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Training Nationals to Start Church-Planting Movements Among the Unreached

What is your definition of an unreached people-group?

Our definition of "people-group" is a group of people that has a distinct culture, language, and/or ethnicity of their own which separates them from the other cultures around them. We consider such a group to be unreached when there is no indigenous community of Christ-followers among them.

By that definition, how many unreached people-groups do you estimate there to be in Cameroon?

Our research indicates that there are 6 unreached people-groups left in Cameroon which fit this definition. We have already mobilized, trained, and sent out a group of missionaries to one of those people-groups, so there are now 5 left.

How do you plan to reach the last remaining unreached tribes?

By facilitating, enabling, inspiring, mobilizing, and training believers in existing local churches that are near the unreached people-groups. We see it as our role to cast vision for the body of Christ in Cameroon to do what Jesus has called us all to do: to go and make disciples. We are standing on the shoulders of hundreds of missionaries and church workers who have gone before us and laid the groundwork. We believe that God has called us to be catalysts to a potential church planting explosion. By ourselves we are inert, but with the others that God has already placed here, we could see some amazing things in just a few short years.

How long do you expect to be in Cameroon? And then what?

Our dream is that we will be able to leave Cameroon by the end of 2015, with there being no unreached people-groups left here. We would then go to other African nations to do similar work. Whether or not God will bring this dream to pass so soon is up to Him.

What do you hope to see as a long-term result of your work in Africa?

As a team, it is our hope, our dream, and our prayer that by God's grace, and by His power working through us and many others like us, that every unreached people-group in Africa would be reached with the gospel and that an army of one million African church-planters would be raised up from the African church to go to the remaining unreached peoples of the world. It is our dream to see the Great Commission fulfilled in our generation, to look up and see Jesus coming in the air. This is our team's long-term vision.

What makes you think that such a big goal is realistic?

We believe that we are doing what God has called us to do. We also believe that God can do anything, absolutely anything! And we believe that God enjoys taking weak vessels like us and using them to accomplish His magnificent purposes.

Why do you think Cameroonians will make good church planters?

The average Cameroonian speaks multiple languages, is familiar with multiple cultures, and has learned determination and a degree of adaptability through the harshness of the circumstances in which they have been raised. These cultural characteristics give Cameroonians certain advantages over the average westerner in the area of cross-cultural ministry. We believe that when these qualities are combined with a keen understanding and love for the Word of God and passion for sharing His love with the unreached, that highly effective church-planters will emerge.

Is the work that you are doing dangerous?

"Dangerous" is a relative term. Living anywhere can be dangerous. Cameroon is a very peace-loving country. The crime levels in the capital city are about equal to any other large city, and in the more remote areas crime is limited more to petty theft.

But even if that were not the case, we believe that this is what God has called us to do, and we believe that there is no safer place to be than in the center of the will of God. We each have only one life to give for our Lord. Whether we die young, or die daily and live long on this earth, what difference does it make?  

The following quote expresses what we often feel as a team: "I cannot, I dare not, I shall not give any less than my all to Him who gave His all for me -- whose all was immeasurably more than I could ever give. I do this not only out of a sense of passionate duty, but also out of love. I do it out of love for Him who is Love Incarnate! I could do no other."

What needs does your ministry have?

By far our greatest need is prayer. We need committed Christians who can commit to spend time every week in prayer for us. We need people to pray for our protection, our progress, and our growth. The second need that we have is financial support, in order to be fully equipped to carry out the work that God has given us. We also need people who can advocate our work to their churches, friends, and circles of influence.

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