What does the 49 in impact49 stand for?
The 49 conveys the idea of minority ownership in missions. We’ll try to better explain. We work with groups of indigenous churches around the world who send individuals from their fellowships to trainings held in their countries in disciple-making, small business development, and leadership development. The cost to have each individual trained in all three concentrations is $1,200. To promote a high level of local buy-in and accountability, we have the indigenous churches who are sending these individuals provide 51% of the $1,200 it costs to train them. Once they have come up with this 51%, we then partner with them for the remaining 49% (idea of minority ownership). This keeps a healthy level of accountability and mentorship from the local church who is sending them to be trained. Now…it just so happens that 49% of $1,200 is $588. Since we only provide this 49% for one year, if you divide $588 into 12 months…tada!…you come up with $49 a month for one year. The number 49 kept popping up! So, these two “49s” is where the “49” comes from in impact49.
When I partner with a church planter what happens next?
Once you have indicated that you would like to partner with a church planter we will send you a 3.5″ x 5″ prayer card that has a picture of the church planter you will be partnered with, as well as their first name, country, people group they are working with, and several personal prayer requests from that individual. Prayer is the number one thing that these individuals need, so we prioritize that focus to serve as a reminder to us all of the people taking forth the gospel in some of the most hostile areas.
Will I be able to contact the church planter that I have partnered with?
This is one of the questions that we receive most frequently, and we want to be honest with you. Because the security of the church planters is one of our top priorities, we are unable to provide contact information to you. Many of these church planters work in areas where there are high levels of religious or political persecution, and they are being watched. While we can provide encrypted and secure emails on our end, there is nothing that is particularly secure on their end. So, something as simple as an email or written letter falling into the wrong hands could jeopardize the life of any one of these individuals or their families.
If I can't contact the church planter I've partnered with, how do I feel connected to what is going on?
To encourage everyone, and demonstrate that your prayers and financial resources are making a huge impact, we send out monthly e-newsletters that provide stories of various church planters around the world (just like the one that you’ve partnered with, or helped to partner with) to tell their stories. It is incredible to hear how God is moving and opening doors internationally!
How many countries do you work in?
Currently we are working in 49 countries (purely coincidental that it matches our name). This number changes over time as we expand into new areas.
How do you choose which countries to work in?
This is not an arbitrary decision. Because we hold accountability and self-sustainability as high priorities within each training program that is started, we only work with local groups of churches who are established and investing in the long-term work of Christ in their area. The churches that we work with are always talking to other connections they have, so the word keeps spreading about this innovative training. Each country that we have entered into has been because of connections to other churches that we work with, and after a lengthy discernment process determined that they would be a good fit for our mission model. This started off in just a half-dozen countries and has grown to almost 50 in a short time.
Is there regular reporting from these church planters?
These church planters do report to, and are mentored by, their local churches. The local churches then report the information to us as an organization. This allows us to monitor accountability, as well as collect information of how the church plants and the small businesses are doing. The dilemma (and it is a good problem to have) is that there are so many church plants happening that we are unable to communicate what is happening in each one of them to the persons who have helped to fund them and make them possible. For this reason, we send out monthly stories of what is going on around the world with the various church plants, so that we can all see and feel a part of what God is doing through our partnership as donors.
If there are other questions that you have please don’t hesitate to contact us. Transparency is our policy!