‘The harvest in plentiful but the labourers are few’. There are few who work in the MENA Region who are not burdened by that truth. The political crises that dominate world news create an apprehension when the global church looks at joining hands with what God is doing there through his local church. This edition of St Francis looks at questions of recruitment in response to this challenge that Jesus gave, the harvest is plentiful. Whatever the visa, security, vision or agenda challenges, the harvest in plentiful

The first article, Mission Zero – reaching the point where all will have heard, asks whether the Western Church has become irrelevant in God’s Mission, examining some of the present day challenges that must be addressed in order to be the people God has called his Church to be, engaged in his task.

In the second article, issues of short- term teams are addressed in Short-term teams: Using them well and avoiding the pitfalls. In an age of modern-consumerism, where short-term teams sometimes look like ‘mission-holidays’, short-term teams can bring huge kingdom benefits if they have a clear purpose, are well-led and part of a broader agenda.
God is already at work moving people around the world through their work, and this provides a unique opportunity for long-term mission to nurture kingdom-perspectives in this largely untapped workforce in the harvest field. Issues of recruitment of intentional cross-cultural workers among expatriate Christians in the GCC offers insightful comment on mobilizing these workers for the harvest field.
Mobilising the Korean Church for the Arab World reflects on a conference of Korean Missions in 2013, and traces the journey of Korean Missions into the MENA region in recent years. It invites Korean missions to broaden its vision, and prepare well for the role it needs to play as part of the harvest-field labour force.

In Fitrah and fig leacves – Islamic and Christian teachings on sin, we are given an insightful comparison through a number of vignettes of the profound differences that mark the approach of these two faith’s to sin. At the heart of their differences is the fundamental understanding of human nature and God’s view of it.

An interview Exploring higher Christian Education in Israel gives insight into the role of Christian Education in not only preparing and equipping the next generation of workers, but the role of education in the harvest.
Jesus of course went on to say, not just that the harvest is plentiful and the labourers are few, he commissioned us to pray the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into the harvest field.

Melani McNeil

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