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Brigada Today is “the missionary helper newsletter!”
Compiled by Doug Lucas DLucas@teamexpansion.org>, Louisville, KY
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In this issue….

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LUIS BUSH READS BRIGADA TODAY

Did you happen to see the flash-back editorial on GCOWE ’95 in last week’s Brigada Today??? Luis Bush did. Can you believe the guy travels all over the world, collects his email from wherever he might be on the globe, and still makes time to read Brigada? (I’m writing from Cote d’Ivoire tonight and I can tell you that it has NOT been easy to get email access here from every village we visited. I can’t WAIT ’til Bill Gates finishes his satellite network so satellite email will become “affordable for the masses!” :-)) Anyway, Luis wrote, “Thanks for the meaningful review of G95… We had a very meaningful meeting of the track/task force and board (functional core leadership) a couple of weeks ago. It was amazing to me to see the incredible ongoing commitment to work toward the overall vision by the track and task force leaders as well as the remarkable faith (at this late stage) that ‘It can be done, it must be done, it will be done.’ What does this mean? It means that AD2000 & Beyond Leadership is still committed to trying to make sure there’s a church-planting team working on each and every people group in the world that has more than 10,000 members with a percentage of evangelicals of 2% or less. Furthermore, AD2000 is hoping that these teams will have committed to planting a church of 100 worshipping believers as soon as possible, preferably by Dec. 31, 2000. Will you help them pull it off? To find out more about how to pitch in, contact AD2000 & Beyond’s Int’l Office at lauri@ad2000.org. (Can you believe she handles email for the whole world?????!!!)
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A PRAYER AND A POEM TO GO, PLEASE

Have you seen Mert Hershberger’s “Prayer-Poem” list? He sent us a sample or two this past week and I can promise you, if you like missions poetry and/or regular prayer items, parables, and thought-provoking stories, you’ll probably like this list. He sends a mailing out every week or so. To give it a try, just send a message with the subject line:
subscribe prayer-poem list

to Hershberger.5@nd.edu.

note (Note that unlike the Brigada family of email conferences that operate on the MAFxc list-server, Mert’s list-server requires the ‘subscribe’ line to be in the subject. The MAFxc list-server expects the ‘subscribe’ message to be in the message block itself.)

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JUNE ADVANCE READY FOR YOU TO RETRIEVE

Take a look at the topics in this month’s Advance, edited by Mark Kelly (listed below).

THE GOSPEL FOR EVERY PEOPLE — Tibetan Buddhists; street children in Mongolia; the Muslim Arabs of Saudi Arabia; the Zapotec Indians of Mexico; the Tajiks of Iran; ministering God’s love during the Kumbh Mela festival; Kingdom advance in Nepal; the Donxiang of China; Liberian refugees; witch doctors turn to Christ; the Jesus film for Western Punjabis of Pakistan

THE PERSECUTED CHURCH — Bangladesh churches, school attacked; Sudan sheik arrested; Lutheran bishop of Belarus arrested; Turkmenistan Adventists arrested; persecution intensifies in Chad; US newspaper fires minister to former homosexuals; New Tribes hostages

SPIRITUAL FORCES OF DARKNESS — Taking up arms in Pakistan; human sacrifice in Uttar Pradesh; adults convicted of murder in child abuse case; nuclear tensions between India and Pakistan

REJOICE! — Neo-Aztec priest asks for prayer; Khmer literacy program registers 727 decisions for Christ; Turkish government permits Kurdish Jesus film; 30,000 decisions for Christ in New Delhi; Chinese evangelists count 85 decisions for Christ; young woman raised from dead in Ethiopia; mobile medical clinics register 104 decisions in Nan province; Hindu Indian artist accepts Christ while illustrating Gospel of Mark; gospel literature distributed to 18.5 million homes in 1997; discovery may lead to advances in fighting cancer, AIDS, other diseases

NETWORKING — Prayer guide, video on Tibetan Buddhists; people group adoption information on CD; “Operation World Plus;” International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church; “Fax of the Apostles;” Turkey video and prayer guide; International Bible Society monthly newsletter; “TV: The World’s Greatest Mind-Bender;” Fasting & Prayer ’98

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GLOBAL GLIMPSE IN KENYA

world globe With 150 years of missions work, the perception is that Kenya has been fully evangelized, but there remain 22 people groups that are without an indigenous, self-perpetuating church within their reach. One of the over 400 church leaders convening from across Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo said, “If we had had a meeting like this ten years ago, the task of reaching our unreached peoples in Kenya would already be completed.” At the climax of the consultation approximately 3000 people dedicated their lives to missions, through praying, giving or going for the unreached of Kenya.
(Source: AD2000 & Beyond, “EAST AFRICA AND THE HORN OF AFRICA CHALLENGED WITH THE GREAT COMMISSION,” By Dr. Stephen Kabachia, Chairman & Rev. Don Kearby, Coordinator, Finish the Task 2000 National Consultation, May 1998, Nairobi, Kenya.)
Global Glimpse is compiled each week by John Hanna, Caleb Project, Littleton, CO.
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READY, “SCET,” GO!

SCET’98 is related to Agape Holland, the Dutch version of Campus Crusade for Christ. It is a summer project that will take place from July 20th till August 9th 1998 in Holland and Belgium. Organizers wrote Brigada Today this past week, “We want to attract the attention of teenagers by organizing 3-days sport clinics. During these days we want to tell them about Christ. The clinics will take place at 30 different locations and we still need some people to help us at the sport clinics. Questions? Contact Thijs van Delden, Kremersmaten 168, 7511 LD Enschede, Holland, tel. 0031-053-4303493, email: m.l.vandelden@student.utwente.nl.
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CARRYING ON ABOUT CARRY-ONS

lighting the way I don’t want to carry on any more about carry-ons, but . . . I got hit last week by British Airways new commitment to REALLY enforce the 6 kilo baggage limit. Ouch. I’ve traveled on every continent but Antarctica and I’ve always carried the same carry-on without having to check it. . . . ’til last week with British Airways. 6 kilos. I had to just take my laptop on the plane in a plastic bag :-( and send the carry-on through their baggage system. Took about 45 minutes to collect in Abidjan on the other end. What’s more, a friend just wrote and said the same thing happened to her on Lufthansa recently on her last trip to Turkmenistan. Rats. rats face I hope this isn’t a sign of the times. There were tons of people who had snuck their carry-ons past the gate… but if their attention is at all focused on your bag when you walk through the lines to pick up your boarding pass, or even pass through a security checkpoint, it’s curtains for your carry-on. I’m trying to think up a diversion on the way home. Maybe I can get the Brazil soccer team to stage a scrimmage on the luggage conveyor belts. That should get their attention. (Have you seen that Nike commercial yet? It’s a classic.) Either way… lesson learned. … either skip these two airlines and fly others, . . . or pack in such a way that you can cut your carry-on weight to 6 kilos! Gulp. gulp Or watch for the Brazil national team. :-)
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DISCIPLE’S PRAYER LIFE TRAINING

How do you sustain long term effective prayer for unreached people groups? How will U.S. churches which have agreed to pray for the Unreached Peoples stay committed? How can you multiply or disciple new prayer warriors to pray for the nations? Answer: “Disciple’s Prayer Life.” Now you can attend a 5-Day training course to help you teach Disciple’s Prayer Life and/or greatly enrich your prayer life, August 10-14, 1998 at Myertown Grace Brethren Church, Myertown, PA. Sponsored by the Southeast Regional Office-USCWM. Only $50. Pre-order materials for $21.00. (Does not include room and board). For more information email: bsuscwmse@aol.com and put [example:PrayerLife-Los Angelos] in the subject line or call 919-787-3821, speak slowly while leaving name and address to receive brochure.
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COOL DOWN YOUR REENTRY

A new practical resource on short-term mission reentry is available from Deeper Roots publications (See http://members.aol.com/HLisech/DeeperRoots ). REENTRY GUIDE FOR SHORT-TERM MISSION LEADERS, by Lisa Espineli Chinn, is a compilation and expansion of handouts and notes of the intensive reentry workshops the author has conducted at the last five National Short-Term Missions Conferences and a special Short – Term Mission Leaders Retreat. Lisa Espineli Chinn has been conducting reentry seminars for international students and short-term missions since the mid-80’s, and authored Think Home: A Practical Workbook for Christian International Students Preparing to Return Home in 1984. For more information, contact Howard Lisech at HLisech@aol.com.
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CAT-LINK SEARCHING FOR SECOND LIFE

If you’ve no clue what a Cat-link is, this item isn’t for you. But if you need one, University of the Nations in Kailu-Kona Hawaii has a CAT-LINK for digital transmission of radio programming available for sale. For detailed technical specifications, contact Willy Navarro svp@uofn.edu.
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COOPERATION AT ITS BEST

This past week, we’ve seen cooperation at its best. I’m at work in Cote d’Ivoire, facilitating an up-and-coming partnership between two on-the-ball churches and Team Expansion. We’ve been interviewing workers in the field to try to learn as much as possible about reaching the particular people group that these two churches want to “adopt” (for the purposes of church-planting). The cooperation and fellowship has been so incredible! We’ve learned so much in such a short period of time because on- site workers have been sharing their “lessons learned” about reaching unreached tribes in this area. So… I’ve put together “Doug’s Divine Dozen Lessons Learned for Setting up These Exposure/Vision Trips:
  • Lesson # 12 — Allow plenty of time in advance of the trip for set-up and planning. We started a good six months in advance… and that’s minimum. Any less and your efforts will seem disorganized and haphazard.
  • Lesson # 11 — Find an on-field helper to “champion” your cause and assist with set-up. Check out your denomination’s mission board or sending agencies or ask other missions committees in your area for help. In our case we were very lucky (I mean, blessed). A Wycliffe worker “adopted” us!!! She worked VERY hard helping to make sure our logistical needs were met… and we’ll be forever grateful. Three cheers for SIL!!!
  • Lesson # 10 — Pay your way. The SIL worker helped us get an idea of realistic figures to spend for meals and housing. Using her figures as guides, we were able to give on-site workers a realistic picture of what we should reimburse them for food and housing. The last thing you want to do is be a drain on their finances, because then the next group that visits will find it much harder to set up a similar trip the next year! YES — shop for the best prices on air fares and hotels. But NO — don’t be afraid to rent a car or van to cover large distances when time is limited. After all, you might have spent several thousand dollars getting there… and maybe you’ll only be there one week . . . so every day counts.
  • Lesson # 9 — Pray as you go. Be sure to allow time for prayer walks. Our trip is VERY scheduled . . . so we’ve only done two prayer walk so far. That’s an “oops” for me. We’re still hoping to do one in each location though.
  • Lesson # 8 — Be flexible. Be flexible. Be flexible. And did I mention, be flexible. Don’t be afraid to change schedules if you get a better opportunity. One day last week, we changed our plans 3 times before we even got out the door. Make sure your team members are EXPECTING the unexpected.
  • Lesson # 7 — Debrief daily. It’s the only way to draw maximum impact out of each person’s individual experiences each and every day.
  • Lesson # 6 — No missionary roasts allowed. :-) Make sure your team knows that new on-site workers should expect to work on the field for a full year before they’ll understand all the reasons behind why full-timers do the things they do. (There are usually VERY good explanations.) So why should one-weekers think they can do better! :-)
  • Lesson # 5 — Fresh insights permitted. While you don’t want your team to come across as presumptuous, someone on the team might indeed have a fresh insight that no one else has thought of yet. Make sure your gang feels the freedom to gently offer humbly-worded insights “as ashes on the ground” — but not lording over those who live and work there every day!
  • Lesson # 4 — Cultivate a sense of humor. On this trip, I’m blessed with 5 guys that are absolutely wonderful people with which to travel and work. They laugh, roll with the flow, and NEVER complain. Somebody pinch me. :-)
  • Lesson # 3 — Stay on focus. Review your trip objectives (you do have them, right?) often to make sure you’re still on track. Learn everything you can. Try the language. Learn the greetings. Use them. Have fun with them. Laugh at yourself and the mistakes you make. (We must have used the word “ee- DAHN-seh” 50 times, just because we heard people greeting us with it each time we met. It wasn’t ’til after we had shaken hands and used it throughout an entire village that we learned it meant “Welcome!” :-) We were welcoming our hosts! :-) Laugh at your mistakes. They will. :-) But they’ll love it that you’re at least trying!
  • Lesson # 2 — Make sure there IS a focus. The last thing you want to do is get caught up in an eternal repetition of short-term trips without a real rationale. That money might be better spent on sponsoring a full-timer. However, getting some of your church’s people into short-term missions might be the best way to build a strong missions momentum in your church, which will pay for itself over and over again!
  • and Lesson # 1 of Doug’s Top Ten Lessons Learned for setting up exposure/vision trips — “Walk softly and carry no sticks!” The full-time on- site workers you’re visiting will be staying on long after your dust has settled. If they invite you to participate in something, make sure you consult them in advance about their precise expectations. One worker here invited our team of 6 to accompany him into the village where he’s moving his family next month. Woah! I was nervous. What if we offended someone and the village leaders told him to hit the trail! We looked to him OFTEN for advice, prayed a lot, and stepped VERY carefully. It worked out okay, but we made sure that he had ultimate power to pull the plug on us at any time. HE was the guy in charge. This was HIS ball game. (They welcomed us warmly and we were blessed by the village’s hospitality; the on-site worker told us he was shocked at the incredibly warm reception he received. We’ll never be the same… and we’ll pray for him like wild now!

In summary, be humble, gentle, and write down everything! And Pray!

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BRIGADA TODAY IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE FOLLOWING TEAM OF REGULAR VOLUNTEERS:

*Global Glimpses: John Hanna, Caleb Project, jhanna@cproject.com
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