Prior to his ascension into heaven, Jesus told his disciples to “be witnesses to [Him] in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8) Since these were Jesus’ last words, it is imperative that we make them our first priority. New Birth has many different ministries that reach its “Jerusalem,” and rightly so. We are called to impact the areas closest to home. But Jesus calls for us to move beyond home to the places farthest away from us. We are called to the whole world and not just the part outside our back door.
The distinction of the Missions Department is that we seek to minister cross-culturally to New Birth’s “Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and End of the Earth.” This means that most of our ministry is directed toward people who are not culturally American. We minister to refugees and immigrants in our “Jerusalem” and travel abroad to minister to people in countries all around the world.
It is important to note that the Missions Department does not exist for ministry only. It also exists to promote cultural awareness, educational opportunities and genuine, cross-cultural relationships. Below are some of the ways that we seek to reach these goals.
This division of the Missions Department has four main goals:
- To raise cultural awareness and increase multicultural interactivity.
- To identify and address international concerns within the Body of Christ in order to create real-world solutions.
- To empower individuals as they foster diverse relationships within their local communities.
- To provide fun and informative activities to unify and enlighten Christians of every nationality.
Each year, the Missions Department offers several missions trips. These missions trips are led by either New Birth or by partner ministries. A number of destinations, trip lengths, price ranges and ministry types are available. We’re sure there’s one that’s right for you.
We endeavor to carry out missions around the world, as well as in our own backyard. Sometimes the “uttermost part of the world” by necessity is right around us or in other cities of our United States of America. The Katrina Disaster is one such example. We partner with other churches as well as established agencies to do business for the Kingdom in helping the less fortunate, and to assure that we are doing the Will of the Father, who commanded us to “go into all the World and preach the gospel” – Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16: 15-20.
International Students Adoption
Many international students who come to America are never invited into American homes. We find consider this an opportunity lost. The Missions Department helps to partner these students with New Birth families who will open their homes for hospitality and occasional fellowship.
New Birth supports approximately 40 different missionaries and missions organizations in work that is being done all around the world. The money we give helps to feed children, evangelize unreached people and groups, host crusades, provide education, meet medical needs and cover some of the basic needs of missionaries.
Local Cross-Cultural Outreach
New Birth members periodically volunteer in an after-school program in the Clarkston area to tutor immigrant and refugee children. We also partner with World Relief to provide other ways of ministering to the physical, spiritual and emotional needs of the entire refugee and immigrant population in our community.
As a part of the L.I.F.E. program, the Missions Department offers an Introduction to Missions Class. The class covers such topics as the Biblical basis for missions, the history of missions, cultural anthropology, contextualized theology and language acquisition. Future plans include additional training opportunities ranging from seminars to additional L.I.F.E. classes.
Periodically, New Birth Missions collects items such as toys, clothing and medical supplies to ship overseas. For example, in 2005 we paid for a 40-foot container of medical supplies to be shipped to the Bishop Eddie Long Bondeni Maternity Hospital in Nakuru, Kenya. In addition to collecting donations, we also raise funds for various international causes.