to go to those places that have never been exposed to the magnificence of Jesus and the supremacy of God’s love and deliver the message of reconciliation through Jesus Christ.” – John Maisel, Founder East-West Ministries International

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evangelize FIVE YEAR GOAL

An Evangelism Story: New Life amidst Persecution


or nine years, an East-West national partner and his team traveled to a nearby Indian village to minister to the people of this lost community. The strict religious practices of this community led the villagers to sacrifice animals to the spirits of their ancestors . . . hoping to improve the conditions of their afterlife. “Despite the opposition we have faced,” explained the national partner,

“we have faithfully prayed for this village and have visited every home to tell them about Jesus Christ.” After nine years of ministry, a small number of the villagers have professed belief in Jesus, and they are now gathering secretly in their homes to worship the One True Living God.

“My Word will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” – Isaiah 55:11

Reach 120 million people with the gospel

OUR STRATEGY East-West is committed to penetrating the most spiritually dark areas of the world with the light of the gospel. We are continually seeking creative ways to act on the urgency of our call to join God’s mission in reaching the lost. Most importantly, we only pursue evangelism strategies in areas where we have national staff on the ground to follow up with those exposed to the gospel. Due to the variety of target populations that exist throughout the world, we recognize the need to engage multiple evangelism strategies to most effectively reach the lost world with the message of Jesus Christ. We utilize strategies that reach from the rural poor of remote villages to the untold millions in mega-cities.

A Baptism Story: New Faith Brings Bold Obedience



vangelism and church planting efforts in dangerous neighborhoods of Spain are bringing transformation to many individuals, families and even entire communities. Former drug addicts, former drug traffickers, and families of prisoners are being reached with the life-changing message of the gospel . . . and the response has been overwhelming. Understanding the need to show others the internal transformation that has taken place, many new believers are being baptized in the Atlantic Ocean— boldly proclaiming their new faith and freedom in Jesus Christ!

FIVE YEAR GOAL Baptize 1 million new believers

OUR STRATEGY Although East-West has always encouraged baptizing new believers as a part of its ministry, we have, for the first time, set a goal for baptism over the next five years. With a belief that being baptized demonstrates an obedient heart, East-West believes baptism is a critical step in a new believer’s spiritual growth.

equip FIVE YEAR GOAL Equip 250,000 church leaders


An Equipping Story: Trained to Reach Muslims

“And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.” – 2 Timothy 2:2 To see believers and churches rapidly multiply, EastWest understands the mandate to effectively train men and women to carry out the ministry of the church. We train church leaders to plant traditional or house churches, to lead ministry in a local church, or to lead an evangelistic ministry in conjunction with local churches. We believe that equipping local church leaders is the key to creating a reproducible, culturally appropriate ministry that can become self-sufficient over time.


e have many Muslims in our area of ministry in Central Asia. The enemy has used so many lies to distort the Word of God,” explained an East-West national partner in Central Asia. An East-West staff member provided training for church leaders from across Central Asia, showing them how to most effectively share the truth of Jesus with Muslims. “We

learned how to use the Qur’an as common ground to start a conversation about Jesus Christ. At the conclusion of the training, we were all assigned the task of sharing the gospel with 12 Muslims. We are eager to apply this training in our ministry . . . that the Muslim population of our country may be reached with the message of saving grace through Jesus Christ!”

MULTIPLY A Multiplication Story: Impassioned Commitment to the Gospel “God has given us a vision to reach our entire city with the gospel through planting house churches!” exclaimed a local pastor in Latin America.


orking with other local church leaders and members, this zealous pastor is part of a large network of churches that is pursuing a strategy for reaching their country for Christ as quickly as possible. Key leaders are training church members in evangelism and church planting. As new believers are coming to Christ, they are immediately equipped to share their new faith with others and start house churches in their own homes. Continued follow-up training allows these new churches to grow in their understanding of God’s Word and then multiply by planting other house churches. “Even though we face political restrictions and opposition in our work, we will not stop until our entire country has had an opportunity to hear the truth!” – Local pastor in Latin America

FIVE YEAR GOAL Plant 50,000 new churches . . . at least 50% among unreached people groups

OUR STRATEGY East-West aims to plant spiritually healthy, self-sufficient churches which are led by nationals. We are equipping spiritually mature national leaders to adequately lead and multiply this type of Christ-centered church. Over the next five years, we will equip our national church planting partners to carry out intentional training of church leaders to ensure the multiplication of churches.

...50% AMONG UNREACHED PEOPLE GROUPS UNREACHED PEOPLE GROUP DEFINED An unreached people group is a community among which there is no indigenous population of believing Christians with adequate numbers and resources to evangelize this people group. A people group is considered unreached based on the criteria of its population being less than 2% Evangelical Christian and less than 5% Christian Adherents (one who claims any form of the Christian religion). Often, unreached people groups are located in the most difficult to reach areas of the world. There is typically much risk involved in getting to these places . . . and even more risk involved with carrying the name of Jesus into these areas.

OUR STRATEGY AMONG THE UNREACHED Our prayer is that the gospel would have a viral effect among the unreached as new believers are overcome by God’s grace and compelled to go and share with others. We are seeing incredible movements take place in various parts of the world as generation after generation of house churches are being planted—all with a purpose to make the name of Jesus GREAT among the nations!

“And we all . . . are being transformed into His image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” – 2 Corinthians 3:18


“We give thanks to God that, in spite of our unworthiness, He allows us to be instruments in sharing His blessing and the gift of eternal life with these people.” – East-West National Partner in Europe

East-West exists to mobilize the Body of Christ to evangelize the lost and equip local believers to multiply disciples and healthy churches among unreached people and/or in restricted access communities.

2001 W. PLANO PARKWAY, SUITE 3000, PLANO, TX 75075 972.941.4500 • WWW.EASTWEST.ORG

We would like to thank an anonymous donor for graciously donating the cost of printing this publication. Professional photos provided by Trey Hill /

Visionary Publication  

Visionary Publication 3

Visionary Publication  

Visionary Publication 3