Friends, as always, I need to start by saying a BIG THANK YOU for PARNERING with us as we are working here in Papua New Guinea! Most of you are aware of our ministry focus these last seven years. At first, we worked with the Mengen people group where a church was planted, and then transitioned into partnering with the already existing churches in New Britain.
WHAT IS THIS PARTNERSHIP
This kind of partnership is a core Biblical step of our methodology in Church Development, especially within the mission context. Unfortunately, it is also one of the areas where we most often fail in. It refers to a co-active ministry, with a joint commitment between us missionaries and the local maturing churches planted in various language groups in PNG. The purpose is to interdependently collaborate in establishing the national church in PNG on a continual sustainable indigenous pathway towards maturity and multiplication, to God’s glory.
Pray for us as a family, but also for our team, including New Tribes Mission for wisdom, endurance, and patience as we pursue this partnership.
THE FOCUS OF THE PARTNERSHIP
The focus of this partnership is centered around Gods goal and purpose for humanity which is also the goal and
purpose of the church, as it’s expressed in Genesis 1:26-28.
26 Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.”
27 So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
28 Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.”
Our focus areas would be to see ourselves and the church in PNG
- surrender and submit to God in all areas of faith, life, and ministry
- to reflecting God’s Holy Image, as they are saved, adopted into His church, sanctified, and glorified.
- to function as a united community, fellowshipping, caring, teaching, discipling, shepherding, encouraging, supporting, and collaborating towards God’s goal of being glorified through His Image.
- to spread His Image locally and cross culturally, thus sending national church planting teams to the unreached peoples of PNG.
- to collaborate in supporting the church and ministry in PNG using their own resources, strengths, gifts, and abilities.
- to shepherd the church based on a biblical model of servant leadership.
All of the above is done with one goal in mind namely seeing God glorified!
Pray that we ourselves will model Godliness as we live to God’s glory, and pry for us as we equip leaders into shepherding the church towards this goal.
THE SCOPE OF THE PARTNERSHIP
This has been a challenging and exciting endeavor in many ways! In New Britain alone, since 1980, we have 23 language groups
where we have churches planted. Each one of these churches has local churches planted amongst them. The map with all the red dots indicates exited works without missionaries as the leaders and the yellow dots indicates work where missionaries are present as the leaders.
A very conservative estimate shows that we are dealing with about 12 000 believers and 380 leaders.
Pray for us for wisdom in how to effectively disciple these leaders and believers
Accomplishing this task is extremely challenging and requires long term incarnational ministry. Our initial years have been focused on three goals, namely clarity concerning the purpose, methodology and collaboration.
– Establishing Clarity on the purpose – At first, we had to make sure all these leaders and believers have a clear understanding of what Gods goal and purpose is for the church in that He wants His Church to be a God dependent, unified, pure reflection of Him to His Glory.
– A core focus of our partnership is thus bringing the leaders and believers in line with the singular goal God has for humanity and the church, which is His Glory. And then equipping the church into how this goal is achieved through His Image, the church.
– Establishing clarity on the methodology – We also had to make sure all these leaders and believers have a clear understanding of the methodology God established through which His church is shepherded and reproduced. This is through servant leaders who in dependance on God shepherds the church into surrendering to Christ to produce through them His Holy Image.
– A core focus of our partnership is thus equipping the leaders from local churches, through teaching and discipleship.
– Establishing clarity on collaboration – We also had to make sure all these leaders and believers have a clear understanding of how God designed this purpose and methodology to be realised. This happens through the unified body of Christ, consisting of believers and leaders, with various gifts and abilities and resources which they collectively contribute towards pursuing His purpose.
– A core focus of our partnership is thus equipping the church to collaborate and participate in achieving the goal God has for His Image, the church.
Thank God who has brought us a long way along this path and pray for the church to grasp Gods Purpose for them, and for the leaders who shepherd them and for the church to be unified and participate in achieving God’s Purpose!
In order for us to achieve the goals of our partnership, we developed a team that consists of leaders from each of the language
group churches in New Britain. (Mainly the churches without missionaries). These leaders are qualified and gifted leaders who has been mandated by their local churches to act as representatives, totaling about 30 men. Even though they still work as leaders within their own local churches they also carry the role as representatives for their language groups. Then we have 3 families from mature churches in New Britain, living fulltime with me on our support center. These men and their families are qualified and gifted leaders who has been mandated by the churches in New Britain to work fulltime with me.
Together we are working on evaluating the needs of the church in areas of church development, support, and leadership, and we develop curriculum which can be used to address these needs, and then we work through a process of teaching and discipleship in equipping the local leaders from the local churches in New Britain towards these goals.
These leaders are being send and supported by the church in New Britain and its really amazing to see the church starting to understand Gods Purpose, how this is achieved and how they can participate and collaborate in working towards achieving it.
Pray for these men and their families that they will grasp the importance of their role as shepherds, as well as for faithfulness and growth in the different areas this amazing task requires.
– These coming months, we have a few trips coming up, where some of the national leaders will work together with NTM in assisting a missionary family allocating into a people group
– I have a trip to Thailand together with some other leaders and missionaries from NTM, and my purpose would be to connect with some global partners concerning this partnership and the way to move forward.
– All the leaders within the team in New Britain will be having a meeting in December to get some feedback on how things have been going this year and planning will be done for next year.
– We aim at completing and recording the resources we have been developing since 2016 concerning the purpose of the church, leadership and collaborating in support.
– We have various groups of leaders getting together, traveling together to visit different language groups and local church as they continue to teach and disciple through the core areas we are targeting right now.
PLEASE CONSIDER HELPING US!
Your prayers and financial support are making a tangible difference in lives and communities. These key leaders are carrying the burden of the work financially, but we are trying to support them in some ways from time to time, as we work with them and disciple them and they likewise disciple us. There are a variety of ways you can support this ministry, so please contact us for more details, or follow this link and specify it as for “the national leadership development in PNG”.
For our SA supporters:
- Lourens Laureti
- Standard Bank Savings
- Account number: 238403122
- Branch: Cresta