March 2019


Imagine 940 church leaders being trained in biblical church leadership, as well as financial and economic sustainability skills. Now imagine 65 pastors from 14 churches in a single district being mobilized and trained, with two additional churches being planted in a year. Additionally, picture some of these spiritual leaders training an average of 16 Sports Outreach staff members in community development-related sports ministry techniques and vision twice every week for seven months. Think of the impact all these people could have in an area where people are deeply desiring to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ. In reality—this is, in fact, what has taken place in northern Uganda in the past year through our international partner, New Foundation Community Ministry (NFCM). Aloysius Kyazze of NFCM reports that through earnest prayers and support of faithful ministry partners, the year’s theme of “Rebuilding His Temple” resonated in hearts and grew a fruitful harvest of disciples, ready and willing to “go into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creation” (Mark 16:15). A powerful platform through which the Gospel can be shared in Uganda is the SEED Program, a unique model pairing church planting with economic empowerment.

Community members are trained in SEED principles


Though its scope may not be as broad as in northern Uganda, discipleship, the most important part of church planting, is taking place at each of Sports Outreach’s ministry sites. Disciples are being trained, equipped, and deployed in the effective use of sports ministry for the purpose of sharing the Gospel and alleviating human suffering (from the Sports Outreach mission statement).


In El Salvador it is disciples who are teaching English, visiting orphanages, and facilitating soccer and chess outreaches, even traveling to Honduras for additional sports ministry opportunities. Tim and Barb Wood are turning Mexican church plants over to local leadership so that they can train the next generation of leaders. In partnership with the local church, Sports Outreach staff members in Kenya are initiating women’s empowerment programs and discipling youth and women with HIV/AIDS. Here in the United States passionate coaches are coming alongside Sports Outreach as staff members engage and disciple those coming to soccer camps, chess clubs, and basketball tournaments.

An exciting, new development in the world of church planting has been the decision of Sports Outreach to become a dedicated Resource Partner for the ARC (Association of Related Churches, based in Birmingham, AL). The role of Sports Outreach will be to serve as a church’s global and local extension for achieving the Great Commission. Perhaps your church or a church you know would like to engage with Sports Outreach in order to extend their reach into the community or world. We would be happy to come alongside (contact Steve Gardner at for more information). This brings church planting full circle, as mature disciples seek both to strengthen existing churches as well as impact areas where there is no viable church. We praise God for this opportunity and look forward to the day when every nation, tribe, people and language, are standing before the throne worshiping our amazing God!  

Church Planting & Economic Empowerment                                           


The Sports Outreach Ministry Team

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March 2019 Newsletter PDF