Radstock is a mission concerned with giving churches a new vision for mission and helps churches develop their mission strategy and to facilitate participation in the wider network of contacts.
The start of Radstock Ministries is interesting. In the age of communist Russia, a German organisation called Friedenstimme (German for "Voice of Peace") worked on behalf of unregistered and imprisoned believers in what was then the Soviet Union. A UK arm of Friedenstimme laboured to raise awareness and be a voice of advocacy in England for those behind the Iron Curtain. In 1991 when the wall fell, those involved in Friedenstimme UK had to decide what ministry to pursue - whether to continue with advocacy work on behalf of the oppressed in other parts of the world, or to continue in their mission to see the Gospel made known in Russia and beyond. With much prayer, it was decided that the men and women of Friedenstimme UK would pursue building Gospel partnerships with believers in what had become the ‘former Soviet Union'. And so Radstock Ministries was born, named after a member of the British aristocracy - Lord Radstock - who in the 1870's had a profound influence on the founding of the evangelical church in Russia. Radstock Ministries dedicated itself to seeing local churches in Russia, the UK and beyond take up their privilege and responsibility in mission.
Throughout the 1990's, Radstock's local church connections grew beyond the former Soviet Union into Eastern Europe. Radstock's commitment to equipping and mobilizing churches for mission was reinvigorated at the turn of the century as the network of churches expanded to the Balkans, the U.S, and Zambia. Today, these churches are actively seeking mission opportunities through Gospel partnerships and aiming to encourage and equip each other and other local churches for mission. This has led to a unique group of church to church connections across the world.
One of the ways in which Radstock helps churches is to set up Micro-Enterprise Developments. This project helps local churches to identify and invest in individuals and business opportunities which: generate financial resources for mission; provide employment for local church members and leaders; display integrity and ethical business practice; and open up evangelistic opportunities among local communities. Support and advice are supplied to assist the local church in running these projects. In communities blighted by high unemployment, the chance to escape - to a bigger city or another country - often seems to be the only hope. MED ministries within the Radstock network aim to bring true hope by connecting and equipping churches to create and finance business opportunities with Gospel priorities. Projects currently include start-up loans in Albania and business models and training in Mongolia and Kosovo. Meanwhile, in Zambia, small business grants and investments in a ‘Food Bank' are proving strategic ways to support families and churches who in turn are providing for orphans and needy children in their community. Pray for Radstock as they seek to grow new links between churches across continents. www.radstock.org