Pioneers Australia 25 Years – the journey so far…
8 Feb 2023
History is a story written by the finger of God – [CS Lewis]
I remember my very first day at Pioneers. It was Monday 15 January 2001. It wasn’t the day Pioneers began, but it was the time Tim Meyers, our director then, was ready to grow his small team, and he took a chance on me. I was nervous. Did I have anything worthwhile to contribute? Could I add value? Had I done the right thing hauling my family from Adelaide to Melbourne into an unfamiliar setting and an unknown future?
Hindsight is 20-20 vision. Today, I have no regrets. On the contrary, taking that step of faith back then is one of the best God-ordained decisions I have ever made. History suggests it was a good move. I sense the hand of God on my life, I play a role in helping unreached peoples encounter Jesus, and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God has been at work all those years.
I was glad to be there in those early days of Pioneers Australia following the merger of Asia Pacific Christian Mission and South Sea Evangelical Mission. But others were on board long before me, and many have joined since. Just as Pioneers was getting underway, Stuart & Jenny joined us to serve in Russia, and Ben & Robyn headed to East Asia. In 2001, three new workers were sent by their churches to serve unreached peoples with Pioneers. Sixteen joined us in 2002, and 19 swelled our ranks in 2003. Our biggest year was 2014 with 37 Aussies joining Pioneers global teams, and 33 in 2018. Even during the initial covid years, growth continued with 10 new long-term workers in 2010, 24 in 2020 and 12 last year.
There is so much to celebrate as we consider the history God is writing. And there is much to anticipate as we look ahead to what God might do as we seek hard after Him in pursuit of reaching more and more people with the good news of Jesus Christ.
Tuesday 15 November 2022 marked a significant day in world history – that was the day the global population ticked over to eight billion. Our aim to help as many of them as we possibly can hear of the salvation Christ alone offers to all who call on His name. God is writing future history today.
How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in?
And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?
And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?
And how can anyone preach unless they are sent?
Simon Longden, Pioneers Australia National Director
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