Posts Tagged ‘Transformational development’


I believe that when it comes to missions, the primary responsibility and focus ought to be the sharing of the Gospel and from there the importance of discipleship and church planting.

Nevertheless I do see a place with helping with physical needs.  I think it is helpful to distinguish between relief and transformational development.  I think Christians that are involve with any help overseas with meeting physical needs must not forget to put the Gospel first.  I also think it would be good for Christians involved with overseas work that care for people’s physical need to know good economics that eventually help people in the long run rather than be short-sighted in one’s goal that end up enabling a problem, create artificial unhealthy dependence, etc.

Here are 4 distinction between relief and development:

1.) Relief is the effort of Christians to help victims in an emergency situation such as war, famine and other disaster. Transformational development is the effort of Christian to help reach people for God by helping with what appears to be problems that have become routine.

2.) While similar to point one, we can also make the distinction that relief is often for the short run while transformational development is more long term.

3.) Relief focuses on what outsiders can do to help victims whereas transformational development focus on what people within a group can do to help themselves and their community.

4.) Relief often involves giving direct aid and resources to the people whereas transformational development is seen as helping people at the larger structural level with focus on economic growth and political advocacy.

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