North America's unreached communities affected by shortage of missionaries: 'We are maxed out' says mission agency

(Photo: Wikimedia)

Evangelical mission organisation SEND International is in dire need of mission workers to assist in fulfilling its church-planting mission.

SEND not only reaches underpivileged communities across the globe, but also areas of the world that may be rich in resources but lack a Christian network.

The Joshua Project refers to these populations as "unreached" or "least reached" because "there is no indigenous community of believing Christians with adequate numbers and resources to evangelise this people group."

SEND International is committed to reaching the unreached people groups from Alaska to Greenland as part of a ministry called the "60-70 Window."

"There's a real exciting work opening up eastward across the northern part of Canada, [to] expand our ministry among the native Alaskan and the Inuit people across the north," the organisation's international director, Warren Janzen said in a statement.

"We just recently, in the last couple of months, have made a connection in northern Canada [and] 23 new villages have opened up to us. [It's] an opportunity to place people in and take the Gospel to these villages who have no witness."

The ministry is named after the large span of land in Alaska and northern Canada between the 60 and 70-degree latitudes.

Hundreds of Native and First Nations villages populate the area, and many are off conventional road systems. Janzen said that his organisation's resources are spread thinly.

"We are maxed out," he admitted. "And, we are looking for new people to come and join that effort. They can bring their current skill, or they can join the current team and develop some skills in order to be the presence and bring the message of Jesus."

Health care workers, teachers, pilots are especially needed for the ministry, and those with expereience developing communities are uniquely valuable.

"Trust is a huge issue," Janzen explained. "So, whatever we can do to build trust with these communities to add value, to bring value to these communities builds a bridge or trust over which we can bring the Gospel."