In previous blogs, we established that partnerships in the International Missions (IM) context are cooperative efforts with organizations working internationally, and we looked at some of the principles that guide our cooperative efforts. Today we will focus on the different types of partnerships.
Partnerships with National Churches. Most of our partnerships are with national associations of Free Will Baptist churches on fields where we no longer have resident missionaries (with a couple of exceptions). IM has a high investment of personnel and finances over a period of several decades in these fields resulting in mature churches, mature spiritual leaders, church growth momentum, and FWB institutions (such as Bible institutes or seminaries). We cannot and should not walk away from them. We must do all we can to cultivate our interdependence, maintain relationships, empower them to continue to effectively evangelize and disciple their country, and facilitate their involvement in an international network of Free Will Baptists. Some of the partnerships in Brazil, Panama, Cuba, Ivory Coast, India, and South Korea have formal agreements of cooperation while in some countries our agreement is informal.
Local Kingdom Organizations. In Uganda, Africa, we partner with Village of Hope, an organization providing shelter, restoration, and training for children caught up in the country’s recent civil war. In Ecuador, we partner with Jungle Kids for Christ (JKC) which takes Christian education into the Ecuadorian Amazon jungle. They not only have a Christian school and a children’s hostel but are also planting a church.
Specialized Kingdom agencies. We partner with an agency that provides opportunities for teaching English in creative access countries (as a means of ministry). Another partner, Bible Missions, works in evangelism, church planting, and leadership training in five countries of Central Asia. Our cooperation with BERACA in Ivory Coast, Africa, provides for medical needs, adult literacy, AIDS prevention initiatives, and micro-loans for those needing to start an economic activity to support their families.
Other FWB organizations. IM also partners with other FWB organizations stateside and overseas for the benefit of our international works. Some of our projects have received the collaboration of WNAC, NAM, the FWB Foundation, Welch College, Randall University, Randall House, our own The Hanna Project (THP), and others.