Partnering with a field for maximum impact!
The Administrative Council has been learning about what it means to “spiritually own” a mission field through a workshop sponsored by Evangelical Friends Mission. It teaches us the benefits of our church body partnering with one church in another country. It would involve us praying for, financially supporting, and visiting one field. We would get to know the people of the other country as a body of believers. The Council has, through prayerful discernment chosen Siete Ejidos in Sinaloa, Mexico and would love for everyone to be involved. If you are interested in joining in a team to go to Sinaloa or would like to find a way to support this ministry, please contact the church.
Information Given to Congragation about the New Fields:
After a great experience watching Haviland Friends ponder through what field they are called to spiritually own at their Design Your Impact seminar Sunday, I thought I’d think out loud a little here to get others’ two cents on what I may be missing or where I might be corrected (some items definitely have my personal spin on them). Haviland appears to be leaning towards Congo or Mexico (Ags or Sinaloa?). I’m not sure whether this exercise is helpful or the opposite, so I’m experimenting here and appreciate feedback.
All three of these mission fields have a unique special place in the hearts of Mid-America Friends: Congo , Sinaloa , Aguascalientes. I have a written report on Sinaloa and we could easily collect more info on Congo and Aguascalientes if Haviland Friends’ needs that further help in discernment.—Matt Macy
*We have since decided to serve alongside Sinaloa, specifically with the church Siete Ejidos.
Congo reasons Haviland might be a good fit to spiritually own/partner:
Rural; No specific church has adopted them; Willard and Doris are at Haviland Friends; No missionary – so they are largely off the missions-support radar in general; Haviland could be a part of sending the first missionary or team of missionaries (if EFM felt it appropriate)!; Burundi/Rwanda Mission networks provide rich source for missions wisdom and support (missionaries, church leaders, EFM and GLLT boards and directors).; Central Africa is an excellent place for Missions Majors to study do’s and don’ts in Missions; Congo has established churches and YM, so the emphasis could be on partnership (sister); The Great Lakes Leadership Training (GLLT) is an established program to plug Barclay professors and students into needed leadership training.; The Clinic/Hospital in Abeka has significant needs and would be a great place to partner with medical support (and Friends of Kibimba is a great sister resource); Lon Fendall/Mkoko currently asking for help with a Uvira building project with no one specific at this point to respond.; Congo churches have enough infrastructure to quickly move into all kinds of ministry possibilities: youth, children, men, women.; Might have some adventure-appeal to Haviland Friends in seeing Africa and doing a side excursion in route.
Congo obstacles to overcome:
Dependency issues can make partnership difficult; Distance – and Africa is an expensive place to travel to; Central Africa has the gospel – vs many people groups who need the gospel. I keep hoping Barclay Missions grads will grasp a vision for the unreached peoples. Ron Stansell said “the 20th century was the century for Afica, this is the century for Asia .” So let’s not distract missions students from church planting in unreached places. That being said, I know the church planting needs in Congo still exist and don’t mean to down play any great Kingdom work (D4D, etc) happening in this place that has so many needs!
Sinaloa, Mexico reasons Haviland might be a good fit to spiritually own/partner:
No missionary – so they are largely off the missions-support radar; This is more of a pioneering type of work, which could fit the breadth of experience/wisdom Haviland has in the church and college - though it has been established for a few years now by Daniel Velasquez of Iglesia Amigos – Wichita , which would be an immediate partnership.; Haviland could be a part of sending the first missionary or team of missionaries! EFM is praying for missionaries here. There are college students at Barclay presently who may be poised to be on a missionary team in Sinaloa, particularly if they had the support of a church who was mission-focused there.; Newer mission with great church planting possibilities – past visits have shown openness to the gospel, so the only question is ‘who will go.’; This is a region with many small communities with little or no Evangelical presence or influence, and in many cases not even a Catholic presence. There are also some small cities nearby, such as Los Mochis , which could be hubs for church planting movements.; Young church in Siete Ejidos has great need for training, especially discipleship.; Though there have already been some small mistakes in missiology, this young field can be coached into an effective church planting movement.; Thirty Four hour drive from Wichita .; Resources in the Ags mission and Mexico City churches would be an asset in exploring approaches in Sinaloa (including Bible League training); Fits Haviland in being a place with many rural villages and farming communities (fertile land with row cops and vegetables), but is near some cities.; Various skills could fit in well in Sinaloa villages as needs or trust-building opportunities are discovered: medical, agriculture, education, youth, children, men, women.; Might have some adventure-appeal to Haviland Friends in nearby beach tourist town Mazatlan .; Hispanic ministry can take place both in Samaria and ends of earth.