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United Methodists "Spin" 24 New Missionaries

From: Zinser, Steve CHAPLAIN <>
To: Christian Methodists <>
Date: Tuesday, April 27, 1999 3:08 AM
Subject: RE: UMNS#229-United Methodists add 24 missionaries

It is simply a matter of defining words according to the needed "spin."

They need to say they have "missionaries" in the field. The people hear the word "missionary" and think of the word in terms of our Methodist history of spreading the gospel around the world. The missionary was viewed as one who took Christ to new cultures. The missionary fulfilled the great commission. They were pastor/founders of new churches. Paul was the great biblical example. Hudson Taylor was a more modern example.

Now missionary means anyone who goes and visits a foreign culture, even if for only 2 weeks. Perhaps they hang windows on a building or hand out food at a distribution center. For the powers that be to consider a financial officer a missionary is not so hard to believe. They want us to believe everyone sent overseas is a missionary.

. I can go to Nairobi and drive a cab. That doesn't make me a missionary. If I drive that cab AND spread the gospel with the intent of establishing churches in unreached regions of that culture, then I can legitimately claim to be a missionary. .

I can go to Nairobi and keep financial records for the existing church structure that's there. If I'm not personally involved in the spreading of the gospel, then I'm certainly no missionary. Hopefully, I'm assisting a missionary. I'm afraid what I may be doing is extending the financial reach of an "institution."

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