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Want 2000 American missionaries?
I went to this morning’s BESPA (Belgian English-Speaking Pastors Association) meeting. After the long Easter weekend in Slavonic and Russian, I needed to be among English-speaking Christians for a couple of hours.

As always, we presented what we and our communities are doing and planning to do, and prayed accordingly.

This time I learned that a major American missionary organization wants to send 2000 young American missionaries to Europe. We are on their map as the most godless part of the world, and they see it as their Christian duty to come and rescue us.

I don’t see it happening – or perhaps it will, but it will be an expensive flop. OK, for the kids it will be good, they will travel, see Europe, and realize that the world is a bit more complex that what they have learned in bible college. But whether it will dent our godlessness, I doubt.

All my instincts tell me that Christian ‘revival’ in any country has to come out of the existing culture and be aligned with it.

Also, I doubt whether anyone can preach Christ really convincingly, from the heart, without many years’ experience of Christian life (the old Athonite rule was that you do not speak publicly of your faith for 14 years – the distance between St Paul’s conversion and his first missionary journey’). For all their enthusiasm, energy and – often - and purity, most 25-year olds simply do not have it.