Medical Teams International makes headway with the help of church partnerships

By February 29, 2012

International (MNN) — The idea of ministry partnerships may not sound that exciting at first, but upon further inspection, it's clear that ministry and church partnerships provide vital nutrients for world missions.

Medical Teams International shares Christ's love with people around the globe in neglected areas via medical aid. They are exceptional at what they do, but there is only so much they can do on their own. The power of just one church stepping up and partnering with their work can be enough to transform a village.

Take a Medical Teams International program in Cambodia, for instance. The ministry began working with a pastor outside of capital Phnom Penh to transform the community with a water system, a sewage system, and other health-related projects.

These things were good, says Medical Teams International's Bill Essig, but "part of what we want to do as Medical Teams International is also to engage and enable churches here who have a heart for mission to get involved in international work and meet some of the needs that we see around the world."

It just so happened that Oregon-based church Imago Dei was looking to partner with a group in Southeast Asia. When they heard about Medical Teams International's work there, the congregation raised $10,000 to fund a water pond for the Cambodian community to access potable water. Church members from Imago Dei were even able to go to Phnom Penh to help with the water pond.

The results of this partnership spread far beyond providing safe water. Through this project and others, local Cambodians began to take pride in their homes. More importantly, they heard about Jesus Christ.

The partnership also allowed an American church to take part in God's work with a church halfway across the world.

It's the resulting benefits of these types of partnerships that keep Medical Teams International looking for more.

"We are able to mobilize the teams from particular churches or church denominations that want to go on the shorter-term missions," adds Essig. "We also look for longer-term volunteers that we'll place in a number of our programs. And then of course working together with prayer support, and collaborating together on a project that we might mutually support, are all ways in which we can work together with churches here in the U.S."

Medical Teams International is always looking for more church partnerships to better accomplish God's work across the globe. A recent partnership helped them to get the first medical help of its kind into Vietnam for over 40 years. These partnerships are vital, and your church can help. Click here to find more on getting involved.

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