A pastor’s conference helps church leaders hone the tools they’ll need for ministry in Burkina Faso.

By February 21, 2005

Burkina Faso (MNN)–Burkina Faso’s high population and limited natural resources have seen poor economic choices for the future of its citizens.

Recent unrest in neighboring Ivory Coast and parts of Ghana have prevented hundreds of thousands of seasonal farm workers from finding work, adding to the poverty. To top it off, the AIDS problem continues to ravage able-bodied adults.

It’s a country where churches have been hard-pressed to overcome these challenges. The difficulties faced by church leaders in this area have led to discouragement among pastors.

However, a recent Frontline Shepherd’s Conference provided just the right amount of hope needed in desperate times. Global Advance’s Jonathon Shibley says the meeting crossed denominational barriers and helped refocus vision. “We had the privilege of gathering almost three thousand pastors from six different nations, primarily Burkina Faso and surrounding nations, with a focus on the Great Commission, church planting and indigenous missionary sending.”

Shibley says not only did they see renewed passion, they saw the potential for growth. “At the end of the conference, we saw, just an amazing response to those that wanted to plant a new church. Literally, over two thousand committed to plant new churches in the next 12 months, in surrounding nations in West Africa.” In addition, over 300 pastors decided to become church planting missionaries.

But it didn’t end there. At the Marketplace Conference, Shibley says over 250 Christian business people came together to talk about business principles and faith. At this event, about 20 Muslims attended, and by the end of the conference, several came to Christ.

This is especially significant as GAM believes that Christians in business can be the ones to turn the tide and bring change to the country, especially in the areas of integrity, and fighting against corruption. This in turn, could see new capital generated that would be a new blessing to the church in that nation.

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