How could vibrant communities of Jesus followers begin to emerge in a region that is extremely isolated, deeply marginalised and impoverished and with strong influences of Hinduism, Buddhism and animism?
In this inspiring video, Mark Galpin shares his experience of working as a Christian community development practitioner in an isolated district of Nepal, where the only way to reach it was by helicopter or several days walking. An area with zero sanitation, high cases of maternal and child mortality and hunger, and no churches or known Christian presence. Mark shares how prayerful, Holy-Spirit led community development work can lead to unreached people coming to Christ and the development of vibrant Christian communities and witness.
Having worked in Eastern Africa and Nepal, Mark Galpin is now Tutor and Postgraduate Programme Leader at All Nations Christian College. He recently helped to edit and contribute to an excellent book, Undivided Witness that explores more fully how God-dependant, Spirit-led development work in unreached communities can lead to people coming to faith in Jesus Christ and, at times, the emergence of new churches.
In this video, Mark laments the current division amongst mission practitioners between those who focus on evangelism, church planting and discipleship and those who do mercy and justice ministries and social action. He proposes a way that these areas can overlap and bear fruit, and shares 10 principles for this way of working:
Principle 1: The need to understand the nature of the Kingdom of God
Principle 2: The need to understand how people enter the Kingdom
Principle 3: The Gospel impacts the whole person and their context / community
Principle 4: Our motivation is to glorify Christ
Principle 5: Spiritual warfare and prayer are an integral part of community development
Principle 6: Creation glorifies, praises and witnesses to God
Principle 7: Community development must have a vision for vibrant communities of Jesus followers
Principle 8: We are called to be a blessing
Principle 9: We must be committed to professional excellence
Principle 10: We need to recognise the synergy between best practice community development and church planting approaches
As you watch this video, ask yourself:
- What is God saying to me through this teaching?
- How has my understanding of mission to least-reached people been enhanced and developed through what I have learned? If so, how?
- How could this new understanding affect the way we ‘do’ mission?
- Is there any action I should take?
Editors: David Greenlee – Mark Galpin – Paul Bendor-Samuel
Publisher: Regnum Practitioner Series 2020