By Paul Johnson
“Use your influence and affluence for those who have none,” says Rick Warren. At ROOTS we take this seriously by doing mission trips (M-Projects). Our goal: Remember the poor and serve the saints. ROOTS participated in seven M-Projects in 2019, including one to Turkey. A team of six travelled to Antakya, Turkey, to assist Antioch Protestant Church in their ministry to Syrian refugees.
It was my third trip to help the Turkish and Arabic congregations in this church. They know we love them because we come back to care for them. Agnes Leung, an accountant from Edmonton, had prayed for Muslims during Ramadan. ROOTS gave her this chance to minister up close and personal. David Xu, professor at Ryerson, Toronto, wanted a taste of missions. He got it. Bill Yao and Beth Bai, both professionals, were to be married five weeks after the M-Project. Still, they came, wanting to make a difference. Jacques Avakian, NAMB Church Planting catalyst for Quebec and francophone Canada, completed the team.
The ROOTS team raised over $6,000 from church and private donations to assist the Antioch church. We purchased supplies for CARE packages and delivered them to a refugee camp. It’s the third time we’ve done this, but for the church, it’s a monthly activity. Pastor Yakup reminded us of the importance of working with a local congregation. After the ROOTS team leaves, the church remains to continue caring for the poor.
Jacques was God’s gift to the congregations. He speaks Arabic, understands Turkish, knows the Middle Eastern culture and radiates love and Gospel passion. Our team blessed both congregations by funding a retreat for them at a resort on the Mediterranean Sea. Jacques and I concluded the M-Project by teaching Jesus’ parables to Christians and seekers at the retreat. Our ROOTS team lived out a dream, to be part of the movement of God in our generation, bringing the good news of Jesus to Muslims. God is so good to us!
If your church is interested in doing an M-Project, I’d be glad to help. firstname.lastname@example.org
Paul Johnson is the Church Strengthening team leader for the CNBC.
Reprinted from the October 2019 CNBC Horizon. Read more here.