Give thanks for a number of good events to support missionaries’ children (also known as Third Culture Kids) over the summer. We praise God for the session to help missionary families at the Keswick Convention, supported by our TCK advisors in the UK, and for the Rekonnect camps for kids and teens back in the UK, which helped them learn from others with similar experiences of growing up overseas, as well as discovering more of the joy of following Jesus.
So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.
— 1 Corinthians 3:7
Several missionary candidates from the UK need increased levels of prayer and financial support to be able to get the clearances needed to start their ministries. Please ask God to raise up more supporters for these candidates. Pray for candidates learning to trust God’s timing and to make best use of the time before they go out.
Lift up interviews with missionary candidates by OMF UK staff in the coming weeks. Pray for wisdom, discernment and unity between OMF and church interviewers.
Ask God to give wisdom to OMF UK’s IT Department as they juggle strategic projects, including a server upgrade, along with daily support matters.
Give thanks for OMF UK’s continued good financial position and pray for God’s ongoing provision of all our workers’ needs.
The United Kingdom (UK) consists of England, Wales, Scotland (which make up Great Britain) and Northern Ireland. Out of a population of about 65 million people, the English make up more than 80%; the Scots nearly 10%; and the Welsh and Northern Irish most of the rest. The UK is also home to diverse immigrant communities, mainly from its former colonies in the West Indies, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Africa. East Asians form only about 1-2%.
The UK, a leading trading power and financial center, is the second largest economy in Europe after Germany. The UK was an active member of the European Union (EU) from 1973 to 2016; but on 23 June 2016, it voted to leave the EU. The effect of “Brexit” on the UK economy is uncertain, with question marks hanging over possible future tariffs and investment. Net migration has already fallen.
There are an estimated 1.8 million church-going evangelicals in the UK (about 3% of the total population). Evangelicals in the UK overall are declining, but are reducing at only about half the rate of non-Evangelicals. As a result, by 2020, an estimated 46% of all church goers in the UK will be evangelical. Decline in many churches is largely due to the absence of young people. The average age of Christians in the UK is 45 against an overall population average of 40.
Against this overall decline, new shoots of growth are emerging, particularly among churches identified as New Churches, Pentecostals, the Orthodox and other small denominations. Growth is especially strong in Black Pentecostal churches, which are estimated to make up 23% of all church goers by 2020.
These trends mean that organisations like OMF face a decline in their traditional constituency of supporting and sending churches. Also, churches are engaging in cross-cultural mission in a greater variety of ways, and not necessarily through mission agencies.
OMF UK’s vision is to put local churches in the UK at the heart of OMF’s mission, focusing resources on empowering churches to engage in world mission, with special attention on East Asia’s unreached peoples. Our relationship with churches continues to evolve, with a strong focus on partnering with them in mission engagement.
- Total: 65.6 million
- Anglo Saxon/Celtic: 85.2%
- Asian: 6.3%
- European: 3.3%
- Middle Eastern: 1.9%
- Afro Caribbean: 1.4%
- Christian: 59.66%
- Non religious: 34.49%
- Muslim: 3.2%
- Hindu: 0.94%
- Sikh: 0.63%
- from Operation Word 7th edition, p.624
Thank you, God, for the churches and individuals who have given their prayer, care, and support to missionaries from the UK. Please equip churches to fully support their mission partners in prayer, finances, care, and practical help. We also ask that you would raise up people to help support and care for missionaries.