We believe it is now God’s kairos moment for the peoples of East Asia; a time for God’s people to align themselves with God’s transformative purpose, as his power begins to break through in the lives of East Asians living in the West.
One of the main emphases of the recent Lausanne Congress for World Evangelisation was ‘Diaspora’ – a major focus on those who have left their home country and are living or studying abroad. Since 2000, some 120,000 Chinese students have travelled overseas to study every year, with most of them heading for the West. According to China’s Ministry of Education, this number will increase to 300,000 by 2020.
Returning students have had a huge impact on China in recent years. Imagine what would happen if the majority of these influencers had been influenced by Christians they’d met in the UK and Ireland. God is giving us an amazing opportunity; providing believers with a mission field on their doorstep – one packed with Asia’s future opinion-makers and policy formers. With Asia’s potential leaders also coming from countries like Japan and Thailand, our Diaspora Ministries team is committed to reaching and transforming the lives of the East Asians currently in our midst.
WHAT DOES DIASPORA DO?
We’re involved in culturally relevant discipling and mentoring of the returnees themselves. We help East Asians to know what to expect when they return, enable them to appreciate what that means for their life and witness, and do everything we can to build them up so they’ll continue following Jesus and remain strong in the faith.
We train others to do the same and to know how to equip returnees to share Christ and serve in the local church: helping them to build up the body of Christ among their own people and establish thriving congregations.
We also want returnees to discover the blessing of being part of the global church by reaching out in cross-cultural mission to different unreached people groups wherever they might find themselves.