The Five-Year Plan
By Gary Fallesen
President, Climbing For Christ
The original mission was (and is) to minister to people in physical and spiritual ways in mountainous areas of the world. Our desire was to build a climbing community of servants by growing the membership of Climbing For Christ so we would have more workers to send into the harvest field.
Our original Mission: Vision was written in June 2004. At the time, Climbing For Christ had 91 members, and we were still 10 months shy of our first Evangelic Expedition (Mission: Mexico in April 2005).
In less than five years, Climbing For Christ grew tenfold and conducted 21 mission trips to 11 countries — with 65 members saying, “Here am I. Send me!” (Isaiah 6:8). But this was only the beginning. “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few” (Matthew 9:37 and Luke 10:2). We ask the Lord of the harvest, as Jesus instructed in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, to send out workers into His harvest field.
We are a missions-based organization, and an ends-of-the-earth ministry. We will go where others cannot or will not.
We return to the Mission: Vision of 2004 and update it with our next five-year plan. This, then, is the Mission: Vision of 2009. We commit to the Lord whatever we do, knowing that our plans will succeed because of that (Proverbs 16:3).
Six (and possibly seven) Evangelic Expeditions were placed on the 2009 calendar. We dubbed this “Mission: Potential 2009.” Climbing For Christ trips included:
- Mission: Possible II (Jan. 8-25) — A return to a mountain and village that was first surveyed in April 2008. We were successful in starting to train local mountain guides in a wide variety of mountaineering skills on a 17,700-foot peak.
- Nepal (May 11-June 1) — Trekking into the Mustang, an area closed to foreigners up until 1992 and still not open to missionaries. This area was in the original Mission: Vision. In 2008, a Climbing For Christ team worked in the Khumbu with a trek to Everest Base Camp. A 2010 trip is likely to go to western Nepal.
- Mission: Possible 3 (July 6-19) — Another trip to a dark corner of the world, where illiteracy is an obstacle to sharing that can be overcome through our God of the possible.
- Philippines (Aug. 24-Sept. 7; postponed to February 2010) — Participating in the third annual Asia Pacific Adventure Ministry conference in the Manila area from Aug. 27-30 and then revisiting the remote villages in the Municipality of Kibungan in the Coridella mountains in North Luzon. Climbing For Christ Philippines has been ministering in this area since August 2008 and an international mission team trekked to Tacadang in October-November 2008.
Gentilhomme church, December 2008. (Photo by Josh Carroll)
- Haiti (May 18-28 and Dec. 5-18) — Continuing the ministry to mountain people in the Chaine de la Selle range, where Climbing For Christ has been ministering since the summer of 2005. This will be a medical mission with work also done on sanitation (building arborloo toilets), water (constructing systems to collect clean water), education (Vacation Bible School), and church and seminary support in Gentilhomme and Malasi. This is an ongoing project. [See “A Plan for Haiti in 2009.”]
Indonesia was also considered for 2009, but no specific dates were set. Climbing For Christ first went to Indonesia in June 2007. There remains a desire to reach tribes found in the mountainous interior of Papua on the western half of the island of New Guinea, where at least 33 people groups have not heard the name of Jesus Christ. Also, we desire to support our JEJAK Chapter (based in Jakarta) with outreach to a hard-to-reach Muslim area of West Java. A trip is likely in the works for May-June 2010.
In addition to the Evangelic Expeditions listed under “One-Year Plan,” we may be enabled to do the following between 2009 and 2011:
Mount Ararat. (Wikipedia graphic)
- Ararat* (July 2010) — Eastern Turkey and northern Iran or Armenia. We’ll explore the possible resting places for Noah’s Ark and the people who live in that part of the world. [*CLICK HERE for “Called to Central Asia.”]
- Denali (May-June 2011) — A team focused on sharing and serving, not necessarily reaching the summit of Mount McKinley, will return to the slopes of North America’s tallest peak. Denali (where Climbing For Christ teams have gone in 2005, 2006 and 2008) is peak-bagging target of Seven Summit wanna-taggers from all over the world. Going into Talkeetna and the Alaska Range were part of the original Mission: Vision, and where part of the original vision was received. [See “The Frontier State” in the 2004 Mission: Vision.]
- Europe (2011) — France, Switzerland, Italy, and Austria. The goal is to recruit members, develop chapters, and wake the dead throughout the Alps. Another possible areas for missions: Norway.
- Haiti (2010 and 2011).
Road into remote Kashmir village with Nun Kun mountain massif (23,409 foot/7135 meter Nun and 23,218 foot/7077 meter Kun) in the background.
(Photo by Daniel Karlsen)
- India — Himachal Pradesh and/or Kashmir. As we wrote in the original Mission: Vision, “Himachal Pradesh, a mountainous Himalayan state bordering Kashmir and Tibet is India’s least-evangelized state. It is called the ‘Land of the Gods’ and a center for Hindu pilgrimages. Every mountain is named after a god and there is much devotion to idols.” Another possible mission area: Arunachal Pradesh, located in the northeast between Bhutan, China and Myanmar. Springtime festivals are held from January through April by different, mostly animist, groups. The most unreached people of India are found here, according to Climbing For Christ advisory team member Tim Scott.
- Kilimanjaro (Jan. 19-31, 2010) — Back into East Africa. Possible Kilimanjaro trek coupled with teaching evangelism to Kilimanjaro Chapter members. [Kilimanjaro was thought of as a “Model Mission” in the original Mission: Vision.]
- Mission: Possible IV (March 2010) — A continuation of Mission: Possible 2008 and Mission: Possible II (above), teaching mountaineering skills to mostly untrained guides on a 17,000-foot peak and answering divine appointments.
- Mission: Possible 5 (April 2010) — A continuation of Mission: Possible 3 (above).
- Nepal (May 2010) — Church build in 2010. Future possibilities include Everest Base Camp chapel and/or survey of the far west (Mount Kailas around the time of the Saghadawa Festival) or Dolpo region.
Atlas Mountain village. (Wikipedia)
- North Africa — Seeking the unreached Berber people in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco and Algeria (a target area on our original Mission: Vision).
- Pakistan — Partnering with Rev. Arshad Morad, a Climbing For Christ member and founder of Gospel of Jesus Christ Ministries Pakistan, based in Gujranwala. [See “Called to Central Asia.”]
- Peru — Partnering with member Jaime Servat possibly in Cordillera Blanca. Also looking at other South American destinations for future surveys in Bolivia and Ecuador.
In addition to the Evangelic Expeditions listed under the “One-” and “Three-Year Plan,” we may be enabled to do the following by 2012 and 2013:
The Taktshang Monastery, known as the Tiger's Nest, in Bhutan. (Wikipedia)
- Bhutan — Autumn is considered the optimal time for trekking in this closed Himalayan country. In our original Mission: Vision, we wrote: “This is considered one of the world’s least evangelized nations, where mission agencies have been ‘welcomed to operate leprosy hospitals and be involved in health, agricultural and educational programs, but only on the condition they do not proselytize.’” Vajrayana Buddhism is the state religion.
The Caucasus in Russia. (Photo by John Straubinger)
Russia — Northern Caucasus.
Any one of the many survey missions being prayerfully considered could lead to a long-term commitment for Climbing For Christ, similar to what Haiti has become for this ministry. Our goal is to disciple believers. That is the ultimate service to people with spiritual needs. Along the way, we also desire to serve physical needs. To do so, we partner with like-hearted ministries (particularly those with native roots).
In addition to the Evangelic Expeditions mentioned above, we are waiting on the Lord to open doors for us in other countries on the original Mission: Vision, such as:
The apostle Paul shared, in his letter to the Romans (10:14-15), “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 they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!’”
May our beautiful feet carry the Good News to the heights, where people who have not heard and do not believe are living in spiritual (and physical) poverty. May we be empowered to tell them, “Our God reigns!”
Posted Feb. 11, 2009 / Updated Oct. 29, 2010