1) To amyrpk, hydrangea and BB: Can you tell me what some of the jewish terms are that you used in your posts? Or at least link me to a glossary? It's pretty interesting what you're saying but I have no idea what the terms mean.
|The main goal of a missionary is NOT to spead the gospel first, but to minister to the physical needs of people. To clothe and feed them. Teach people, give health care to them. I know of missionaries serving who have yet to verbally share about God, but they share in their works and their giving of themselves to better anothers life.
Sorry but I disagree
(why should that surprise you). I think it depends on which Christian organazation it is that you are talking about. Perhaps the org. that your mom belongs to does not encourage conversion but there are planty of others. I am not opposed to doing good works because it fulfills you spiritually however, when organized groups of Christians go to do missionary work, the real work at hand is to convert.
Here is a quote from an Islamic website regarding missionaries in Malaysia:
"The Bowens plan to help establish two Pentecostal Holiness churches in Kuala Lumpur by training the pastors and bringing forth leaders to start plant more churches in this emerging Southeast Asian Muslim-majority nation of 19 million. A spokesperson for the National Evangelical Fellowship of Malaysia claims that 600 Christian churches have started there since 1992. Evangelical Christians like the Bowens tout Muslims as the largest block of unreached peoples in the world. Having scored remarkable successes among Catholics in Latin America, notably in Brazil, and spurred by the fall of the Soviet Union, missionaries in the 1990s regard Muslims as a "final frontier" for evangelism. Their strategies call for "creative access, cultural sensitivity, and church-planting in the 10/40 Window." The 10/40 Window is evangelical-speak for the rectangle with boundaries of latitudes 10 and 40 degrees north of the equator; encompassing most of the Muslim World.
Muslim countries especially targeted are the newly independent states in Central Asia - particularly Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and the Southeast Asian tigers, Malaysia and Indonesia.
Nevertheless, Frontiers and other Christian groups strive to place missionaries throughout the tough "10/40 Window." Most Muslim countries remain closed, either because of the strong linkage between ethnic and religious identity amongst Muslims, or because of heavy restrictions on proselytization. This restricted access has led U.S. Christian mission groups such as Frontiers to lobby Congress on the issue of "the persecuted Church" in Muslim countries. These lobbying efforts have spurred the creation of a US State Department Commission on Religious Freedom, albeit one whose original stress on persecuted Christians has been slightly diluted. The Commission will now include representatives from multiple denominations and faiths, including Dr. Laila AlMarayati of the Muslim Womens League.
The "persecuted Church" primarily within the 10/40 Window has been a rallying point and foreign policy crusade for the Religious Right in their quest to gain wider access to the untapped millions of non-Christians within the Window. Frontiers, a mission group devoted completely to converting Muslims, boasts that "through creative approaches, patient sowing, and fearless proclamation, more Muslims have come to Christ in the last 25 years than in the previous 1400 years combined!"
The Mesa, Arizona-based group claims to have 500 missionaries in 30 countries, or about 20% of all North American Protestant missionaries serving among Muslims. Frontiers seeks missionaries for the 90's with the motto: "Muslims. It's their turn. It's all we do. Whatever it takes." From Bosnia to Bangladesh, American missionaries apparently have been doing whatever it takes to penetrate often resistant and hostile Muslim target countries. Two popular missionary approaches to Muslim countries involves setting up business ventures or non-profit relief and NGO work.
Christian relief groups have made inroads in places like Somalia (which is 99% Muslim) by taking advantage of humanitarian crises like the famine in 1992 that precipitated U.S. intervention. Some missionaries reportedly even hook up with the CIA, blurring religious and political goals. The Washington Post revealed February, 22 that CIA officials admitted a "controversial loophole" exists that permits the agency to "employ clerics and missionaries for clandestine work overseas."
By far, however, the most popular long-term method has been to establish front export businesses, a growing strategy used by missionaries to gain access into a target country. Often, missionaries start branch offices of American companies overseas or enter as consultants. Cindy Bowen speaks proudly of her husband's creative access to Malaysia, which capitalised on his landscaping business in LaGrange, located 6O miles Southwest of Atlanta. "
My bil and his wife lived in Asia for many years and were often astounded by the complex lives missionaries had: on one side business men/women and on the other "planting churches". I have witnessed this in the Caribbean. Usually American missionaries coming to "minister" to the lost. Dh and I often commented on how you couldn;t tell who was exploiting the situation more, the converted or the missionary.