By: Rev. Paul H. Bosshardt
Minnesota United Methodist churches have an opportunity to host General Board of Global Ministries missionaries in their churches and communities late this summer and during the fall. Five missionaries will itinerate across Minnesota to talk about where they live, the people with whom they serve, and what they are called to do. Churches can invite these individuals to visit and speak so that members can learn about United Methodist ministries around the world. Such visits also provide a great opportunity for churches to enter into a covenant relationship, a dynamic relationship through which churches provide financial, spiritual, and emotional support to missionaries—who in turn pray for the church and regularly communicate with its members.
Here are the missionaries who will be visiting Minnesota in the coming months:
• Paul Lee Webster is serving at the Mujila Falls Agricultural Center in Kanyama, Zambia, and he will be in Minnesota from Saturday, August 2 to Saturday, August 16, visiting churches in south-central, north-central, and eastern Minnesota. Paul’s ministry is as a rural economic development specialist; he serves the needs of poor, rural people. Paul’s projects promote education, health, sustainable agriculture, community development, evangelism, and church construction. Click here to view a video that Paul recently created to show his work and the work of Mujila Falls.
• Mozart Makafui Adevu serves as the Africa regional coordinator for the Sustainable Agriculture and Development Program for the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) in Africa. Mozart will be in Minnesota from Wednesday, October 22 to Wednesday, October 29, visiting churches in east-central and southeast Minnesota. Mozart’s program focuses on training communities for assessment of needs and assets, and providing training in areas such as integrated crop and pest management; improving nutrition through the use of moringa and soybeans; beekeeping that produces pure, hygienic honey; and livestock and agroforestry to protect the environment and encourage the growth of trees that produce food and income.
• Daniel and Rachel Gabler serve in aviation ministries in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The Gablers will be in Minnesota from Saturday, October 25 to Wednesday, November 5, visiting churches in east-central and northeast Minnesota. Daniel is a pilot and mechanic who is head of a maintenance center for three flight ministries in that country. Rachel shares her gifts and skills in educational and aviation ministries in Lumbumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Gablers are new to Minnesota United Methodists and have family in both Minnesota and Wisconsin.
• Koni Purscell serves as a church and community worker in the Big Stone Gap District of the Holston Annual Conference in Southwest Virginia. Koni will be in Minnesota for a couple of weeks in either September or October, visiting churches in the southeast and southwest parts of the state. Koni works in church and community renewal, providing direct support and programs for systemic change for people in a rural area. This includes work with food banks, summer gardens, children’s ministries, thrift stores, and Christmas assistance for some 500 families. She’s also working on new programs, including a cooking class for low-income folks. Koni is new to Minnesota United Methodists and has in-laws in south-central Minnesota.
If you are interesting in hosting any of these missionaries in your church and community or simply would like to learn more about partnering with a missionary, please contact Minnesota Conference Secretary of Global Ministries, Rev. Paul H. Bosshardt (by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org; by phone at 763-767-5753; or by mail at 972 118th Lane NE, Blaine, MN 55434-3087).
Because of the driving distance involved in each itineration, available places, dates, and times will be determined as requests are received.
Rev. Paul H. Bosshardt is the Minnesota Conference’s secretary of global ministries
Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church