Advancing sustainable solutions to material poverty through church missions.

The North American Church is losing ground in attendance, influence, credibility and virtually every other category that really matters.  In this day and age, many see the church as the hope of the world only as it “proves” itself in practical ways that touch the everyday needs of everyday people.  But that’s not a cry for more traditional forms of charity or the missionary model of the past 200 years.  Instead, thoughtful people, from Millennials to Boomers, are looking for churches that have moved from simply doing good things to solving real problems in lasting ways.  Churches that invest in this kind of mission work become more helpful in lifting people out of poverty and better partners to ministries on the frontlines.  They also become more relevant and credible to their community, more fulfilling to both pastor and people, and more appealing to those on the margins looking for a reason to attend a church.

Our mission is to help churches reframe their missions and charitable work around sustainable solutions and create room for business-minded people who can help that happen.  Our annual SATtalks and other resources highlight some of the most innovative churches and faith-based ministries around the world working to move missions in this direction. We do this because the Church needs the stories of early pioneers and innovators to inspire and help us see what could be!

Tom Bassford, Founder/President | Significant Matters & SATtalks

Partnering Like Family, Not Donors | Tom Bassford

I was supposed to be in Zimbabwe this week with a small group of people from the US, Canada and the UK.  We were going to get an up close look at Hands at Work In Africa, a group I ran across about a year ago and was deeply impressed with.  Like many organizations working with the most vulnerable and in hard to reach places their focus is on children.  But what really impressed me was their model; the way they go about helping. They help villages find community-based solutions to their problems.  While most outsiders with resources and [...]

The Courage to Disrupt | Larry Sharp

WATCH THE VIDEO...   Rick had just retired as the VP for Europe at Conoco.  He spent his career in the halls of power but never, in all those years, was he asked to use those skills as a means to further the gospel until… Larry Sharp of IBEC Ventures invited him on a trip to Kazakhstan. “We coached about a dozen business owners committed to using their business for God’s purposes and Rick was able to help in every situation.  But what I remember most was a conversation on the way home when Rick said, “All my life I [...]

Churches Investing In Enterprise Solutions | Wayne McDaniel

WATCH THE VIDEO...   Sitting in churches all across the US are men and women whom God has gifted with exceptional “business sense.” They know how to do business, how to create jobs and the power of work to lift people out of poverty.   In fact, over one billion people have been lifted out of poverty since 1990 and two-thirds of that was due to business and job creation rather than government and charitable aid? Engaging the business-minded and leveraging the power of business is one of the greatest opportunities for the church in the 21st Century.  With that in [...]

VIDEO – Africa’s Missing Middle | Andy Agaba

WATCH THE VIDEO...   In Andy Agaba’s home country of Uganda, the major crisis they face is unemployment.  Eight out of ten who graduate from college will not find a job.  Is the answer more charity or even more micro-loans?  Not according to him.  What Africa needs are more small to medium enterprises (SME’s). On one side you have millions of people with access to capital from micro-finance.  On the other you have a few large companies with access to capital from banks.  But in the middle you have SME’s; too large for microfinance and too small for banks.  That [...]

VIDEO – Beyond The Secular/Sacred Divide | Jeff Coffey

WATCH THE VIDEO...   “You either serve God or you serve money,” Jeff was told over and over again in his early days in ministry. Earning money while doing missions was deceitful. Irresponsible. Impossible. For years, Jeff tried to adhere to the idea that missions should be free from the bonds of business. But his creativity and entrepreneurial mind kept insisting otherwise. Eventually God would take his passion for fly fishing and that entrepreneurial mind to create a fly tying business called Fair Flies. It provides a real and lasting solution for women who have been exploited through human trafficking [...]

VIDEO – From the Church to the Marketplace | Emeline Nde & Renita Reed-Thomson

WATCH THE VIDEO...   Emeline Nde was 12 when she received a scholarship from a church out of Switzerland. “It enabled me to get one of the best educations I could in Cameroon. It was a paradigm shift from seeing myself as a victim acted upon to an architect of my own life who with the help of God could rewrite my story.” Later on a small $20-dollar loan gave her the means to start a business. When that business succeeded it allowed her to be generous and, more importantly, showed her that business is ministry when done as an [...]

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October 29-30, 2020

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