I wanted to introduce myself and my wife Cindy with the hope that we might be able to serve your church in the area of missions. Our hearts desire is to connect churches here in the US through more than just the typical prayer and financial support of our own ministry but in vital partnership with the brothers and sisters we serve around the Muslim world.
I came to faith in 1980 from a Jewish background and three years later worked with two other young men to plant a non-denominational church called, Riverbend Community Church in Columbia SC. I met Cindy there. She had come to faith through the witness of her brother, who is now a PCA pastor in Asheville, NC. It was through her interest in Muslim work that we were led to focus our ministry on the Muslim world. We moved in 1987 to the Washington D.C. area and became affiliated for six years with the PCA’s ministry to Muslims called Church Without Walls. In CWC we focused on outreach to Muslim communities in the US and equipping churches here to engage in Muslim ministry. We served then for 10 years with MTW in a West African country that is over 97% Muslim. We led a church planting work there. By God’s grace that work resulted in nearly 50 churches planted in one country and the formation of a new denomination and seminary. That work has spread and grown into a church planting network now working to plant churches among Muslims in 5 countries with nearly 165 church plants and 140 indigenous missionaries and three seminary programs.
Ten years ago we were asked by the mission to take on responsibilities internationally to help facilitate work among Muslims around the world for our mission. My title with our mission is Area Director for Strategic Muslim Ministry. My wife focuses her time on the care and nurture of women working in the Muslim world. She works with a prayer network and maintains regular contact with women working in the Muslim world to help them work through the many issues they encounter in ministry and family life. Our experience of living, raising a family, and ministering in the Muslim world helps her relate to and help the wives and families preserve in some very difficult contexts. My work is focused on three primary areas. I work with newly developing national initiatives, partnerships between US churches and ministries in the Muslim world, and theological education.
In my role I provide advice and regularly consult with about 8 partnerships in the Muslim world. There are four areas/ministries that I focus more of my time on.
· This past year we helped launch a new Arabic media ministry that is producing Christian satellite TV programming and training/developing new local media teams to serve the church in the Middle East. I serve on the board of this ministry and my wife and I plan to locate part of each year to help day to day with growth of various ministries.
· Five years ago we helped launch a new ministry partnership focused on the gospel among Palestinians and Israelis called Jerusalem Gateway Partnership. I am currently the chairman of that partnership. This work is the one exception to our exclusive Muslim focus.
· I also serve as director for Muslim ministry for an indigenous mission and church planting network to Muslims in West Africa. I visit each country once or twice a year and meet with leaders regularly to help with strategy and to mentor them personally in their leadership.
· I have worked with Miami International Theological Seminary to develop 4 seminary programs in the Muslim world, three in West Africa, one in North Africa. I work with MINTS now as a liaison with a dozen seminary programs our mission has developed around the Muslim world.
One of the things we are most passionate about, in addition to reaching Muslims for Christ, is helping US churches engage deeply and effectively in partnerships with national partners to build up the church both overseas and here in the US.
I am a graduate of RTS and ordained in the James River Presbytery. I am currently enrolled in the DMin program at Miami International Theological Seminary. My focus in that is writing courses that provide training in Muslim ministry and that address the special issues facing churches in the Muslim context.