In This Issue: Stories of hope, spiritual equipping, and more
See how a devastating tsunami changed the work of Bible translation in this new documentary from Wycliffe Bible Translators.
Source: Wycliffe Bible Translators
The Finish Line: Stories of Hope through Bible Translation, by Bob Creson (with Carol Schatz). Wycliffe Bible Translators, 2014. 148 pages.
Until the year 2000, the number of languages researchers believed would need their own translation of the Bible was growing. It topped out at around 3,000, and then, for the first time, began to drop. Today, due to new technologies, strategic alliances, and the sacrificial service of translators worldwide, the number keeps dropping. “We are participating in the greatest acceleration of the pace of Bible translation ever witnessed by the Church,” says Bob Creson, president and CEO of Wycliffe Bible Translators USA. “In light of the current pace, we know that the last translator—the translator for the last language needing Bible translation—is alive somewhere in the world today!”
The Finish Line is a book about the task of Bible translation and includes stories from the experiences of Creson and his family as well as many others. It’s an inspiring and easy read and of course includes suggestions for how we can be part of this work. At points this feels a bit like a Wycliffe infomercial, though a winsome one, but the ministry’s commitment to celebrating partnership with other organizations lessens that effect.
» Purchase the Kindle edition, currently priced at US$.99; US$10 for the paperback. Watch an author interview (CBN).
» You might also be interested in Arop, a recently released 30-minute video from Wycliffe. It beautifully tells the story of what God did through a translation effort in Papua New Guinea and can be watched online or downloaded for use with groups.
Prayercast, producers of high-quality, free videos that encourage prayer for the nations of the world, are now working on materials to inform and inspire prayer for the followers of various world religions. As with the “nations” videos, each one is narrated by the prayers of someone from the same background as those for whom they are praying.
Be sure to check out some great related materials, including succinct summaries of each religious group’s background, beliefs, what God is doing among them today, and how we can pray, as well as audio files in which the narrators tell their own stories of coming to know Jesus Christ. These and the videos could be good resources to use with groups and classes.
So far, there are pages about Atheism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Judaism, Mormonism, and Occultism, and more are to come. I found the material about praying for atheists particularly insightful.
» Watch videos and learn more. Note that the world religions map is interactive: scroll over the name of a religion to see where followers are concentrated. See also a new video about praying for the Ebola crisis.
Source: Moody Publishers
Helping without Hurting in Short-term Missions, by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert, with Katie Casselberry. Moody Publishers, 2014. 128 pages. Leader’s guide sold separately.
Are you a fan of Corbett and Fikkert’s When Helping Hurts? This new curriculum for training and debriefing mission teams applies to short-term missions the key ideas of the widely read book. It includes teaching and examples with questions and journaling assignments, all designed to prepare short-termers for service that doesn’t hurt the poor they are trying to serve. Six of the eight lessons are built around free, online video content.
» Learn more or purchase from Moody for US$12.99 (slightly cheaper on Amazon). See also the Leader’s Guide.
» Also see another new curriculum for training short-term mission teams, Mission Launch Team Training.
Source: Center for Mission Mobilization
Hudson on a Mission, by Jim Jobe. Center for Mission Mobilization, 2013. 32 pages (full-color, staple-bound paperback).
Are you in ministry and looking for a gift for donors who support your work? Check out the kids’ book, Hudson on a Mission. It tells the story of Hudson, a young raccoon, and his family, as they move into a remote village of turtles to bring them the Good News of Jesus. The book illustrates cross-cultural ministry, church planting, and multiplication (particularly in a tribal context) in a way that kids can grasp. This would be a good resource for families, donors working with children, and supporting churches. Jobe wrote it to help his young son prepare for their family’s relocation to Asia Pacific with New Tribes Mission.
Center for Mission Mobilization is selling the books at $US4 a copy if you buy ten or more. The normal price is US$6.95.
» Preview the book, learn more, or purchase from Center for Mission Mobilization (coupon code: HudsonChristmas). Thanks to Karen from Weave family ministry for telling us about it. Find lots of other great mission resources for kids and families at WeaveFamily.org.
Source: InterVarsity Press
Spiritual Equipping for Mission: Thriving as God’s Message Bearers, by Ryan Shaw. InterVarsity Press, 2014. 208 pages.
Spiritual formation and discipleship are at the core of effective and fruitful mission, says Shaw, president of Student Volunteer Movement 2. Our methods and strategies for reaching others are useless if we are unable to live the holy, faithful lives God intends for us.
In this book the author describes—from scripture, research, and his own experiences—ten spiritual keys essential to the life of cross-cultural workers (whom he calls “message bearers”). The book has a strong emphasis on hearing from God and discerning his guidance. It also explores disciplines like Bible study, prayer and fasting, humility, perseverance, and focus.
» Learn more or purchase the paperback for US$12 from InterVarsity; available for less from online retailers and in electronic editions.
» Another book written to address a common blind spot for global workers is coming out soon, and has steep discounts for advance purchases. See Werner Mischke’s The Global Gospel: Achieving Missional Impact in our Multicultural World and the recent review in Brigada Today.
Source: Missions Catalyst Events Calendar
November 2 or 9, International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (global).
November 6-8, Oasis Conference (San Diego, CA, USA). Annual event from Crescent Project.
November 6-8, Open Expo (Raleigh, NC, USA). Business as mission event for BAM/B4T practitioners.
November 6-8, Global Missions Health Conference (Louisville, KY, USA). An annual event.
November 6-8, Canadian Network of Ministry to Muslims Annual Conference (Richmond Hill, ON, Canada). Creating a welcoming community.
November 7-8, Southeast Michigan MissionNext Forum (Brighton, MI, USA). Find insights into options in missions suited to your skills and passions.
November 13-16, International Conference on Missions (Columbus, OH, USA). Conference of the Christian Church / Churches of Christ.
November 15, Bridges Seminar (Spokane, WA, USA). Building bridges to reach Muslims. Provided by Crescent Project.
November 16, Global Mission Sunday (international). Marking the 40th anniversary of the Lausanne Movement.
November 20, Extreme Poverty: What it is, and What To Do About It (online). Missio Nexus webinar.
November 26-30, TENTmaking Course (Terkicko, Czech Republic). Provided by Tent Norway and Global Opportunities.
» View the complete calendar and/or submit an item. We could use some help finding events planned for 2015!
In This Issue: Tools for your toolbox
First of all, thanks for reading! We’re grateful for your partnership in the gospel and the opportunity to hear from you and serve you.
This edition of Resource Reviews includes a few new tools for a mobilizer’s toolbox. Please let us know if you’ve come across others that readers should hear about. We have some more cool things we can’t wait to tell you about, but they’re not quite ready yet – next month, I hope!
Finally, we want to apologize for a mistake in our September 17 edition of Missions Catalyst Newsbriefs. Our item about ISIS included a link to a story about the conversion of the brother of an ISIS leader, a report which (as several readers pointed out) proved to be untrue. Sorry for passing it on!
publisher and managing editor
Monthly Resource Reviews are composed and compiled by Marti Wade, who has managed and published Missions Catalyst since 2004.
Based in Oregon, Marti is a writer, editor, and project manager serving with Pioneers on the Church Partnerships Team. She is the author of Through Her Eyes, a book about the lives of women serving cross-culturally in the Muslim world. She also speaks at conferences, Perspectives classes and similar events.
Source: Center for Mission Mobilization
The Center for Mission Mobilization has repackaged some of their materials, created related pieces, and made them all more accessible to a larger audience as free, versatile downloads. You can also purchase hard copies of the Bible studies if that works better for you.
Xplore is a seven-lesson small group study designed to help believers discover God’s overarching purpose throughout the Bible and history, learn about world religions and unreached people groups, and grow in World Christian practices. A set of one-page coaching conversation documents will guide you through one-on-one conversations that reinforce the same topics. Take a look at those; they include some great material and may be able to stand alone.
Go Mobilize is another seven-lesson small group study, designed to help World Christians grow into mobilizers and learn what it takes to start a mission movement among their friends, churches, and families. A set of coaching conversation documents is also available for this study.
The GOer Groups study, video-based with downloadable discussion questions and a leader’s guide, is designed for college students interested in serving internationally. It addresses major questions and barriers students encounter as they pursue cross-cultural ministry.
Finally, take a look at the NVision video series, a set of 15 videos, 5-7 minutes in length, designed to to help you point people who know and follow Jesus to entire groups of people that don’t. Use these to help believers discover God’s pursuit of worship all over the earth, as well as simple, practical ways to impact the nations for Christ.
» Learn more or download resources (registration required for some pieces).
Source: Faith Comes By Hearing
Looking for good Bible apps not only for your own study but for your kids or to use evangelistically, even cross-culturally? What about Bibles for those who prefer listening over reading? You may find just what you want from the Bible.is family of applications from Faith Comes By Hearing (FCBH).
The free Bible.is app now features 1,556 languages (including hundreds in audio versions and JESUS film video) and is available on the web and for both iOS and Android devices. The Bible.is app is capable of providing access to God’s Word to over two-thirds of the world’s population.
Then there’s the Deaf Bible app, which FCBH says is the most downloaded Deaf app in the world, with 10 new sign languages added this year.
The Bible.is KIDZ app, created in partnership with Child Evangelism Fellowship, is a new, free scripture app for children. It features illustrated Bible stories, audio, games, and other interactive activities. The story selection is somewhat limited, but they plan to keep adding.
» Visit the app page on the Bible.is website to learn more and follow links to download apps from the various platforms.