4) Is the USA Becoming Less Christian? Pew Researchers Say "Yes."

In their sweeping report, Pew Research said that two-thirds of the people in the USA now claim to be Christian, down from over three-fourths just ten years ago. Meanwhile, US of Americans who say they have “no religion” (the “nones”) have risen from 17% to 26% during the same time.


We love reading Justin Long’s take on the news, however. In an email he sent us last week, he asked about timing. “Will the “nones” change as they age?” He also challenged the research in its definition of “nones” anyway. But in a third conclusion, he also admitted — “This might be the new normal.”


Meanwhile, while traveling in Birmingham (England), we were struck by the statistics there. The city is said to have 1.3 million now. Residents told us that 35% are currently Muslim. But 55% of those under 11 years of age say they are followers of Islam. In a park on the evening of a recent Islamic religious festival, 110,000 Muslims gathered to celebrate. As we prayer-walked in certain sectors of the city, there were times in which we didn’t see anyone who seemingly WASN’T Muslim.


We don’t view this as a dramatic and horrible shift. We view it as a tremendous opportunity to love and care for people who have immigrated from other lands where they might have lived their entire lives without ever knowing a Christian or hearing the story of Jesus and the hope He brings. However, if they STILL do so, even in England (or the USA or wherever immigrants are settling), shame on us.


(Learn more about Justin Long’s ministry of research and analysis at


14) The Last Bit: What Does One Say at the Wake of Perished Missionary?

Last week, I (Doug) migrated from one funeral wake to another to show our respect, appreciation, and partnership at the loss of three treasured workers, each of whom gave their lives while serving Christ, our org and our partners, and the Great Commission. Unfortunately, the sensitive nature of their work prevents us from revealing where they served or what they were doing. We probably shouldn’t even reveal how they died (other than to say that it wasn’t a death planned by those who might have wanted to persecute them; it was a tragic traffic accident; enough said). Their family members’ emotions were all over the board, as one might imagine. But I have to say — the overarching theme was a sense of pride and purpose. Comments like, “You can’t stop telling the Good News. If you do so, our son’s (daughter’s) life will be for nothing.” We were humbled, sobered, and inspired by family and friends — and the testimonies they shared about the life-long plans these workers had held to serve cross-culturally.


So — what does one say? What can we communicate in times like those? All I could think of saying was, “Thank you. Your son/daughter was doing something incredibly, eternally important. He (she) didn’t die while doing drugs or getting in trouble. Your daughter (son) made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of the Creator and King of the universe. For that, you can always be thankful.” Still, I wept because I couldn’t find words.


We also helped team members deal with the grief. We placed three chairs at the front of the room, each with a sign bearing the name of the fallen teammate. Team members each could walk forward and speak to the chair, sharing a leave-taking, or giving thanks in a way that he or she didn’t have time to give previously. It took as long for team members to grieve as it did for family members. And, in fact, the grief will continue forward. We shared something of the cycle that they’ll see in the days, weeks, and (for some) even months to come. We predicted frustration, confusion, guilt, sadness, depression, anxiety — and more — would take place on the journey ahead. We asked team members to watch for *deep* depression (suicidal thoughts, inability to function, etc.) and refer those team members immediately. But we also cautioned them against judging team members who seemed ready to move on in a more “instant” way. We explained that different people grieve in different ways. Just because a friend doesn’t cry, it doesn’t mean she didn’t love. And just because a friend DOES cry, it doesn’t mean he isn’t working through the process in a healthy way.


What would YOU say at the death of a missionary/friend? What’s the best resource or book to recommend for team leaders or regional specialists? Thanks for any help and hope you can give. Please pray for fallen colleagues throughout the globe, wherever and however they might have perished.


4) YWAM’s training vessel Next Wave’s next DTS in Greece

YWAM’s 42 meter training vessel t/v Next Wave is a great place for a Discipleship Training School (DTS) with a sailing theme. 2020 school starts 6th April on the beautiful Greek island of Chios, then sails to Skala Loutron, Lesvos for main teaching phase. Connect deeply with God, then add dinghy sailing, canoeing, snorkeling and swimming in Azure blue bays with beach BBQs. Check out 


5) It’s Not Too Late to Order Hindu World Prayer Guides (for Oct. 20)

Remember that his 15-day emphasis on praying for Hindus begins October 20th. That means you still have time to get you, your group, and/or your church on board. Learn more at….


Printed copies:


PDF Downloads:  


DVD about Hinduism:


12) Catch this Free 12-part Course on How to Be a Missions Mobilizer

Kenneth Ortiz put together these short-training videos on “How to be a Mobilizer.” What’s your take on them?


Ortiz is the Director of New Initiatives and Partnerships at Bethany Global University. He is also the Executive Director for their Gap Year Program. Check it out!


1) If You Missed Missio Nexus "Future," At Least Watch This (for free)

If you missed last month’s Missio Nexus “Future” conference, at least watch this one message from Andrew Brunson. Hear the testimony of this worker who was held captive for nearly two years in a Turkish prison. Hear his heart. At the end of everything he experienced, hear him conclude that Jesus is worth it all. Hear him say — we have to take risks. Hear him say that “we have to be willing to die. You probably won’t [die]. But at least you’ll be ready.” Thanks to much to Ted Esler and the Missio Nexus family for releasing this main session video to YouTube for all the world to hear.


Read his story in Time Magazine…


You can learn more about Andrew Brunson via his new book, which we’ll review next week, “God’s Hostage.”


3) Let’s Pray for Peace in Burkina Faso

The PrayerCast people wrote recently,” Over 200 churches have closed in northern Burkina Faso to avoid further attacks. “If the world continues to do nothing…the result will be the elimination of the Christian presence,” said the President of the nation’s Episcopal Conference. Though Christianity is the minority (Islam the majority), it is now a quarter of the population! Islam and Christianity have largely enjoyed a peaceful coexistence.


“But this once peaceful country has turned into a hotbed for extremism – and now the long-held peace is threatened. Though Christians have been specifically targeted in recent attacks, this violence has taken hundreds of Christian and Muslim lives and displaced tens of thousands more! Meanwhile, Islam is spreading into nearly every ethnic group, with unreached peoples steadily turning to its teachings.


“It is URGENT that the Gospel reach the Burkinabe – roughly five million have never heard it! And so we pray!” It seems to be our first and best option. But let’s not let it be our last.


If you’d like a backdrop for prayer for Burkina Faso, visit…


6) The Secret of True Life Film in 17 languages

Awarded Best Short at Christian Film events in the USA and Britain, this is a gripping tale of discovery told through brilliant animation. This 26-minute gospel resource is now in 17 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, Spanish, and major Indian languages. Check it out at…


Stream free of charge to your phone or computer. High resolution files for TV use, etc, are available upon request. Write to…


filmatsecretoftruelifedotcom  (filmatsecretoftruelifedotcom)  


7) Teach in South East Asia

Chiang Rai International Christian School is looking for teachers for the 2020-2021 school year. CRICS is a strategic K-12 school located in northern Thailand with close access to neighboring countries. The mission of CRICS is to provide quality education while sharing Jesus with local and MK students, and also to enable missionaries to live on the mission field an extended time with their families.


9) Need Insights on Coalition-Building in Restrictive Environments?

If you work in Media to Movements, you know how important – and difficult – building a follow-up coalition can be. Join this free one-hour online event on Tuesday, November 5, at 8 AM Pacific. Two experts will be sharing their lessons learned from coalition-building in restrictive environments in North Africa and Asia. Learn more and register at 


4) Remember that Carrie Osgood Map of World Religions?

We keep seeing that Carrie Osgood map of world religions. (Recall that we referenced it in the 2019/03/31 edition, item 6, “Carrie Osgood Might have Created the Most Interesting World Map Ever.”)


The press she’s getting via the World Economic Forum site continues to be played in social media.


Some missions agency has probably already hired her as their new researcher to give Justin Long a run for his money. : )



10) Hispaniola Prayer Conference

Here’s an invitation to all Christian ministries on the island of Hispaniola to come together for a time of prayer, encouragement, and collaboration. It’s slated for February 20-21, 2020 at the Hodelpa Garden Suites Golf and Convention Center. The goal is to bring all Christ-followers together to believe God for a Jesus transformation of the island. For more info, contact

bartowbarahonaatgmaildotcom  (bartowbarahonaatgmaildotcom)   or call 770-881-6621. Tickets are $12 and are available at…


6) CATALYZE — Discover Your Calling

Do you sense God calling you to serve overseas? Do you long to see Muslims follow Jesus Christ? Do you have what it takes? They can help you get there! This three-day intensive is designed to impart practical missional skills. Learn how to communicate the love of Jesus with your Muslim friends and begin a lifestyle of discipleship. They stage events in multiple locations. For more info, visit …


9) Mountain Feet Weekend Discernment Retreat

Mountain Feet Weekend helps you hear and respond to God’s invitation on your life so you may humbly and confidently join God’s kingdom purpose in a way which honors who you’re created to be. It takes place Oct. 25–27 near Oklahoma City. The $95 fee includes lodging, meals, materials, and the opportunity to get to know others like you who dare to live a life of eternal consequence. Register by Oct. 20:


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