NewsPress Releases

Open Letter From Jeff Denlinger To The WorldVenture Family Regarding COVID-19

To The Extended WorldVenture Family, All of us are acutely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. In the midst of the challenges to adapt to the new realities in which we find ourselves, I find great peace in the anchoring truth that God alone is sovereign. He always has been, he always will be, and he is sovereign today. The virus is not sovereign though it covers nearly the whole earth; nor is the accompanying fear of the virus sovereign; there is only one Lord, Jesus Christ. It is to him we turn regardless of our circumstances. It is because of…
March 18, 2020
Features

God of Shepherds

By Sam Knutson It’s a special honor to visit a newborn baby and its parents, even more so to be the first ones to see the swaddled little bundle of joy. It speaks volumes of your relationship when the parents invite you to see a child. So, what does it say about the first people to see baby Jesus? It wasn’t kings or Wise Men at first. No, the Father gave the greatest birth announcement of all time to shepherds. So, the first visitors to behold God made flesh had just rushed over after being out in the fields with…
December 4, 2020
Features

For His Joy

Pulling Together as a Family in Christ By Donna McDonnel One of the things that have been hardest about this year, if I'm honest, is the way that I have seen the people around me divide. Maybe that doesn't sound right in English, but what I mean is, it has felt like this has been a time of dividing, division.  Are you in this group?  Are you in that one?  Do you believe this?  How can you believe that? It doesn't even seem to matter where I am physically located. Everywhere I turn, division.  Family members trying to be careful…
December 1, 2020
Features

Noel in Cote d’Ivoire

By Angelika Ragsdale (A journal entry written some years ago which has relevance now)  At the bus station in Adjamé, Abidjan, waiting for the next bus back to Bouaké after depositing my documents to get my Ivorian residence card, I open my Bible to Luke 2. As I read about Joseph leaving Nazareth to go to Bethlehem (his birth town) to get registered, because the Roman government at the time issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world, it dawns on me, that it wasn’t just the people of Israel being on the move…
November 27, 2020
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Jonah: The Heart of God For the Nations

By Brody Philips  And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?" — The LORD (Jonah 4:11) Such a provocative question with such profound implications. By now, almost all of us have heard the story of Jonah: a reluctant prophet sent by God to preach a message to Nineveh, the capital city of the Assyrian empire — the same Assyria that would soon take the nation of Israel into captivity. Jonah refused to go to Nineveh, and in…
November 18, 2020
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Our Heart in Response to God’s Call

By Evans Walton Our hearts need to be fertile when we respond to God’s calling. A heart that is fertile is willing to submit to the direction of God, recognize the grace of God, and be willing to share God's grace with others. The book of Jonah primarily focuses on a gentile city called Nineveh which was infamous for its cruelty. The prophet missionary was sent to warn the people of Nineveh about God’s coming judgement. MacArthur writes, one of the book’s intents was to, “shame Israel by the fact that a pagan city repented at the preaching of a…
November 3, 2020
FeaturesThe Church on Mission

How to Form a Digital Team

The Church on Mission is a series of blogs and videos to help your ministry or church thrive in the digital age and make disciples locally and internationally. This is the first video of the series in three parts. Introduction (1 minute) The Template (3 minutes) Review & Strategy (3 minutes) Resources: PowerPoints: Sample Report Form: You can view how to use this report by clicking here to go to nikolehahn.com. List of Digital Resources: Indigitous: Engaging and Unleashing Believers into Digital Missions. Good source to learn about digital missions. Church Communications: Church conferences and blog posts on how to…
November 2, 2020
Features

God’s Unusual Intervention in The Book of Jonah

By Philip Kendall  Throughout the book of Jonah, God demonstrates again and again that his way of working in the world can be, and often is, fundamentally different than we’d either like or even expect. “‘My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ declares the LORD” (New International Version, Isaiah 55:8). God does not restrict himself to reaching out to those we reach out to, blessing us in ways we see as blessings, or even giving us objectives that we would like to achieve. Instead, He does what He knows is best. God reaches out to…
October 25, 2020
Features

What to Do When the Post Office Fails

Stories from the field and practical advice on supporting your missionaries with prayer and mail By Nikole Hahn Our small group decided to partner with the missionaries our church supported through writing letters and prayer. Working at a church, and with some of these missionaries from the different organizations, gave me insight into the practicality of letter writing. While the commercial open rate for an emailed newsletter can range from 20% to 30% on average, regular mail is making a comeback. In the past, we went to email because our mail boxes were full of junk. Like a pendulum swinging…
October 23, 2020
Features

What Mask Are You Wearing?

By Ginny Jensen Ginny serves WorldVenture appointees and international workers by encouraging and equipping them to fulfill God’s global redemptive purposes and by assisting each person to finish well with Him. Masks have become a fashion statement and a point of conflict. In the past, masks were commonplace in other parts of the world. In the United States, we associated them with burglars, Mardi-Gras, or Halloween. By definition, masks protect, disguise, or entertain.  A masque is a form of entertainment where the performers wear masks. Often, life is a masque. We mask our true feelings or present a façade that…
October 9, 2020
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A New Pane of Glass, A Pair of Shoes, and Jesus

By Nicolette Hutcherson Beirut, Lebanon He was sitting outside the church gate with his shoeshine kit, watching the people coming and going.  One of our volunteers noticed him and called me over to help.  I invited him in and asked if there was anything specific he needed. "Shoes," he shyly replied, "size 38."  I took him over to our section of men's shoes - we didn't have a lot - and showed him a few pairs of tennis shoes in his size.  He hesitated and then pointed to a pair of fake leather business man looking shoes - not something…
October 7, 2020
Media

Japan: A Bible Cafe

Japan, known as the “Land of the Rising Sun”, while prosperous materially, is a nation steeped in spiritual darkness and despair, and remains largely unreached. Since our deployment to Japan in 2009, we have had the privilege of serving alongside both missionary colleagues as well as Japanese church leaders to build up the church and shine the light of the Gospel of Christ among the Japanese people. - Greg and Asa Swenson https://vimeo.com/446959462      
October 6, 2020
Features

The Return Key

By Dr. Rick Griffith After we checked out of our Bangkok hotel, a family checked in at the same counter. Turns out, they were missionaries, and the wife was a counselor in nearby Chiang Mai. When I noted that I am a professor at Singapore Bible College, she replied, "Oh, our only Thai counselor was hoping to attend SBC in a few months, but she can't afford it since her husband is also a seminary student and they have a young daughter." "Really?" I responded. "Our church in Texas has funds to invest in Asian families attending SBC!" Fast forward…
October 5, 2020
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Reset: We Just Started The New Testament

Reset: (verb) to set again or anew. Fall is often the symbol of change. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! - 2 Corinthians 5:17 Reset is a mindset we should embrace these days. Perhaps we could start that through a new spiritual habit of reading the Bible each day?  Peter Persson, Director of Global Prayer Initiatives, started a Reading the Bible in a Year plan in January through our Facebook group. He recently began the New Testament. It's not too late to dig into the New Testament…
October 3, 2020
Media

Foundations: A Church Building and Community Center

And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled. – Luke 14:23 Church Building and Community Center in Senegal (Click Here to View Project Information) They still need about $200,000 in gifts. https://vimeo.com/458280380 Articles and Blogs: Building a Church Legacy in Senegal     
October 2, 2020
Features

How Social Media Can Help You Live Deeply

By Nikole Hahn The mocking voices of social media drive that anger and grief more deeply into a person’s heart with each refresh of the newsfeed. Even what we post online is what we saturate our hearts with, and so, if what we post is angry, grieving, or mocking, we hear that voice, too, deeply in our souls. If social media can infect us this way, what would happen if we altered how we posted? Would that change how we lived each day? In thinking of this, the word repent comes to mind. The word repent means, “to change one’s…
October 1, 2020
Media

Marilee Morden: Leadership Training and Church Development in Brazil

About Marilee Morden The leadership training course (modular seminary) was originally designed to train lay leaders from the small, interior churches in Northeastern Brazil. Since the course began in 1992 over 200 have graduated and many have been ordained to the ministry. This has been an important way Marilee has found to help extend God's kingdom in ways and places she would never be able to personally. Click here to view her profile and learn more.  https://vimeo.com/458204585   Header Image by Fabricio Macedo FGMsp from Pixabay
September 30, 2020
Features

A Reset in Chaotic Days

By Jeff Denlinger, President of WorldVenture Many years ago, in other tumultuous, chaotic, and dark days, the prophet Habakkuk bemoaned these words to God: “O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you ‘Violence!’ and you will not save? Why do you make me see iniquity, and why do you idly look at wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; strife and contention arise. So the law is paralyzed, and justice never goes forth. For the wicked surround the righteous; so justice goes forth perverted.” (Hab 1:2-4 ESV) In reply to…
September 28, 2020
Press Releases

Bridge Revisited 2020: Virtual Event Happening Now!

What is Bridge?  Bridge is, Building Relationships Intentionally with the Diaspora for Global-Gospel Expansion. This is an event hosted at Crossover Bible Fellowship by WorldVenture missionaries, Lloyd and Jan'et Chinn. The theme is African Diaspora. September 24 - 26, 2020: It is happening right now!  You can join from anywhere around the world. Live sessions happen Saturday, September 26, and you must be registered to join. Click here to register.  https://vimeo.com/458826853 Quotable for Social Media Feel free to copy and paste the quotes below to put into your Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter accounts.  "Africans in Diaspora … should not feel…
September 25, 2020
Features

Imprisoned Like Paul

…But the word of God is not bound! - 2 Timothy 2:9b Marilyn Escher is a "retired" WorldVenture worker, still on the job as a Global Resource Specialist, working to finish up the translation of the Bible into Wolof. Wolof is spoken by 5 million ethnic Wolofs in Senegal. Because of her age (77), mission leadership recommended she evacuate from the field temporarily. She had 24 hours notice before the borders closed. Twelve hours to pack during the night hours and four days to get from Senegal to COVID-free Fort Bragg, California where her brother is pastor of Grace Community…
September 25, 2020
Features

Alexandra: A Story of Recovery and Redemption

By Ireni Mota And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28 Alexandra was born in an upscale neighborhood of São Paulo. Her problems were no different than our own. Alexandra had good parents. As an adolescence, she desired to know the favela side of the city (a shack or shanty town) and the slum lifestyle. This interest occurred soon after her father’s death. Alexandra became “Piriri”, a respected drug dealer in the community. Rarely ever do drug dealers not get involved with their…
September 23, 2020
Features

An Unexpected Blessing

Bruce Tissell’s story of innovation during Brazil’s COVID-19 shut down is an inspiration for all of us as we find creative ways to stay in business, do ministry, and make disciples in this unexpected time. Bruce is the Director at Baptist Seminary in Teresina, Brazil. North Brazil was hearing about and watching this new thing called the Corona Virus or Covid-19 in early 2020.  No one really paid much attention to it as it was something in other parts of the world, or in the Southern part of Brazil (this is like another world to us in North Brazil). In…
September 12, 2020
Press Releases

Sherri Schneidermann-Kone: A Tribute

Sherri Schneidermann-Kone was appointed with CBFMS January 28, 1987 to minister at the Baptist Mission Hospital in Ferkessedougou, Cote d’Ivoire as a nurse. At her appointment, Sherri made this statement: “What motivates a person to leave the comforts of home and go to a country thousands of miles away where everything is unfamiliar and strange for the purpose of being a missionary? The answer is found in a song. The words to the song, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross sums up the reason.” said Sherri. “After all that Christ has done for me, my only loving response can be,…
September 8, 2020
Features

In The Garden

By Ginny Jensen One of my dad’s favorite hymns was “In the Garden” by C. Austin Miles. As a youngster, I didn’t fully understand the imagery of the song but I loved it because he loved it. Now I look at those words and I see the image of quiet time with the Lord. The beauty of the chorus brings peace as I meditate on it. “And He walks with me, and He talks with me, And He tells me I am His own, and the joy we share as we tarry there, None other has ever known.” Quiet time,…
September 3, 2020
Features

The Blessing

Written by a Colleague  We have been so moved by this blessing being sung by God's people in different languages from different countries. We think you will be blessed, too. Choose a video from this sampling taken from 100 virtual choirs singing blessing over their city, country and the whole world in this time of global uncertainty. It is more than just singing a song—it is matching good news with good deeds: 100 churches in NYC sing and serve together 121 churches in Canada work and pray together 100 churches in France unite and help each other 177 churches in Singapore with 772 singers 300…
August 14, 2020
Press Releases

Remembering Anne Laine

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His faithful servants   (Psalm 116:15)  Anne Foster Laine, global worker with WorldVenture serving in Uganda, died in her sleep on Friday morning, August 7, 2020 in Mesa, AZ. She was 51.  “Anne had a deep love for the people of Uganda,” said Africa Director, Lloyd Chinn. “Anne had a relentless resolve to push through the uncomfortableness of a different culture in order to change lives.”  Anne Laine was born on June 13, 1969. She was raised in Virginia Beach, VA in a Christian home and accepted the Lord as a young teenager. After what she described as a time of…
August 13, 2020
Features

Being Formed

By Ginny Jensen Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. – Philippians 1:18b-19 Early in my faith journey, I clearly understood the choice between following the world and following Christ. What I had difficulty reconciling was how I would be transformed to be like Him. I struggled with verses like Philippians 1 and 2 which seemed so contradictory. In chapter one, Paul petitions God to complete the work… in the lives of his…
August 13, 2020
Features

5 Ways to Share Your Faith Online

By Nikole Hahn Paul spent his time in prison writing letters. Even when Paul himself couldn’t minister in person, God used his words to traverse obstacles, distance, and time. Paul’s words continue to make an impact, in large part because they were fixed in time to a timeless medium. Luke’s “Acts of the Apostles” is similar. According to the introduction in Bible Study Tools of the Book of Acts, it was written “To depict the triumph of Christianity in the face of bitter persecution.” Fixed in time, but timeless! Written in one place, but unconfined by time and space. Many…
August 10, 2020
News

2 Ways to Help Beirut

The Beirut explosion on Tuesday, August 4, 2020 left 300,000 people homeless, 135 people dead, 5,000 wounded, and according to USA Today, up to 15 billion dollars in damages. While Lebanese neighbors scour the city for missing relatives, we pray. As the Red Cross warns that death toll numbers could rise, we pray. As our colleagues in Beirut lament, we pray. Our colleague writes, “We sleep. We wake. Shocked and numb. It seems it was an accident, they say. A horrible accident. Only Hiroshima and Nagasaki more powerful. Can’t scream, can’t cry. Work. We can work. Grab my daughter and…
August 6, 2020
Features

How the Pals Inspired Others to Go

By Dougg Custer, VP Mobilization Ministries “I do not know how things will turn out for us.  As a husband, I feel obligated to lead our family toward obedience, whatever the end may be–whether it is life or death or discomfort or disappointment.  It is clear that the Lord Jesus calls us not to an easy life, however he calls us.  He bids us to take up our cross–just as he did–to suffer and die.  Perhaps we will toil for years to raise support and never make it overseas.  Perhaps we will go and utterly ‘fail’ as missionaries from all…
July 31, 2020
Features

Resting Murder Face: Principles of Necessary Conflict

A week-long series on leadership and conflict resolution By Rodger Schmidt Change is hard work. It is uncomfortable and many leaders tend to hang on to what worked in the past even if it is outdated or no longer effective. For businesses to grow, the entire organization must be consistently analyzed, discussed, negotiated, and fine-tuned. Conflict is the backdoor to reinvention and innovation.  “No one sews a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment. If he does, the patch tears away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear is made. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the wine will burst the skins—and the wine is destroyed, and…
July 17, 2020
Features

Resting Murder Face: Why is Conflict Necessary?

A week-long series on leadership and conflict resolution By Rodger Schmidt  Many leaders avoid conflict at all costs. However, the most innovative solutions often are born out of conflict. The workplace is a dynamic environment, always needing to grow, change, find solutions, transition, and upgrade. Conflict is a regular element of everyday work life. If leaders manage conflict well, it will produce growth and leadership capacity in themselves and others (and the more enjoyable will be the experience of others in the workplace).   Why is Conflict Necessary?  Conflict encourages the leader to consider new ideas. If the participants truly hear one another’s perspectives and ideas, it helps to mold and clarify concepts; either making the leader clearer…
July 16, 2020
Features

Resting Murder Face: Conflict is Inevitable

A week-long series on leadership and conflict resolution By Rodger Schmidt When two or more people interact for a long enough period, conflict happens. It is inevitable. Dr. Silcox claims unresolved conflict preys on peoples’ minds and distracts them from their most important tasks. Individuals in ongoing conflict rarely contribute well to the organization’s mission and strategy. Therefore, Individuals may simply be going through the motions, or undermining the organization in some way. The following questions and related principles are helpful to consider while managing the inevitable reality of conflict: Are there perceived inequities in how people are treated? Inequities…
July 15, 2020
Features

Resting Murder Face: Introduction

A week-long series on leadership and conflict resolution By Rodger Schmidt  If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. - Matthew 18:15 Managing conflict is not only inevitable but a necessary process if leaders hope to foster community, mature themselves, and lead others well. It is essential if we are to achieve all the Father has prepared for us in the mission of God around the world. I have invested years navigating conflict rooted in personality differences—Family of origin blind…
July 14, 2020
Features

Coping with the Coronavirus Pandemic in Italy

How a Coronavirus Canceled Plans For Two Colleagues by Emily Roth  After 42 years of ministry in Italy, Doug and Dee Valenzuela were preparing for their biggest project yet to take place on the last weekend of May. It would have been a three-day event drawing thousands of people to hear the gospel and receive salvation in Jesus Christ. The event, called Christian Alive 2020, could have been the capstone of their work in the city of Naples and its surrounding area before they would retire at the end of the year. But, the event was canceled. Instead, they celebrated…
June 8, 2020
Features

Life With Charlie

By Ginny Jensen Charlie is my little lap dog. He is now old and losing his sight. He is still the most loyal, cuddly pet I have ever had. Through the years, there have been many challenges with him. He was a rescue and came with many issues. In watching Charlie, I have seen parallels to my relationship with God. After doing something wrong, Charlie comes sheepishly to me for forgiveness only to turn around and do it again. Sounds like me. How about you? When Charlie escapes the yard and runs free, it is beautiful to watch him. Yet,…
June 6, 2020
Features

Building a Church Legacy in Senegal

Senegal Broke Ground This Weekend on a New Church By Colleagues in Africa On Saturday, May 30, 2020, we broke ground for a permanent place of worship. The story behind the ceremony for a new church building began years ago.  After decades of missionary work, there are only about 100 Wolof believers. Out of those 100 believers, less than a third attend church on a regular basis. This breaks our hearts. When we spoke to some of them, they shared several reasons for not attending. “It doesn’t feel sacred.” They desire a formal place of worship. “It doesn’t feel Senegalese.”…
June 1, 2020
Features

How COVID19 Changed Language Learning For Me

  By Sam Knutson During this coronavirus lockdown, God has shifted our plans and I am beginning language learning from the States instead of in person.  I was very nervous about my first lesson in Spanish because, even though I have been trying my best to learn on my own, I am still such a novice!  At the end of my lesson, we could only shake our heads and laugh at God's humor.  My online language lesson went from shaky introductions to sharing the Gospel in my bumbling Spanish. My tutor, Nico (a pseudonym) lives in Guayaquil, the city we…
May 26, 2020
Features

Sheltered Under His Wings

  By Ginny Jensen We have been sheltered in place for weeks; for some, it's been months. Slowly the world is beginning to “re-open”. If your isolation is a physical location, you may be seeing the light at the far end of the tunnel. If you are like Hannah in social isolation, you don’t know when it will end. Staying in isolation has its stressors. Stepping out of it will bring new stressors. Is it safe? What if there is a second wave? What effect will social distancing have on relationships? The questions, fears, and anxiety are as unique as…
May 21, 2020
Features

Seeking Peace During a Pandemic

  By Emily Roth The last 10 days of Ramadan began on Tuesday, May 12. More than at any other time of year, Muslims seek God during these 10 days and nights. Ramadan is the holiest month of the Islamic calendar, and the final 10 days of the month are the holiest days of this month. A saying attributed to Muhammad instructs Muslims, “Search for the Night of Qadr in the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan.” Laylat al-Qadr, also translated as the Night of Destiny or the Night of Power, is honored by Muslims as the…
May 16, 2020
Features

A Snapshot Into Cambodian Orphanages

If orphanages are where the resources are, won't they provide the best nutrition, health care, and education? By Lisa Yunker My degree program in seminary required me to do an internship and, by that time, I sensed the Lord was calling me to work in Cambodia. I joined a team for a seven-week mission trip to Cambodia. During that time we were exposed to, and given the opportunity to work with, a broad spectrum of ministries. One of the ministries we encountered was a large well-respected orphanage. The woman who was in charge was a lovely Christian lady with many…
May 15, 2020
Features

For the First Time in 1400 Years

By Emily Roth It is a special time of year for 1.8 billion people around the world. Something in the atmosphere makes this season different from any other. Those who celebrate it hang festive lights and exchange gifts. They host big dinners, serving seasonal dishes, and inviting honored guests. People give generously to the poor and needy. Everyone strives to be the best version of themselves. They reflect on the past year and feel hopeful for the year to come. And children watch out the windows with anticipation to see if they can spot...the moon. It is Ramadan. Based on…
May 6, 2020
Features

The Courage and Sacrifice of an Indonesian Church

How a Jakarta Church is Living 360 Discipleship By Bruce Swanson Eric and Tina Yee’s church members are creating exciting impacts in all of their circles – personal, professional, and community. Eric has been discipling the church to obey all Jesus commanded, including living as salt and light. It is so cool to see them doing that with courage and sacrifice. From the Eric & Tina Yee’s Update | 04/22/2020 When COVID-19 began to enter Indonesia last month, everyone was unprepared for how quickly it escalated from precautions to closures to deaths. While it has been a difficult season, including the…
May 2, 2020
Features

How Many Hot Dogs Does It Take to Unlock a Heart?

When God Locks Us in to Unlock Hearts in Ecuador By Matt and Kristy Messick We work with marriages.  And, in this culture, they are tough. Since 2016, we’ve been reaching marriages through an 8-week course called MAS en Mi Matrimonio (More in My Marriage).  It originally attracted mostly believers. In the last year, it has had a strong draw for non-believers. Graduates began to recommend the course around the city. We love building relationships here. When we first moved to Ecuador in 2014, Matt found a small store downtown that sold hotdogs--a cheap and fast snack he could grab…
May 1, 2020
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2 Ways to Create Solitude and Silence

  By Ginny Jensen “How to Actually Concentrate” by Carolyn Yates addresses concentration in our everyday life. It also has a great application to how we approach our relationship with the Lord. Time with the Lord requires more than going through the motions. We often struggle to concentrate on the mundane things of life. So, how do we focus on the Lord? Yates provides several tools in her article to help build concentration or focus. She points out that we are so used to multi-tasking that we struggle to focus on one thing. In our time with the Lord, do…
April 29, 2020
Features

3 Principles For Times of Anxiety

  By Ming Perrello, MS, LPC I confess that I have been anxious. My sleep has often been fitful. My body is tense and I feel restless. I am easily irritated. I feel busy yet I am busier in my mind than with my hands. Who can blame me?  I live near the epicenter of the COVID-19 hotspot of New York City. The climate here is tense; just about everyone knows someone who has the virus. I am a caregiver to my husband who has multiple sclerosis, a memory-impaired 88-year-old father, and a brother who is a paraplegic.  I am…
April 28, 2020
Reviews

Hot and Cold Climate Cultures

By Bruce Thomas  Foreign to Familiar: A Guide to Understanding Hot and Cold Climate Cultures by Sarah Lanier is an especially important book for all beginning global workers. It explains several basic cultural differences encountered by people across the world. If a person has never been exposed to a culture other than their own, this is a particularly good place to start. The book is in no way exhaustive of cultural differences. It also does not cover the specifics of every culture or country. The book is meant to provide a general overview of how cultural differences can affect thinking…
April 27, 2020
Features

Meme, Myself and Isolation

Health for the Whole Person by Christy Otten, MA, LCPC The internet has been awash with memes about the coronavirus. You may have seen the one(s) about Isaac Newton: He discovered theories of gravity and motion during a plague—the message clearly being that you can do a lot while staying inside. Then, there are the ones especially for parents—one tells us that while you, as the parent, know this is a crisis, your children may only remember scavenger hunts, family game nights, and the immense amount of together time. Imagine the family memories you can create! If I’m being honest,…
April 24, 2020
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Shelter in Place: Hannah

  By Ginny Jensen Sometimes, when we feel like we are captive, it has nothing to do with our location. Loss, physical limitations, or broken relationships (to name a few) can hold us captive. Consider Hannah. She was barren in a society that gave honor to childbearing. She was provoked by her rival. Her husband deeply loved her, but her deep desire for a child left her anxious, grieved, and frustrated. In the midst of her grief, she poured out her heart in the temple and was seen by the high priest, Eli. Hannah told Eli the priest about her…
April 20, 2020
Features

Shelter in Place: Jesus

  By Ginny Jensen Shelter in Place usually means home. When Jesus left heaven, it was like leaving his home. He was perfect yet living in a broken world. Jesus remained close to the Father while on earth. He made choices based on the word of the Father. He was abiding. Jesus’ time alone prior to Satan’s tempting him gives insight into his practices to maintain intimacy with the Father. It included fasting and solitude. He was able to refute Satan, showing his familiarity with Scripture. Imagine those days alone in prayer and meditation; silently listening to the Father. Solitude…
April 19, 2020
Features

The Inner Life, World, and Vision of Healthy Cross-Cultural Servants

  By Dr. Dennis Ahern, Director, Paraclete Services  “You really like your work,” observed an eager short-term missionary after a few days of serving alongside me in Asia. In that moment, her question perplexed me and so I replied, “If I didn’t like my work, I’d change jobs. What led you to this observation?” She responded, “Our team travels on short-term assignments and we serve many career missionaries living in Asia. I’ve decided that many missionaries hate their work.” How accurate is this young woman’s observation today? Is ministry to be enjoyed or do we discover God’s will only after…
April 17, 2020
Features

Shelter in Place: Joseph

  By Ginny Jensen  Shelter in Place can mean very different things for people. Some live in mansions, small homes, or on the street. Joseph had several places during his lifetime. He lived in his family home until his brothers threw him into a pit. From there, he traveled with traders and was sold as a slave. The extremes of his lodging went from prison to the king’s palace. Imagine how disruptive life would have been for Joseph. Consider the unmet dreams for his life. We may wonder, during those years of captivity, if he thought about the unfulfilled dreams…
April 16, 2020
Reviews

On Canoeing The Mountains

  A commentary on Canoeing the Mountains  By A.D. Brown Full disclosure: I hate leadership books. Ok, maybe hate is a wee bit too strong. I find them overpromising and underdelivering. The last thing I have time for is 7 keys to this or 12 secrets for that and how to have a megachurch like me in 3 easy steps. So, when I picked up Canoeing the Mountains, I had expected more of the same. I was willing to read up to 25% before I gave up. To my surprise, I didn’t give up but just finished it! Using Lewis…
April 14, 2020
Features

Shelter in Place: Daniel

  By Ginny Jensen  Most people these days can be grateful for being at home. For some, they may be “stuck” someplace else. They, like Daniel in the Old Testament, have an added amount of discomfort. Daniel was in exile, taken to Babylon. Nothing was normal for Daniel and his fellow exiles. Daniel remained faithful to his prayer time. He continued even after the king’s decree. Prayer is never more crucial than at times like these. We serve a God who hears; he knows, and he is in control. The Psalms offer examples of prayers of lament. Honestly tell the…
April 13, 2020
Features

Shelter in Place

  By Ginny Jensen  Shelter in place, quarantine, and stay at home are words heard repeatedly these days. For many, it feels like a prison sentence; others feel imposed upon and inconvenienced. As believers, these times can draw us closer to the Lord or disrupt all spiritual practices leaving us drifting away. This feeling of being in captivity and isolation are not new. Over the centuries, others have experienced the same feeling during plagues, slavery, imprisonment, or exile. Bible stories we know and love give us examples of thriving in such difficult situations. Some early church fathers even chose a…
April 9, 2020
Features

When the Occasion of Disruption Becomes an Opportunity for Distribution!

  WorldVenture sees how the gospel can be a catalyst for justice in the world.  Karen Shogren, Professor at Seminario ESEPA, Costa Rica began teaching a new program to train church leaders to combat the scourge of sexual abuse.  She has been developing this critically needed training for some time and was excited to release it this year.  The course began as an in-person pilot program; plans to take the program online for wider distribution would have to wait for another 1-2 years. But the disruption of the coronavirus quarantine nearly stopped the program entirely.  Professor Shogren shared that “exactly…
April 7, 2020
Features

13 Ways to Effectively Work From Home

Serving While Sheltering by Dennis Ahern Yesterday was a strange day in the midst of our new normal. After checking in with the IM team at 7:30 a.m. (California time), my wife, Denise and I went to buy groceries. We experienced the push of the cart during the early morning “senior” shopping hours. Truthfully, my wife does not accept invitations from anyone or anywhere that begin with, “Dear Senior Citizen.” But, she accepted my invitation because I invited her to join me as my guest. Does it seem strange to others besides me that before entering a supermarket, we put…
April 5, 2020
Features

Staying Home, But Not Alone

  By Grace Sandeno, Director of Public Health Initiatives Battle back against isolation and stress! Here are some practical suggestions for making our current isolation less isolating: Whether you are alone or “isolated” in a house of seven, as I am, reach out to people not in your house. Other people need a hug, even if it is a virtual one. Learn some new “tricks.” I admit to being an “old-timer” when it comes to technology. But, as it turns out, you CAN teach an old dog new tricks. I’ve messed up technology stuff a number of times, but I…
April 4, 2020
Features

How to Worship Together in Quarantine

  https://youtu.be/74HtYmAzSyw In the past, Zachary Galyen enjoyed multiple opportunities during the week to worship in community. Since moving to the Czech Republic last May, he "...could count on one hand..." the opportunities to worship. "I just missed it." He said. "What pushed me over the edge is seeing all the people coming out of the woodwork, sharing their corporate or personal time of worship because of the restrictions to meet publicly, etc. I thought it was so cool that people were posting encouraging songs of worship FOR each other, but it would be so much cooler if we could…
April 3, 2020
Reviews

The Ideal Team Player

A Commentary on The Ideal Team Player, Patrick M. Lencioni By A.D. Brown Patrick M. Lencioni’s team strengthening methods have been popular across many different organizations. It’s no secret that interpersonal conflict is a leading cause for international colleagues to return home, so I’m interested in anything that will decrease attrition and increase cooperation. The Ideal Team Player is his 2016 addition to his Dysfunctions series. The first part details an imaginary manager who has just inherited his family’s construction business and is tasked with new projects and getting it done in the midst of high staff turnover. The manager discovers that ideal team…
March 31, 2020
Features

This Way We Have Never Been Before

By LeAnn Custer Early in the morning Joshua and all the Israelites set out from Shittim and went to the Jordan, where they camped before crossing over. After three days the officers went throughout the camp, giving orders to the people: “When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the Levitical priests carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it.  Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before.” – Joshua 3:1-8 I thought how applicable the verses are to our present Corona Virus pandemic situation since none…
March 30, 2020
Features

Accepting Reality, Accepting Grace

By A.D. Brown In the span of just a few weeks, I’ve observed how all of my friends back in America suddenly find themselves homeschooling and working remotely. Routines have been disrupted, plans have been dramatically changed, and we all wonder what the new normal is going to look like. This is certainly an unprecedented world situation. It also reminds me of normal life as an international colleague. Certainly, there are the obvious parallels: We have been homeschooling for years. I’ve been working remotely basically since 2013, and our routines are, well, routinely disrupted. In 2018, we also experienced a…
March 24, 2020
Media

Continuing Ministry Online During COVID19

by Nikole Hahn A simple guide on how to use social media and technology to keep life on some sort of normal in this period of church closures, quarantines, self-isolation, and social distancing due to COVID19. Bible Studies: Zoom, Google Hangouts, Skype, and Discord can be used to lead a video Bible Study like your face-to-face. This is an opportunity to invite people from your community. Hold the Bible Studies during times when the rest of your community can join you, too. Think of the working class in your planning. Small Groups: Your small groups are going to need your…
March 19, 2020
News

Coronavirus Can’t Stop The Great Commission

The following is from an email sent recently to our partners: Well, 2020 has been quite unexpected, hasn't it?  COVID-19, the "Coronavirus," is impacting and disrupting our lives and plans, locally and globally.  It's good at these times to remember that God is not disrupted; He is sovereign and even this will be worked out for His glory and our good.  All praise to Him! With hundreds of WorldVenture workers throughout Asia and across the world, we've been monitoring the situation for several weeks.  You'll be pleased to know that we have leaders and protocols in place to provide information…
March 13, 2020
Reviews

Theology in the Context of World Christianity

By Christie Stalcup A commentary on, Theology in the Context of World Christianity: How the global church is influencing the way we think about and discuss theology by Timothy C. Tennent (Buy this using Amazon Smile) As a child, I thought that vanilla ice cream was basic, normative, universal ice cream and that all other flavors were offshoots of vanilla. Want strawberry ice cream? Take vanilla and add strawberries. In later childhood, I realized that vanilla is itself a flavor made from the vanilla bean. Vanilla ice cream is not normative and universal. It is a flavor added to the…
February 19, 2020
Features

How Internships & Short-Term Mission Trips Are Meaningful

As we began our descent into Tegucigalpa, Honduras, we passed over the roofs of shanties, saw the laundry hanging on the lines, and the streets that the missionary from One Collective described as like a plate of spaghetti. Trips like this one forever changed how I viewed missions, people, and ministry.  Now, almost five years later, I am a Digital Engagement and Disciple-Making Coordinator with WorldVenture wanting to help others know that life-changing experience of serving. One of the ways to experience God at work in the world is to become a Pathfinder. Pathfinders is a 4 week to 1-year…
February 13, 2020
Features

How The WhistleBlower Motivated Adrienne Livingston

The Whistleblower (2010) was inspired by true events. A Nebraska cop in the late 1990s became a United Nations Peacekeeper in Bosnia only to witness sex trafficking by the very officers and organizations pledged to keep the peace in the aftermath of the Balkans war. This movie helped motivate Adrienne Livingston to find her calling as director of Anti-Sex Trafficking Initiatives with WorldVenture. “It’s a God-thing.” She said. After working at a non-profit and graduating with a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies from Western Seminary, she felt burned out. “I was the executive director for 9 of the 14…
February 5, 2020
Features

When Pastors Learn the True Gospel

By Laura Pearce In Rwandan churches, it’s common to hear pastors teaching the prosperity gospel and salvation by works (especially tithing). Prophecy, rather than the Bible, is often treated as the primary way to hear from God. Most pastors in Rwanda have little or no Biblical education. The lack of Biblically literate, spiritually transformed leaders has meant a general lack of discipleship and genuine faith in many Rwandan churches. Therefore pastoral training and leadership development continue to be critically important for the growth of the Church in Rwanda. The Pastoral Training School of New Creation Ministries exists to meet these…
January 28, 2020
Features

3 Takeaways From “The Mission of God”

A commentary By Keith Sellers (Hungary) on J.H. Wright’s, The Mission of God: Unlocking the Bible’s Grand Narrative The main takeaway of Wright's monumental text is that the Bible is a book about mission. Mission is not just a subtopic of Scripture. The Bible in its entirety portrays the mission of God to redeem humanity and compels us to join God not only in the partaking of redemption but in his mission. Wright develops his presentation in four sections: The Bible and Mission, The God of Mission, The People of Mission, and The Arena of Mission. The book breaks down…
January 26, 2020
News

The Taal Volcano Aftermath

Spewing an eruption column 3,281 feet into the air, Taal interrupted life in the Phillippines on Sunday, January 12, 2020. Images of evacuations, ash-covered homes, and roadways as well as animals dead and alive plastered the internet. The ash cloud spread as far away as Manilla (60 miles to the north), felt by our colleagues 41 miles from the eruption site. (read our update from January 15, 2020) The Philippine field and our national partners in ministry gave us a new update on the Taal Volcano eruption.  The Philippines, January 23, 2020: Most people in the danger zone are evacuated…
January 24, 2020
Uncategorized

In Memory of Luanna Traubert

“When they arrive at the gates of death, God welcomes those who love him. Oh, God, here I am, your servant, your faithful servant...” Psalm 116:15-16 (MSG) On Tuesday, January 14, 2020, our loving God welcomed Luanna Traubert home. She was 77. As was her custom over the past thirteen years, Luanna came into the WorldVenture office to participate in the President’s Office prayer time, to call on alumni colleagues, and to write a tribute letter for one alumni who passed away the week prior. Shortly after the 11:30 group prayer time around the second-floor railing in the office, Luanna…
January 23, 2020
News

Taal Volcano: January 15, 2020 Update

Spewing an eruption column 3,281 feet into the air, Taal interrupted life in the Phillippines on Sunday, January 12, 2020. Images of evacuations, ash-covered homes, and roadways as well as animals dead and alive plastered the internet. The ash cloud spread as far away as Manilla (60 miles to the north), felt by our colleagues 41 miles from the eruption site. We reported on Facebook on January 12, 2020, that our colleagues said, “…ash falling in our area. Schools are closed tomorrow, and the airport is closed right now.” The people who live near the volcano have inadequate structures. As…
January 15, 2020
Features

Doors: A Visual Prayer

Submitted by colleagues who visited North Africa Jesus talked about being the door and the way, the truth, and the life … to eternal life PRAY with us that many will find that narrow path The narrow door Leading to life
January 11, 2020
M

Has God Called You To Be A Missionary?

Every follower of Jesus is called to make disciples.  A better translation of the Great Commission in Matthew 28:19, normally rendered "Go and make disciples...," is probably:  "In your goings, make disciples..."  But like the apostles, some disciples are called to a "greater going," one that involves leaving your home, your people, your way of life, and becoming one with others for the sake of taking the good news to them.  For hundreds of years, Christians have used the term "Missionary" to describe that type of person, that type of calling.  Is that you? If that's something you'd like to…
January 1, 2020
Features

Broken Before Him

Photo image Credit: WT (picture from Bolivia) by Ed Eby Ps. 51:17 “My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.” Matthew 5:2 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Who are the poor in spirit? These are people, like the psalmist, who realize that they’re messed up and need God’s mercy and grace. They’re people who rely on God for every decision and perhaps even for their daily bread. Our culture rewards independent, confident, self-sufficient people who have all the answers to their problems.…
October 2, 2019
Features

How Oral Storytelling Brought Me Deeper into Scripture

About a year ago, I was off to Orlando, Florida to a Bible Story workshop called “Simply the Story.” I wanted to know how I could share God’s Word effectively in a culture that prefers oral modes of communicating. I was growing discouraged at a lack of connection between my style of teaching (Western, literate) and my community’s style of learning (African, oral). In other words, I wanted to know how to teach people to understand the Bible even when they aren’t comfortable reading the Bible.
September 28, 2019
Features

How Peter in Africa Came to Know the Lord

by Nikole Hahn “Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.” – Psalm 95:1-2  Jan’et and Lloyd Chinn met Peter in 2010 when they returned to Ghana after their first Home Assignment. The mission house and leadership center were under construction. Peter approached the Chinn’s about a job. “We hired him to maintain the property, to use his machete to keep things from growing too tall. His job was to make sure the things that…
September 19, 2019
Features

Restoration in Madagascar

An Interview with Jamie Shattenberg of Eden Projects by Nikole Hahn Deforestation is a constant threat to the environment and the people living in it. The world loses about 8.3 million hectares per year of forest, often spurred by increasing poverty in developing countries like Madagascar. In 2015, we shared how Eden Projects doesn’t just replant the forests, but also helps Malagasy families combat poverty. Today, stories of hope continue and the forest is growing! Eden Reforestation Projects is an organization that started in Ethiopia in 2004. Dr. Stephen Fitch understood the “third world culture” and the cycle of poverty.…
September 5, 2019
Features

The Gift of Business

By Bruce Swanson While in Kenya in June 2014, we were reminded of some very important truths. One of these reminders came during a seminar on starting a business we led the first Sunday we were there. These seminars were offered to the members of a church we partner with who are in or interested in business. About forty-five men and women joined us for the seminar. As we began to make our way through the curriculum, we were impressed by the interaction of the participants. They had many great ideas and thoughts and were quickly able to apply the curriculum's principles to their business.  One particular…
August 30, 2019
Features

What You Should Know Before Your Short-Term Trip

By Emily Roth So you’re preparing to go on a short-term mission. Maybe you’re visiting missionaries that you support. Maybe you’re going with a team from a church. Short-term missions can have many different goals and plans. Our WorldVenture colleagues host short-term mission teams every year in locations around the world. As you are packing your toiletries and checking the dress code, there are certain pieces of advice that will help you prepare for your trip. Five of our colleagues have shared from their years of experience what you need to know before you go. POLANDLinda Thomas: “I'd advise people…
August 21, 2019
Features

“I Hold My OWN Hand!”

By Grace Sandeno There she stood in the parking lot—my remarkably stubborn oldest child who was, indeed, holding her own hand. She did not want to hold my hand because she was three, independent and tired of getting dragged around where I wanted to go. What is more remarkable is that my youngest child did exactly the same thing when she was three. I have two adopted children sandwiched between two biological children. My adopted children have a great genetic benefit in that they are not the result of cross-breeding between a German and a Norwegian, creating what may be…
August 13, 2019
Features

Missions in Reverse

In Poland, many people share the common dream of going to the United States someday. WorldVenture colleagues Bruce and Linda Thomas first moved to Poland in 2010, and right away they began to meet locals who wanted to see America.
August 9, 2019
Features

Prayer Around The World

By WT "The reality is, my prayers don't change God.  But, I am convinced prayer changes me.  Praying boldly boots me out of that stale place of religious habit into authentic connection with God Himself." - Lysa TerKeurst A pastor at one of the churches I attended believed that an effective and healthy church prays on its knees. When he helped design the new building, the pastor put in kneelers. I remember using them a few times. They seemed like a thing for special occasions. It created a full-body posture and atmosphere for prayer. Eventually, that church moved again and…
August 8, 2019
Features

How to Ask The Right Questions

...And other information to ponder as you seek God's direction in ministry and for the right missionary organization to partner with. Choosing a mission agency can be a difficult task to navigate. Not only are you looking for a group with the same beliefs and ideology as you, but you also need to be with an organization that meets your needs practically and encourages you to follow the call that God has put on your life. So how do you choose? Below are some helpful tips for choosing the mission agency that is right for you. From team chemistry to…
July 27, 2019
News

RAY BUKER, JR., PASSIONATE CHAMPION FOR GLOBAL MISSIONS, ENTERS GLORY

(Denver, CO) - WorldVenture announces the bittersweet news that Ray Buker, Jr., missionary to South Asia and well-known leader with WorldVenture, died Friday morning, July 5, 2019. He was 93. Buker was a celebrated, well-loved leader in WorldVenture and beyond.  He was passionate about global missions and recruited workers with the same passion.  More importantly, Buker modeled the WorldVenture vision of being compelled by the love of God. “The joy of the Lord was always on Ray’s face whenever he greeted people” reminisced Dennis Vogan, Vice President of Organizational Solutions for WorldVenture.  Buker was known for his joy, his encouragement, and his love.   …
July 11, 2019
News

WorldVenture Introduces New Global Initiatives Leader

As part of a global strategy to increase gospel impact among unreached people groups (UPG’s), WorldVenture is excited to announce that a new role coordinating Global Muslim Initiatives has been filled.  This position will provide training, resourcing, and strategy development to WorldVenture workers engaged in ministry among Muslim unreached people groups (MUPG’s).  The name of the individual overseeing this important work has been redacted for security purposes. “Every Muslim should have the opportunity to hear and respond to the Good News of Jesus,” shared.  “It’s hard to fathom that in today’s modern, globalized age, there remain who have not been given that opportunity.” With a…
July 10, 2019
Features

The Best Way to Learn a Language?

By Emily Roth Before I moved to Spain, I described my level of Spanish as enough to be a good tourist. I could order food from a menu and ask where to find a bathroom. Many friends encouraged me that full immersion in Spanish would be the best way to master the language quickly. They recommended reading the Bible in Spanish and advised me to avoid making friends who speak English. At the time, I agreed with them. Then I arrived in Spain and met other international workers who chose to attend English church services. I couldn’t understand it. Didn’t…
July 9, 2019
Features

How Perceptions are Changing in Ngohé

By Laura Newkirk Twelve ladies from the village of Ngohé just graduated from Formation Lois. These women are courageous, formidable, determined, and amazing! Some ladies came by horse cart and others walked far distances in the hot sand. None of them could read, but most of them worked very hard to memorize verses each week. They had their children or husbands help them. A’s husband got so frustrated that he told her she was too hard to teach. She stayed up at night and worked until she got it and memorized every verse assigned! At the graduation, she and four…
June 24, 2019
Features

The Impact of a Gospel Rock

By Nikole Hahn In 2015, Megan Murphy started “The Kindness Rock Project.” She left a rock on the beach of Cape Cod with the words “You’ve Got This” painted on it. Facebook rock painting groups began where communities did a grown-up Easter egg-like hunt for hand-painted rocks, leaving pictures with hints on Facebook groups so a family or person could find it and report it to the group. Over the past year or two, I’ve participated in this trend as a form of community outreach for online connections. Last week, my prayers yielded phenomenal results. Kairi and her mom were…
June 11, 2019
Features

Gideon-Style Missions

By Nikole Hahn "Come back when you have a 4-year degree from a Bible school or seminary," Four to five mission agencies said in the 1990s to Rob and Lisa Atkins (currently in Bolivia). While students are the focus of most mission's mobilization, making up a robust 1% of the world's demographic (Pipeline: Engaging the Church in Missionary Mobilization; pg. 14), older missionaries (Over-Forty) encounter pushback from friends and relatives in a culture where people are expected to save for a comfortable retirement. "Occasionally, we hear subtle comments from people that our age concerns them. I also have issues with…
June 4, 2019
Features

How to Discover Contentment

By Chelsi Johnson “I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that once again you renewed your care for me. You were, in fact, concerned about me but lacked the opportunity to show it. I don’t say this out of need, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being content—whether well fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need. I am able to do all things through Him who…
May 10, 2019
Features

Oh Sunday’s Comin’

By Patrick LaPoint Cold, dark, bound by linen Enclosed in a borrowed cave, body lay still, dead. Sorrow, guilt, despair, and fear lovers, followers, family, hearts destroyed. But Sunday's Comin' Jubilation, evil vindication, demonic triumph Every demon, devil, and evil spirit rejoicing. Sadducees, Pharisees, Chief Priests, and Law teachers Herod, Barrabas, satisfied by a lawbreakers death. But Sunday's Comin' Roman soldiers stand watch and keep warm by the fire, All stand watch to make sure the man stays dead. Windows shut, doors locked, alert and afraid, upper room filled, crowded with tensions and questions. But Sunday's Comin' Wasn't he the…
April 20, 2019
Features

Salt of the Earth in March Madness

By Bruce Swanson Jesus commanded us to be “the salt of the earth.”  How are we to be salt in our professions?  Here is a good example from March Madness, the 2019 NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Auburn made it to the Final Four and was oh so close to winning their semi-final game against Virginia. With seven seconds to go and Auburn leading by two points, the refs missed a clear double dribble by Virginia. Calling the infraction would have given the ball to Auburn and all but guaranteed their victory and moving on to the championship game. But, the…
April 17, 2019
Features

Why Random Acts of Kindness Aren’t Enough

by Grace Sandeno The US is big enough to have many flavors to its culture.  I grew up in the northeast where one of the primary characteristics was bluntness. In the mid-west, people are “nice.” In the south, people are known for their hospitality. I’ve lived in Colorado for almost 30 years, so it’s home.  We pride ourselves on our independence here, but we also like to think of ourselves in another way – we are “good” people. That often comes with no religious connotation as we are a largely secularized society; nonetheless, we perceive ourselves as “good” by whatever…
March 29, 2019
Features

Safely Caring For Your Missionary

By Ed Eby Do you support a missionary financially? That’s terrific! Would you like to know how to be a more active support for them? Your missionary is going through a real rough period right now. How do I know? I used to be that guy. I raised my children in a different culture, and I was always on guard for their safety. I always appreciated the financial backing of my supporters, and I coveted their prayers. But the thing that meant the most to me was when somebody reached out to me with a phone call, letter, or email.…
March 27, 2019
Features

Loving Your Neighbor Through Cancer

By Emily Roth Until last September, international workers Jon and Kathy Haley had over-the-fence friendships with their neighbors in a suburb of Barcelona. They greeted each other when they happened to be out on their back porches at the same time, and the neighbors would keep watch over their house when Jon and Kathy left on extended trips. Then during one of their trips out of town, their neighbor Eva* texted Kathy from the hospital. Eva had suffered from back pain for 15 years. Four years ago, her doctor diagnosed her with Multiple Sclerosis and prescribed medication to treat it…
March 25, 2019
News

Bringing Relief to Beira!

Make your DONATION right now and help the people of Beira, Mozambique! Cyclone Idai is being called the 'worst humanitarian crisis in Mozambique's history.' We need to raise funding to help support the communities that were affected by this disaster. And some of our very own international workers are doing ministry right in the heart of Beira! The situation on the ground in Beira, Mozambique is desperate. 35 kilometers (almost 22 miles) of the road into Beira are flooded, thousands of people are stranded, there is no electricity, clean water is extremely limited, and additional flooding in Zimbabwe puts Beira…
March 21, 2019
Features

10 Tips for Keeping Your Computer Safe

By Ed Eby For nearly twenty years, I was the Network Engineer for the USPS Engineering Center in Merrifield VA. One of my primary jobs was to be a White Hat Hacker for the Engineering Center. A letter signed by the Vice President of Engineering gave me the legal right to break into any machine on the engineering network. It was my job to play the bad guy. If I was able to break in, I would then notify the owner of the machine and help him to fix the problem. This would often result in upset and embarrassed engineers,…
February 25, 2019
Features

3 Ways to Keep Your Missionary Secure

(Photo at a church of David and Kristen Caucutt ) A Brief Guide for Partner Churches and Individuals By Ed Eby One day we had a visiting missionary come to our headquarters to share what God was doing in his field. He was from a closed country where the Gospel was not welcomed. He showed us a picture of a gathering of believers. Because of security concerns, he had all the people standing with their back toward the camera. But their name plaques were all sitting on the tables in full view of the camera. Oops. It wasn’t obvious to the…
February 23, 2019
Features

The Impact of Jim Gould’s Death

By Linnea Boese Often, when things happen in one’s youth or childhood, they seem insignificant. What is thrilling is living long enough to be able to look back and understand their real impact. In 1964, during my family’s home assignment, when I was 11 years old, I had my first “call” to missions in response to a South American missionary’s message in Pontiac, Michigan. My parents had been missionaries, so I understood that God had a passion for reaching those who have not yet heard the Good News. We had gone through a traumatic evacuation from the Congo after turmoil…
February 22, 2019
Features

Trusting God or Trusting Technology?

by Ed Eby Do you trust God or do you trust technology to keep you safe?   What If What if that VPN, SSL, HTTPS, or encrypted message could be hacked? What if anybody could read your texts or posts? What if you could no longer trust technology to keep you secure? Would you still be okay, or does this thought cause you to panic? As a technologist, I’m often asked the question: “Is this thing (software, service, protocol, etc.) secure?” The average person tends to think in binary terms—either a thing is secure or it’s not. The reality is that security…
February 21, 2019
Features

Going on Mission, Into Exile, and Back

By Emily Roth What happens when the country God calls you to serve rejects you? After six months of waiting, Beth Horn received notice that her visa to Austria was denied. Despite this news, she held onto faith that God would open the closed doors. She had been reading Jeremiah 42 just the week before. The Israelites remaining after the Babylonian invasion asked the prophet Jeremiah to seek guidance from God. They were tempted to give up the Promised Land and relocate to Egypt, where they expected to find security and prosperity. Instead, Jeremiah delivered this message: “Do not fear…
February 7, 2019
Features

How Francis Schaeffer Inspired 360 Missions

By Bruce Swanson Forty-five years ago, Francis Schaeffer challenged all of us to do 360 Missions. “There is no dichotomy in the Bible between the intellectual and cultural on the one hand and the spiritual on the other. But often there has been a strong…tendency to divide man into two parts – his spiritual nature and everything else. We must take that conception like a piece of baked clay, break it in our hands and throw it away... God made the whole man; the whole man is redeemed in Christ, and after we are Christians the lordship of Christ covers…
February 4, 2019
Features

Amazing God

By Emily Roth “You’re amazing,” she said. Immediately, I recoiled inside. We had been talking about my work in Spain, and this was her response. At first, I didn’t know how to explain why her compliment made me uncomfortable. Such compliments encourage self-pride, that much I knew, but it wasn’t until the next day that I realized the deeper truth. More than a temptation to pride, such compliments invite me to take credit for what God has done. It puts me in His place, steals from His glory, and ascribes it to me. This is exactly the sin that so many of the…
December 28, 2018
News

2018 End of Year Giving and Office Hours

Dear Partners, Thank you for your faithful support. God uses your prayers, encouragement, and financial gifts to take the good news of Jesus Christ throughout the world! Our WorldVenture offices will be closed from 11:30 AM Mountain Standard Time (MST) on Friday December 28, 2018 through January 1, 2019 in observance of the New Year holiday. Our offices will reopen at 8:00am (MST) on January 2, 2019. During that time, our online giving platform, the "Partner Community," will be available to receive any last-minute year-end financial gifts at give.worldventure.com. If you would like personal assistance with your 2018 year-end giving,…
December 12, 2018
Features

The Vendors of La Cancha

By Robert Atkins  The mom is what is called a cholita here. They are indigenous women, Aymara or Quechua. The term was originally a derogatory one--women of mixed blood; usually half Spanish or other white race. Even as little as ten years ago, they were not allowed to do many things like riding public transportation. They can be recognized by their long, twin braids and their hats. Their hats tell where they are from if you know the “code” (which we do not). The more typical bowler hats you often see in pictures are typical of La Paz, and you…
December 4, 2018
Features

Ireland: Story of an Irish Couple

By WT The Emerald Island—a place where the history is rich and reminders of it are everywhere. You can easily find ancient stone artifacts lying in someone’s field or moved a few feet to be used as an addition to someone’s stone fence. This is where the people are incredibly warm and friendly but still enjoy privacy, where little white dots of sheep are spotted on green mountains and hills or through open stretches of bog. The churches in Ireland are a bit of a complicated puzzle with a thorny history. The Roman Catholic Church and the Church of Ireland…
December 3, 2018
News

Lessons Learned

By Grace Sandeno The death of U.S. missionary, John Allen Chau, on North Sentinel Island has provoked a firestorm of criticism over his, or anyone’s, attempts to make contact with people groups that reject outside contact. Much of the criticism has focused on the potential health impact of introducing new diseases to an isolated people group with no previous exposure and thus no immunity. While a new report reveals that Chau was concerned about this specific matter and spent years in training, preparation and prevention (1), the larger issue is critically important; examples of significant de-population due to introduced disease…
December 1, 2018
Features

Aha Moments in Ministry

by Grace Sandeno Years ago, I took a semester off from college and traveled to Burkina Faso (West Africa for those of you who aren’t geography buffs). It was an “aha moment.” Actually more of an “aha four months.” I was planning to be a doctor and went to work in a medical clinic to see what it was like. It was amazing--everything I hoped for and so much more! There were snakes, scorpions, wild dogs and millipedes the size of a hot dog. I saw malaria, hepatitis, river blindness, mental illness, birth, and death. We had no doctor, but…
November 15, 2018
Features

How Busyness Consumed My Life

By Rachel from Africa In America, we drill busyness into our heads from a young age. It isn’t enough just to go to school and study. We need to be involved in sports, music, and theater. On top of that, some of us had a job in high school. And it isn’t just a stage of life, it is the start of a lifestyle. We continued by always being busy, not resting. Who needs sleep when you can just drink coffee that at some point doesn’t affect our bodies anymore? We seek other ways to keep us going and turn…
November 13, 2018
Features

Wearing God’s Name

By Doug Hazen I love the Shema.  It’s the blessing that Moses commanded the Levites to speak over the people of Israel.  And because it is SO personal, it is the primary blessing I use to bless people. “The Lord bless you     and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you     and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you     and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24-26 The personal nature of God blessing or increasing me and keeping or protecting me is incredible.  And the fact that he would make his face to shine on me recalls a Bible school professor who described…
November 10, 2018
Features

Two Pictures

By WT in Jordan I want to tell you two stories by painting two pictures in your mind. The first might not catch your attention, but continue to read, the second will. Imagine a living room. We are sitting around a coffee table that is filled to the edges with food and I have a cup of tea in my hand. I sit with my friend whom I am staying with as well as a husband and wife who, after several years of marriage and five children, clearly still adore one another. We talk about their children, how each of…
November 8, 2018
Features

Our Greatest Prayer Motivators

By Doug Hazen  My prayer mentor says there are two things that motivate prayer: crisis and vision. Both are packaged in the person of Jesus through the cross and the resurrection and are our greatest prayer motivators since they affected both earth and heaven. Bigger than the awful storms, earthquakes, and tsunamis we have been seeing in past days, the cross was the convergence of unparalleled evil allowed, and even approved, by God, the Father. Isaiah says it pleased him! I’ve sensed the truth of this profound sacrifice before. Hopefully, it brought most of us to a saving knowledge of…
October 6, 2018
News

Dana Stucky: A Life of Passion and Impact to the End

Financial contributions may be made in Dana’s honor to the Institute of Albanian and Protestant Studies. Please visit www.worldventure.com/dana and select designation: “Dana Stucky Memorial Fund” to make your gift. (Denver, CO) – Earlier this week, WorldVenture announced the bittersweet news that Dana Stucky died at 10:05am (PDT) on Saturday, September 15, 2018, at the age of 66. “God commands us to ‘rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn,’” WorldVenture President, Jeff Denlinger, said. “Dana’s life and commitment to God and to others lead us to great rejoicing, even as we mourn deeply with her family. But our mourning is immersed in the hope of the…
September 19, 2018
Features

Dana Stucky: A Lasting Impact

By Jim Thorp  Americas Ministries Director As a person judges seasons of life, it might be said by some that it was a shame Dana did not make it to retirement, because after all the years of ministry effort, she should have been able to enjoy some rest on this earth for her and Larry to do some “fun” things. There are a few problems with this. First, Dana believed what she was doing all these years was fun. Secondly, she was never going to stop doing what she had been doing for so many years of active ministry. Then…
September 17, 2018
Features

How to Praise God

A Prayer Challenge by Doug Hazen They say that the names of God are a good basis for worship prayers. I think I know why. Let’s compare the one person I love and admire more than any other… my wife. Her names are Ruth Emeline. But her qualities especially describe her and are even more meaningful. She is quiet but determined. She is competitive. She is a servant. She is a provider. She is a mother and grandmother. She loves. She laughs. She weeps. There are many other qualities all of which describe this woman I deeply love. But, her…
September 13, 2018
News

How God Loves the Venezuelan People

Recently, Venezuela made headlines again—headlines such as, “Venezuela devalues currency and raises minimum wage by 3,000% (The Guardian, August 20, 2018),” and headlines that stretch as far back as March, 2018 from The Washington Post called, “The Crisis Next Door.” Even as IMB workers say, “If you stay, you die,” and our workers and ministry partners experience hardship, God loves the Venezuelan people. When Jesus served on earth, the Jewish people expected a king who would overthrow the political oppression of the time. Jesus didn’t solve poverty. He didn’t take away the political oppression. “Jesus' willingness to suffer and die…
September 3, 2018
Reviews

How to Build Resiliency

By Jerry (Staff) It’s no surprise that the character trait of resiliency and its development in ourselves, our families and our teams is critical to expanding God’s kingdom. I recently came across a TED talk by Jane McGonigal that began with the 5 top regrets that hospice workers heard from those literally on their deathbeds. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends. I wish I had let myself be happier. I wish I had the courage to express my true self. I wish I’d lived a life true to my…
August 30, 2018
Features

How Hurricane Harvey Brought Unity

According to CNN, Hurricane Harvey broke rainfall records in 2017, and by Sunday, August 27 of that year, experts said, 27 trillion gallons of rain fell over Texas before it downgraded to a Tropical Storm. One-third of Houston flooded causing 8 million cubic yards of garbage. The storm ravaged 100,000 homes, causing 30,000 people to seek emergency shelter. Today is the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Harvey, and we reflect on God’s redemptive power through our workers and church partners. Terri Olson from Family Bible Church in Kingman, Arizona said, “Even though it has been almost one year, I still can't…
August 25, 2018
Features

The Practice of Waiting

by Emily Roth When I moved to Spain last January, my roommate had an orchid plant on the dining table. Its flowers shriveled and died. We wondered if it would bloom again or if the whole plant would go soon. I don’t have much experience caring for plants, especially nothing as exotic as an orchid. So we gave the orchid water, moved it in front of the window, and hoped for the best. Jesus told his disciples, "Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can…
August 8, 2018
FeaturesNews

Remembering the Pals… by sending others in their place…

"These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth... Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city" (from Hebrews 11:13, 16 ESV). Two years ago today, at about 11:30am (MDT) on a well-traveled stretch of Interstate 80 in Nebraska, Jamison, Kathryne, Ezra, Violet, and Calvin Pals were killed when a distracted truck-driver crashed into their mini-van. On their way to train at WorldVenture Headquarters for an anticipated…
July 31, 2018
NewsPress Releases

Public Health Initiatives to be led by industry veteran, Grace Sandeno

WorldVenture is pleased to announce that Public Health Initiatives will be led by Grace Sandeno. Sandeno shares WorldVenture's passion for the unreached and underserved. But she also brings more than 30 years of experience in the industry at state and local levels that will benefit communities worldwide. "We're excited to have Grace lead us," remarked Bruce Swanson, WorldVenture's Director of 360 Initiatives. "Unmet health needs are present in every city, town, and village in the 65 countries where WorldVenture works. Strategic initiatives to provide access to public health makes sustainable changes that result in long-term benefit to individuals and communities.…
July 25, 2018
Features

God’s Work to ‘Ekballo’ Jonah

 Insights From the Worst Missionary Ever Whether you grew up in the church or not, you’ve heard the story of Jonah. God calls this prophet to arise and go proclaim divine judgment on the people of Nineveh. Jonah arises alright! But, demonstrating a remarkable misunderstanding of omnipresence, Jonah purposes instead to “flee from the presence of the Lord!” However, Jonah’s little cruise in the opposite direction gets interrupted by the storm of the century. Evidently, his travel agent didn’t know what Jonah himself told the terrified sailors: “I fear the LORD…who made the sea!” One might fault Jonah for not taking…
July 20, 2018
News

Samuel Gill: A Life Celebrated

Samuel Gill was the kind of person that filled a space with life, love, and enthusiasm. His unexpected passing in Brazil on Saturday, June 23, 2018, left a void in the world. His love of the Lord infused every life he touched. Even as Samuel Gill retired in 2017 from WorldVenture, he wasn’t done serving the Lord. While living in Prescott Valley, Arizona, Samuel began a new career in Life Coaching. He enthusiastically embraced his goal of helping others tell their story. On his website, “Your Next Step Ministries,” Samuel wrote this: “Personally I enjoy speaking to men and women…
July 3, 2018
NewsPress Releases

WorldVenture Hires New Advancement Vice President!

Signaling a new strategy for advancement, church partnerships, missionary recruiting, and donor development, WorldVenture president, Dr. Jeff Denlinger, announced the hiring of Dr. James V. Bull to the role of Vice President, Advancement. Dr. Bull starts July 1, 2018. “We are convinced that we must chart a new organizational direction,” Denlinger told the WorldVenture Board of Directors recently. “We must more closely align ourselves with others in our common journey of living out the Great Commission… I am very grateful to God for bringing Jim and Selma Bull to us for this next chapter in WorldVenture’s journey.” Dr. Bull will lead…
June 22, 2018
Press Releases

Remembering Arno Enns

ARNO ENNS, RESPECTED MISSIONARY AND LEADER, FINISHES THE RACE (Denver, CO) - WorldVenture announces the bittersweet news that Arno Enns, veteran missionary to Argentina and influential leader for WorldVenture, died at noon on Tuesday, February 20, 2018, at the age of 93. During his and Cora Lee’s time in Argentina, he started and led several churches. Arno Enns also held evangelistic campaigns and discipleship programs that included individual Bible studies with church leaders, helping them grow in their knowledge and faith in the Lord, even as they led others. His extraordinary cross-cultural intelligence, tremendous linguistic skills, and deep love of…
February 27, 2018
MediaNews

How Facebook’s big announcement can help missions…

On January 11, 2018, Mark Zuckerberg announced on Facebook to its 2 billion users that he is returning Facebook to its roots. The Facebook founder called it “time well spent” to return to helping, “… people stay connected and bring us closer with the people that matter to us.” While different organizations greeted this news with a variety of reactions, this change is great news for international workers, partners and churches! Until now, WorldVenture partners and churches easily enjoyed reading updates, viewing videos, and prayer updates about international workers from their personal Facebook feeds without any extra effort. According to…
January 25, 2018
News

Why Austria Still Needs Missionaries

Austria has roughly the same population as New York City. Yet the number of evangelical Christians in the whole country couldn’t fill Yankee Stadium. Only 0.5 percent of the population is evangelical. Or about 43,000 in a country of 8.6 million people. WorldVenture workers Nate and Bethany Johnson hope to grow the Church by coming alongside Austrian Christians living in Vienna. “Church planting is still needed in Austria because there are areas of the country and in the city of Vienna with no evangelical witness,” said Nate. “There are many people here in Austria who will go their entire life…
January 31, 2017
News

Japan Celebrates 50 years

Japan recently celebrated the 50-year presence of its churches—complete with martial arts, gospel singing and the gathering of a large church family. On Sept. 14 and Sept. 15, 1,000 pastors, leaders and church members associated with the Conservative Baptist churches in Japan gathered in Fukushima.
January 5, 2015
News

Hope After Haiyan

Eighty-six churches and 8,355 families with CBAP were severely affected by Haiyan. Now, many of these churches are thriving like never before, thanks to the efforts of relief teams focused on evangelism just as much as providing food, clothing, medicine and shelter.
January 5, 2015