Jan – Apr 2014
H U MI LITY
Family Ties a Near Miss
Questions in the Storm Pioneers to Partners
Missional characters Bridge asia
P A RT N E R S HI P 1-1
為下一 步 預 備 好
う ょ し ま き 行
Ready for the next level
Bringing hope to hard places
We serve the church and seek to bring the gospel to all the peoples of East Asia. We help place Christians with professional skills in China and other Asian countries, and share the love of Christ with East Asians worldwide. Through Godâ€™s grace we aim to see an indigenous, biblical churchplanting movement in each people group of East Asia, evangelising their own people and reaching out in mission to other peoples.
UK NaTioNal oFFice OMF International (UK) Station Approach, Borough Green Kent TN15 8BG 01732 887299 email@example.com www.omf.org.uk DiRecToRS National: Peter & Christine Rowan Finance: Darren Wall Mobilisation: Lenore Gerschwitz (Interim) candidates: Louise Barker Member care: Beverlea Parkhill aRea MoBiliSeRS london 01732 887 299 firstname.lastname@example.org colchester Mark Sinclair 07583 551 610 email@example.com
From The editor Hudson Taylor longed to see Chinese churches presided over by pastors from among their own countrymen.
It's now 2014, and the game has changed. In many places the national church is now well established and in the hands of highly capable leaders. How do mission agencies working in Asia respond to this new situation, and whom should they be sending to support and serve the Asian church? Throughout 2014 in Billions, we'll be looking at those developing partnerships with Asian churches and the Timothy-and Apollos-like characters we are seeking to mobilise. In more difficult circumstances, OMF are working alongside the Philippines Council of Evangelical Churches Relief Arm (Philrads) to support their disaster relief effort. Tony Waghorn Editor â€“ firstname.lastname@example.org
cambridge Tim Jenkins 07557 237 039 email@example.com Hampshire Andy & Jenni Stevens 01865 600 024 firstname.lastname@example.org Bristol & Wales Charles & Liz Chalmers 0117 946 6211 email@example.com Manchester 01732 887 299 firstname.lastname@example.org Glasgow Phil & Cathy Steed 0141 959 4180 email@example.com Belfast Nathaniel & Donna Jennings 028 9073 1266 firstname.lastname@example.org DiaSPoRa MiNiSTRieS Keith Wood 07971 418019 email@example.com Registered Charity England and Wales: 1123973 Scotland: SC039645 Company limited by guarantee England and Wales: 6541911 International Headquarters, 2 Cluny Road , Singapore 259570
PeoPle News Departures arrivals
4 8 9
Questions in the Storm 6 Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda)
insight and inspiration 19 Insights into cross cultural living
Family Ties 'How about Maltesers?'
From Pioneers to Partners 10 The changing needs of East Asia
Missional characters Introducing Timothy
a Near Miss D.E Hoste joining CIM
100 Million Drops in the ocean 12 Reaching Chinese urbanites
Bridge asia 22 'Together in Christ for East Asia'
Promised land The birth of a new ministry
News Selected snippets from OMF's work with East Asians around the world.
‘I was in prison and you visited me.’
In Taiwan, linda McFerran makes time to followup former residents of Bethany Children’s home. Following a prison visit to one young man, Linda wrote, ‘There were a row of men behind double-glass windows and bars – with a telephone to communicate. As I walked towards bay No. 11 Jay lifted his head and his eyes filled with tears! It took a minute or two for him to lift the phone. "Fan ma, how did you know I was here? I could hardly believe it when they called my name to say I had a visitor. Almost two years and you are the first one to come to see me." Now it was my turn to well up. I only recently discovered that Jay, who left seven years ago, was in prison. His sentence is long – another nine years to go. As we talked, it was good to remind him of God’s love and forgiveness. He knows he has done wrong and is paying the price. When we prayed, he put his hand against the glass and said, "Fan ma, would you sing that song, 'Nothing can separate us from the love of God'?" – a chorus he had learned in Sunday School many years ago.’
Song and Dance
Since moving to Tokyo, João Pedro (called JP) has been working with a church which has given him generous opportunities to use his dance skills with the youth, children and gospel choir. An unlikely opportunity arose when the Christian parents of his Japanese church leader, Nobu, arranged for them to lead a twoday dance and gospel music workshop in a Buddhist school for children from troubled backgrounds. It was the first time the school had opened its doors to Christians. During the workshop, the children learned gospel songs, practised dance routines, heard testimonies and were given postcards with Bible messages based on the songs and dance. The event was very well received by both staff and children. Nobu and JP are planning to collaborate on similar dance and music evangelistic programmes in the future. www.vimeo.com/omfjapanyoufo
The Desert Blooms
In Mongolia, water is scarce and wells are precious. The provision of water for agricultural projects is vital. Markus Dubach (National Director, OMF Switzerland) visited a project in which he had played a part and was pleased to see that saplings planted five or six years ago have grown into sturdy trees. The local project leader described his new challenges: ‘When the project was started a number of years ago, we used to have to import potatoes from Russia in order to meet demand. The people used to fight over water and yields were very low. Now over 800 farmers are organised in different collectives. Under the umbrella of an industrial cooperative, we produce so many potatoes that we have made an agreement with Russia to export potatoes. Who would have thought this possible five years ago?’
Chewing betel nut and wearing a sarong, Granny had a big smile on her face when Thailand Field Directors Mark and Becky leighton (US) greeted her after the church service. But her face sobered as she told them that ever since she had become a Christian, people in her poor neighbourhood had been throwing rocks on her tin roof. ‘I don't know what to do! I keep telling them about Jesus. I keep praying that Satan would be bound and these neighbours would stop bothering me.’ They asked her if she knew what Jesus had said about persecution. ‘No,’ ‘Jesus said, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven.”’ Granny was thrilled to learn this. 'Now, I think I can meet those rocks better,' she declared.
Church planters in Thailand, emanuel and Barbara Zwygart (Switzerland), tell the story of Uncle U’s recent return to church – after 40 years! He had married into a very traditional Thai-Chinese family with few freedoms. Following the marriage, his father-in-law didn’t allow him to attend church. A few months ago, his father in-law passed away. Since then, Uncle U is free and back in the local church in Wat Sai. How could a man like him have persevered in his faith? Uncle U did not stop reading Scripture or praying to our heavenly Father. No one could stop him doing that! God is now making him a blessing in the church and beyond.
Population 93,616,853 7200 Islands 700 Inhabited 186 People groups 17% unreached groups
Maraming tanong dahil sa bagyo
Questions in the Face of the Storm Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda)
‘Maybe God is cursing us. First war, then an earthquake, now a typhoon,’ a taxi driver mused to OMF worker Andrea, his passenger. He had tried to call his cousin in Tacloban but there was no answer. He then just shrugged his shoulders, ‘They're gone, I'm sure. They had a little house by the sea. He must be gone, along with his wife and children.’ Later on in the conversation he asked Andrea if she was a Christian and what followed was a conversation about religion, faith and death. ‘In a twinkle of an eye, everything can just go and we die,’ he said. Andrea was able to share about Christ and salvation, and about not fearing death.
‘People are asking questions,’ Andrea said. She encouraged Christians to ‘grab the opportunities. Take Tagalog (national language) and Visayan (a language of the region) tracts and small Bibles with you. Ask questions!’ This is just one example of what can happen when devastation strikes a country. ‘In Manila, the capital of the Philippines, life is going on as normal but people are very much affected by the situation,’ shares OMF leader Mark. ‘Many, many people have family, relatives or friends in the Eastern Visayas who have not been accounted for, or are dead.’ Along with questions about the deep things of life and suffering from the devastation, tragedy can be intensified through evil. One concern is for vulnerable
Assistant Director for International Mobilisation
children. Many are in danger of being trafficked – sadly not unusual when calamity strikes. Another outworking of the tragedy in some areas has been loss of civil rule. At least one aid organisation had to be evacuated for safety. As supplies ran out some people lost control, resulting in the breakdown of peace and order. While the loss of life and damage has been staggering, we were grateful to learn of the safety of an OMF couple serving in Tacloban. They are remaining in the area with an OMF ministry leader and Filipino colleague while they seek to minister to a long-time friend who was in Tacloban for medical treatment. We were sorry to learn of the loss of 8,000 Bibles in the Waray language.
Prayer • Continue to pray for the missing, the injured and those needing immediate aid. Pray also for wisdom and safety of those providing aid. • Pray for timely, wise conversations with those directly or indirectly affected by the typhoon. • Pray that the groups working to protect the children will be successful. • Pray for wisdom for OMF International and other groups as they evaluate how best to serve people in the affected areas – not just in the immediate sense but in the long-term as well. • Pray for God’s mercy and grace to be revealed in the midst of devastation
Walter and Claire McConnell
Ho and Laura-Jane Meas
Destination Singapore Designation International Coordinator for Mission Research Departure January 2014 Sending Church St. Patrick’s Church of Ireland, Coleraine
Destination Japan Designation Student ministry, Sendai Departure 6 January 2014 Sending Church Windsor Baptist Church, Belfast
Ho grew up as a Buddhist in post-Khmer Rouge Cambodia and first heard about Christ in 1997 at an OMF-run student camp. A Filipino missionary and a fellow student helped lead him to faith and he grew spiritually through Campus Crusade. Laura-Jane, born in Belfast, was saved as a child through her aunt’s witness. Her university years clarified her belief and she became convinced that the gospel is for all, beyond cultures and borders. God had begun speaking to Laura-Jane about Japan when she was ten through a missionary’s presentation, and in 2001 she began work with OMF. Ho and Laura-Jane met in Sapporo when Ho was a postgraduate at Hokkaido University. They married in 2006, Joseph was born in 2009 and they served in Sapporo International Church, alongside Ho’s research. Before leaving Japan, the suicide of a friend’s son awakened them to feel more deeply God’s heart for Japanese people. They came to Northern Ireland in 2009, where Ho studied at the Irish Baptist College. They returned to Iwate for three months after the 2011 tsunami to work among survivors.
Walter, from western Washington, USA, joined OMF in 1987 to work in Taiwan. He met and married Karen Cuthbert, an Irish OMF worker. After two terms of church planting and theological teaching they moved to Belfast with their children, where Walter studied for a PhD in Old Testament. This opened the door to teaching at Singapore Bible College. From Portadown, N. Ireland, Claire studied in Belfast, where she was working with East Asian students. In 1985 she married Paul Livingstone and moved to Coleraine. Kept from Asia for health reasons, they were involved with OMF through prayer and serving on the Irish Council. Whilst at home caring for Matthew, Daniel, and Joshua, Claire worked with Chinese students. Tragedy struck both families in 2006 when Paul and Karen died unexpectedly. Though on different continents, Walter and Claire shared their grief, fell in love, and married in 2008. An email from Peter Rowan in October 2012 began a new journey that is taking them to Singapore to serve the OMF family through mission research.
Arrivals Roy Murray East Asia Ministry Working with students and young professionals. Highlight On my third day in East Asia in 1994 I met a 20-year-old student. A few years later I moved in with him and his family. They all came to faith; just over a year ago he completed his Masters in Theology and is now pastoring two churches. What can we pray for? The team in the country is beginning to grow but is still small given the 50 million plus population. The country and hearts are open, but we don't know for how long. Pray for more workers now. What can we pray for the future? It looks as if I will be I based in Latin America to mobilise the church and mission organisations for mission in Asia. Please pray that God will raise up hundreds from Latin America to join us in the work in Asia. Returning I return at the end of February 2014 and will be based in Glasgow.
Linda McFerran Taiwan
St John and Eleanor Malaysia
Ministry Working with Young Adults who have been in care. I am also OMF North Taiwan Care Co-coordinator – responsible for providing practical and pastoral care for our OMF team.
Ministry Teaching at the Sabah Theological Seminary, Kota Kinabalu. St John: Dean of Students and Head of the Counselling Department. Eleanor: Teaching English and discipling students.
What was the highlight of your last term? Setting up Faith, Hope, Love House as a place for kids who have grown up in care to come ‘Home’ to. It’s a place for them to go when they face the big things in life or just need someone to talk to. It is also a springboard for those who aren't quite ready to leave care. What can we pray for? People to fill in the gap during my absence – that kids in the Bethany Children’s Home would care for one another. Breakthrough in the church-planting ministry amongst Taiwan's working class. It has been great to have some new workers; there is plenty for new workers to do. It would be great to have more from UK and Ireland! Pray too for good adjustment for me and Chinese friends. Returning I will return to Northern Ireland in January 2014.
What was the highlight of your last term? StJohn: Teaching a marriage course at a church – perhaps my warmest teaching experience ever. Church members invited friends along. Eleanor: Studying Colossians verse by verse with three students. Their enthusiasm was infectious.
What can we pray for? The relationship between the majority religion and the church is strained, following court decisions that may restrict the use of certain biblical terms. Pray for wise Christian leadership and discernment. Our graduate pastors who often go straight into multi-church (up to 24!) responsibilities, especially in rural areas. Pray that our students would learn to dig deep into God’s word, to be well equipped to feed their congregations in future. Returning We will return to the UK on 1 December 2013
the need is for PlaceS
and women wh
從 先 鋒 到伙伴
biblical tools t
From Pioneers to Partners Are we on the The Cusp of Destiny in the 21st Century? How do OMF and the church respond to the changing needs of East Asia. Peter Rowan, OMF UK’s National Director shares some key thoughts. The 20th century was an age of unprecedented barbarism, yet also amazing globalisation of the gospel. Over the past 100 or so years Christianity has experienced an incredible transformation in its ethnic and linguistic make-up. The biggest phenomenon in
with Asian chu
the history of the church during the 20th century was the growth of non-Western churches. Today Christianity is a global faith, and you and I are privileged to live at a time of tremendous church growth. This reality must not obscure the fact that there are still many peoples across East Asia who have yet to hear the gospel. But in the years since the CIM was forced to leave China, beginning to take the good
H U MI LITY
d is for men
l tools to work
news to many other East Asian contexts under the banner of the OMF, the national churches in those places are now growing and maturing and are engaging in crosscultural mission themselves. Today OMF has the privilege of serving East Asians in a context where God is growing his church. Is this not the cusp of destiny in the 21st century? What God will do in Asia in this century is a story we are privileged to be part of – not as benefactors but as participants, and perhaps in some cases as spectators – of things which God does quite apart from us or in spite of us! According to Patrick Fung, OMF International General Director, ‘One key issue that keeps surfacing for the fellowship is our relationship with national churches as the Asian Church continues to grow in maturity.’ In 2013 the Methodist Bishop of Singapore, Robert Solomon, graciously challenged OMF leaders when he reminded us that, ‘In the context of the globalised world and church, it is increasingly imperative to recover a biblical ecclesiology that would inform us of what ought to be done. It is clear that the days of unilateral mission action without reference to existing national ecclesial structures and leadership, and without consulting them and seeking collaboration, are over.’ What does this mean for organisations like OMF International and for individuals considering serving in East Asia? First, for mission organisations it means being open to changing our structures to better reflect the kind of biblical ecclesiology that Bishop Solomon is talking about – structures that enable careful listening to existing national churches, allow for the possibility of our ministry strategies and priorities being reordered and changed, with the result that all of us are changed and enriched in the process. Organisations like OMF have the privilege of fostering a genuine engagement with the body of Christ in East Asia. More
than ever, we need not just partnership but a deeper inter-change where people and organisations from different parts of the Body of Christ come together, in Christ, and enrich each other’s missionary service to the praise of His glory among the nations. Second, it means hearing afresh the call to humility. This has always been an essential as far as Christian service is concerned but this call is coming to us in new ways, and with fresh challenges, as we seek to serve the churches of East Asia in crosscultural mission. It has been said that as far as the local church’s ongoing involvement in world mission is concerned, we perhaps need to be sending fewer workers like Paul and more of the Timothy and Apollos model. Pioneer missionaries are still needed in certain places but increasingly the need is for men and women from the older church, who have the theological and biblical tools, to work with existing but newer Asian churches in the task of cross-cultural mission. Do you come from an older church context, rich in theological resources that could be made available to the newer churches in East Asia. Can you see yourself in that kind of role? A note of caution: this is a ministry that requires a hefty helping of humility. It’s about cultivating a partnership and an inter-change that offers our best while learning and being enriched from the rest. And we have much to learn from the churches of East Asia. The great mission-minded pastor, Charles Simeon, once wrote of the ‘three lessons which a minister has to learn: 1. Humility, 2. Humility, 3. Humility.’ He went on to say, ‘How long are we learning the true nature of Christianity!’ As we seek to listen to, work with, and serve under the national churches of East Asia, those three lessons also capture the true nature of 21st century mission.
If you’d like to comment on Peter’s article, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
大 海 中 的 千萬 點 滴
100 Million Drops in the Ocean Reaching and training Chinese urbanites
Pray • Thank God for his constant faithfulness to the Chinese church. • Pray for the continued building of the urban church, God will build his church and the gates of hell will not overcome it (Matthew 16:18). • Thank God for the current generation of Chinese people living in specific places for his purposes (Acts 17:26).
China Chen's Story
Three years ago, Chen and some fellow members of a large urban church in China were commissioned to plant a new church to reach college students and young professionals in their area. Initially there were a couple of dozen attendees, now nearly 200 gather every Sunday. They have just moved into a bigger space, however they expect to outgrow it by the end of the year! It is a common refrain for house churches in China; get a bigger space and the church quickly grows to fill it. With the growth comes increased attention from the authorities. Chen gets calls and visits from police on a regular basis. ‘We just want to talk,’ they say nonchalantly. The police warn against any undue influence by foreigners who attend the church. They also recommend that once the church gets to a certain number, it should divide into another group. If a church gets too big, the police in Chen’s city fear it might cause or give the appearance of social disorder. However, far from being a source of social disorder, some urban dwellers are not even aware of the church. ‘I don’t know of any Christians or churches here,’ said Li, a well-educated, well-travelled Chinese urbanite. Such a statement may come as a shock to some, especially since, according to Operation World, the church in China may have as many as 100 million believers. By one local Christian’s estimate, as many as one million believers meet for fellowship in Li’s city. How could she not know about them? Such a question may belie a misplaced assumption about China and the urban church. Just because the Chinese church may have 100 million people (less than 10 per cent of the population), this does not mean that the average Chinese person on the street is aware of or even cares about how God has grown his kingdom in China. If Li, a seemingly well-informed urban resident, cannot name a single Christian in her area, you can imagine that the need for the gospel is still great.
• More than 50% of Chinese people now live in an urban area compared to less than 20% in the early 1980s. • More than 300 million people have relocated to urban areas since the 1980s. • Urbanites earn 3.5× more than rural workers.
Zhao & Bao Bao’s story
Many in China have heard of Christianity, yet relatively few have heard a clear, biblical explanation of the gospel, attended a gathering of believers, or seen the impact Jesus can have on a person’s life. This is not due to a lack of effort on the part of the Chinese church. Consider Zhao and Bao Bao, a young Chinese Christian couple. Zhao works full-time as an assistant pastor at their church and Bao Bao is very active in ministry as well. Their stress level is high, too high at times, but they have a heart to see God use them and their church to grow his kingdom in China. One of the ministries in which Bao Bao is most involved is the church’s fledgling children’s ministry. Strong models of ‘Christian families’ or ‘children’s ministries’ are relatively new in some parts of the Chinese church. Many believers are first-generation Christians. They want to glorify God in their parenting, but struggle with how to do this. Just like parents in the West, parents in China face a complex set of issues when raising children in an environment that is often hostile to spiritual growth. In China, parents face pressures to provide the maximum amount of education and extracurricular activities for their children. As in every culture, there is a tension between what is biblical and what is not and some parents feel overwhelmed. Churches are seeking new ways to train and prepare parents. Christian books on family and parenting are hot sellers in Christian bookstores in cities. Praying for Chinese Christian families is a much-needed ministry.
新事工 的 誕 生
Promised Land; The birth of a new ministry 14
In February 2011, the Taiwan field leader Phil asked me, ‘Tera, have you ever thought of starting a similar ministry to sex trade workers, like the Pearl Family Garden, in another city?’
My immediate response was, ‘No! There are still many ladies in Wanhua that we haven’t reached.’ But the challenge of that question kept coming back to me. God reminded me of Keelung, a harbour city close to Taipei. A few years before, someone had mentioned to me that Keelung had a similar area where women work in prostitution; the church were interested in doing something, but did not know how. I went to Keelung in January 2012 to have a look at the area. I was introduced to a local pastor whose church is on the edge of the red-light district. I felt like one of the spies in Joshua, but as soon as I saw the area, I felt a real burden. We prayed that God would give us two local volunteers so that we could begin street work, visiting the ladies and building trust. God didn’t just give us
two workers; he actually gave us two churches! Each church had a small team of volunteers willing to learn, and it was exciting to see the vision and passion grow in the hearts of our co-workers. Many ladies responded positively to the friendship we offered. In January 2013 I received the news that a prayer partner in Holland had passed away and left a big gift for The Pearl Family Garden ministry. As I went on home assignment, I questioned: does God want us to step out in faith and start a women’s centre in Keelung? I arrived back in Taiwan in July 2013, and heard that the mayor of Keelung planned to designate a specific area as a sex zone in Keelung’s red-light district. This would legalise any sex trade conducted in the area. He hoped this would bring more tourism and commerce and help the ailing economy of the city.
Tera van Twillert OMF Taiwan
On hearing the news, the churches in Keelung were alarmed and came together as one for prayer and fasting. They rose up to protest against this plan. We were asked to share about our ministry during this meeting at which pastors from all different denominations were present. One of our local workers there shared the following: ‘Our church has been on the edge of the red-light district for over 40 years. Many times we have prayed that God would remove them from our doorstep, but we never prayed for their lost souls. When Tera took us into the area to share the gospel I was scared but, when I saw how they responded to us, I realised that the scariest thing is not who they are or what they do, but my own heart’s attitude.’ That evening, our low-key hidden ministry was brought out into the open and received heartfelt support from all the local churches.
The partnership of the local churches and the gift God provided through my prayer partner gave us the courage to step out in faith and establish the new ministry. We call it ‘Promised Land’. The first activity we used the gift for was during the Chinese Moon Festival. We bought 300 moon cakes and attached a different bible verse to each. We handed them out as gifts to the ladies during street work. Now the churches do the ministry. I am involved as an 'advisor' walking with them in the process of developing it. During our recent planning meeting, the workers of both churches wrote a report on what they saw as the most important issues they needed to address. They decided to focus on raising prayer support, the need for training more workers and thinking through issues of practical help for the ladies. We pray that the church in Taiwan will rise to meet the practical and spiritual needs of the marginalised women in Keelung and other cities. The Pearl Family Garden Video go.omf.org/taiwanvideos
Family Ties Ali surveyed the sweet counter wondering what to send for Jonathan’s birthday. 13 year old Ed suggested, ‘How about Maltesers? They’re light and should travel to Cambodia ok.’ 16
Opening the package Jonathan was amazed. Maltesers were a huge family favourite! Ali and Ed had no idea! Jonathan and Zoe Norgate were in the process of applying to join the OMF team in Cambodia and had begun inviting folks to become prayer partners. Ali Sayers-Flood knew the Norgates a little but wanted to know more precisely why they were leaving Sheffield, what they would be doing in East Asia and what they expected of prayer partners. So she approached Zoe for more information. A few days later, over lunch in Zoe’s home, Ali’s questions were answered. She came away sensing this family was in for the long haul of ministry. Should she and Andy commit to being prayer partners for the long haul too? In April 2011, Jonathan and Zoe, along with Max (5), Poppy (3), and Eli (1) were at the week-long training course for candidates, preparing
their lives have been richly
them for moving to Cambodia. During one of the sessions, the team challenged them to pray for a link person or couple in their sending church. When asked who they might approach, Jonathan and Zoe looked at each other and Zoe ventured, ‘Do you think the Sayers-Floods might?’ The Sayers-Floods were surprised to be asked, but the more they prayed the more they sensed God wanted them to say yes. What’s more their teenage sons, Max’s heroes, were also up for it! The Sayers-Floods were keen to make sure this new missionary family would not be ‘out of sight, out of mind’ in their church. Andy and Ali have incorporated a once every half-term prayer meeting for the Norgates into Christ Church, Fulwood’s busy programme. It starts with coffee and cake, a short devotion and an introduction to the evening’s theme by Andy, including specific prayer for each member of the family. Ali then leads a section covering themes pertinent to mission or Cambodia. These have included marriage in the mission field, home schooling and the plight of trafficked women in Cambodia. Ali trawls the internet and books and together she and Andy distil news into manageable chunks for the group. They’ve invited speakers along to enrich meetings, including a Cambodian believer living in Sheffield who
Janet chapman UK Third Culture Kids’ Advisor
shared valuable historical background, grandparents bringing first-hand news after a holiday, past missionaries explaining particular prayer needs and an OMF Area Mobiliser providing the bigger picture of what God is doing in East Asia. Ali and Andy are eager to learn about Cambodia and missionary life. Several books have been lent around the group, they also distribute copies of the bi-monthly OMF Cambodia prayer letter and pick up ideas for prayer points from BBC news. Meeting by meeting they share the facts: the group’s knowledge increases, and their compassion for Cambodia grows. Andy emails notes to the Norgates’ other sending church in Aberdeen and to folks like me around UK. It is no small time commitment, but through their
ministry, they are able to promote informed, regular prayer. When Poppy had a serious accident the SayersFloods alerted the already established email group. 60 church members away on a weekend lifted Poppy to the Lord in prayer. The impromptu prayer meeting the following day gathered over 100 people. Many people prayed fervently and Poppy’s life was spared. Prayerfully and faithfully Ali and Andy encourage prayer and care for the Norgate family. They count it a privilege and say their lives have been richly blessed through this partnership. Could you be doing something similar for one of your missionaries?
D.e Hoste – a Near Miss On 5 February 1885 the boat train steamed out of Victoria Station, carrying the intrepid Cambridge Seven on the first stage of their journey to China; D.E Hoste was their quietest and most unassuming member, yet he went on to succeed Hudson Taylor as General Director of CIM, a post he held for over thirty years.
With our awareness of the quality of these early pioneers, their fervour and singleheartedness, it is tempting to think their acceptance as missionaries was always straightforward. But with Mr Hoste at least, this wasn’t entirely the case. Following his commission in the Royal Artillery he was stationed on the Isle of Wight. It was during this time that he applied to work with CIM. By November 1884, his application process was almost complete, but the Secretary, Benjamin Broomhall, still required two or three of the customary character references. One request was sent to Rev William Storrs, Hoste’s vicar at Sandown – and his reply is to be found in our UK archives. Mr Storrs states concerning the young artillery officer: 'When I heard that he had offered himself as a missionary I was sorry, for I did not think he was naturally fitted for such work… I should have liked him to have remained in the army and worked among the men.' Other questions elicited equally diffident responses: 'naturally rather shy... a little impulsive perhaps…' We thank God for the wisdom of all those involved in that interviewing process. William Storrs himself was deeply respectful, supportive of CIM’s work and positive about other aspects of D.E Hoste’s character. He may have been able to look back with others and rejoice in God’s ability to overrule in human affairs and take up a life offered in service to him.
洞 察力與 靈 感
Insight and Inspiration
What is it like to face the challenges of a new culture and strange food? What about the obstacles to friendship and communication brought by an unknown language with a new alphabet? Hear first hand from someone who has faced these challenges and by God's grace has overcome them.
One great joy of the gospel is that the unknowable and unseen God of all things became the man Jesus. Anyone who has seen him has seen the Father. What about those who visit idols at the temple? Those who find themselves hopeless, helpless and alone when confronted by the hardships and uncertainties of life, work and relationship? Framed by the grit and grime of Taiwanese urban environment the voice of its female protagonist, a food-stall owner in the city The Stranger explores these themes and unfolds the opportunities to offer the hope and light of the gospel.
New videos from OMF giving you a look at the lives of East Asians and insights into settling into cross cultural living.
It is easy to judge a book by its cover, but we all know people are complicated. Pray takes a look below the surface as it tells the stories of East Asians in desperate need of a loving Saviour. Be informed of their struggles and inspired to pray for the people we are eager to reach.
‘…these three remain, faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.’ See how this truth shapes and controls the work of an evangelist. Love takes you through a day in the life of a worker in East Asia.
Watch and download the videos go.omf.org/taiwanvideos Download prayer materials (Extracts from the Taiwan prayer guides) Praying for Taiwanese Men: go.omf.org/twprayer1 Praying for Buddhists: go.omf.org/twprayer2 Prayer resources 30 Stories From Taiwan’s Working Class, OMF Reaching Taiwan’s Working Class – A Prayer Guide, OMF go.omf.org/prayerguides
Missional characters Asia is an ever-changing place, and as OMF seeks to be relevant and effective in ministry, it needs to remain flexible, and adapt to the changing needs of Asia.
While pioneering work is still needed in many places, many Asian churches are mature and eager to take the gospel out. Strong partnership with the local church has always been core to OMF's work, but these growing opportunities mean that we will be serving the East Asian church in increasing ways in future. Our work going forward is likely to see a shift to engage in partnership, in behind-the-scenes support or simply serving local Asian church leaders. As we look at these changes, the type of people we need to join with us in cross-cultural ministry also changes. We thought it would be good to look at a few Bible characters who were engaged in mission activity in an evolving landscape.
Timothy first appears at Lystra, in modern-day Turkey in Acts 16:1. It appears that he and his mother believed during Paul’s visit to Lystra with Barnabas in Acts 14:6–20. His Jewish mother Eunice, with the encouragement of her mother Lois, then brought Timothy up in the faith (2 Timothy 1:5). He is therefore described by Paul as ‘my son’ (1 Timothy 1:18) and ‘my true son in the faith’ (1 Timothy 1:2).
Resources for leaders
• Introducing 1 Timothy – Angus MacLeay – First chapter PDF available here: go.omf.org/mcleaytim • The Pauline Circle (Biblical Classics Library) – F.F. Bruce – out of print but available on eBay/Amazon • Bible Gateway online commentaries: go.omf.org/bbgresources
QUESTIONS. How does Timothy start out in ministry?
How would we go about determining whether those concerns are evident in mission candidates?
...Could this be a ‘short-term ministry’ experience?
What was it in Timothy’s character that made him suitable for ministry?
• Acts 16v1–5 • Acts 19v21–22
What are the next steps in responsibility for Timothy? • 1 Thess 3v6 • 1 Cor 16v10
How does Timothy’s working relationship with Paul develop? • Rom 16v21
What are Timothy’s big concerns? • Phil 2v20,21
• 1 Cor 4v17 leading to 2 Tim 2v2 • Acts 16v2
…any other thoughts? What kind of work did he do? • • • •
1 Thess 3v1–3 1 Cor 4v17 Phil 2v19 1 Thess 3v6
…What could a Timothy-like worker bring to a church in Asia? …What could they learn?
Bridge Asia is a new initiative to build teams of volunteers throughout the UK who engage UK Christians in world mission, with a special focus on the peoples of East Asia.
Bridge Asia National Coordinator Trevor is from Omagh, Northern Ireland and is sent out from Windsor Baptist Church in Belfast. Background 14 years with OM (11 years in Russia). Ministry experience Evangelism, discipleship training, teaching missions, Director for OM Russia. Trevor loves History, travelling, current affairs, cricket, rugby, golf, discipling and teaching God’s Word.
Bridge Asia: From Mary’s heart in Bristol to Lin’s heart in Taipei
One minute spent viewing the world population clock can leave you feeling helpless. There are over seven billion people on the planet, and now over 2 billion people in East Asia alone. It is overwhelming to contemplate the numbers, let alone to think about our response as Christians to the Great Commission. The feeling of helplessness can be heart-numbing when you also consider the distance and cultural difference involved. This is why OMF has developed Bridge Asia. Better than the Channel Tunnel or the Johor-Singapore Causeway, it’s a 6000 mile bridge allowing a person like Mary in Bristol with a heart for East Asia, to connect with Lin’s heart in Taipei with the gospel of Jesus Christ. If you’re interested in connecting with the heart of people like Lin, you can – by engaging people in mission while here in the UK …
Find a role
There are five key Bridge Asia roles. These involve promoting mission, mentoring potential long and short-term workers, supporting prayer groups and organising events. If you’re interested, we’d love to spend time with you to find out if Bridge Asia is the right fit for you.
Join a multiplying team
You won’t be doing this ministry on your own! You’ll have the support and guidance of a Bridge Asia team and the leadership of an OMF Area Mobiliser. The teams are designed to draw others in, grow more teams and multiply the network of people involved in building the gospel connection with East Asia’s peoples.
You want to be effective in your work, so we’re committed to equipping, training, leading and developing leaders. We also want to learn from you, and enable you to share your skills with other team members.
Work together 24
With your team, you’ll run events, promote the work of OMF and facilitate prayer networks. You’ll partner with OMF candidates preparing to go, or workers visiting the UK from East Asia, supporting them in their ministry to people like Lin.
You might be one of many people who are already engaging with OMF in vital areas, doing valuable ministry in connecting with the peoples of East Asia for Christ. You are encouraged to continue sharing your heart for East Asia. Perhaps your ministry is part of what Bridge Asia is also beginning to do, or perhaps not. If you feel called to consider a Bridge Asia role please ask about joining a team.
If you'd like to get involved, you can:
Visit omf.org/uk/bridgeasia where you can find more information about Bridge Asia with detailed descriptions of the five ministry roles. Contact your Area Mobiliser (see inside cover) or Trevor Warner (Bridge Asia National Coordinator: email@example.com) and talk through the possibilities for ministry in your area.
Do you love to share about world mission with individuals or small groups within your own church, network of friends and work colleagues? To share resources and stories, you donâ€™t have to be an expert speaker.
Would you like to mentor one to three individuals locally to help them explore their personal involvement in world mission?
Do you enjoy giving presentations or preaching about world mission at churches or other Christian groups? 25
Are you gifted at planning, organising and hosting events? Could you run one or two effective OMF events in your area per year? Could you partner with representatives of other Christian groups and churches to run several general mission mobilisation events?
Prayer Groups Coordinator
There are around 3000 people across the UK in OMF prayer groups. We'd love to see another 3000 or even 6000 people join them. Bridge Asia Prayer Groups Coordinators will resource the current prayer groups and also facilitate new expressions of prayer for East Asians, especially among young people.
Events 4 January
2pm–4pm Orangefield Presbyterian Church, 464 Castlereagh Road, Belfast, BT5 6BH All are welcome to hear of how God is working across East Asia and join in through prayer. Contact Nathaniel Jennings Email firstname.lastname@example.org
9am–12.30pm Christ Church Fulwood, Sheffield With Peter Rowan, Paul & Nadine Woods, Derek & Audrey Newton and Ben Cooper. Contact Paul German Email email@example.com
Belfast OMF New Year Afternoon of Prayer
Theological Education Across Cultures
4 January 26
Bristol Beginning of the Year Day of Prayer
10:30am for coffee / tea 11am start – 3pm finish 174 Redland Road, Bristol, BS66YG Contact Charles & Liz Chalmers Email firstname.lastname@example.org Phone 0117 946 6211 18 January
OMF Half-Day Japan Conference
10am–1pm Lighthouse, 13 Lynn Road Ely, Cambridgshire CB7 4EG Speaking: Tim Walker, Levi Booth, Roger Stevens and Tim Jenkins Contact Tim Jenkins Phone 07557 237 039 www.lighthouse-ely.org/contact
Ireland OMF Under 35s Conference Whitepark Bay Youth Hostel, Ballintoy, County Antrim Contact Claire Harfitt Email email@example.com 28 February – 2 March
Connected – OMF National Conference
The Hayes Conference Centre, Swanwick Book Online: www.omf.org.uk/connected2014 Phone 01732 887 299 8 March
Londonderry OMF Breakfast
9am–11.30am White Horse Hotel, 68 Clooney Road, Londonderry, BT47 3PA Join us to share breakfast and hear missionary speakers from East Asia. Contact Nathaniel Jennings Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Bristol Day of Prayer
10:30am for coffee / tea 11am start – 3pm finish 174 Redland Road, Bristol, BS66YG Contact Charles & Liz Chalmers Email email@example.com Phone 0117 946 6211 15 March
A World Class Event
10am–3pm St Stephen’s, Lambeth, London, SW8 1DH Interested in working with mission kids from 2 weeks to 2 years … anywhere in the world? Hear what others are doing and find out what you could do. Contact Tim Jenkins Email firstname.lastname@example.org 15 March
Partnering with the Asian church
10am–1pm Lansdowne Baptist Church Partnership suggests 'working alongside'; two members of equal value sharing projects and goals. What does this mean for OMF in 21st Century Asia? Paul Woods, a lecturer at Singapore Bible College, will share his thoughts with us. Contact Andy Stevens Email email@example.com
The Next Generation Conference
Chinese Overseas Christian Mission, Milton Keynes Contact Derrick Burns Email firstname.lastname@example.org 29 March
Vietnam Rising Dragon – A World Changers event
10am–4pm St. Andrews Street Baptist Church, Cambridge, CB2 3AR Contact Tim Jenkins & Mark Sinclair Email email@example.com 7–12 April & 12–17 April
Word Alive 2014
Prestatyn, North Wales Two weeks of dynamic bible teaching, space to relax and have fun, exciting and creative children’s work and energising worship. OMF will have a stand there during both weeks. 2–4 May
Annual Scottish Conference
Windmill Centre, Arbroath Contact Phil & Cathy Steed Email Scotland@omf.org.uk Tel 0141 9594180 27–30 June
GOfest 2014 – Powerful Gospel, Passionate People Bulstrode, Buckinghamshire See back cover for information www.gofestival.info
Director for Finance & Corporate Services
Finance ‘I am looking for what may be credited to your account’
We thank the Lord for his faithful provision during this year, seeing us almost 100 per cent supported in our financial requirements so far during 2013. This has in large part been due to significant legacy income, filling the gaps where members have not received gifts to cover 100% of their support needs. Please continue to pray for God’s provision however he chooses to provide it. Writing to the church at Philippi, Paul expressed his gratitude and joy at their partnership in the gospel (Philippians 1v3ff). Towards the end of the letter (4v10–20), he thanked them for a gift he had recently received from them. This was of course a great blessing for which he was thankful to God, but more than that his response shows he was ‘looking for what may be credited to their account’ (4v17). For Paul, this was the cause of his deepest joy – the blessing received in the obedient lives of those who had shared their resources with him. Ministry partnerships can too often be viewed as one-way; the giver providing for the receiver. However, as this passage highlights, the Lord brings these partnerships into being so that he can work his kingdom purposes out through the lives of everyone involved. The Lord could provide for Paul and he could provide for the Philippian believers; in this case he provided for them both through their service to each other, blessing them and furthering his kingdom purposes through them as a result. As Paul did, we also trust that the Lord will further his kingdom through the lives of those who partner with OMF in so many significant ways. Actual income Target income
Member Support Gifts Legacies General Donations/Other Income
£3240K £895K £495K
4–6 July 2014
Welsh OMF Conference
Cefn Lea, Newtown, Wales Contact Charles Chalmers Email firstname.lastname@example.org
70% 19% 11%
oMF NaTioNal coNFeReNce 28 Feb–2 March 2014
The Hayes conference centre Swanwick, Derbyshire We live in a ‘connected’ world where video calls and virtual meetings are a normal part of mission life; where the gospel is being proclaimed from mobiles, mp3 players and all over the web. Find out how we can connect people to the things that really matter.
Book online at www.omf.org.uk/connected2014 Or call to request a booking form 01732 887299
SERVE ASIA Get first hand experience of mission in East Asia.
SUMMER TEAMS 2014
omf.org/uk/serveasia email@example.com 01732 880325
“The OMF team inspired, enthused and challenged me at Orientation in preparation for my Asian adventure!” Victoria Walsh