In partnership with several key ministries in Latvia, BBI inspires and mobilizes 200+ leaders and future leaders annually, through Mission Days, to take the Gospel to Latvia, the Baltics and the world. BBI has worked closely with leaders in the US and Latvia for many years. This emphasis has expanded beyond spiritual leaders to the realms of business, education, politics and cultural influence.
In recent years most Latvian pastors and churches have struggled to recognize the importance of world missions. They have experienced the benefit (and sometimes the pain) of missionary work in Latvia, but few think it is for them. Mission Days challenged this kind of thinking.
A young pastor from Riga said, “I was a big critic of the importance of missions before. But at Mission Days, I felt like the disciples on the road to Emmaus. I felt like my mind was opened.”
Since 2005, BBI has brought current and future missionaries together every year for Mission Days. This is an annual three-day conference that provides education, encouragement and vision for world missions.
Another participant shared, “One thing I learned at Mission Days is that missions isn’t only for hyper-active people.” He continued, “I have always thought missions was for others, but it is possible that it is for me too. This is a surprise for me.”
Intrinsic to the development of a movement to mobilize Latvians toward missions, is good and sound research which can undergird wise and strategic decision-making for individuals, churches and organizations. Together with several key mission leaders in Latvia, BBI is devoting effort to developing a research approach that would be the most helpful. So, a new partnership with Nova Institute, of Gloucester, UK, is in the works. Director Dr. Darrell Jackson, has agreed to consult with and guide our multi-organizational Latvian team in this process.
MISSION TO BASHKORTOSTAN
From 2000 to 2007, BBI helped launch a vision of encouraging, recruiting, equipping and sending Latvians who speak Russian to take the Gospel to Bashkortostan, one of the Russian-speaking Muslim republics within Russia. Year after year, teams of youth workers, VBS teachers, musicians and construction workers partnered with tiny Bashkiri churches, helping them strengthen their own ministries and establish new ministries.
The vision of mobilizing Latvians toward missions continues as Latvians take part in trans-European mission mobilization events like Mission Net and continue to work with Russian partners in regions in near the Russian Arctic Circle.
For several years, BBI had a major goal to mobilize young people to impact their communities through service. Strategic relationships were developed with key officials in city hall opening the door for hundreds of young people to engage in city clean-up projects in areas where the city does not have funds to keep up.
First, directed by BBI, hundreds of youth hit the streets with gloves, shovels and rakes, transforming ugly places into beautiful ones…all in the name of the Lord Jesus. Passersby were shocked at the sight of young people volunteering to serve for free, city officials were amazed and the local media covered these projects with great interest and strategic story placement.
MORE OUTREACH INITIATIVES
Through the years, BBI has helped develop and implement many other outreach initiatives in partnership with multiple ministries. Past articles which describe these efforts to reach children, youth, artists, politicians, athletes and more are listed to the right.
Articles About Mission Mobilization
Charles Kelley interviews Dan on “all things” Eagle’s Wings Camp and sheep farm Philomath, OREGON – During my recent ministry trip to Latvia, I had the opportunity to sit down with my longtime friend and ministry partner, Dan Roth. We discussed the camp and campers, sheep farming, pastoral ministry, and more. BBI is so grateful […]
Mobilizing Latvians to use their gifts for the Lord By Charles Kelley Corvallis, OR – Have you ever thought about the word MOBILIZATION? This word represents one of BBI’s original objectives. Simply put, it means helping as many people as possible to get involved on the front line of world missions. For example: BBI’s sister church […]
Partnering with God’s People in Serbia and Bosnia & Herzegovina By Charles Kelley RIGA, Latvia – I occasionally hear Americans refer to Latvia as one of the Balkan states situated on the Balkan (not Baltic) Sea. Even our president spoke about the Balkan Sea. One reason for this confusion is that most of the Balkan peninsula […]
A New Era of International Ministry is Dawning By Bill Zipp CORVALLIS, Oregon – When the Apostle Paul went on three historic missionary journeys in the book of Acts, he traveled on roads built by the Roman Empire. When he walked into cities as diverse as Thyatira in Asia Minor or Athens in Ancient Greece, […]
By Natalie Meeks GREENVILLE, South Carolina – It’s late Spring in Latvia. Summer awaits. The Baltic earth is poised to come alive with vibrancy. With longed-for rays of sunshine, lush green leaves and florals and the busy chiming of Latvians soaking in every moment of these eight short weeks of warmth. It’s Harvest time in […]
Changes, Challenges and Being Better Together By Natalie Meeks GREENVILLE, SC – We are many, and yet we are one. How can this be? Pastor and Missions Leader David Platt once said, “The body of Christ is a multicultural citizenry of an otherworldly Kingdom.” “Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its […]
A Combination of God, Missions and Art By Edith Chenault, Journalist from Austin, TX and Missionary to Estonia August 7, 2014 TARTU, Estonia – Art, artists, and Christianity combined to form imagiNATIONS, a unique cultural event that took place in late July in Tartu. The event, organized by Bridge Builders International and Külli Hansen […]
More Difficult to Find, Needed as Much as Ever By Chuck Kelley PHILOMATH, Oregon – When I started BBI 20 years ago, I had a dream to build 1,000 bridges to and from Latvia. In those years most of the bridges involved church to church partnerships. For many years BBI has been known for the […]
Mission Incubator Philosophy of Ministry A Message given Chuck Kelley at Mission Incubator, a gathering of 30 Missionaries working in Latvia, Jan 25, 2013, Gregor Mission Center, Saldus, Latvia An Incubator is a place that enhances health and accelerates growth. It is always a temporary place designed to help but not control. It’s a place […]
Latvians on the Emerald Island By Lienite Bemera Vineta (BBI/Partners administrator), Tomass (BPI student) and Lienite (BBI/Partners director) – we three went to meet the Latvian church in Ireland. Chuck Kelley received the vision to minister to Latvians in Ireland in January 2012, during Mission Days in Riga and already after 5 months went on […]
Reflections on Mission Days 2012 By Rebecca Manley Pippert (DUBLIN, Ireland) – We loved our first time in Latvia! The city itself is lovely, the music and culture is amazing, but it’s the people we enjoyed most. There is a depth and thoughtfulness in Latvians that moved us. Even though my approach to teaching an […]
Don Richardson’s legendary book and movie unveiled at Mission Days 2008 By Chuck Kelley (RIGA, Latvia) – Before Don Richardson came to Riga last week, very few Latvians knew who he was. By the end of the week, they were lining up for him to autograph his book, Peace Child, which has now been translated […]