As I followed the breadcrumbs this morning to determine my next stop on Mission 227, I discovered that Celebrate Recovery is working in Mongolia. We recently began a Celebrate Recovery ministry at TrueNorth Church so I was intrigued when I learned about CR in Northern Asia.
Here’s more about what’s going on in Mongolia (the following text was taken from SIM.org):
One of the oldest countries in the world, Mongolia, is familiar with one of the oldest vices: addiction. Alcoholism is a severe problem in Mongolia, which in some way affects nearly every family.
In 2003 the Celebrate Recovery program began in the capital of Ulaanbaatar. This church-based addiction recovery ministry has become a nationwide movement with more than 40 churches involved in 14 of Mongolia’s 21 provinces. These local recovery groups have helped hundreds of individuals and families find freedom from the grip of addiction, and many have come to faith in Christ. Today about 800 people participate in the program, and about 200 trained leaders serve in the ministry.
Initially developed by Saddleback Church in the USA, Celebrate Recovery was translated into Mongolian and applied to the Mongolian context. The first phase in Mongolia was simply to visit churches, introduce the program, and help them begin. The second phase saw the development of a Celebrate Recovery Network which formed provincial, regional and national committees, following the model of Exodus 18:13-27. This enabled the ministry to more effectively communicate, equip and encourage Celebrate Recovery groups which are often far-flung.
God is leading Celebrate Recovery leadership into the third phase which will build the capacity and sustainability of the groundwork laid during the first decade. The dream is to organize professional counseling training and courses on addiction, something CR leaders have frequently requested. The beneficiaries of this training will be broader than CR leaders; it will be available to recovery workers and leaders in rehabilitation centers, prisons and other organizations. The CR leadership team also feels it is time to broaden the focus from alcohol to other prevalent addictions in the country. The vision is to see Christian recovery workers and addiction counselors well equipped, empowered and resourced.
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