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Please help these native missionaries

It’s challenging for American missionaries to enter certain parts of the world — namely, remote tribal areas and Islamic countries. But native missionaries like Ana and Janeth often receive an open door to share the Gospel with unreached groups and closed cultures.   For example, these w…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
It’s challenging for American missionaries to enter certain parts of the world — namely, remote tribal areas and Islamic countries. But native missionaries like Ana and Janeth often receive an open door to share the Gospel with unreached groups and closed cultures.
 
For example, these women spent three months in the mountains of Chihuahua, Mexico (an area that would be very difficult for white missionaries to enter) reaching the Raramuri Indians. They would hike 4-8 hours through the mountains to find unreached villages and often carry the sick and elderly back to the hospital where they could receive adequate care. In the process, they earned the trust of the natives to tell them about the love of Jesus. One of them said, “I would not exchange this experience for anything in the world.”
 
Missions Training Institute Photo
Stories like these explain why we started the Missions Training Institute (MTI) in Matamoros, Mexico. (For the full story of how the MTI began, click here.)
 
God led us to do to raise up long-term, national missionaries in Latin America. The unexpected fruit, however, came when Latin Americans started answering the call to go to the Middle East and East Asia.
 

While men like Edwin and Isaiah will likely plant churches in hard-to-reach areas of Mexico, others are distributing Bibles to insurgents in Colombia and moving to closed countries like Morocco to live amongst Muslims.

 
It’s an incredibly efficient and powerful ministry model – the graduates are passionate and effective in ways that those of us in America can’t be. While the numbers of American missionaries is dropping, the MTI graduates going to serve in the middle east climbs every year.
 
This year, the leadership of the MTI was turned over to long-time professor, Marco Zayas. It will be relocated to a more populated area, which will open plenty of opportunities to reach the community in new and exciting ways. However, a building/renovation project requires $35,000 in materials and equipment (at the time that I’m writing this blog, roughly $2000 has been raised).
 
An AIM mission team will be going down there two days from now, Sunday, to start the project (you can follow them here). Richard Rogers, the leader of the upcoming trip, has been a long-term supporter of the MTI over the past 12 years.  He shares why he’s going in the following blog excerpt:
I’ve seen the tremendous fruit that has come from this little Missions training school over the last 12 years.  I’ve ministered in the villages with them, I’ve been on missions trips with them, and slept on concrete floors out in the boonies with them, and every time, their compassion, their willingness to suffer, and their love for the people blew me away. 
 
Last year when their finances were scarce, the students made a decision to stay with barely enough food to eat, and the teachers decided to stay without pay.  I’ll do anything to help people like this.

Richard’s passion is contagious. It makes me want to do something. If this stirs you, too, click here to find out more about the MTI. We need your prayers and gifts. I believe that this ministry has a higher spiritual return on investment than just about any other ministry I’ve seen. Any gifts given to it go a very long way.
 
I would personally appreciate it if you would link to this blog via Twitter, re-post it on your own blog or facebook, and just help get the word out. As I said before, the team is starting this Sunday, so the need is urgent. You can follow their ministry and progress at the MTI blog.
 
You can also read more ministry stories from the MTI students here.

Comments (3)

  • Couldn’t agree more, Seth. My family was on the forefront of indignenous missionary work in Panama. My uncle, a member of the Kuna tribe, and his wife labored for 30 years on the San Blas Islands and my father Claudio, also Kuna, and mother worked as missionaries for another 15 years. They knew the language and culture. God used them to establish a thriving Kuna-led Christian church on the islands and in Panama City. For more examples, check out KP Yohannan’s “Revolution in World Missions”. There is a place for transnational mission work, but in some cases, indigenous missionaries are the best way to present the Gospel.

  • Greetings from Mexico. I have known Hna Flor for years and have been meaning to visit her in Matamoros and see the school firsthand. I teach in a Bible School near Monterrey and would love to connect with the MTI people. Blessings to you guys.

    Greg

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



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