- Strategic Alliances
Today, God is again interrupting schedules on behalf of Ethiopians. This potentially beautiful land faces a grave challenge. Marxism's 17-year reign drained her economy. Famine, war, illiteracy and unemployment, coupled with Islam's strong bid for Ethiopia's soul, have weakened her people.
AIMS is following Philip's example, obeying God without question. We are building strategic alliances to take the Gospel to Ethiopia's Final Frontier. The Evangelical Churches Fellowship of Ethiopia represents 12 denominations (97 percent of the nation's evangelicals). Working with AIMS, this group recently identified Ethiopia's 41 remaining unreached peoples.
AIMS is committed to helping these believers reach their brothers with the Gospel. Calvary Temple of Denver, Colorado, has joined with AIMS to mobilize churches to partner with them. At the Fellowship's request, AIMS recently trained 286 prospective missionaries specially chosen to penetrate and evangelize these final 41 unreached peoples. The candidates, previously trained by their denominations for local church ministry, received 55 hours of strategic missions training.
The goal of this strategic alliance, which AIMS has named Ethiopia Call, is to penetrate and begin initial evangelization of Ethiopia's remaining 41 unreached peoples within the next year, by supporting these missionaries with $50 per month.
Ethiopia Call is fast becoming a model for taking the Gospel to this world's unreached peoples. This alliance is founded on the principle that Western churches, individuals and ministry organizations can effectively partner with national churches and missionaries to evangelize and plant churches among the unreached. Now, the fruit is starting to appear – and the results are incredibly encouraging.
The People's Democratic Republic of Ethiopia is a fertile mountain plateau surrounded by the deserts of the Red Sea Coast. It borders Somalia, Kenya and Sudan. Ethiopia is in a state of shock from death, famine and war. These incredible difficulties have caused the nation to lose its corporate sense of identity, so that it remains divided on regional and ethnic lines. Communism left the nation spiritually, economically and agriculturally bankrupt.
Yet, in the midst of such desperation, a spark of hope still glimmers. Ethiopia was one of the first Christian nations, and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church was the state church until the 1974 Marxist Revolution. The Marxist regime targeted the evangelical church for persecution, yet the Church grew by amazing proportions, even in secret.
Now, after Communism's collapse, the Church is laboring in the open again, and Ethiopia is in the midst of tremendous revival.
And although the surrounding nations are predominantly Muslim, the Ethiopian Church has maintained its strong Christian witness, despite outside pressure. The ECFE and AIMS are certain the Ethiopian Church will be an effective sending base for future missionaries to neighboring nations.
The ECFE will establish four new training sites within Ethiopia for
ministry to the unreached. AIMS will work with Calvary Temple to
refine and develop a missionary sending structure within the Ethiopian
Church for ministry among the unreached.
I feel very proud in the Lord to share with you brothers and sisters that as a result of this Ruth/Naomi type of relationship between Calvary Temple and AIMS and the ECFE:
In their home country of Somalia, 99 percent of the Somali people are Muslim. They tend to despise Christians. Drought, famine, and war have driven many from their homes to surrounding countries.
As you pray for the Somali people, remember also the 40 other peoples that AIMS is helping to evangelize through its joint effort with Calvary Temple of Denver, CO, and the Evangelical Fellowship of Churches in Ethiopia.
Recent statistics gathered for the Ethiopia Call alliance demonstrate that this united outreach has born phenomenal fruit since its inception in 1995. Ethiopia Call has trained and launched Ethiopian national missionaries to minister among the unreached peoples in their own country. The eventual goal is to take the Gospel to surrounding regions as well. Already, this alliance has accomplished the following:
Ethiopia Call has set specific goals which include the establishment of a steering committee representing those already participating in this alliance, as well as the churches, mission agencies, business, individuals and professional organizations who will join this united effort. Together they will accomplish common goals with combined resources, prayer and communication. The strategic alliance is a mutual partnership established to facilitate what God is already doing in mobilizing the Ethiopian Church.
Excerpts from articles <> found in Final Frontiers Winter '95/'96 - Fall/Winter '97 the magazine published by AIMS. AIMS is an organization helping the Church obey the Great Commandment and fulfill the Great Commission by Advancing adoption of unreached people groups and building strategic alliances to target regions and peoples.