Unique

Flexibility

…has been a cornerstone of Fellowship International Mission since its founding in 1950. Wherever missionary work has prospered, there seems to have been freedom to move quickly and decisively to seize opportunity for the sake of Christ.

Christians believe that Jesus Christ is still the Lord of the Harvest; that it is still HIS work to send out the workers. This being so, it is not necessary or desirable to check and double-check His leading as it is understood by a church or its missionary. It is certainly wrong to elevate a mission board to His place of authority – to insist that sending churches and missionaries conform to the kind of rigidity and inflexibility that often results.

Flexibility helps to guarantee that missionaries have room to move obediently, speedily, and efficiently in response to openings for the Gospel. They know that they can do this with a minimum of restrictive policy or administrative red tape.

INTEGRITY

…as applied to missions, again assumes that the Lord of the Harvest still speaks clearly as He makes His will known to individuals and churches.

Integrity also assumes that spiritually attuned men and women can recognize His voice; it believes that missionaries can be trusted to report His leading to the wider church as well as to responsibly act upon it themselves.

Integrity further means that churches must find this quality in their mission boards and trust them also.

We cannot speak honestly of freedom and flexibility under the Holy Spirit and then question the integrity of missionaries and mission agencies as they try to follow the Lord’s leading.

Fellowship International Mission’s application process looks for this quality in candidates. Since it is ultimately the church that sends the missionary, it is there that tests of integrity should begin. Church leaders should be certain to send people to mission agencies whose lives and ministries are governed by Biblical principles in every respect.

So again, these leaders should be sure that those they commission are capable of recognizing the voice of God. They should be confident that when their missionary speaks of “the Lord’s leading,” it has been discerned on a biblical basis and in a spiritual way.

All of this is vital to the effectiveness of their missionary interests and the care of their missionaries.

ACCOUNTABILITY

…stands in critical relationship to Flexibility and Integrity. The Bible does not allow, nor does the true missionary desire, absolute freedom or unquestioned trust. Flexibility and integrity are valid both in themselves and in relationship to each other. Wherever possible, however, there must be appropriate means of defining and evaluating each. This means Accountability.

The Bible indicates that God requires daily accountability of all Christians. We also know there will come a day when each person’s works will be tested. Even now, the “reproofs of life” and God’s direct intervention restrict unbridled freedom and challenge our integrity. Thus, in principle at least, accountability is a given.

The early church set an example of accountability that was essential to the early days of missionary outreach and is still appropriate. Fellowship International desires to follow the New Testament example of local churches who send the missionary and accept a major share of responsibility for his or her effectiveness.

Fellowship International Mission also supports the principle of the sending church as the missionary’s first point of reference when ministry questions arise. However, to the extent that churches delegate much of this responsibility to mission agencies, boards such as ours provide suitable accountability structures and procedures.

For Fellowship International Mission, this kind of accountability means such things as…

  • A thorough application process
  • A signed agreement with the Fellowship International Mission Constitution and Policy Manual
  • Annual signing of the Fellowship International Mission Doctrinal Statement
  • Quarterly and annual reports to measure ministry results against goals
  • Regular reporting of project and ministry-related finances
  • On-field evaluation by mission leadership
  • Furlough debriefing

Fellowship International Mission is governed by a Board of Directors comprised of godly pastors, missionaries, and businessmen. The Mission affirms the Doctrinal statement of IFCA International and meets the financial standards of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.

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