Connection Pointe and India: A ‘golden opportunity’ for church planting
A partnership between Connection Pointe Christian Church, Brownsburg, Ind., and Asian Partners International, a church-planting ministry in India, is reaping big benefits for both, and serves as a blueprint for effective church-mission cooperation.
“Our church was looking to add global partnerships that relied on non-Western workers involved in church planting, and connected with ASSI (the community development division of Asian Partners International) in 2005,” said Dan Crum, Global Impact Director at Connection Pointe.
Connection Pointe participates in the ministry in India in several ways.
“We take a small team annually to visit India and have done so for several years,” said Dan. “We also started child sponsorship in India with CMF in 2018, and one of our trip members this year got to meet a neighbor’s sponsored child. In addition to our support for the organization, we have also made significant financial contributions toward a Global Learning Center in a major city in India.”
Connection Pointe’s trips to India have had one of three purposes: vision, relationships, or contribution.
“Our vision trips are for people who have never been, to understand God’s work there and apply what they see to their own walk of faith,” said Dan. “I tell people that if you have the opportunity to hear the founder of the mission speak or visit India and meet the Indian leaders he works with, take it!
“On our relationship trips, everyone meets Indian leaders who touch their lives,” added Dan. “Relationships happen between people, but the relationship between our organizations is the bigger picture. Our church means something to the leaders because they know that we are committed to the work and to them. That decision was made when we began the partnership, and as long as they stay faithful to what we all understand God has called them to do, we don’t need to measure the results. Those are up to God.”
The contribution trips involved teaching and member care that the church offers to the Indian leaders, and that has also been very helpful to the ministry.
“All of these trips result in church members who are ambassadors for the work in India,” said Dan. “We have quite a good alumni group who can speak about God’s work there.”
Benefits to the church
“The benefits to Connection Pointe have been many,” Dan said. “Small group leaders received training from the Indian leader of API several years ago. Several staff members have visited India, which has broadened their understanding of how God works, making them more effective and humbler. The mission founder was interviewed in all of our services one weekend last year, so is now better known by our church members. Sponsoring children from India has opened up people’s eyes to God’s work in another part of the world and shows them they can participate globally and relationally through this commitment.
“The movement to God taking place in India right now, to my understanding, is one of the biggest in modern history,” said Dan. “The founder’s obedience to the vision God gave him, and his courage to follow through, birthed this church-planting movement. He has become a global influence on Christian movements around the world, has visited many countries to offer training and encouragement, and continues to bring new vision for multiplying disciple-makers and planting churches.
“This is Christian history being written in front of our eyes,” said Dan, “and we have a golden opportunity to be involved and learn from this effective movement and its brave pioneers.”