China (MNN) — China Partners' Erik Burklin says one of the greatest needs for growth in the Chinese church is the training of new leadership. One of the ways they're addressing this need is by opening Bible training centers in the rural areas.
Their teaching teams went to Sichuan province to help with Bible training at one of the lay training centers. "We had the privilege of training 270 lay pastors and lay leaders. And while we were there, we had the opportunity to do a two-day session with seminary students."
The training of the younger emerging Christian leaders, who primarily come from poor rural areas of China, need significant help. Most of these leaders will never have the opportunity to attend a regular Bible school or seminary. But each of them has the desire to be better equipped for ministry.
The team also held Pastoral Training Seminars for the Sichuan Seminary in Chengdu.
Burklin says their team's main focus was to give the students practical training in the areas of discipleship and Christian leadership. "Discipleship is tremendously needed in China because there are so many new believers coming to faith. Because there's a lack of leadership and the lack of trained pastors, they're not being properly followed-up with and cannot be properly followed up with."
There are multitudes of registered and non-registered lay leaders' Bible training schools throughout the country. There are also 18 theological seminaries and Bible institutes. The need for proper training, along with faculty and staff, is evident.
Pray for safe travel home for the team, and that the Holy Spirit leads and directs the newly trained in ministry.