Dr. Dennis Jackson
Dear Global Partners Family,
Like you, my life has never been the same since I met Jesus. I long to see people from every nation experience the transforming love of God. Together, we have the honor of joining Christ in His mission to share the gospel with everyone everywhere. I’m celebrating the exciting ways this mission advanced in 2023.
New missionaries have been mobilized and launched, a refugee has been blessed with affordable housing, the Asian Church is sending missionaries to the Middle East, missionaries have started discipleship journeys with local friends. People have heard and responded to the Good News of Jesus!
But the reality is, there are still so many people who have never heard the Good News that the Father deeply loves them, Jesus died to save them and the Holy Spirit can live within them.
4 in 10 people live without access to the gospel; we exist to reach them.
Stepping into such a monumental mission can feel paralyzing, but it doesn’t have to stop us in our tracks – everyone has a role to play. Some go, some equip and many give.
As you read this report, I pray that you are encouraged and inspired by how He is using you.
Thank you for your generous giving and faithful prayer to reach the 4 in 10 who live without access to the gospel. Because of your investment, many are experiencing the transforming power of Jesus.
In H+S Service,
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A WELCOMING, CREATIVE COMMUNITY
Last winter, after several years of reaching out to immigrants and refugees, mostly via organic relationships, our team prayed, “Lord, in addition to what we’re already doing, how can we add value to the community?” God answered in the form of a partnership engaged.
Our colleague Riley* also serves among immigrants and refugees. We have partnered together on refugee ministry projects outside of the city, but Riley has long had a vision for a ministry in the city where Christ-followers can build bridges across cultures through creativity. Last January, we met with Riley to discuss partnership and making this vision a reality. In January, we had no building, no established team and few resources. Since then, God has provided a facility, a team of nine individuals representing five organizations, additional volunteers and ministry supplies.
The vision of the center is to be “a welcoming community of people from all cultures who come together to learn, share and express their creativity.” We recently hosted both a dedication service and a grand opening and are now launching programs such as homework help and music classes. Through these programs, we pray that relationships develop in which people share both creativity and God’s truth.
*Name changed due to security guidelines
SPREADING HOPE THROUGH DISCIPLESHIP
“It’s been two years since I’ve discipled anyone,” I whined (yeah, for real, I whined) to my friend and teammate Wendy. “What about Nada?” asked Wendy. Nada, our hairdresser, is not involved in a church and I was unsure if she was a believer.
Wendy went on to remind me that Nada is more than just my hairdresser, since we’ve been building a friendship for more than 25 years. “And just think of the ministry she could have,” said my pastor friend, Erica. “She’s got a daily ‘captive’ audience.”
I prayed about this for two months, and the Lord kept bringing her back to mind. In February, I pitched the idea to Nada, explaining what discipleship is. I added that this wasn’t something for her to just hold onto and keep for herself—but to give it away.
Her eyes filled with tears, and she said, “This is what I’ve been waiting for. I just didn’t know what to call it.”
Please pray for Nada that she will continue to grow, that the Holy Spirit will reveal Himself to her and that she will be joined in her faith by every one of her family members. By the way, her name, “Nada,” means hope.
PROVISION OF CHRISTIAN HIGHER EDUCATION
The early missionaries of the Pilgrim Wesleyan Church in Zambia established three key initiatives: planting/building churches, building schools and establishing a hospital.
The Pilgrim Wesleyan Church built 74 primary schools as a contribution to the nation, along with a seminary in Jembo and a college of Nursing and Midwifery in Zimba. Many students who have passed through our education system have served in both public and private sectors, as well as in politics.
Establishing Africa Wesleyan University in Zimba has been years in the making. Once open, the college is set to offer a wealth of relevant and contemporary knowledge through a combination of remote learning and in-person sessions as well as opportunities for exams.
Africa Wesleyan University will offer degree qualifications in three programs: Theology, Education and Nursing. These three academic programs find their genesis in the colleges in Jembo and Zimba, and the many primary and secondary schools around the country.
These three programs are only a beginning, with additional programs in agriculture and business to follow.
The long-term vision is to have distributed campuses in Choma, Jembo, Lusaka, Chipata, etc., where different programs will be provided to meet the growing demand of Christian higher education in Zambia and beyond. This is indeed a new day in the provision of Christian Higher Education for the Church in Africa.
OBEDIENCE LEADS TO CHURCH MULTIPLICATION IN INDONESIA
At the age of 18, a young Indonesian man named Yosman Banu from the island of Timor became a follower of Jesus. He joined The Wesleyan Church, where he was discipled by experienced pastors. When Yosman sensed God leading him into full time ministry, he enrolled at Sekolah Tinggi Teologi Magelang (Magelang Theological College), a Wesleyan Bible College started by missionaries that is now fully run by Indonesian scholars. During this time, Yosman sensed the Lord telling him to move to the island of Sumatra to plant a church in the Karo regency.
So in 1998, following the leading of the Holy Spirit, Yosman moved his young family from Timor to Karo, a distance of approximately 4,000 kilometers. While Indonesia is one country, it is spread across 6,000 inhabited islands. Culture and language vary from island to island. When Yosman arrived in Sumatra, he struggled to learn the customs of the people he was serving. But he and his family worked tirelessly to plant a church, learning from their failures. On October 17, 1998, The Wesleyan Church was successfully established in Karo with six initial congregations.
Today, those churches have multiplied, and multiplied again, and again! There are now 37 Wesleyan churches in the area with over 3,000 members. God takes the little we give him and multiplies it to bless the nations.
FROM EVERYWHERE TO EVERYWHERE
A portion of the Asian* Church passionately desires to join with God’s mission around the world. It’s a good thing too, because in some parts of the world like the Middle East and South Asia, missionaries from the West have a hard time gaining access or trust with local peoples. Asian* missionaries, using medical or business platforms, are filling gaps, some of which are created when Western missionaries can’t reach into previously accessed fields of service.
The Wesleyan Church through Global Partners is active in training some of these missionaries. Four (along with their families in some cases) are already on the field and one more will deploy to the Middle East. Through sensitive relational coaching and contextualized curriculum, these missionaries, and others who will follow them, are learning how to lay a foundation for missionary sending from Asia that potentially could, geopolitical factors permitting, lead to a sustainable Asian missionary movement. Let’s pray that this happens. Not only can the Asian Church change the world, but also by participating in His mission, they have the opportunity to be transformed more into Jesus’ image, of walking closer to God and getting to know Him better.
*Country and personnel names omitted for security