Silk Road Summer 2023
We are praying for a team of young adults to serve for 6-8 weeks next summer in locations along the ancient Silk Road.
You have the chance to further the work of gospel ministry in places where few believers exist. Will you seriously pray about joining this team?
At the crossroads between East and West, what once was a wild, embattled region of feuding city-states, lie the modern-day countries of Central Asia. These countries formed the hub of the Silk Road, an extensive trade network bridging Xi’an, China to Venice, Italy and beyond. Traders brought silk textiles West to satisfy the ever-increasing fashion appetites of Europeans, and in the process, mixed cultures and religions in places once insulated from foreign ideas.
Since the Muslim conquests in the eighth century, Central Asia has been predominantly Islamic, though adherence and practice vary considerably from region to region. Against a backdrop of harsh deserts, vaulting mountains (“The Roof of the World” as some call it), and fertile valleys, Central Asia retains many of its ancient cultures and traditions, though in the cities, there are visible shadows cast by its towering neighbors to the North and East.
One of Central Asia’s military heroes, Timur (also known as Tamerlane) described himself as “The Sword of Islam” yet even he could not totally eradicate faith in Jesus here. The same roads that enabled the trade of textiles and culture are once again enabling a far more precious trade: the message of the Kingdom of God! And by God’s providence, there are even now followers of Jesus and small churches along the Silk Road.
Our partners along the Silk Road are requesting our help. The workers and believers are few, yet – as Jesus’ said – the harvest is plentiful. We want to come alongside the workers and believers in this region, encourage them, add to their capacity, and expand their reach.
We are identifying several cities to which we are inviting young adults (high school graduates up to 30 years old) to come serve next summer. This initiative, Silk Road Summer, is designed to match Western believers to Central Asian teams to help expand the gospel reach of those teams. While we hope and pray for great gospel breakthroughs during this summer project, we are also asking God to work in the hearts of those who are serving and call them into longer term service.
Silk Road Summer gives young adults an opportunity to experience God in new places and new ways. In terms of duration and intensity and preparation, it is certainly a step up from a weeklong mission trip! We hope they come back with a deep love for the peoples of the Silk Road, a new reliance on Jesus, and a bold willingness to take their next step towards God’s call on their lives.
Please help us spread the word about Silk Road Summer! We need young adults to prayerfully consider following the Lord to Central Asia. We need praying and resourcing churches behind them. And our partners on the Silk Road need endurance and encouragement! Find out more by filling in the contact form below.