Daily Archives: 2018/06/24

2018/06/24 — Brigada Today

Compiled/Edited by Doug Lucas and Tina McCormick, Team Expansion
Brigada online has more graphics and links at http://www.brigada.org

In this issue…
1) Let’s Get Smart about Sending Out New Workers
2) There are Zillions of WordPress Plug-ins to Help You Do Forms
3) Serving As Senders Today
4) Want to Lose Brainpower? Just Boot Up your Smartphone?
5) DonorElf: Why Haven’t We Been Using This Before Now?
6) Salesforce Releases Nonprofit Cloud
7) Where are We on Global Missions Conferences?
8) Free Resources for Teaching the Bible to Children
9) We Asked for Input on new GDPR Rules for the European Union…
10) 5 Keys for Storytelling in Virtual Reality
11) Maybe It’s Time for Stepped-up Prayer for Italy
12) TESOL Training in Asia
13) We’re Grateful for…
14) The Last Bit: Join Me in Praying for Ed to Become a Disciple-maker
15) Closing Stuff

1) Let’s Get Smart about Sending Out New Workers

It costs a lot to send out and care for people in overseas ministry. In view of that, how can we increase the likelihood that our sent-ones will have an effective and productive experience? Mission Smart: 15 Critical Questions To Ask Before Launching Overseas (by David L Frazier with Equipping Servants Int’l) was written for overseas ministry candidates, church leaders, and mission agencies to discover the right people who know their callings, have been confirmed, can thrive overseas and be effective in cross-cultural ministry. It addresses serious gaps in the mission mobilization process and offers fresh solutions for seeing less missionary attrition. Learn more at…


Here’s the Amazon link to get your copy.


2) There are Zillions of WordPress Plug-ins to Help You Do Forms

Which one do you prefer? We’ve had good luck with Ninja Forms…


They say they’ve been downloaded 11 million times. (Of course, if 10,999,999 people decided not to use them, maybe we’re the only folks who still like them? : ) They seem always to have some of the most cutting edge tools, features, and capabilities. Some say they have the most powerful form-development engine — and they’re completely free with lots of extensions to work with other plug-in engines.

Another key player is Gravity Forms.


They are known for easy of use, time-saving features, and great integrations with groups like PayPal and MailChimp.

Those are two of Brigada’s favorites. What’s your favorite way to provide “contact us” forms, submission forms, and more? Just click “Comment” following this item in the app or on the web and thanks in advance for sharing your lessons learned.

3) Serving As Senders Today

Neal Pirolo has been a constant voice for good member care. He recently saw an item in Brigada and, he told us this past week, it started a string of thoughts that led him to write, “Thousands of words and hundreds of seminars, symposiums and surveys have erupted over the past several decades regarding missionary/member care. And, I am sure, they have all added to the awareness of and the necessity for a group of people partnering with the missionary in the task to which God has called the team. The multi-leveled and multi-diverse nature of missionary care has produced graphs and charts to show the complexity of need and sources of help to meet those needs. One such resource is a book first published in 1991, with a twenty-year Update in 2011. Serving As Senders Today speaks to the level of missionary care that Paul, the Apostle refers to as his “Partners in the Gospel.” People from the church at Philippi were meeting the needs of Paul in six distinct areas. By their actions, they showed that they “owned” his ministry. He was their field representative. But they took personal charge of their part in his ministry. Those missionaries who have developed their “Partnership Team” attest to the fact that these relationships and the commitments made (and kept) by the team have sustained them through years on field ministry and when they are on home assignment. This resource is available from Emmaus Road International.


(Thanks for all you do, Neal!)

4) Want to Lose Brainpower? Just Boot Up your Smartphone?

Kind of an oxymoron, right? Could a “smart phone” make you not so smart? That was the finding in a study done by the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin. The study basically found that smartphones were such a distraction, they ended up making us look dumb. We basically already knew this, right? That phones, for all they do, distract us from the matter at hand. But note that this study seemed to indicate that the phone distracted us even when we weren’t getting notifications. How can that be? What’s your take on smartphones? Click “Comment” following the app or web version of this item and share your opinion please. Thanks in advance for any insight you can offer.

5) DonorElf: Why Haven’t We Been Using This Before Now?

We recently decided to give DonorElf a try — to help us communicate with current and prospective donors more effectively. What in the world were we thinking? Why haven’t we been using this before?!!! The development team behind this application have obviously been involved at one time in raising support personally. Otherwise, how would they know so perfectly what we need? What’s more, as I (Doug) was using the application, I had an idea for another feature. I wrote them via the in-application help screen and within a few hours, they wrote back to say they liked my idea and would implement it by the end of the week. (We wish our friends at other software companies would be so responsive.) Yes, this app will set you back around $18/month. But just the ability to send timely thank-you notes is worth that already. What’s more, if you are part of an organization which uses a compatible accounting software, DonorElf can integrate with that package in such a way that you are notified the same day that your organization’s financial team enters the gift. See the long list of compatible software at:


Learn more about DonorElf’s many other features at…


Also, in case you were wondering, we aren’t getting a kickback from DonorElf for sharing this item. (At this point, they don’t even know we’re writing about them!) Thank you DonorElf!

6) Salesforce Releases Nonprofit Cloud

This month, Salesforce released what they’re calling the “Nonprofit Cloud.” With this new set of features, they’re claiming that nonprofits can gain a complete view of constituents and mission, track and measure impact in real time, raise more resources by unlocking donor data, and
much more. Basically, this application is designed to help you with fundraising, program management, and marketing. Are you using these features in Salesforce? Is it everything they’ve promised and more? If so, please click “comment” following the app or web version of this item. We’d love to hear a real user’s experience. Learn more about Salesforce Nonprofit Cloud at…


and via the free magazine at…


7) Where are We on Global Missions Conferences?

Allen Yeh’s thoughtful analysis at…


might not fully explain polycentric missiology as much as you’d like, but it does indeed paint a good picture of five major missions conferences that happened a half-decade ago. It also might help you understand a bit about where those conferences each see us going in the future of missiology. Take a look — and if you have an opinion about his opinion, please click “Comment” after the web or app version of this item. We’d love to hear YOUR opinion!

8) Free Resources for Teaching the Bible to Children

More than a quarter of the world’s population is under the age of 15 and Christians need to be equipped to teach this open-hearted “mission field.” A missionary in New Zealand publishes free Bible Lessons complete with everything required to teach over 150 Bible stories in cities or villages. Training videos and step-by-step instructions help inexperienced teachers gain confidence and skills. Check out


9) We Asked for Input on new GDPR Rules for the European Union…

And the Brigada audience responded. For example, Peter expressed his opinion that, just because we might use MailChimp as a service to send newsletters, it didn’t get “the monkey off our back,” so to speak. Maybe MailChimp was acting as the processor, but Peter felt that we would still be the controller.

Carolyn shared, ” Have you run the tools in MailChimp to get your account GDPR compliant? It took me a while to go through and set up everything on mine. Start at:


Also, there are things you need to have on your website (see the checklist on the bottom half of this page:

She also pointed out, “Make sure you make necessary changes to any comment forms on your website, any place where people donate, etc. If you have a “Leave a Reply” form, with an option to save name, email and website, that means you are storing people’s data, so you need to check regulations for keeping that secure (SSL?) and how people can request for it to be deleted later.”

She added, “I don’t have all this figured out yet…but yes, it is serious, and yes, there are things that need to be taken care of to be compliant.” I’m glad she’s willing to help us all address the details of GDPR, not only so we can be compliant, but also so we can be better at storing and interacting with the personal information of our friends, partners, and co-workers. Thanks Carolyn!!!

Do you have other opinions or comments on the GDPR? Please add to the thread at…


and thanks for your input.

10) 5 Keys for Storytelling in Virtual Reality

Augmented & Virtual Reality are the latest technology revolution. Are you able to participate online for an hour on July 18 at 8:00 AM Pacific (GMT -7) with John Bucher? He will address how stories can best be structured, created, and then told in virtual immersive spaces. You’ll also meet 25 other leaders and share your interest in AR/VR. Learn more and register here:


11) Maybe It’s Time for Stepped-up Prayer for Italy

OK, maybe we shouldn’t have said ‘maybe.’ It’s definitely time. We’ve heard that fewer than 10% or 15% of Italians actually practice any faith in Christ (including those who claim to be Catholics). Italians also tell us that materialism is on the rise. And we understand that over 70% of all villages and cities don’t have a Bible-believing congregation. The sixth book of the New Testament was written to these passionate, loving people. Let’s pray that God will bless them mightily, that revival will sweep across their nation, and that a missionary movement could rise up so that they could step up like never before to help fulfill the Great Commission globally. For inspiration and ideas, please watch this video, by prayercast.com, as you pray. Please consider using it in an upcoming service or prayer meeting at your church or group.


12) TESOL Training in Asia

Pick up TESOL training designed for those in ministry set at a ministry budget. Asean Center for TESOL offers an intensive, five-week course leading to a TESOL certificate in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Get classes, community experience, and lots of guidance – and a certificate – all at the same time. And it just might be cheaper to fly out and take this course than it is to take the same course in North America or Europe. See the contact info below for application forms or more information:


or email
infothaiatactesoldotcom .

13) We’re Grateful for…

…A gift of $40 from a long-time friend of Brigada. He wrote, “Your ministry blessed me back in 2003-5 (is it possible you have been around that long??) when I was first learning about unreached people groups.” God be praised. We’re sooo grateful! Thank you! (And yes, it has indeed been a bit of a run since we started in January 1995!)
…A regular gift of $25 from the folks who put together the book, Mission Smart, available online at…


Want to partner with Brigada so that all may hear in order to hasten the coming of Jesus? Just click “Donate” at www.brigada.org, or mail a check payable to Team Expansion (Brigada), 13711 Willow Reed Drive, Louisville, KY 40299. Team Expansion is a 501(c)3 incorporation so, for USA citizens, your gift to Christ by writing a check to Team Expansion is tax-deductible. Thank you, in advance, for your partnership!

14) The Last Bit: Join Me in Praying for Ed to Become a Disciple-maker

This past week, we received a note from a gentleman in Indianapolis, Indiana. His note was simple: He asked us to pray for him as he was striving to put disciple-making into practice beginning at his church and beyond. This humble and thoughtful note stirred us to realize — What if God could raise up an “Ed” in every church or small group? What if an “Ed” could begin praying that disciple-making could surge back to the forefront of our minds. There are numerous plans, lots of books, and tons of intent, but when all the dust settles, we fear that far too often, there is little action. We need a modern-day “Ed” in every church across North America, Europe, Africa, South America, Asia, Australia, and all parts in between. We need those modern-day “Ed’s” to care enough to be courageous — to approach their respective churches with an action plan, yes. But we also need them to begin implementing personally, one by one. We each need the personal moxie to start small groups of serious followers. We need to redouble our efforts each to find an Ed in our midst who will become a disciple worth multiplying, then begin praying, obeying, sharing, and training others. Only in this way will we see true growth to the edges of our existing churches, then beyond into the edges of the unreached. Only then will missionaries rise up who know how to make disciples among friends and the not-yet believers.

In Ed’s case, he happened to have taken part in the very first Zume (pronounced zoo-may) group that I (Doug) ever facilitated, way back when Zume was in beta form, when the website hadn’t even gone public yet, in January of 2017. Ed never forgot the material. When he wrote this past week, we thought of others who know what to do – but just need the courage and faith to act. If you haven’t tried the Zume way to make disciples, would you give it a shot this week? The 9-lesson course is free, and there’s no book nor DVD to buy. You don’t have to pay a subscription fee — and no one will solicit you for money. You simply gather 3 to 11 friends and start a group (of 4-12 people). You start working your way through lessons 1-9, putting into practice what you learn, as you go, making disciples. Try Zume today and see if it doesn’t help YOU become like Ed — faithful, obedient, multiplying.


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