ABT’s church-planting teams include more than just Bible translators. Medical, agricultural, and literacy workers will be needed on many church-planting teams. Aviation, construction, and computer skills may also be needed.
Each church-planting team will typically include a community development coordinator trained in humanitarian and logistical skills.
The community development coordinator will not necessarily try to meet all of the community’s humanitarian needs. Rather, as he works to evangelize and disciple the people, he will also coordinate efforts to train the community to take responsibility for its own needs.
For example, a medical worker would not only serve people’s medical needs, but also train them in hygiene and first aid. He could help the community develop its own healthcare system with trained staff. To ensure that the Gospel of the Kingdom, not community development, remains the priority, the community development coordinator will maintain accountability in his work with the rest of his team, the sending church, and ABT.
Any community development efforts should clearly serve the end goal of discipling and church planting. ABT will prepare and equip community development coordinators to that end.
Training Requirements for Community Development Coordinators
In addition to relevant training that may be required for specific roles in community development, ABT requires the following training for community development coordinators. Along with the home church, ABT will provide direction and financial assistance to help members-in-training complete these requirements. Training completed previously may also be accepted.
1. Phase I ABT training (Orientation Week)
2. Time spent in cross-cultural outreach or mission
3. Four semesters or equivalent in Bible study
4. Linguistic training
5. Mission Medical Intensive (MMI)
6. Phase II ABT Training
Interested in serving on an ABT church-planting team?
How to Join ABT
These are some of the training resources we may recommend to community development coordinators depending on their needs.
Medical and Humanitarian:
Mission Medical Intensive (required), Aquaponics, Clean Water, Community Health, and more
A hands-on training school in Thailand that integrates Bible, missions, and Anabaptist theology.
Six-week terms of study from September to May. Courses in Bible, Theology, Evangelism, and more.
Linguistics and Literacy:
Nine weeks of graduate-level linguistic training each summer (undergraduate students may apply). Hosted at the University of North Dakota (UND).
Nine-week course offered during the summer of odd-numbered years at SIL-UND (2017, 2019, etc).
Covers community-based literacy programs and methods with an optional class on writing systems.
Cross-Cultural Mission Training
A hands-on training school in Thailand that integrates Bible, missions, and Anabaptist theology
Serve and study on the field in Ghana under experienced church planters with Charity Christian Missions.
SENT I is a three-month course in the fall. SENT II is a two-year internship.