Shy kids get nowt and some brash ones miss out too!
By Ian Williamson, 12 Sep 2017
I have two self funded trainees working with me at New Life Middlesbrough, one has been brought up in a Middle Class Christian home, has attended a number of large, wealthy churches, has been part of the CU at Uni and has a number of professional Christian friends. The other grew up on the estate, has an unchurched background and knows very few Christians outside of our church.
The first trainee joined us and was able to fund himself from his savings until he managed to raise financial support from his large network of friends, family and former churches. However even after receiving a number of generous donations, he still needed to apply for some grants to reach his funding target.
The second trainee didn't have a network of friends or family that she could go to for support. This is because the small network she did have
a) wouldn’t understand why she would want to be a self funded intern
b) couldn't afford to support her even if they wanted too.
The thought of looking for financial support was daunting for her and I knew exactly how she felt. I have come from a background similar to hers and I have spent nearly 10 years building a support base by making a noise and pestering people for financial, prayer and practical support.
Many 1st generation, indigenous Christians are faced with a battle to find the funding to study and train as gospel workers. And that is why I would like to encourage churches to put into their budgets a training fund, specifically for indigenous workers. The funding comes as a great practical help, yet it also comes with a spiritual benefit too. When somebody is praying for God's provision and they see prayer answered by the geneorsity of God's people it grows their faith and sets an example for them to follow.
Fortunately because of the noises I have made in the past we have built relationships and partnerships with a number of churches and organisations, who have kindly offered to help support our interns. But we still need help, if you would like to help our mission in Middlesbrough by supporting indigenous workers we would love to hear from you.