- Field-Based Partnerships
- The Power of Partnership
Questions & Answers about Partnership
A. Questions and
Answers about Partnership
- Aren't Christian ministries already cooperating? What's the need for a
special emphasis on partnership?
2-3 ministries have cooperated for specialized projects. In other cases,
churches and other ministries have come together for short-term, one-time
events like a city-wide evangelistic crusade. However, until now, there
has never been long-term cooperation and coordination of all ministries
who are committed to reaching specific unreached language groups or other
key population centers.
- Who are some of the agencies involved in existing partnerships? Are they only
from American and European countries?
In the many different
partnerships that exist, over 350 agencies are involved from dozens of
countries. Over 30 percent of these come from outside the West. These range
from large organizations like World Vision, Anglicans, the Assemblies of
God, Wycliffe, and the Southern Baptists, to smaller national and emerging
- Where are these partnerships taking place?
are a trend all over the world, including Europe and North America. As
the Church looks toward unreached people groups, most of the groups with
over one million people are in and around the 10/40 Window. Operating partnerships
range from Senegal in West Africa to Outer Mongolia, from Bangkok to Beirut.
- What is it that partnerships actually "do?"
an active, working forum in which ministries can coordinate their plans
and resources and develop a common strategy. Usually partnerships start
with limited but highly strategic projects in the beginning which will
allow the relevant ministries to actually work together while all other
ministries benefit from that cooperation. As the partnership grows in maturity,
task forces or working groups of ministries typically begin to form around
issues critical to holistic evangelism and church planting. Often these
include Scripture translation/distribution, prayer network development,
radio/tv/film production and distribution, literature development/ distribution,
health and educational ministries, local church-planting strategies, etc.
- Are national, indigenous believers involved in the partnerships?
YES!! In virtually
every Strategic Evangelism/Church-Planting Partnership, nationals are involved
in every aspect — from strategizing about the needs to exploring new and
more innovative ways of working together.
- How do the partnerships handle doctrinal differences and approaches?
Partnerships are made
up of people with a variety of different cultural backgrounds, experiences
and theological perspective; yet each with a commitment to share the Good
News of salvation through Jesus Christ. Partnerships work best when they
attempt to celebrate their differences, rather than try to eliminate or
minimize them. Most do not try to come up with theological statements or
agreed upon doctrines, instead they might adopt already established international
- What is Interdev's role?
Interdev does not
fund, run, or control partnerships. One of the foundational principles
of partnership is to build a sense of ownership into each participating
agency or church. Interdev trains individuals to launch and sustain partnerships
and provides on-going mentoring for partnership effectiveness.
- What tangible things have partnerships been able to accomplish that would
not have happened otherwise?
Many specific evangelism-related
projects, plans, and relationships have come out of partnerships. Scripture
and other literature has been developed and distributed in numbers well
beyond any one agency's ability. Coordination of human rights advocacy
has taken place on behalf of national believers who have been discriminated
against, harassed, and even tortured for their faith. More effective church-planting
strategies and results have occurred when believers have prayed and planned
Power of Partnership: Working Together to Reach the Unreached, 1998, Interdev.