When looking for ways to reach ethnic groups different than your own, establishing connections takes effort. The resources below are compiled to cultivate authentic action for outreach. Learn from the work and perspective of missionaries to America.
Growing your congregation among diverse ethnic groups makes a special kind of spiritual experience. According to research by Religious News, multiracial churches have higher levels of spirituality and grow larger than homogenous churches. At the 2019 LCMS convention a resolution was passed to prioritize reaching new immigrants with the gospel. Read and download Committee 1, resolution A, “To Strengthen Multi-Ethnic Outreach” here.
Currently, the growth of Christian congregations is driven mostly by nonwhites, whether Catholic or Protestant, evangelical or mainline. Over the past half-century, 71 percent of growth in Catholicism, for instance, has come from its Hispanic community. In the Assemblies of God, one of the few U.S. denominations to show overall growth, white membership slightly declined while nonwhite membership increased by 43 percent over 10 years.
Guidelines for Cross Cultural Outreach
Missionary James spent many years overseas as a missionary. Here he shares insights on best practices for reaching a new ethnic group.
How to Help A Congregation Reach An Ethnic Group Different From Its Own
President Dan Gilbert Interviews Rev. Terry Chan on his doctoral project on YouTube.
God’s Desire that all Ethnic Groups be Saved
Sermons in Spanish with Professor Ben Haupt, associate provost and assistant professor of Practical Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, translated into Spanish by Dr. Hector Hoppe, senior editor of Multilingual Resources at Concordia Publishing House.
The Wave That’s Still Building
David Frum’s Article in the April Atlantic Monthly Magazine reports that by 2027 the foreign born population of the US is projected to equal its previous peak from 1890, 14.8% of the population – and then keep rising.
Where is there Growth in American Christian denominations?
Religious News Service
"A Lutheran Framework for Addressing Immigration Issues”
A report of the Commission on Theology and Church Relations. November 30, 2018.
U.S. has highest share of foreign-born since 1910, with more coming from Asia.
New York Times
“Church membership plummets in US over past 20 years”
Free wheelchairs for people in developing countries.
Understanding the Great Commission
Barna Research breaks down differences in understanding of the verse among denominations and other demographics.
Why the United States needs more Immigrants
The New Yorker
Fewer Births than Deaths among Whites in Majority of U.S. States
New York Times
Christians outnumber Muslim Refugees to U.S. in last 15 years
Religion News Services
The Most and Least Racially Diverse U.S. Religious Groups
Pew Research Center
Using Digital Media to Share Christ with Muslims
John Yoder, of Immigrant Ministry Connections shares links, ideas and tools to speak with Muslims about Christ.
Jock Ficken, PLI, writes a great blog about "the 3 immigrants who have deeply impacted my life." https://plileadership.org/3-immigrants-who-made-a-difference-in-my-life-and-a-book-to-make-sense-of-it/
Bernice Bunkowske has written a book of memories called, “Send Me.” Its intended to open eyes and hearts to God’s mission call – and tells the story of how God called her as a young girl, after she had read the biography of Mary Slessor. To find out more and order the book click here.
For help with outreach to Spanish speakers in the US, contact Adolfo Borges at 407-437-8057 firstname.lastname@example.org or Rev. Lincon Guerra, email@example.com.
To enhance your ministry among the nations, learn how the Bible speaks to cultures of guilt, shame, and fear. Western theology emphasizes forgiveness of sins, but people in the Majority World seek honor or spiritual power. In today’s globalized world, Christians need a three-dimensional gospel of God's innocence, honor, and power. Is your gospel 3D? The 3-D Gospel
Healthy relationships across cultures are possible. Dr. Michelle Reyes takes a close look at the concept of cultural accommodation found in Scripture—and especially in the letter of 1 Corinthians—to redefine how Christians interact with cultural narratives that are different from their own. Becoming All Things
To learn more about outreach to Muslims, go to Voice of Faith or reach out to POBLO–People of the Book Lutheran Outreach
For outreach to Asian populations, Rev. Terry Chan is available to help you find direction. You can contact Terry Chan at SFMissions@gmail.com. Also review resources by the Lutheran Heritage Foundation or contact Rev. Ted Nathalang at TNathalang@LHFmissions.org.
Refugee Resource Blogs
Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services
Immigration and the Church: A Christian Response to the Border Crisis
The Imaginative Conservative
Race, Class and Culture Survey
Association of Religion Data Archives
The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965: A Game Changer
Why are Missionaries in America?
Rebecca Y Kim
Janel Kragt Bakker
The Lutheran Society for Missiology Resources
Why America Needs Immigrants Now More Than Ever
Fewer Births Among Whites Than Deaths
“Antioch Redux” – Paper given at international presidents of Lutheran churches meeting suggesting a more biblical approach to church planting. Robert Scudieri, 2004. Click here to read.