We are a nation of immigrants! Immigration is responsible for two-thirds of Canada's growth (Statistics Canada 2011) between 2005 and 2010, most of our "new neighbours" settling in the large urban centres of the nation.
What does this mean for Pioneers?
Many previously assumed "unreached" people from areas like the 10/40 Window are now accessible to believers in churches across Canada. Christians can now literally practice "missions on their doorstep."
How can we reach these "strangers" next door with the love of Christ?
Since the early 1990's, Pioneers Canada workers have been reaching out to "most needy, least opportunity" peoples around the world with the "Good News" of Jesus! Now representatives of these people groups have settled in Canada. We now have a mission field on our doorstep.
That's where Pioneers' In Canada Missions comes in. God has called out some 40 workers who are ministering across Canada in Evangelism, Discipleship, and Church planting through a partnership with Pioneers and the local church.
You will read stories in this newsletter that illustrate how God has used Pioneers workers to reach out to newcomers in our neighbourhoods. Will you consider joining us?
Canada is a great nation with so many resources and the ethnic diversity here rivals anywhere on earth. But one of the most shocking things that we see happen in ICM ministry almost weekly would be something akin to a blind man standing in front of Niagara Falls. Let me explain.
The other night I took another phone call from a close family friend. Although they've been in Canada for eight years they are completely without ability to help themselves. They have a phone. They have a computer. They have active driver's licenses, but in talking with them you'd wonder about the use of any of these things. Why? Language.
This family is one of several hundred in our small town whose level of English is so low that they cannot search the internet for anything of value, they cannot call a number where the person answering doesn't speak Punjabi, and they dare not go to a new office to talk to new people because the whole idea is far too intimidating. So what do they do? They have heard the 'roar' of the falls that says there is help available, but how do they reach it?
What do they do when one of the family members is trying to break a major drug addiction? Or needs to begin a divorce process? Or press charges for a work related offense? Canada has all the resources, all the programs, all the help anyone could ever need...oh wait... not for this immigrant family.
But that is just one more location Pioneers missionaries are bridging the gap between need and service. I can't tell you how many times the person on the other end of the phone has asked me, "so who exactly are YOU?" as they openly wonder how I fit into the mix of such sensitive family issues when I call on someone's behalf. And, how do we fit? How do we help? ANY way we can - EVERY time we can - to every PERSON we can. That is ICM work. That is the heart of Jesus as it reaches nations.
- Worker among the Canadian Sikh community
On Thanksgiving, I was planning an outreach potluck with some Canadian believers. The week prior I was trying to get some Palestinians to my house for the potluck. It wasn't working, so I finally gave in and said, "God, do whatever you want!" Well, all the Canadians brought their Muslim friends and ALL of them ended up being Kurds. While we were sharing about what we were thankful for, one lady started sharing a dream she had of Jesus and how it has changed her life. We were all stunned that she would share this in front of her own people but overjoyed that she had the courage to do so!!!
- Worker with unique ministry among Muslim women
One day Khadija had a dream. She was standing in front of a road that looked muddy and tough, and as she was hesitating, she heard a voice from above that said, "Don't be afraid, I'm He for whom you're searching. Take the road." When she obeyed the voice, that road lead her to heaven.(Mt 7:13-14) When she woke up, she knew that it was Jesus. Shortly after, she had another dream in which Jesus took her to pierce her ears. Jesus declared that she belonged to Him forever! (Ex.21:5-6)
Of course Khadija didn't know when she dreamed these dreams, that they are passages from the Bible. Actually Jesus's visitation in her dreams started when she was in her country in a fanatic Muslim family!
Now she has given her life completely to Jesus and wants to follow Him. To be able to grow spiritually on God's living Word and to experience the victory and transformation in all the areas of her life, she needs help. She's a widow, a mother of 2 children and a student here in Canada. God sent her and her 2 kids to our regular prayer meeting of Muslim background believers and we'd like to encourage them and nurture them alongside the Arab church she attends.
I'm honored to be a part of God's work for Muslim women whether for their salvation or for their discipleship. Muslim women are not easily reached behind their veils. Praise God who constantly visits them with dreams and visions. God wants to include each one of us for His Kingdom work, what a privilege! May all be ready to be His instruments to those who have never heard about His love.
- Family working among the Muslim community
- For more information on ICM ministry check out: www.pioneers.ca/icm
- joyloewen.blogspot.com - conversation starters when meeting Muslim women and inspirational stories of the vibrant ministry that God has given Joy
- Woman to Woman by Joy Loewen - a book with practical advice for developing a fruitful ministry with Muslim Women