Sunday, December 29, 2013

Working Together

It has been quite a start to our fundraising process. We have begun making our need for financial support known and have been encouraged hearing from people who are starting to partner with us. We have multiple speaking engagements at our church as well as another that we’re working on setting up with a church in Akron. Also, earlier in December we had an interview for an article that will be in the Lima News at some point in mid-January (most likely Jan. 13). 

If anyone else is interested in personally hearing more or having us speak on what we are doing, we are more than happy to get together. We still have a long way to go with fundraising and need many more financial partners before we can buy our plane tickets and head out, but we’re looking to God to meet this need through those who believe in this mission as well. 

Thank you to those of you who have helped us in this already.

One of the things that I wanted to share with all of you is about the set-up of the groups that are working in Burkina Faso. There are a number of organizations that we will be working with during the year we’re there. All of the organizations work together on different projects, which is something that I find really neat.

Envision- http://weareenvision.com

The organization that we are going to Burkina Faso with is called Envision. Envision is a part of the Christian and Missionary Alliance (CMA) that focuses on short-term missions trips and internships. Our one-week trip to Burkina in 2013 was done through Envision in order to check out what they do in Africa.

Our main job in Burkina will be to facilitate short-term teams that come from other countries (mostly the U.S.). When we are not with a team, we will be plugging into other outreach opportunities in Ouagadougou. Our work is both missions and humanitarian, but the main reason is to love as God loves.

Compassion International- http://www.compassion.com/Default.htm
Molly has been sponsoring a child in Burkina Faso through Compassion International for a number of years. Their program provides a wonderful opportunity to share the love of Christ with children in need and to help improve another person’s life. I was amazed to learn about all of the orphanages and schools that were run by this organization.

One of the best schools in Ouagadougou is run by Compassion and many of the children begin attending when they are not yet Christians. One of the other missionaries told me about how a Muslim leader sent his child to a Compassion school there in the city in order to give him the best education possible. When the kid refused to attend the required Bible class, the father was outraged with him for refusing to accept the great opportunity that the father had provided. I am amazed what an impact schooling that would be considered basic by our standards could have in such an area.
Children in a class at a Compassion center
The leaders of the Envision group are also involved with an organization called Engage Burkina. Engage is a non-profit/non-religious organization working to improve the lives of people in Burkina. Sponsors for this organization range from Baptist churches to companies like Tiffany's and Adidas.

This is a great way for people who are not Christians to see that our mission involves more than just preaching. We seek to improve the lives of the people in Burkina. Working to better the lives of people in need is something that everyone can agree is a beautiful thing, and by first meeting people’s basic needs, opportunities can arise to minister to their spiritual needs as well.


Friends in Action- http://www.fiaintl.org/usa/
Friends in Action is one part that I am very excited to be involved with during our time in Africa. This organization drills wells in impoverished villages, giving them a source of clean water. They place the well in the care of a church in order to provide a ministry opportunity.

This group often needs individuals with mechanical abilities. Equipment frequently has problems when traveling or working in the high heat. I went to college for automotive studies in order to be useful for jobs such as this that will link my skills with ministry needs.
Check out the drilling equipment for Friends in Action


I am very excited to see what God has in store for our year in Africa.

God Bless.
-Ben