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News and notes from around the A2 Community

Official blogs from Asian Access

After a brief lull, fighting in Marawi continues

Phillippines ReservesPhilippines (MNN) — Just when it seemed like things were settling down in the Philippines, conflict between government soldiers and ISIS-linked fighters reignited. On Thursday, the Philippine army launched an air strike in the southern city of Marawi to flush out up to 40 fighters hiding in the city. At least 20 people have been killed in the conflict, including soldiers, police officers, and civilians. “I really don’t know how it will go on,” Herman Moldez, the Philippines Country Director for Asian Access, says. “I think this is the reason why the president declared martial law, so that he can really pursue them very well.”

Fighting erupted Tuesday after a failed attack on the hideout of... 

A2 sessionThe Secret Sauce of Asian Access?

Sometime ago I was asked about the secret sauce of Asian Access… I’ve written previously about this on other blogs:

ALL IN with God

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That said, the other secret sauce corresponds to a question that I am frequently asked, what is your curriculum. While we do have a curricular model, the most powerful part of Asian Access learning is actually the learning... 

Sometimes ministry means facing uncomfortable situations

Adrian De VisserSoutheast Asia (MNN) – As Christians, we are called not just to spread the Gospel, but to care for the vulnerable as well. And sometimes, that requires us to confront uncomfortable situations. That’s something Adrian De Visser, a pastor from Sri Lanka and partner with Asian Access, says Christians often have a hard time accepting. On a trip to Cambodia, De Visser says he witnessed women, including young girls, being sold for sex. He says the Church must be willing to confront these types of issues, not turn a blind eye to them. “I had to take some of the pastors over there, because you know, in Asian cultures we are very shamed-based, so people are ashamed to even admit what happens in our part of the world,” De Visser says. “But for me, it is a sin of my nation, and I need to address that. It took a lot of teaching, debating, to get them on board to realize that this is a problem the Church must address.” De Visser has taken it upon himself to respond to this issue. He is partnering with a local pastor in Cambodia... 

phil timeline triad 1(believe it or not)

If you spend any time in the Philippines, you will learn quickly that basketball is amazingly popular. Filipinos love to play, watch, and talk about the sport. So when we set up the schedule for Asian Access Philippines Class One, we made sure to build in afternoon time for our leaders to enjoy their favorite pastime.  What we hadn’t counted on is how much our leaders were invested in sharing, and hearing, one another’s life stories. The second full day of an A2 first session focuses on developing and sharing a timeline—a poster-sized template that allows each leader to map out their personal, spiritual, and ministry journeys.  The morning is spent developing the timelines, then everyone breaks for lunch. Upon returning from lunch...

wesley at 50thAn Asian Pastor's Journey from Career to Calling

On May 1st, Asian Access released a brand new series called, Eastern Voices: Insight, Perspective, and Vision from Kingdom Leaders in Asia In Their Own Words.

Today, we'd like you to meet Wesley...

For decades, Wesley Kyaw Thura misinterpreted "calling" as building a ministry career. Then God used dramatic circumstances to inspire him to resign his pastorate and denominational positions to become a zero—a "nothing man". In the process, Wesley discovered his calling and found his soul.

From Eastern Voices, Vol. 1: "Losing My Face to Find My Soul" (chp 1)...

Ahok

Ahok imprisoned on blasphemy charges, prayers needed

Indonesia (MNN) — In a surprising turn of events, Jakarta’s former governor, Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama, was sentenced to two years in prison for blasphemy. Ahok was Indonesia’s first Christian governor running for re-election. The blasphemy charges were leveled against him by extremist Muslims during the election. After Ahok lost the election, prosecutors moved to drop the blasphemy charges for a lighter charge that would only put Ahok on two years of probation. However, Jakarta judges ignored the prosecution’s advising, and moved ahead with Ahok’s blasphemy trial and sentence.

Asian Access’ Joe Handley explains, “In terms of the sentence itself, it’s a blasphemy charge because Ahok had quoted the Quran in what was interpreted to be out of context by the more radical side of interpretation of Islam. The moderates said he had no...

Asian pastor praying

We as the Church need each other

Asia (MNN) — There’s a reason why when we share stories of persecution, we ask for the Body of Christ to get involved in the solution. It’s because a key ingredient to perseverance of Christians under attack is encouragement from other Christians. While on the road with Asian Access last week, Ruth Kramer spoke with a pastor from a closed, creative-access country in Asia. The pastor says Christians do face persecution in his country, but it’s not always easy to pinpoint. He says, “It depends on the location area. Nowadays, for most of the big cities, it seems the government, [has slightly] opened the door for churches to do activities. But for most of the churches in the highlands and remote areas, they are still facing persecution.” For example, he shares the story of a house church in a rural area. The congregation was growing too big to fit into the pastor’s house for Sunday sermons and worship. “The pastor offered his piece of land for the church, and the church donated money, offered money to build the chapel. Right after they finished building the chapel, the local authority came with policeman and they locked...

They didn't trust each other,  even within the Church

map/flag of CambodiaCambodia (MNN) — There’s a slice of land in Southeast Asia about the size of Oklahoma. It’s surrounded by Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam. While you’ve no doubt heard of Cambodia, you may not know much about the country. Meng Aun Hour of Asian Access says what most people do recognize is the phrase, “killing fields”. We shared a couple of years ago howGod is bringing healing to the nation after the 70s massacre of Cambodians by their four-year leader, Pol Pot. The Gospel is a shining light of hope after such a deep and painful scar that continues to characterize the country. Aun Hour gave us an update on how the Cambodian Church is doing... 

Tragedy brought them to a deeper level of ministry

Pray for NepalNepal (MNN) — Nepal just marked the second anniversary of devastating twin earthquakes that killed 9,000 people and made a million others homeless. The government has been criticized for the slow pace of rebuilding, and did not officially hold any commemorative events April 25th. However, survivors held memorial services in Kathmandu and other parts of the country. Although it has faded off front page news, the reality is that Nepal is still in tatters. Less than one-fifth of the destroyed homes have been rebuilt. Asian Access, a ministry that helps train, develop, and network church leaders, had already started connecting believers to help respond to the quake needs. It was a unique moment for these Christians. Perhaps what makes this more interesting is how the Japanese Church lived out... 

Takeshi Takazawa video screengrabTakeshi wants "Eastern Voices" to introduce Asian leaders to the West and to promote dialogue

On May 1st, Asian Access released a brand new series called, Eastern Voices: Insight, Perspective, and Vision from Kingdom Leaders in Asia In Their Own Words.

Takeshi Takazawa expands on how the reader can best engage "Eastern Voices"—getting to know the writers as people, hearing their stories, and thinking of questions that could be asked of their brothers and sisters in Asia that would help to build and deepen the conversation... 

This ministry has big goals for the future

Asian Access Jubilee in JakartaMNN’s Ruth Kramer traveled to Indonesia last week with Asian Access as they celebrated 50 years of ministry with Jubilee in Jakarta. Kramer shares her reflections.

Indonesia (MNN) — It’s not every day that you can mark a jubilee in ministry by snowball growth, but that’s what is happening to Asian Access (A2). I’ve spent the last few days with them, not only celebrating what God’s doing through them, but also hearing about big dreams for the future. Between 1967 and 2001, A2 was in pioneering mode. They had a call from a Japanese pastor to come and train their church leadership to help them figure out a strategy to multiply churches. Laying the groundwork was painstaking, but well worth-it when, in 2002, believers in Mongolia asked A2 to come alongside their church leaders. From there, came requests from Sri Lanka, Nepal, India, and several creative-access Southeast Asian nations — with the newest cohorts being trained in the Philippines next week... 

EV1 final title slide 2017 04 25 flat 700pxGroundbreaking book released May 1 platforms national leaders across Asia

Asian Access is releasing a brand new series today called, Eastern Voices: Insight, Perspective, and Vision from Kingdom Leaders in Asia In Their Own Words.

Noel Becchetti, VP for Leader Development at Asian Access served as editor of the compilation of 14 stories from 15 different Asian authors. In his introduction, Becchetti writes:

"It's time to hear the voices. The voices have actually...

What can a ministry accomplish when God is leading the way?

Asian Access' 50th anniversary celebration in JakartaAsia (MNN) — What does the phrase ‘Jubilee in Jakarta’ bring to mind? Certainly, a celebration…probably one in Indonesia. You’d be right on both counts. Asian Access (A2), a ministry dedicated to leadership development and church planting in Asia, is marking what God has done with the initial vision of empowering pastors in Japan 50 years ago. A2’s Noel Becchetti shares, “The immediate, exciting stuff going on for Asian Access is next week…we have two new countries beginning.” What started in Japan has grown into core leadership partnerships with a dozen other nations, including the newest in the Philippines. At the same time, Becchetti explains, an orientation session is launching in a creative-access South Asian nation, “which means by early summer, the new class will be fully involved in its course material.” The commitment from A2 is...

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From the President blog by Joe Handley

A2 Community blog with posts from a variety of contributors around Asian Access

Stories about Asian Access published by Mission Network News, a mission news service dedicated to keeping Christians informed on evangelical mission activity around the world. In doing so we hope to educate and motivate Christians to prayer, participation, and support of missionary work to help further the Great Commission.

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