We talk about the church a lot. But why? It’s because we believe that God’s people are a hub of change! Poverty is much more than physical, it is spiritual. By working through local churches, we not only address the physical symptoms of poverty, but it’s spiritual root.
But how does this actually look?
You will often find a church in even the most rural communities doing great work. Overseas, we collaborate with the church in 3 primary ways:
- Empowering Holistic Mission
Through biblical study and group discussions, we help churches better understand their purpose and mandate in relation to the great commission and great commandment. Churches learn how they can be a source of community transformation and are encouraged to go beyond only speaking God’s word to being salt and light through acts of Biblical love. Churches learn how they can be leaders within their communities and help people out of spiritual and physical poverty. Moreover, church members develop leadership skills and gain practical approaches to address their community needs, becoming more confident in using their God-given gifts and resources to expand God’s Kingdom.
- Meeting physical needs
In the places we work, churches want to address the immense physical poverty within their communities but don’t know where (or how) to start. We work with churches to identify ways they can make a difference and train them to be catalysts for change. Through conservation agriculture (CA) training and village savings and loans, we provide churches and individuals the tools they need to escape poverty for good.
- Relief Support
In times of disaster, we work with local churches to meet critical emergency needs. Churches are a natural refuge for people within a community. When disaster strikes, we will work with local churches to help distribute emergency food, provide shelter, medical care, or clean water. The benefit of working with local churches in times of disaster is tremendous. In addition to obvious physical needs, during a crisis, many people suffer from psychological and spiritual trauma. In these cases, the church is there, able to provide words of encouragement, hope, and prayer.
We also feel very honoured and are grateful for the many local churches in Canada that partner with us to help lift people out of poverty. Simply put, Tearfund wouldn’t be able to carry out its programs without these churches and their congregations donations and prayers.
We engage local churches in Canada through speaking events such as Tearfund Sunday or fundraisers such as Tearfund’s Big Quiz. These events are not only fun and inspiring, but they also create change for the world’s poor. Additionally, we also provide churches with resources to learn more about God’s plan for the poor and how they respond.