The Appalachian region (specifically the state of West Virginia) is often referred to as the Third World of the United States. It suffers from chronic poverty brought about by absence of jobs and remoteness of location. Some of the problems are: chronic high unemployment (30-50% in many areas), substance abuse, high drop-out rate in schools, population reduction due to migration, malnutrition (one fourth of all children in the region go to bed hungry each night), poor medical care, infant mortality exceeds national average by 35%, high rates of teen-age pregnancy, and poor housing. Housing in WV, according to standards set by the United Nations on adequate housing, is so substandard that an alarming number of the population could be considered homeless.
Mustard Seeds & Mountains
Mustard Seeds & Mountains, Inc. is called to be a part of the larger Church’s ministry of reconciliation. Within that context we have a specialized call to work in meeting the physical needs of the poor and in Christ’s name empowering them to achieve a life of greater dignity and self reliance. We also do development in a way that shows high regard for God’s creation. We are committed to meeting people’s spiritual needs — laboring to see them reconciled to God. And we are called to work for reconciliation in the fabric of their community life as well. Central to our mission is the enabling of the church to:
- Reflect the values of God’s new Kingdom
- Place mission at the center of congregational life and Christian discipleship
At times it may be necessary to engage in traditional charity work. Ultimately, though, we seek to transform the region and the people while affirming their dignity and giving them skills to succeed in our absence. Our goal is not merely to affect the economic condition of the region. We will live among the people and by representing Christ to them as we minister to their needs, we will be able to lead them to the point where God empowers them to be servants as well. This reconciliation to God and between people is central to our ministry.
Visit their website: www.mustardseeds.org
Randy Wallace received his Biblical education at Trinity College and in addition has a Ph. D. in Organizational Leadership. Randy has experience as a youth director, pastor, missionary and missions administrator. He brings into any situation his friendly, informal style which serves as a means to powerfully influence people to rise to new heights of performance. His enthusiastic and entertaining teaching style contribute to building a highly interactive, dialogical teaching/learning environment which is punctuated by high student involvement. He is a team oriented person committed to helping people fulfill their potential and realize their dreams.
Jacqueline has been involved in the ministry for over 40 years. She has been a pastor’s wife and served with the home office of a major Protestant mission agency. One of the key aspects of Jacqueline’s ministry is prayer. She has been instrumental in establishing prayer circles and emphasis on prayer in local churches wherever she has lived. She has trained others in intercessory prayer and been influential in creating a vision for the world within churches. Jacqueline is known as a sensitive, caring and compassionate person who reaches out to women within the church. She has had a fruitful ministry among women in which she has engaged in non-formal education and personal development.