Global Great Commission Network - Field Responses to Financial Dependency and Web Site and GCNetwork Notices

Global Great Commission Network Update
July 2017  Newsletter # 19
Greetings again from the Global Steering Team of the Global Great Commission Network.  

In the last newsletter three articles dealt with the issue of financial support and the danger of dependency.  Two readers in particular responded with insightful and interesting comments. Those follow in two separate articles.  We'd appreciate hearing from more of you in response to these perspectives at info@ggcn.org

We ARE excited to report an update to the www.ggcn.org  web site that is now live.  You'll notice some new features, enhanced mobile device compatibility, and several updates.  We look forward to continuing to develop the web site in the months ahead.  AND, you'll also note that we are combining our web site and our social networking site, so both can now be found at www.ggcn.org.  You'll note that the social networking site requires a secure login.  Those of you who have been users of the GCnetwork tool will soon receive personal invitations to join this new, secure site, now simply called Connect that goes further than ever toward our goals of CONNECT, COMMUNICATE, AND COLLABORATE.  We look forward to introducing you to more features of this tool in the weeks ahead.
Response from Africa

This response is from a pastor in Senegal, West Africa

Thanks for the information breakdown and for the efforts of the  GGCN in motivating leaders around the world.

The issue of outside funding for the local church would always be  an issue, but should treated within a local context.   Senegal, for example, is country that is 90% Muslim, where the 7% C hristians is made up of 75% Catholics - this is evangelism being confronted  by two externally well funded organisations.  If the local church is not able to  raise resources for its work, it puts the sustainability of its efforts at risk.   In a country where poverty is so rife, people do not care who gives them  means to feed their families.  I have seen Muslims in Senegal wear a JESUS  t-shirt given to them by Catholic charities into a mosque to pray not minding  whether it comes from local or outside sources.

Christian organizations and institutions should rise up and support poorer  countries' evangelism because Islamic countries and funders are pouring  millions to reconvert the souls the church are winning back to Islam with aid  and support.  So many US/Europe gay foundations are pouring millions of dollars  into Africa to support gays and lesbians to grow their communities, and all that  we believers of the true gospel of Jesus Christ do is to debate whether outside  fund is okay or not.  Lets encourage any outside organisation or body that God has  blessed to pour their funds into the church for evangelism because Jesus is coming  soon and gays, Islam and humanism is contending heavily with the church.

Some countries in Africa like Nigeria, South Africa and others have risen above dependence  upon outside funding for their evangelism.  However, so many other countries still need outside  funding if it can be available.  The evangelism in Senegal is currently growing partly  because the Assemblies of God are providing funding, training and empowerment to  their local pastors with outstanding results.
 
These are just my thoughts from the local community where I am based.
 
In service of His kingdom,
Senegal Pastor
Another response from Africa - From John Lumbe

John Lumbe was born in Zambia in an evangelical family of 7.  John accepted the Lord when he was nine, and at 18 got involved in youth ministry, initially with Youth With A Mission.  In 1993 he moved to South Africa for theological training.  John is founder and director of Youth Network Southern Africa, a ministry which focuses on holistic youth development, leadership development for under-resourced pastors in the black townships.  He is currently helping plant a church in the Southern suburbs of Pretoria, South Africa.

This is an interesting conversation.  There are two things I would like to highlight.

Firstly: MISSIONS of disparities. The reality is, on the mission field, equality is only in spirituality and not resources.  It is one thing to be spiritual and be certain of the call, but it is another thing to be resourced to carry out the call. The concept of supporting missions among under resourced communities is still under-developed among locals themselves.  Locals do not see those sent out as missionaries but those who come in from the western world as missionaries.  Those who come from outside largely do not see local missionaries as such as well.  The lack of recognition is from both sides but it weighs more on the local missionary. This is what prompts this disparity. 

Secondly, giving and supporting global ministry needs to be balanced and transparent.  Those who seek help need to function and account for resources with the fear of God, applying integrity all the way.  Those who seek to help need the same level of integrity.  They need to move forward in knowing that they are working with reliable local leaders who can be entrusted like the Jerusalem church to administer resources.  The locals need to be given the freedom to inform the helpers where and how help is needed.  To work as co-laborers in expanding the kingdom is the pattern that is needed.  Imposing, controlling, dominance, judging, marginalizing and being prejudiced do not serve the purpose of serving Gods global vision.  So does greed, dishonesty, manipulation, theft among locals serve Gods interests.  We all need to be accountable to each other. 

Lastly, help becomes meaningful when relationships come first before resources.  We can not be so driven with the desire for statistics as opposed to building healthy, godly relationships.  As we give, let us be thoughtful of those who administer the resources to meet their essential basic needs in order to avert unwarranted temptations for people to get by.  We are one in Christ yet resourced differently.  Those who have material, they can enable those who do not. Those who receive must exhibit gratitude and be honorable in dispensing the resources.
 
John

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From the Steering Team
We appreciate hearing from you at any time, whether in response to the discussion about financial dependency or whatever questions or input you might have.  Let us know what is happening in your ministry or your part of the world in missions collaboration.

We are increasingly excited with the prospects for the roll-out of our new social networking site, Connect. This is a replacement to the GCnetwork that we have provided to over 500 users until recently, and it enables us to pursue some of the goals and objectives to connect, communicate, and collaborate that we have been working on since the Tokyo 2010 meetings.  Stay tuned!
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