May 1, 2013

Which countries are most in need of missions work?

I've recently compiled some data from a number of different sources together in order to rank which countries are most in need of mission work.  In the future, I will have a longer spreadsheet with weighted values, but for now, I've compiled a list based on 3 crucial issues:

1) % of the population unevangelized
2) number of unreached people groups
3) non-evangelicals per missionary

A lot of data is missing, primarily the number of missionaries in each country.  When data was missing, it was interpolated and estimated based on region, countries with similar data, and some anecdotal information.  Continents are added to the list, just for reference.  Also, some countries listed don't exist anymore, and some countries are recognized on some lists, but not on other lists, so there is some mish-mash of data (ex. Palestine/Israel).  Cells with a blue background were estimated.

You can check out the spreadsheet here:


If you don't want to check out the whole thing, here's the top ten countries in most need of missions efforts:


(If they have an asterisk, they contain some data that was estimated.)

Just because a country is on the list and it needs more mission efforts, please don't automatically assume that we need to send missionaries there from OUR churches.  We have to be wise and ask the Lord what we can do to reach these nations.  Consider all options: radio, internet, guerrilla evangelism, native missionaries, national missionaries, near-cultural missionaries, cross-cultural missionaries, etc.  Also, remember that this list is not complete.  When I finish the longer, weighted spreadsheet, I think it will more accurately reflect countries of need.  Yet even when that is complete it will only reflect need at the country level and not at the people group level, which is more important.

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