14) BackPage: Teamwork, in Action, in Baby Grand Form

What are some great examples of teamwork for you? I love watching these “Piano guys” at work. Check ’em out at…

I like it because everyone knows his role and he does it with precision and appreciation for the overall sound. I love it that they don’t seem dejected if they have a smaller “bit part” (like closing the lid on the piano? What kind of music does THAT make?).

But I also like it because, together, they accomplish more than any one of them could have done if taken separately — the definition of synergy. That’s the way all good teams should function, if they’re worth their salt.

Finally, I love it that it sounds GREAT! In other words, they’re all skilled — and if you take their efforts as a group, the outcome is fantastic. Great teams are actually more than great attitudes, although attitudes are super important. COMPETENCY matters too… and that’s probably a factor in your team too.

What models or examples of great teamwork have you seen lately? (Just click on “Comment” below, then enter your video. We’ll look forward to your input. (Thanks, All, for the tip-off on Piano Guys!)

14) The BackPage: Eric Whitacre’s “Virtual Choir”

This past week, a Brigada participant asked if I had ever seen Eric Whitacre’s “Virtual Choir” talk at TED. I must have been on another planet. This is one of the most interesting and intriguing concept talks ever. It’s 14 minutes — but believe me, you won’t regret it


After I watched his TED Talk, I had to go find the full 2.0 version…

And then I had to go find the video by Britlin Losee that, according to Whitacre, started it all. She was the little girl who sent him the video-letter, explaining that he had inspired her to become a composer. What a great story — that she, then, inspired him to create this “virtual choir” that connected a couple of thousand voices from dozens of countries all over the world. So here’s my question: What triggers inspiration? And how can you inspire others? Here are some shooting-from-the-hip theories that I have:

  • *** Inspiration often comes from the place in which you least expect it. A successful high-brow composer gets an idea from a little girl, alone in her bedroom, with a teddy-bear on the shelf behind her.
  • *** We often glean inspiration someone unlikely to have ever earned the platform to grant it. Think about it — we often catch insight not from those who are normally speaking, but from those who have little voice: The under-dog who wins over the champion, the disadvantaged one who somehow overcomes all the odds, or the person in the midst of pain from a terrible life-threatening illness who takes on the world.
  • *** Glimpses of inspiration happen from the top of a mountain, or on a canoe trip in the canyon. To get ideas in here (our hearts or heads), we sometimes have to get out there (on the streets or among the poor).

Can you see the trend? If this is the case — if my hunch is correct — the one thing you need, if you’re going to inspire others, is “voice.” You don’t need riches. You don’t even need a ton of talent. You just have to care. You have to endeavor. You have to be exceptional in your effort. If we could learn how to inspire others (and how to be inspired by others), something tells me there would be a lot more cool insights by future Eric Whitacres.

Your thoughts? Just click on the comment box below. And thanks for your contribution.

5) 5 Languages Of Appreciation In The Work Place —

With subtitle, “Empowering Organizations By Encouraging People,” author Gary Chapman and psychologist Dr. Paul White have teamed up to write this newly released book to help supervisors and managers effectively communicate appreciation and encouragement to their employees, resulting in higher levels of job satisfaction, healthier relationships between managers and staff, and decreased cases of burnout. Ideal for both the profit and non-profit sectors, the principles presented in this book have a proven history of success in businesses, schools, medical offices, churches, and industry. The book contains an access code for the reader to take a comprehensive online MBA Inventory (Motivating By Appreciation). The inventory is designed to provide a clearer picture of an individual’s primary language of appreciation and motivation as experienced in a work-related setting. Understanding an individual’s primary and secondary languages of appreciation can assist managers and supervisors in communicating effectively to their team members. To find out more about the book and the accompanying assessment tool for teams go to

7) Best Apps for iPhone” Cont’d: Best App. For Your Intranet —

Have you tried




Use it for free if all your users have the same ‘domain’ on the end of their email. For example, if your entire office has email addresses, ask them to log onto Yammer and you’re in business! Instant Intranet! Learn more at the site. No charge as long as you don’t mind allowing things to be a bit “loosey-goosey” on administration. The network will be encrypted, mind you, so outsiders won’t be able to see or learn about your personnel nor about an of your sensitive fields. And along the way, you’ll pick up free calendaring, free discussion threading, free Facebook-like status updates, and much much more.

12) The BackPage: Keeping the Team in Team on your Next Mission Trip —

Two weeks ago, I had the good fortune to accompany a short-term mission team to Haiti. Prior to the trip, I attempted to collect some resources that would help facilitate a daily group processing time. My goal was to focus the debriefing time in four major areas:


a) brief worship and prayer


b) logistical recap/planning — That’s where we’d review the schedule, what’s getting accomplished, what do we need to tweak, etc….


c) “What are we learning about…” — This isn’t so much team building as it is trying to catch the cross-cultural near-misses, the lessons learned about working with local people, and what that is teaching us about ourselves, etc.


d) Body life — This is where we planned to extinguish possible brushfires. We would invite the “feelers” to speak up… evoking the things we need to consider. If necessary, we’d call for folks to talk one on one (if they hadn’t already).


Several people pitched in. Jenny, a Member Care specialist in our office at Team Expansion, reminded me of these resources:


Reentry After Short Term Missionary Service


Sorting It Out: Simple Questions for Debriefing Short-termers – Various Articles


Reentry Exercises



We had used the “Round Trip” curriculum — all 5 weeks of it prior to the trip. (It was originally recommended to us by a Missions Pastor in Evansville by the name of Pat; Thanks Pat; it worked *great*!)


There were several others who fed me questions to ask, discussions to lead, etc. In the end, the debriefing time each night turned out to be the highlight of the trip. The short-term missions team developed into a kind of “virtual family” that would experience things out in the community by day, then share them with each other at night — so the overall group picked up on everybody’s joint over all experience. Furthermore, the evening sessions really helped everybody process the day, pick up on what we were learning, avoid duplicating mistakes, etc. Several participants told me, 6 and 7 days after the trip, that they were missing those evening meetings. They had formed a kind of community through those sessions, yet, that community didn’t cause them to “ghetto” during the day. In fact, just the opposite: the community experiences at night seem to fuel their fire to be more and more adventurous and outward-focused during the day.


Are there particular resources you’ve used for meetings like those? Is there a book or study workbook you’d recommend? Feel free to remind us of past Brigada references… and thanks in advance to anyone willing to post your best suggestion.




To comment or inquire on this item, click on “Comment” below the online version of this item at…


2) Looking for an Easy Way to Integrate Your WorkGroup or Team? —

One Brigada user recommends Virtual Filing Cabinet:

It will support 200 concurrent users, all sharing files together. It lets them keep their emails, faxes, notes, meetings, appointments, document management, document collaboration with other Workgroup VFC users, on-demand PDF conversion, bulk email, document scanning, business card scanning, GPS enabled mapping, and import/export to outlook all in one easy-to-use solution. Of course, your mileage might vary. And some might say — ouch … $99 is steep. But remember — that’s a one-time cost. But with products like Central Desktop…

(which has new hooks into Office that will blow your mind) and…

(which has become a kind of de facto file-sharing solution for some)

Virtual Filing Cabinet might be pushed to the back of the drawer. But isn’t it great to have some choices!? :-)

4) Build Your Multi-cultural Team —

That’s what Next Step can help you do at their Multi-cultural Team Building Workshop, January 23-29, 2011, at the International Linguistics Center in Dallas, TX. It will only set you back $100… and the instruction you get will be deep and wide. Understand yourself better… and thereby understand your team better. Training Consultants from SIL (including their Multi-Cultural Community Facilitator) will help you think through who you are, as well as help you figure out how to learn who *they* (the multi-cultural members of your blended team) are. Interested? Contact Alan at…

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9) New 4-Month Grad Cerftificate in Mulicultural Teamwork

Beginning August, 2009, the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics (GIAL) in Dallas, Texas, will offer courses leading to a Graduate Certificate in Multicultural Teamwork. People working with other cultures and different organizations will learn how teams work across cultural boundaries, and how to handle the various cultural factors affecting their work together. The program includes four courses: Christianity Across Cultures, Social and Political Organization, Multicultural Teamwork, and Multicultural Leadership. Learn more at

or email

or call 1-800-892-3356 or 972-708-7343. All nationalities are welcome.

6) Conference On Cross-Cultural Partnerships

The 2009 COSIM Conference is June 15-17, 2009 at The Prince Center, Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan. The theme is: “Sailing Together Through Changing Winds: Surviving and Thriving in Cross-Cultural Partnerships.” Participate in excellent plenary sessions and workshops that will deepen your understanding and equip you for healthy cross-cultural partnership. The conference is reasonably priced. COSIM (Coalition on the Support of Indigenous Ministries) is a fellowship of evangelical organizations and churches with a common interest in the support and capacity building of majority-world ministries. COSIM’s mission is to expand the understanding and practice of healthy partnerships with indigenous ministries for the advance of the Gospel.

Fact sheet/registration:

COSIM web site:

or email Werner

or phone 480-951-0900

1) Email Collaboration Solution Found!

Looking for a secure, collaborative email solution for your organization, ministry, or team? Remember the missionaries that asked for recommendations (see the 2008/09/2 edition:

They ended up choosing a solution called Email Center Pro

This solution is…
*** Secure (https encryption)
*** Allows collaboration among multiple user accounts
*** Has a template system to help them quickly answer repetitive questions
*** Helps with accountability by showing what has been assigned to whom
*** Has had super-fast customer service (that’s even tweaked a few things at the server level for their specific needs!)

And the best news is that Email Center Pro has created special pricing for non-profits (yay!) and is giving Brigada a gift for every new user this article generates! How big? 50% of first month’s payment and 15% of the user’s contract for *life*! Wow, that would be $13 every month for Premium accounts!

All you need to do to ensure your discount and generate the gift for Brigada is to sign up at this page:

and enter one of the following promotional codes when you for an account level:


That’s it! From there, they take care of everything. (Thanks for any help that this generates for Brigada. If it does, we’ll show any and all donations here.)

2) How Would You Advise This Mission Team To Respond?

Here’s a mission team in a Muslim land with 6 local volunteers who are wanting to help answer 400 emails from seekers that are starting to rot in our inbox. After finding them, the team put together a pretty good plan for getting them access to computers/DSL/VPNs, etc. But now they need a secure way for these volunteers to access the emails, then respond to, and finally send them. To bypass the issue of whole disk encryption this all needs to happen online. If this system had some nifty capacity to manage/limit user account, route all incoming messages back into the central in-box, etc. that would be ideal. In some ways, this sounds, in part, like a Customer-relation management software package, but the team has no full-time I.T. guy, so the solution has to be easy to implement. Any easy solutions? If so, just click on “comment” below to leave your response. They’d be very grateful.

13) The Back Page: The Power Of Teamwork

I was just thinking today about the young man in northern Africa who first told me about Spot Messenger. He labors daily in a Muslim land, thankful for the chance to be at the front lines for the Lord. He had seen the effectiveness of this device and wanted to pass the word on to others. Yes, it took him a few extra minutes to send a note about the device. But to him, it was worth it… because he wanted to invest in others, since someone had invested in him.

That’s the power of teamwork. We each become followers and/or leaders, dynamically, throughout the day or week. We each get the chance to help make — or break — others.

Can you think of a helpful action that someone took on your team? Can you illustrate an approach by which someone helped you become more effective or more mature? If so, please click on “comment” immediately below this item on the web. Share the power of teamwork… and maybe by doing so, you’ll help some other team to become all the more effective. That’s the multiplying power of Brigada!

The Backpage: The Power of Harmony (Olympic Opener)

Like many inhabitants of our planet (about 15% of the whole world), my wife and I watched as China threw a party to beat all parties at the Olympic Opening Ceremonies. I was amazed by all the wizardry, costumes, people hanging on wires, and the works. Granted, I would have loved a more telling commentary — one that explained the ups … and *downs* of China’s past and present. (Can any body say, ‘positive spin’ on a history that hasn’t always been known for guarding human rights?) But laying all that aside for a moment, I’ve got to ask: How in the *world* did they do that refrigerator box routine? (Photo at left courtesy Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) You know… the “movable type blocks” scene which everybody just assumed those 897 boxes were run by hydraulics, forming shapes of the wind, Chinese characters, ‘waves’, and more. How does one create that kind of teamwork? (On 3 different occasions, they showed the Chinese character that translates, “Harmony.”) How’d they do it? How do you get 897 guys to spell out the shape of a wave, the wind, or a complex Chinese character in Bronze, Seal, and then Songti kaishu (Modern Chinese Script)? Well the explanation I heard was 8 hours a day, solid, for 4 months. That’s right: 861,120 man-hours. Yikes. No wonder they had teamwork. Never mind that the budget was $300 million dollars. The point is — how does a guy know how high (let alone *when*) to raise his box. (Curious there were no ladies, right? :-) ) Again, let’s try to overlook all the human rights violations for a moment and just focus on the “lessons learned” from that one scene: What’s your opinion? How would you train 897 guys to do that? What kind of technical assistance would you give them? (What were those audio headsets telling them?) Anyone got any inside info?

So if we grant that it took a lot of teamwork and precision, what this illustrates *big-time* is that for a team of 897 to reall pull off a large-scale success like this, he has to recognize he’s part of the body. Likewise (if you can permit me a poetic license for a moment, even about a government that has restricted rights for decades), we’ll function best in the body of Christ if and when we see ourselves in perspective of the larger body. Ephesians 4. Romans 12. I Corinthians 12.

What’s your perspective on that “harmony” movable type routine? How do *you* think they did it with all those refrigerator boxes? (I’m prepared for a couple of commenters to take me to task about ‘why in the world would I watch an opening ceremony from a nation that has limited human rights’… but what I’m really hoping we can carve out is — how does a team learn to act together as one?)

10) The Backpage: How Does One Recognize Leadership Potential?

In the Kingdom of God, there’s a place for everyone, but I suppose not all of us are comfortable in leadership positions. Lately I’ve been asking myself, how does one recognize leadership potential? This is coming up in my life this week because I have to oversee the process of appointing captains of the soccer team I coach. One approach is for me to just assign them. Another would be for me to pick one and let players vote for another. A third would be to just boldly allow them to vote on all 2 or 3 captains’ positions.

The same thing comes up on mission teams. Do we just set it up so that the team members vote for someone as team leader? Or do we just let the regional guy *appoint* a team leader. (Our organization currently does the latter.) What’s your protocol… or, if you had it to do over again, what would you recommend for others.

But beyond mere *practice*, what are the qualities you look for in budding young leaders? Steadfastness under pressure? Ability to handle stressful situations without panic? Intelligence? Sensitivity? Diplomacy? Ability to grasp the vision? What are your favorite “top five” characteristics for leaders? Just click on “comment” below this item and have at it. Please help us assemble a body of knowledge, links & pointers, and life lessons. Thanks!


20060723 Brigada Today

In this issue…


  1. NEWS SUMMARIES PUSHED TO YOUR INBOX — Do you have trouble remembering to check Or do you live in a place where web access is costly? One of our Team Expansion workers asked this past week if I could recommend a daily email news update, so he wouldn’t be caught in the dark about some major terrorist action or whatever. It was a good question, I thought, and it spurred me to do some research. I found a lot of good help from Dartmouth College Library. For your convenience, I’ve clipped some of the best options for you here. Just scan through and pick out the right level for you. Then click on the link, sign up once and forget about it. The rest will come pushed to you via email:

    BBC: This service lets you specify which categories you’d like from a large list including each continent, subsections of the United Kingdom, Entertainment, Science/Nature, and more. Three to five stories will come in each category, and depending on which you choose, some may overlap. You may also specify delivery time and mail format. A great service for those who’d like a non-US perspective on current events.

    CNN: A daily e-mail, CNN’s QuickNews features fifteen to twenty headlines and article summaries arranged by category: Top Stories, Weather, US News, World News, Sports, and Business. All link to full content.

    CNN *breaking* news: CNN Breaking News is very fast. The content is typically political, though some financial and other news is delivered. Each alert comes with a link to Highly recommended for those who want to keep aware of current developments.

    CNN *Custom* news alerts: This custom e-mail alert will notify you of any article that mentions your selected keywords. You can choose immediate, daily, or weekly delivery. You’ll first have to register as a member; then click the “Create your own” link on the alerts page.

    New York Times: This service brings you the top stories from the New York Times, and lets you choose from a diverse set of categories, including Business, Editorial, and Arts. Headlines are followed by a brief summary and links to the full articles.

    Washington Post: This daily alert briefs you on current events in eight categories–Highlights, Politics, World, Nation, Metro, Business, Technology, Sports, and Style. Each category features one story summary and a link to more news in that category. There are also links to editorials, horoscopes, comics, and a Washington DC webcam.

  2. NEED A RESOURCE TO TRAIN TEAMS GOING OUT FROM YOUR CHURCH? — “Ready Set Go” is a Global Training Ministries DVD for your use. These 2 training DVD’s assist your local church to train your short term missions teams. Each of the 8 sessions gives insights into key missions concepts. Your training coordinator will develop the individual sessions in interaction with the team to enhance the effectiveness of each team members experience. Purchase online for (Aust) $39.95 + postage.

    For more information see or email

    globaltraining(at)ozemail(dot)com(dot)au [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

  3. HOW TO FOLLOW UP YOUR SUMMER TRIPS — “The Journey Deepens” is a weekend retreat to help prospects explore what it is like to be a missionary, discover whether a missionary or sender role is God’s fit, and connect with mission agencies. These retreats are for college students, young professionals in their 20s and 30s, adults in their 40s and 50s, and high school seniors willing to explore becoming a missionary. Each retreat of 50 participants and 10 missionary mentors from multiple agencies is highly relational with extended worship, small group discussions, personal reflection and much prayer. Discussions include agencies guidance, finances, singles/families, etc. For those in south central USA a 2006 retreat will be Sep 29-Oct 1 in Davis, Oklahoma (between Dallas and Oklahoma City). For those in southeast USA a 2006 retreat will be Oct 20-22 in Atlanta, Georgia. Agencies may apply to send a mentor/recruiter. These retreats are presented by MissionsFocus Int’l and co-sponsored by ACMC, Caleb Project, Perspectives and the U.S. Center for World Mission. For more visit

  4. MISSIONARY TRAINING CAMP — Elijah Company will host another training October 12-15, 2006 at Living Waters Farm in Virginia. These four-day intensive exposures often illuminate the pathways for those desiring to be in missions. From the last training Robyn wrote: We are still processing the closest four days with Jesus ever! Meaning you discipled us so deeply according to the Word that we felt so close to Him, we truly were able to “hear”. Please do not wait too long to register. For more information and applications write to elijah(at)elijahcompany(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .] or call 757-226-3507. See their web site at .

  5. PLACES AVAILABLE IN BI-LINGUAL DISCIPLESHIP SCHOOL — StEP International, a residential missions and ministry discipleship training center, begins its next school year November 5th in Pirmasens, Germany. During Phase 1 of the 10-month program, students experientially and relationally learn to apply Biblical principles to their every day lives, as well as, learn practical skills, such as budgeting, computers, car maintenance and either German or English. Working closely with a local church, students are also equipped and released to participate in church ministries and outreaches. Then, during Phase 2, students further apply their training through missions work, including outreaches in Europe and a 2-month missions trip to Suriname.

    You can contact Joe and Shelli at office(at)step-international(dot)de [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .], and the school website can be found at


    and find an interactive map. The map was constructed with 2002-2005 data from more than 100 studies involving surveys of 80,000 people. Countries with large populations — China, India and Russia ranked 82nd, 125th and 167th, respectively — “tend to do quite badly,” White said. “One of the reasons we put that down to is the collective identity.” [taken from a news source]. TOP 10

    The Top 10 nations on the “world map of happiness”:

    1. Denmark 2. Switzerland 3. Austria 4. Iceland 5. Bahamas 6. Finland 7. Sweden 8. Bhutan 9. Brunei Darussalam 10. Canada The U.S. was ranked No. 23, with Australia close behind at No. 26., While the United Kingdom was No. 41. (Thanks Paul!!!)

  7. ORPHANAGE SEARCHING FOR CURRICULUM — Circle of Hope is a new Christian non-profit organization that is working with orphans in Africa. They currently looking for well written international curriculum for a school that will be built for African students and would like to know if anyone has found or created a really well-done curriculum in English that is appropriate for students in less developed countries. They will be happy to share the information gathered with others. If you have any suggestions please send them to julie(at)newlinkmedia(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

  8. IS THERE A TENTMAKING GROUP FOR OIL WELL WORKERS? — That’s what Hebert would like to know. He’s searching for a missions agency that sends oil well tentmakers to sensitive countries. If you know of one, email hebert67(at)yahoo(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

  9. MAKE A DIFFERENCE WITH BRIGADA — Want to help make a way for Brigada to keep cranking out the door and onto missions radars worldwide? Just click on “sponsor” in the top menu (to use PayPal or a credit card), or if you prefer, send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous. In any case, thanks for considering Brigada in your estate giving, your monthly church missions fund, and/or your own personal giving for this calendar year.

  10. THE BACKPAGE: THE AGE OF PARTNERSHIPS — Is this the age of partnerships, or *what*?! In the missions agency I lead, we’re teamed up with medical groups, missionaries who are experts in a particular region, national associations, and more. What kinds of things can you do to maximize the likelihood that these relationships will succeed?

    *** Write down expectations in advance — Before buying airfare for your permanent onsite workers, write up a “letter of agreement” between your work and theirs. Our organization lists categories in the left- hand column, partner involvement in the middle column, and responsibilities of our organization in the 3rd column. We include topics such as policy, selection of team members, granting of visas, selecting a team leader, training responsibilities, language learning, financial responsibility, stateside representation, and conflict resolution.

    *** Clarify the money trail — This one factor can deep-six a partnership as fast or faster than maybe any other issue. Make sure you figure out how much each family has to contribute to any generic project funds, as well as how property is handled once a worker resigns and heads home.

    *** Invest in relationships — It just seems as if our most successful partnerships are those in which someone in our organization is best friends with someone in the partner organization. In other words, partnerships seem to thrive best when they are based on *relationships* rather than contracts.

    *** Start small, grow big — It kills me how many prospective partnerships break down before they ever even get out of the gate, because the would-be partners try to imagine all the various scenarios that could wreck their futures — and in the process, never get off square one. In my opinion, though some of these scenarios need to be considered, the groups *could* go ahead and get started on some small “baby step.” Start small, build trust, then take on more as you build that all-important relationship.

    So there you have it. Not a magic wand… but at least something to chew on getting started. We pray God’s richest blessings on all your future collaborative efforts!

20041024 Brigada Today

In this issue…


  1. THANKS FOR THE PARTNERSHIP — Hats off to the anonymous donors that are helping making Brigada happen… $30 from 1 backer and $15 from another. In addition, we received the Sept. sponsorship from Dial- Abroad for $175! Learn more about their services by logging on at: Thank you for being a part of the Brigada family! You can join in to help underwrite the cost of the Brigada secretary by logging on to: then click “sponsor” in the top menu (to use PayPal or a credit card), or just send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. Thanks! As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous.

  2. VOLUNTEERS NEEDED FOR TALKING BIBLE SUNDAYS — Audio Scriptures International in California (ASI) is seeking volunteers in different parts of the country to help promote the Talking Bible Sunday Movement. ASI has a packet of useful information and other helps to enable volunteers who wish to share in churches in their area. The goal of the Talking Bible Sunday movement is that there be an annual Talking Bible Sunday in thousands of churches. Currently there are printed, translated New Testaments in over 1300 languages. Audio Scriptures International (ASI) in partnership with World Mission in Michigan are committed to make these available as Talking Bibles for the millions of people in oral cultures who do not read. For more information visit or e-mail asi(at)audioscriptures(dot)Org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  3. TRAINING IN CHRISTIAN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT — Are you interested in learning church-based, field-tested strategies that equip you to promote financial self-sufficiency among the poor? If so, training that you need is available now via email-based distance courses or live event training. The Chalmers Center for Economic Development at Covenant College, in partnership with Food for the Hungry International, World Relief and World Vision US, is offering distance learning courses beginning in January, 2005. For more information, email chalmers(at)covenant(dot)edu [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .] or visit

  4. GO TO THE NATIONS… AS AN ENGLISH TEACHER — Here’s a 4-week TESOL course in effective English teaching techniques, sponsored by Youth With A Mission in Lebanon PA USA. January 17 to February 11, 2005. Details, application forms, and alternate dates listed in website at . E-mail questions to ywampa(at)comcast(dot)net. [Replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  5. SYNERGY NEWSLETTER — This communiqué is a brand-new, missions mobilization ezine published on the Internet by DualReach. It features stories and ideas from churches who are successfully involving their people, particularly younger generations, in cross-cultural ministry. “Synergy Newsletter” also introduces readers to the resources of the expanding DualReach electronic resource centre, including ready-to-use tools that DualReach develops, and examples of best practice they collect from a wide array of dynamic missions churches. Upcoming topics will include helps for developing a great missions page on your church website, guidelines for adopting a strategic focus for greater global impact, and tips for effective budgeting and financial stewardship. Subscribe by visiting the DualReach website or writing bruce(at)dualreach(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  6. ALERT YOUR CHURCH: WYCLIFFE DINNER THEATRE IN CALIFORNIA — Wycliffe Bible Translators has a new, unique way to inspire and challenge churches for reaching the nations with God’s Word. They are coming to churches throughout California this Spring (February through May) with a professional live drama and cultural meal that portrays a story of Bible translation in the Philippines. They bring a team of twelve actors, stage crew and kitchen crew along with the stage, lights, sound, tables, dishes, philippino decor and even a portable kitchen to prepare the meal. They need a gymnasium-sized room for the performance. If you would like to work on scheduling an event in your church, give Brenda a call at (800) 269-2007, or e-mail her at brenda_long(at)Wycliffe(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  7. LEARN CONVERSATIONAL ENGLISH — Do you know of someone who wants to improve in English? Youth With A Mission in Lebanon PA USA is offering a 12-week course from January 10 to April 1, 2005. Classroom teaching plus immersion in an English-speaking international community contribute to a rich learning environment. Details and application forms on website at E-mail questions to ywampa(at)comcast(dot)net. [replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  8. CATCH THE ZWEMER INSTITUTE ON MUSLIMS –In 2005 students from all over the world will gather to learn from qualified educators, as they develop and sharpen their skills in Muslim ministry. Make plans now to come to Zwemer at Columbia International University in Columbia, S.C. for intensive training (credit/audit) in Muslim studies. Visit or for full-course descriptions. Or contact Vanessa VMagnus(at)ciu(dot)edu [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .], or call 1-800-777-2227, x3327. Scholarship help is available but apply early. Winter Studies 2005 January 10-14 Church Planting Among Resistant Peoples (Zwemer faculty) January 17-21 Issues in Islam (Dr. Nabeel Jabbour) Summer Studies 2005 July 4-8 Introduction to Islam (Dr. Steve Johnson) July 11-15 Folk Islam (Dr. Dave Cashin) July 18-22 Approaches to Islam (Dr. Phil Parshall) July 25-29) Revelation, Qur’an and Muslim Tradition (Dr. Steven Masood)

  9. LIES OF THE ENEMY: THE HERERO PEOPLE of NAMIBIA — Under the cool shade of a tree the Gospel was presented to a small group of Hereros. After the presentation of the Gospel, one man said, “What you are telling me makes sense. Everyone keeps telling us that we must do this or that to go to heaven. And once we get to heaven, we might not stay there.” “You’re the first person to tell us what the Bible says and to let us see it for ourselves,” he added. He told them that Jehovah’s Witnesses where just there, but now they know the truth. To adopt the Herero people for prayer or for more information, please visit or email swacsc(at)iafrica(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

  10. HIGH IMPACT WORKSHOP OUT OF AFRICA — From research for a Masters in Missiology a workshop entitled We-are-the-Plan was recently developed in South Africa. The workshop introduces those characteristics which accelerate the missional impact of local Churches and emphasizes that the congregation that is different makes a difference. The presentation materials, methods and techniques which are used make this interactive workshop an exciting experience with awesome results. Launched globally in 2005. Interested local churches can contact the researcher directly at prochristo(at)kimnet(dot)co(dot)za [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  11. YWAM CROSSROADS DISCIPLESHIP TRAINING SCHOOL — Are you looking for greater intimacy with God and a taste of cross-cultural missions? If you are age 30 or more, or a family with children, consider taking the Crossroads DTS at Youth With A Mission at Lebanon PA USA. This 20 week program includes 12 weeks of lectures, with speakers who focus on such topics as the father heart of God, how to hear God’s voice, intercession, spiritual warfare, and relationships. Students then have the option to minister in Ukraine for 8 weeks, a very practical cross- cultural ministry experience. The lecture phase is from March 21 to June 10, 2005 with outreach to Ukraine immediately following. Details and application forms are on website E-mail questions to ywampa(at)comcast(dot)net. [replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  12. SHARPEN YOUR INTERPERSONAL SKILLS –- Sign up now for the “Sharpening Your Interpersonal Skills” (SYIS) workshop to be held February 28 to March 4, 2005 at Gateway Missionary Training Centre in Langley, B.C. This workshop, developed by Dr. Ken Williams, is offered internationally and has been greatly appreciated by intercultural workers around the world. ACTS Intercultural Ministry Centre and Gateway M T C have offered the workshop each year since February 2001 to missionaries from a variety of organizations. For more information contact Bev SYIS(at)gatewaytraining(dot)org or check the web site

  13. INTEGRATED AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS COURSE — Are you interested in learning to produce a constant supply fish and vegetables which can be used as an effective “Helps Ministry” or for many other purposes? If so, you will want to attend a practical course entitled, “Integrated Agricultural Systems” held at Camp Living Water, Bryson City, NC, March 7-11, 2005. Instruction will focus on “Aquaponics”, which is the combining of aquaculture and hydroponics for mutual benefit. It will also give an expanded overview of how it can be practically used to integrate all types of agricultural systems, bringing them into a natural balance and turning waste products into an asset. Each attendee will be given an opportunity to construct a highly productive, small- scale system from barrels, capable of producing fish and a large variety of vegetables, greens & herbs. For more information or to register, visit: . Full-time missionaries can register at the student rate. Note early discounts.

  14. MISSIONARY TECH TEAM WORKS — Here’s some user feedback on the Missionary Tech Team approach to getting a vehicle: ” We are … on furlough in the US for 8 months. We had to hit the ground running and didn’t want to mess with fixing up a donor car. So we rented a minivan from the folks at Tech Team. It’s $170/month plus $0.10/mile. Tech Team takes care of any repairs. In July the transmission of our Dodge Caravan went out. We stopped at a transmission shop, called Tech Team, and they gave their credit card info to the shop manager. The next day we were back on the road with a next transmission! We love Tech Team.” For more info., see tech’s website:

  15. NOT ALL MISSIONARIES USE A MACHETE — Youth With A Mission in the Andean city of Merida, Venezuela are running a Discipleship Training School with a difference, that should attract young musos with a heart for missions. It is a 6 month, bi-lingual (Sp./Eng.) Musicians’ DTS. The school is designed to bring musicians, vocalists and sound engineers together to learn more of God’s ways and character as well as personal musicianship, then outreach to Central America and the Caribbean in groups, or bands. For more info., email Blake and Carmen at ladif(at)compuserve(dot)com.

  16. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN MINISTRY TO CUBA — Interested in ministry to Cuba? Check out: or contact ericp(at)misionmundial(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .].

  17. GOOGLE NOT THE ONLY OPTION — Thanks to Allan who wrote, “Google may be the most popular search engine, but it’s not unique with its new desktop search tool. There are others, maybe just as good, or better. For some other options like Copernic and Lookout. Check out the possibilities reviewed here on Ziff Davis Net: (this “tinyURL” will keep the address from “wrapping”) Most of them are free, just like the google one. Unfortunately they generally work only with Internet Explorer, which is limiting for people who use the excellent (and free) Firefox or other browsers.” Thanks for the new info., Allan. Also, we should remind readers, when installing Google, you need not check the box to send information to Google for marketing purposes! In fact, we’d discourage it. Good luck and happy searching!
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