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Into all the world

When the Assemblies of God was organized in 1914, the leaders vowed to engage in "the greatest evangelism effort the world has ever known." With more than 1,800 missionaries in 158 countries and 1,100 missionaries stateside, we are making good on that vow. Globally, the Assemblies of God numbers over 30 million. A major reason for that growth is the power of Pentecost.

On the heels of a Pentecostal outpouring around the turn of the century, Spirit-filled believers began to share the gospel at home and in foreign lands. They were determined to fulfill the purpose of Pentecost: "You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth" (Acts 1:8, NIV).

That determination is still alive. Across the United States, missionaries are penetrating inner cities, reaching ethnic groups and touching the homeless, the hurting and the addicted. They are taking the gospel to prisons and hospitals. They are planting churches in communities large and small. Others are ministering in military installations and to thousands of U.S. and international students on college and university campuses. Still others are serving as chaplains to race car drivers, rodeo cowboys, motorcyclists and truckers.

Overseas, established churches are growing under the leadership of national pastors and lay workers. More than 1,400 Bible schools and extension programs are training 80,000 students. Ministries of compassion to the poor and suffering and medical outreaches have opened doors in areas that otherwise would have been closed to missions. Television and radio ministries are beaming the gospel into areas where missionaries cannot reside.

Whether across the backyard fence or in Botswana, Southern Africa, everyone has a role in fulfilling Jesus' Great Commission to "go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you" (Matthew 28:19).

As from its beginning, the Assemblies of God is committed to reaching the lost through every means available, relying upon the guidance and power of the Holy Spirit.


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