I have the privilege of welcoming a friend of mine, Chris Petty, to preach at The Gathering this Sunday. Chris is formerly the Pastor at Poplar Springs Baptist Church in Ringgold, GA, but has recently been called as a career missionary to Bolivia. He and his family are planning on moving early in 2017.
I love the kind of ministry Chris has been called to because of the focus on training and developing Bolivian pastors to then go back into the churches and areas they are already living and serving in. It’s exciting to see this kind of mission work developing simply because of the potential to reach so many more people through just one missionary. Here is an excerpt from the information about Chris and his family’s recent appointment:
After Chris has served for 8 years as senior pastor at Poplar Springs Baptist Church in Ringgold, GA, God is leading our family to La Paz, Bolivia as full-time missionaries! Pouring our passion for missions into the body at PSBC has been our role in the Great Commission, but that role is now changing. It is an overwhelming privilege that excites us and scares us at the same time. Chris will be training and discipling pastors as well as mobilizing missionaries from Bolivia to other parts of the world, including to least-reached people groups in remote villages of Bolivia. Joy will be ministering in the home and the community, developing relationships with women and children in order to evangelize and disciple. All three of our children desire to go and are willing to sacrifice to serve. We are so grateful for this gift! We will be sent by SIM and Poplar Springs Baptist Church. Our goal is to leave by the end of this year.
• 85% of pastors in Bolivia have no biblical training and many are even unconverted.
• Many churches in South America are eager to send missionaries but lack training and the infrastructure to send them.
• There are more than 35 least reached people groups in Bolivia.
• Because of their access to many “closed” countries and their ability to adapt to many cultures, Bolivians have the potential to be a strategic mission force.
I hope you will make plans to join us Sunday to hear Chris and meet his family.