Cross-Cultural Ministry from Inside the United States
I used to have a boss who started a large, nationwide ministry to urban communities. He argued that the Christian church could be most effective in global evangelism and discipleship if it focused on the large, urban areas of the United States. He pointed out that one of the largest Spanish-speaking populations in the world was Los Angeles. In the efforts, the church could encounter enormous populations of Honduran, Salvadorian, Guatemalan and Mexican people groups. If we wanted to reach Korean populations, there was no better place than the large area of L.A. known as Koreatown. And what better way to reach Armenians than to go into the large Armenian-speaking population of Los Angeles.
In a similar fashion, Lifeline’s decade plus of ministry in Los Angeles County Jails was not made arbitrarily. Rather, it was made with the intent of reaching arguably one of the largest (if not the largest) county jail systems in the world. At its height of population with 22,000 inmates, our ministry of Malachi Dads and Hannah’s Gift reaches a diverse, international and multicultural population. The populations can be so diverse, that one might suggest that we consider it as part of our international ministry instead of domestic.
Imagine that your local church could support international missions without ever needing to wire-transfer money. How easy it would be to be able to observe the success of projects without a fifteen to twenty hour flight crossing multiple time zones. Think of the efficiency of being able to send teams to do short-term ministry without the need for passports or visas. This was the case in the story of Vlad, in this month’s newsletter.
When you and/or your church organization support our ministry in Los Angeles County Jails, you are achieving these goals. Your support is transforming the lives of individuals who are in turn, helping to reach families and populations hear (and see lived out) the Gospel of Christ.