Category - Ministry Updates

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Keeping Kids from Drugs — through Basketball and Jesus
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Freed from Addiction — Through Recycling
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The Ranch Where Heaven Meets Earth
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‘Nobody Believes in God Here’
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Hope Amid Death: COVID-19 Ministry in Latin America
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One Man’s 30-Year Search for a Bible
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The Riots That Led to Friendship
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Discipling Christians to Live Their Faith at Work
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What Does a Bible Translator Do When. . .
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On an Island Without the Bible

Keeping Kids from Drugs — through Basketball and Jesus

Kids play basketball at sports ministry Transformados
Drugs are a big lure for kids in La Paz, Mexico — but a sports ministry is getting kids off the streets and teaching them the saving truth of Jesus!

“[If] my brother wouldn’t have invited me to Transformados, then I wouldn’t have known anything about God. … I would probably be on drugs, alcohol and sex,” Chuy says. Chuy’s alternate life isn’t hard to guess at because many of his friends are already living it. In the sprawling city of La Paz, Mexico, drugs are widely available. Some kids start using them as early as 13 years old. But in recent years, more and more children have found an alternative through a program called Transformados. Five days a week, they gather on a basketball court, eager to learn new…

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Freed from Addiction — Through Recycling

Men sort bottle caps as part of recycling project
Zhenya had lost everything to his addiction. But a surprise job at a recycling plant — and an unlikely friendship — led Zhenya to redemption.

Kurt drove away from the rehab center — and from his friend Zhenya. As the miles went by, he felt a growing relief. For the first time in months, the heavy burden of responsibility that came with helping Zhenya was lifting. Caring for Creation and Their Community Kurt and Rochelle zurBurg have served as TEAM missionaries in Odessa, Ukraine, for more than 12 years. Their ministry has included a variety of activities — from apartment building repairs to backpacking to teaching science classes. It is always, “at its core,” Kurt says, “about serving people and sharing Jesus with them in…

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The Ranch Where Heaven Meets Earth

Two teen girls ride horses during equine program. This is one way Rancho el Camino does missions in Mexico
Equine classes at Rancho el Camino are a chance to learn discipline, patience and what it means to follow God.

You don’t find Rancho el Camino without a bit of determination. Driving away from the beautiful beaches of La Paz, Mexico, you take the highway to the outskirts of town and turn sharply onto a dusty, bumpy, gravel road. But as you draw closer, you may just sense what has attracted so many people before you. People say they feel something different at the ranch. Some are moved to tears. Others demand to know what causes the strange sensation. Over the years, TEAM missionaries Pete and Emily Johnson have come to see the ranch as a “thin space.” It’s a…

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‘Nobody Believes in God Here’

Anne reads her Bible
Becoming a Christian was life-changing for Anne, but her partner hated it. Was following Jesus going to cost Anne her closest relationship?

Despite its post-Christian culture, Germany loves a good Easter celebration. They take four days to celebrate, from Good Friday through Monday. They hold Easter markets and share amazing food. They shut down offices. Few people actually believe in the miracle of the holiday, but they know the story. So when a German celebrates Easter as a believer for the first time, it’s a day like no other. For the first time, this wonderful holiday has meaning beyond what they could ever have imagined. But on Easter of 2017, Anne wasn’t feeling all the joy she was supposed to. It had…

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Hope Amid Death: COVID-19 Ministry in Latin America

COVID-19 hasn't stopped God's work! From aid packages to medical evacuations, see how God is using missionaries in Latin America!

“Leche!” shouts a little boy. He grabs the can of milk out of a bag and starts hugging and kissing it. Missionaries pitch in to buy a coffin so their friend can be buried in the cemetery instead of a mass COVID-19 grave. Churches pool their money and start committees to provide food for the neediest families in their neighborhoods. When the new coronavirus turned into a pandemic, many people wondered, “Will COVID-19 put global missions on hold?” And while missions does look a bit different these days, we’re happy to report that God is still working to transform lives. …

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One Man’s 30-Year Search for a Bible

A man reads a Bible
After his Bible was stolen, Diyar spent decades searching for another one. How would he find one without knowing any Christians?

Thirty years ago, Diyar owned the most powerful book in the world. He didn’t fully understand it. It went against everything he’d ever heard about God. And he knew he had to find its meaning. But the book was too powerful to go unnoticed, especially in Diyar’s Middle Eastern country. Someone discovered Diyar’s book and stole it from him. Diyar tried everything he could to find another copy, but it was impossible. Impossible, until his wife, Talora, attended an ordinary wedding. A “Chance” Encounter Talora didn’t expect anything unusual to happen at the wedding. But as she got ready, a…

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The Riots That Led to Friendship

burned building in Papua in August 2019
In the Summer of 2019, violent protests in Papua left burning buildings in their wake — but these protests also led to a surprising friendship.

People barricaded the streets. They threw stones at local businesses. They set buildings on fire. The people of Papua, Indonesia, were not happy, and they wanted the government to know. As TEAM missionaries serving in Papua, Devon and Katie Hayes thought it best to keep a low profile during the protests. They tried to avoid big groups of people in the streets and parks. And eventually, the Indonesian government sent military troops to clean up the situation. Devon and Katie warned their sons Seth (age 6) and Nick (age 3) about what was going on. But kids aren’t necessarily concerned…

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Discipling Christians to Live Their Faith at Work

Being a Christian means following Jesus everywhere — even at work. But what happens when your profession's best practices conflict with God's commands?

“For the longest time, I thought my job … was to figure out how to help people transform their relationships.” Henry*, a conflict management specialist, was taking a closer look at his role when he realized something: “That’s not exactly my job.” A Tool for Christian Professionals Henry had been working through the Vocational Manifesto, a discipleship program designed for Christian professionals. The program helps people find areas of brokenness in their professions (e.g. poor financial stewardship) and then replace them with ethical practices. Henry is a TEAM missionary serving in a professional role, in a nation where traditional Gospel…

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What Does a Bible Translator Do When. . .

A group of men in Chad work on a Bible translation project
Bible translation is rarely about simply replacing one word with another. Bible translators share some of their trickiest challenges and how they overcame them.

The journey of a TEAM Bible translator begins long before the first word of Scripture is written down. It includes undergoing extensive training, cultivating cultural sensitivity and navigating the possibilities of a difficult climate or an unfriendly reception. And once the translation work begins, each language project has unique challenges all along the way. For example … … After 10 long years, still searching for just the right word for “hope.” … Discovering two very different words for “God.” … Realizing that your recommendations as translation consultants don’t go over too well with the translation team. So, what’s a Bible…

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On an Island Without the Bible

Simson led the Bible translation team for the Hatam Bible. Here he sits at his desk.
Simson was desperate for a Hatam-language Bible. But he never imagined he would join — and ultimately lead — the Bible translation team that made it happen.

Imagine this: You’re on an island, and you can only keep a few Bible verses. The rest will be wiped from your memory. Which verses do you choose? Give it just a little thought, and the question quickly becomes complicated. You could use up all the verses on explaining Gospel. But what about God’s character? What pleases God? How does He think of you? How should you relate to others in light of Christ? Even if you had years to choose, you would agonize over what you were missing. But you might understand a little of what Simson Dowansiba felt….

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