Meet Thomas: local pastor whose multiplying strategy reaches across Africa

Meet Thomas: local pastor whose multiplying strategy reaches across Africa

When we first arrived in Kenya and got settled as a mobilization field team, Thomas Omenta became one of our first friends. When I think of Thomas’s story and his missional journey, I am reminded of when Jesus began His ministry and called some of His first disciples. “And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.’ Immediately they left their nets and followed Him” (Matthew 4:19-20). Thomas was one of the first people we took through the Xplore study, and he even invited some of his friends to go through it with us. Together, we learned about God’s heart to redeem all peoples and how He invites all believers to play a role in this global purpose. As we were finishing up the study, it appeared that Thomas was already in his most strategic role. His interest seemed to be in growing the local church where he served, and less in world missions. Thomas was serving God in mighty ways in his church and at his university, and he didn’t need our help. Eventually, we began to focus on meeting and discipling other students. But earlier this year, Thomas contacted me. Although it had been nearly two years since we last met, he shared how our relationship through the Xplore study had, in fact, deeply impacted his life. He explained he now reads and teaches the Bible differently, and that God has given him a heart for the unreached. He quit his job as a pastor and is now the East African Assistant Director of a mission organization here in Africa. After...
Relationship building paves the way for more mobilization

Relationship building paves the way for more mobilization

“You’ve got this franchised, right?” The director of a prominent mission school in Southeast Asia was holding copies of Xplore and Go Mobilize and wondering if he could afford to use these CMM discipleship tools with his students. Jason and Ryan, members of the CMM’s Southeast Asia Catalytic team, had just met this man, who is leading the institution and preparing the next generation of goers from the region. They smiled and said, “No, they are free to download and use however you like.” His disposition immediately changed, and suddenly the conversation shifted to how the CMM could partner with the school and create a new module that would incorporate mobilization training for every student. Like this mission school, the CMM is committed to seeing laborers raised up to take the gospel to the unreached. In Southeast Asia, where Ryan and Jason serve, there are still more than 330 million unreached people who have never heard the gospel message. With tens of millions of Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, and animists throughout the region, it is one of the most religiously diverse parts of the world.    But Southeast Asia is also home to a large and growing evangelical church. With tens of millions of evangelical Christians throughout the region, Ryan and Jason have found that the theme of mission mobilization is as relevant as ever. For this reason, they feel privileged to be “servant partners” with their counterparts in the process of mobilization. The Southeast Asia team has been overwhelmed with the level of professionalism and passion they encounter with these fellow mobilizers. Everywhere they go, they meet people who...

Global affiliate mobilizes despite war and conflict

“Interacting with an unreached people was very edifying for me,” said Jerome after being led through Xplore and visiting an unreached tribe. “It gave me confidence and courage to serve the Lord. I no longer lament insignificant treasures, because now I see that there are those who are suffering more than me.” Jerome was a student at the Summer School of Missions, founded by Eraston, a CMM Global Affiliate in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Eraston founded the school to mobilize Congolese believers to take the gospel into conflict zones and unreached areas throughout the war-torn country. The median age of the DRC’s population is 19, and while Eraston believes it is strategic to mobilize these young people, he has also found that they are often intimidated by the violence and financial insecurity they face on the mission field in a country at war. “This is due to the fact that both the church and its youth are lacking information and missionary training.” Eraston said. To provide this necessary training, he started the Summer School of Missions, a multi-week hands-on intensive course on the biblical basis for mission that requires an in depth study of Xplore. The French translation of Xplore has provided Eraston with a platform to share God’s heart for the nations. After leading a group of students through Xplore in just one week last summer, Eraston took the class to visit a nearby Pygmy tribe. The Pygmies have a long history of exploitation by outsiders, and are wary of missionaries. This sort of resistance, Eraston thought, would provide a great atmosphere for the students to...

Breaking the norms to build up the kingdom

In Kenya, it is easy for a student to get stuck in the “cycle of life.” As young adults, Kenyans are expected to get good grades in school so that they can go to a good university, make good grades, get a good job, make a lot of money and provide for their family. Their children are then expected to repeat this cycle, and so on. These very same expectations were upon Alice Kalunda. When we first met Alice, she was a junior at Kenyatta University studying world religions. She had a heart for missions, but life and societal pressures discouraged her from pursuing that calling. Instead, she wanted to study world religions in order to serve as a teacher in local schools throughout Kenya. Because Alice had this passion for missions, she was really excited to meet missionaries from America. We were able to take Alice and her friends through the Xplore study, and it was like she was seeing the world for the first time. She was overwhelmed with some of the things she was learning. She had no clue there were people in the world who have never heard about Jesus. Before the Xplore study, she read the Bible as a random collection of stories with her at the center, instead of reading it as as one story, with one theme: the glory of God filling the earth! All of this information was so exciting for her that she started gathering all her friends to learn these same things. We were overwhelmed with how many people she was inviting to go through an Xplore study. Eventually,...
Chinese missionaries are the missing link

Chinese missionaries are the missing link

The towering mountains of southwest China are home to thousands of Himalayan Buddhists. Flat-roofed village homes nestle in the lush green river valleys below, and on the outskirts of town, yak herders live in tent dwellings as they have for thousands of years. In this remote region, where many Buddhists have never heard the good news of Jesus, God is moving in surprising ways. In one such village of 70,000 people, a Buddhist temple gleams white in the sun. Overhead, strings of colorful prayer flags flutter in the breeze. Large Buddhist prayer wheels line the outside walls, awaiting worshippers who will spin the wheels in hopes of gaining merit. In the monastery, young boys live together as monks-in-training. They receive a basic education, as well as training in Buddhist scripture and practices like meditation. The man in charge of their education is called a Living Buddha, who is highly respected by the people and has great spiritual power and authority in the community. For more than 20 years, a Western missionary team has made yearly trips to visit this Living Buddha and build a relationship with him and others in the village. As their friendship developed over time, the Living Buddha began to trust this group of missionaries. Although they have shared the gospel with him, he has never professed faith in Jesus. But a couple years ago, this Living Buddha made the surprising announcement that he wanted the 300 monks under his tutelage to become Christian. He requested that his monks be trained in the Bible, English, Mandarin Chinese, health, and math. So at his request and under...
Xplore introduces Brazilian teen to his strategic role

Xplore introduces Brazilian teen to his strategic role

The CMM is committed to getting the gospel to the unreached by igniting mission sending movements from outside the western world—where 80 percent of evangelicals live, places like Brazil and many other Latin American countries. While the U.S. still remains the largest sender of missionaries in the world, Brazil has has been experiencing massive growth in mission sending and is among the largest mission senders in the Global South. Tiago is a Brazilian believer who is a mobilizer at heart. As director of the mobilization division for a Brazilian mission agency, he became a friend and co-laborer of the CMM team that was based in Sao Paulo for several years. One of the tools Tiago has adopted into his mobilization strategy is the CMM’s Xplore study. Like many of our friends around the world who use Xplore, Tiago has formed his own way of presenting the study. Mobilizing mainly throughout the state of Sáo Paolo, he speaks and teaches at numerous churches, sharing about missions, recruiting mission workers to be trained, and raising prayer warriors and financial partners to undergird the missions movement. For many Christians, engaging with Xplore is the first time they have the chance to hear about unreached people groups and God’s global plan to bless all the nations. Tiago is committed to introducing believers to new ideas like this. Last summer, Tiago and his team planned and coordinated another Xplore study. They decided to promote the study on Facebook, which is how Wilson, a 16-year-old high school student, heard about it. Wilson lives in Sáo José do Rio Preto City in Sáo Paolo Brazil with...

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