Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Winter on Dependency

A simple case of dependency is where missionaries start a church, a school or a hospital without figuring out how those things can be run by the local people. These projects may run just fine as long as a missionary (they don’t have to pay) is there to help, or as long as monthly infusions of subsidy keep coming from abroad.
By contrast, all over the world are broken-down school buildings and even smoldering church buildings that have been left behind by fast-growing church movements that have learned how to grow without depending on outside help.
Self-reliance is the opposite of dependency. Self-reliance emerges when people discover ways to do things with self-respect and in ways that employ what is within the range of their control. Growth becomes spontaneous. They do not "depend" on help that is beyond their control...
- Ralph Winter, Mission Frontiers, May-June 2007
[Related: The Greatest Missiologist]

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