Theological Famine Relief

Posted by Brett Toney on

The Famine

This past summer I had the opportunity to travel to Cameroon again to teach at a seminary. I walked away with an increased burden to see pastors better equipped to faithfully teach and preach the Word. That’s the main reason I feel compelled to have an ongoing partnership with friends in Cameroon and why we have started a new fund at Five Points called “Theological Famine Relief.”

The name (unashamedly) comes from the International Outreach branch of The Gospel Coalition (TGC). They have identifiedthat 85% of the world’s estimated 2.2 million evangelical churches are led by pastors with little or no training. This constitutes a famine. Consider by comparison, the staff pastors here at Five Points have a combined total of six theological degrees from institutions of higher education.

Coming back from Cameroon, I felt burdened to see that we use what we have to pursue the joy of our brothers and sisters in the severely under-resourced Global South. That certainly could be done by partnering with TGC’s existing work, but we are particularly looking at doing something that neither TGC nor any other ministry I’ve found is doing.

The Relief 

What we will be particularly focused on doing is working to provide not just individual resources to pastors in the Global South but an entire library. Using Amazon.com’s Kindle and Whispersync technology, a library’s worth of resources can be loaded onto a Kindle and remotely managed, allowing for additional resources to automatically be distributed as they become available.

However, we want to make this technology available in a culturally appropriate way that serves the long-term, on-the-ground work of missionaries and nationals. We will be looking to distribute these electronic resources in coordination with trusted and vetted ministry partners.

Partner With Us

You can partner with this global cause in a few ways. Most importantly, you can pray that God might be pleased to graciously blow on this spark-of-an-effort to equip the church and advance the gospel. You can pray that funds, distribution partners, publishers, and other logistics would all be provided that this effort would have an exponential impact.

You can also engage in this effort with us by connecting us with potential distribution partners in the Global South. Do you know missionaries, professors, pastors, or community development workers who know their context well and share our vision and values? If so, please get them in touch with me.

Last, you can give. It is looking like each fully-loaded Kindle will cost around $150. Tax-deductible contributions can be made online here (after logging in, select “Missions – General” in the first menu and “Theological Famine Relief” in the second menu). Or you can make a contribution in cash or check to Five Points. 

I am eager to see what the Lord will do through this new endeavor, and, if he wills, how it will expand to make a significant impact in bringing relief to the theological famine that exists.

Tags: missions, giving, theological famine relief