Blog

Introduction

Many "trained" missionaries begin their work in a cross-cultural context without a clear understanding of the missionary task. From a personal perspective this statement was partially descriptive of our missions team. We were well prepared to learn new languages and cultures. We had basic preparation to lead unbelievers into ...

The Learning Period

Approximately the first two years on the mission field are appropriately called the learning period or the adaptation stage. Missionaries are learning to live in new contexts and adapt to them. During this period, four interrelated types of learning take place. Missionaries learn (1) to speak a ...

Growth Period

Effective missionaries, having learned language and culture and shared their faith, begin the Growth Period with a vision of how God will use them to mobilize a movement in the area where they are working. They realize that their task is not merely to plant a church but ...

Collaborative Period

When a Christian movement is established without inducements of finance or favor but through heartfelt response to the proclamation of the kingdom of God, authentic national leaders mature in Christ to stand with church planting missionaries as leaders of God’s movement. With the maturing of devout, responsible ...

Phase-Out Period

At the conclusion of his theological treatise to the Romans Paul describes how he had fully preached the Gospel from Jerusalem to Illyriucum, laying new foundations wherever he ministered (Rom. 15:19-20). In this process it was his custom to appoint elders, and through prayer and fasting, "commit ...

Conclusion

Each stage of church planting and development is important to the eventual maturity of a missions movement, and the result is predictable when any stage is neglected.

By-passing the Learning Stage almost always results in anemic movements. This most strikingly occurs when campaigners from the West seek to plant ...

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