A3 expands to the Middle East and North Africa
Leadership development is what we desperately need but we don’t really get it. People promise us this but deliver other products, not developing leaders.
These words, from Pastor Isias (not his real name)—a leader based in a country located in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region—tugged at my heart. His cry amplified the very reason that A3 feels called to expand our ministry into this part of the world.
In the midst of a global pandemic and financial uncertainty, God has continued to grow A3’s ministry. He is opening doors in MENA, one of the most critical areas for the Gospel on our planet. With your financial partnership, A3 will go through those doors to more countries.
We had just begun our launch into the country where the leader I have quoted above is based when I received a phone call from a renowned mission statesmen and expert on collaboration. “I have a new mission assignment for you, Joe. It’s called The Last Mile.” I’m excited to share more with you—but before I do, especially in this season of thanksgiving, I want to thank you for your generous support of A3.
Your prayers and partnership have been the silver lining to the dark clouds we have experienced due to the horrific global pandemic. It’s because of you that we have been able to continue to serve. Our national leaders are ministering under extreme pressure as their countries suffer with the twin burdens of the coronavirus and the economic chaos created by the pandemic. But their commitment to developing, equipping, and releasing emerging leaders to serve remains stronger than ever. Thank you!
But back to the phone call. The assignment being presented to me centered on strengthening the MENA Church, utilizing an approach described by The Last Mile. What does The Last Mile advocate?
Picture power lines running along the interstate. It’s easy to connect the power lines from one pole to the next. The hard part is getting the power from the pole to individual home, and from the home to the individual socket or switch. It takes time, hard work, and resources.
The same is true for climbing Mount Everest. Most people can make it to the 24,000-foot-elevation base camp. But only a few can climb those final 5,000 feet to the summit. The Last Mile is the hardest.
“Joe, for years we have saturated the Middle East and North Africa with the Gospel and we have seen millions of commitments to Christ made through the internet. The challenge is, even with all the commitments we’ve seen and despite the enormous amount of time and money we’ve invested into the MENA region, there is very little evidence of tangible fellowships developing.
Joe, I’m convinced The Last Mile for the Church in the Middle East and North Africa is rooted in the core Christian disciplines—discipleship, leader development, and church multiplication. These are the hardest parts.
A3 has deep experience in all three of these areas. Will you help us go the last mile?”
As I mentioned earlier, God has grown A3’s ministry in the midst of the global pandemic, launching three new countries this year. It’s no coincidence that one of those countries happens to be in the Middle East. Many people like you have made that possible.
A3 launched digitally into Pastor Isias’s country two months ago. He and his fellow leaders have been inspired by their initial sessions. When, Lord willing, the coronavirus is brought under control, we are eager to engage these leaders face-to-face so that they can get the full picture of what an A3 learning community can provide.
We have been given a profound opportunity to help to finish The Last Mile. Why would a Middle Eastern Pastor and a renowned mission statesman and expert on collaboration call me? I believe it is because A3 has strong reputations in discipleship, leader development, and church multiplication. It’s what Pastor Isias. was looking for. And it is exactly what The Last Mile is all about.
You can be part of finishing The Last Mile in the Middle East and North Africa. Will you prayerfully consider a gift of $50, $100, or $150? Perhaps God has blessed you in such a way that you could give $500 or $1,000 or more. Your gift of any size will make a difference.
Direct Link: https://vimeo.com/482805673
Thank you in advance for your partnership in this strategic region. Finishing The Last Mile,
Rev. Joseph W. Handley, Jr., Ph.D.
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You can resume giving toward this project on March 27, 2023.