Training Christian leaders in China has never been more important.
Severe persecution and strict regulations from the Communist government have forced the Chinese church underground. The attempts of the regime over the last five decades to snuff out the flame for Christ in China has instead caused the underground house church movement to flourish.
The Chinese church is still experiencing unprecedented growth with an estimated 110 million believers, yet could be much larger since verified statistics are difficult to obtain. The size of the Christian population in China is expected to exceed that of the United States in 2025, an increase of nearly 50 million in just over ten years!
The vast majority of believers attend house churches, in groups anywhere from five to fifty members, and each group needs a leader that knows the Bible. Church leaders have not been able to train leaders fast enough to keep up with the rapid growth, due largely to the restriction of Christian resources by the Chinese government. How much more will the Church in China need qualified leaders in the next ten years?
It is estimated there is only one trained pastor for every 10,000 Chinese believers. In this leadership vacuum, many believers have suffered harm and been led astray by false doctrines disguised as Christian teachings. Pastor Zhong (whose name has been changed for security) shares his experience in the video above, “In the past, heresy has cheated many Christians, because we do not have an abundance of the Truth of the Gospel.”
In order for the Church to grow, it must be strong; and for it to be strong, it must have strong leaders.
World Compassion created the ABC Bible Training Curriculum (ABC) and China Mission School (CMS) training programs in order to develop leaders in China to meet this vast need.
ABC is used to lay the right spiritual foundation in the life of a believer, similar to general education at a Bible School. This training equips believers to lead life-giving churches and prevent false doctrines from corrupting their small groups. Graduates of ABC are ready to disciple new converts and lead strong house churches.
CMS goes a step further and equips believers to reach new communities with the Gospel, in their own country and beyond. China is still considered one of the most unreached nations in the world, with over 456 unreached ethnic groups (over 88% of the population). Graduates of CMS are prepared spiritually and practically to evangelize and plant new churches in hostile nations.
When you invest in the life of a leader, the impact is endless. Pastor Zhong, featured in the interview above, uses CMS to train over 20 young leaders in this church community, who will help lead and send the 2,000 total believers in the congregations of their four partner churches.
Your simple gift of $114 (£72) to provide one full CMS sponsorship for a student can change thousands of lives. The students in this program will be the pastors leading the 50 million new converts in the Chinese Church over the next ten years.