The seventh of the ten Luke 10 Exploration Trips in 2022 went out October 17-26 to Dubai and Doha, with a team of six. Thank you for praying for this team and EFM’s Luke 10 Initiative as Evangelical Friends discern where to launch new mission fields as part of EFM’s Five-Year Goal. See more information here.
The following is a report that Rusty Savage, EFC-ER Ministry Director of Multiplication, provided.
|Who Was on this Trip?|
The team was made up of:
- Amen Thapa (EFC-Nepal)
- Thomas Moore (EFM Short-Term Missionary)
- Bhakta Tamang (EFC-ER)
- Mathew Bradbury (EFC-ER)
- Zach Bohler (EFC-ER)
- Rusty Savage (EFC-ER)
|Where Did We Travel and What is the Need in the Area?|
Dubai and Doha are home to millions of migrant workers from all over the world. Within these two large cities, immigrants make-up over 90% of the workforce, often laboring in difficult circumstances for very long hours. Most of the workers are separated from their families who remain behind in their home nations.
Among the many ethnic groups who have immigrated to Dubai and Doha in search of economic opportunities is a large population of Nepalese people. Far from home, detached from their families, and often living in difficult conditions, many of these Nepali men and women are searching for community belonging and are uniquely open to hearing the message of the Gospel. In this context, there is a great opportunity to minister to the spiritual, emotional, and relational needs of Nepali migrant workers.
|Stories and Testimonies|
- Amen Thapa and Mathew Bradbury—the first of our group to arrive in Dubai—were welcomed by Amen’s friend and “disciple,” Roman. He brought Nepalese take out, over which he shared about both his sacrificial partnership in ministry, and the struggles of being away from his wife and children (living in Nepal). Amen shared how Roman has been a strong and faithful brother in first Malaysia and now also in Dubai. Roman is one of over twenty men and women from EFC-Nepal currently living in the UAE.
- Our first night in Dubai, the team met with a home fellowship group of (mostly) Nepali Christians. Made up of young adults, these believers meet each week on the lawn of an apartment complex reading their music and Bibles by flashlight. They welcomed us with tea, food, and warm fellowship. Although they had already put in a very long day of work, these brothers and sisters stayed late into the night to converse and pray with us long after the meeting had ended. Along with the Nepali members, the group also included believers from Uganda, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka.
- Pastor Kumar welcomed our team to his small apartment where he hosts one of the many home fellowship groups that make up his church. Kumar planted the very first Nepali-speaking church in Dubai. After training other leaders to take his place, he was sent to plant a second church. His fellowship is especially burdened to reach out to Nepali Christians who have neglected or walked away from their faith since arriving in Dubai.
- From the top of the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, our team had the opportunity to look out over the massive, ever-expanding skyline of Dubai and pray for the many different peoples who make up this city of 3.5 million people.
- In Doha, the Qatar Nepalese Christian Church (700 members) hosted our team lavishly through a leadership delegation (15+ people) with time, food, and worship. They celebrated 25 years as a church in August and began our time together on Monday by sharing that two people had put their faith in Christ during worship gatherings on Sunday. They have 22 vibrant house churches and a ‘servant leadership team’ of 55.
- Binod, a church deacon in Qatar, who has been working there for 16 years (on annually renewed visas) is working with an Arabic family as their driver. He is informally considered the ‘eldest son’ in the household of 26 (two grandparents, their three sons who are married with children, and their three daughters). Binod verbally witnesses to the loving grace of Jesus, is asked for godly counsel by the grandmother, and prays for them while he lives on their compound – he has favor and is bearing fruit. He says the Nepali church is blessed in Qatar as they work within and reach out to the migrant Nepali community.
Luke 10 Exploration Trips continue into 2023 as teams explore potential sites with first trips and/or follow up trips. Our next benchmarks include hopes that the EFM board will approve a commitment in November 2023 to launching at least five new fields.
How Can You Join?
Are you interested in exploring missionary service? Do you know of anyone of any age who might be interested in exploring the idea of serving as a missionary overseas for two or more years?
EFM is currently looking to contact and connect with people about opportunities to explore serving as missionaries with the Friends Church!
We look forward to sharing more news as it becomes available about what we are finding and discerning in EFM’s Luke 10 Initiative as we continue to explore where EFM may launch new mission fields.
Director of Mobilization