Greeting friends! I have the exciting opportunity to be apart of this year's iEDGE program, serving for 2 years reaching and discipling university students on a team in Auckland, New Zealand in January!
According to New Zealand’s 2013 census, 40% claim Christianity but most don't have biblical doctrine, and only 5% regularly attend church. Thirty years ago 70% claimed Christianity. Where have the 30% gone? Atheism. As Atheism increases, Christianity declines. New Zealand is ranked as the 11th least religious country in the world - there are a lot of hearts to be healed!
Auckland is the perfect place for the gospel to spread to the world – it’s the world’s most culturally diverse city per capita. Of its 1.4 million people, 39% were born in other countries. Our team will focus on students at Auckland’s three major universities, building relationships, sharing the gospel, discipling new believers, leading bible studies, organizing events, and leading large-group worship and teaching. These campuses have 20-25 different cultural backgrounds, primarily native New Zealanders and other Pacific Islanders.
The goal in having a ministry in New Zealand is for it to be a hub that branches out to all the other Pacific Islands. Many of these Islander students come to New Zealand for college and return after graduation. For example, there are more Tongans in Auckland than on the island of Tonga itself; there are more Samoans in Auckland than on the island of Samoa. By touching people’s lives in Auckland with the love of Jesus, God can use us to reach the whole South Pacific. Not to mention, Pacific Islanders are some of the most mobile missionaries in the world. They can more easily get visas for hard to access countries than almost anyone else. The Pacific Islands is a very strategic mission field, and we believe that the key to reaching the South Pacific is through New Zealand.
Would you be willing to pray faithfully and give generously toward our mission? In order for us to leave, we need the remainder of our two-year budget. I still need $13,600 to be fully funded. In order to reach my goal, I will need several gifts in the $50-$500 range as well as some $1,000 or $2,000 anchor gifts. Would you prayfully consider a special gift by December 31st? Regardless of your gift's size, you will be a fellow worker for the truth in this mission (3 John 5-8).