|It is my recommendation that after reading this document no organisation should support or share a platform with NTM any who do so would very much go along with this corruption or even justify it.
To show the extent of sin in the evangelical camp this ecumenical organisation is promoted and supported by the following:
The New Tribes Mission
New Tribes Mission is an international, theologically evangelical Christian mission organization based in Sanford, Florida, United States. NTM has approximately 3,300 missionaries in more than 20 nations. Paul Fleming, a native of Los Angeles, California, founded NTM in 1942. In the 1930s Fleming had worked as a missionary in the British colony of Malaya.
In 1943 NTM started publishing its magazine Brown Gold. In 1944/45, NTM moved headquarters to Chico, California. Shortly thereafter it established a “boot camp” (missionary training facility) at Fouts Spring, California.
The Missions main aim is to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ to those groups where no translation of the Bible exists. When such a group is identified, NTM first attempts to make contact and establish a relationship. Then, missionaries are sent to learn the language and the culture of the native people, while further developing relationships and providing humanitarian aid. The missionaries translate biblical literature into the indigenous language, as well as teach natives how to read and write in their own language. The professed goal, however, is to establish fully functioning churches that operate independently of missionaries, which “in turn reach out to their own people and to neighbouring tribes.”
The organization sent out its first group in November 1942 to Bolivia. Of the 10 adults and six children, six were killed the following year. According to Time Magazine, aboriginal Bolivians killed five NTM missionaries in 1943.1
NTM, an inspiration
Nothing gives more inspiration to Evangelical/Protestants than to hear the stories of those brave men and women who have risked life and limb to reach out to peoples that have never heard the message of the Gospel.
In 1900 some 189 Protestant missionaries and some 500 Chinese Protestant Christians were martyred during the Boxer Rebellion. 2
In 1956 five young missionaries were killed as they attempted to reach out to the Auca people of Ecuador. They were attacked by a group of Huaorani warriors. Their story has been published in a book by the widow of one of them, Elisabeth Elliot, entitled Through Gates of Splendour, as well as a film documentary of the same name.3
NTM has seen its share of martyrs in Central and South America as well as the Philippines .n the latter part of the 20th century. There can be little doubt that it takes a level of commitment from those men and women of the NTM that can only be admired and has meant that churches in various parts of the world have invited representatives of NTM to speak about the work they are engaged in.
NTM believe that the Bible is the final authority for those seeking to follow Jesus Christ. It is through the Bible we learn of man’s lost condition and God’s offer of salvation through the death and resurrection of His only begotten Son Jesus Christ.4 It is for this reason that they seek to translate the Bible into the languages of those un-reached groups around the world so that these people may be able to read a copy of the Bible in their own language.
NTM has not escaped criticism and controversy for its zeal to convert indigenous populations. Various accusations have been leveled at the group such as Industrial Espionage and representing US foreign policy interests,5 hunting down primitive Indians and destroy their culture in the name of converting them to Christianity.6 In 2005 NTM were denounced as being agents of the CIA by the then Venezuelan President, Hugo Chavez, on national television and were ordered to leave the country.7
NTM is a member of the International Orality Network (ION). The ION was formed with the merging of The Making Disciples of Oral Learners Working Group of the 2004 Lausanne Forum on World Evangelization and the Oral Bible Network (OBN) in 2005.8
As its Statement of Faith The ION subscribes to the Lausanne Covenant.9 ION includes amongst its advisers Mark Overstreet who served as one of the contributing team at the Third Lausanne Conference, Cape Town 2010.10
In 1987 Dr. Thomas Wang, the Director of the Lausanne Committee for World Evangelization, wrote an article titled “By the year 2000, is God trying to tell us Something?” this led to the Global Consultation on World Evangelization (GCOWE) I in Singapore and launched the AD2000 & Beyond Movement. 11
The AD2000 movement was founded on the principles laid down by the Lausanne movement:
We wholeheartedly follow in the footsteps of the theme and vision of Lausanne II in Manila 1989 with the call to “Proclaim Christ Until He Comes.” It was at that meeting following the plenary session on AD 2000 that a significant group met together and almost unanimously called for the establishment of a group to carry forward the AD 2000 vision. This has been done, pressed forward by countrywide initiatives to the year 2000 with some 2000 individual plans of evangelism directed to the year 2000. So we add with many, our aim in this movement and this consultation of “a church for every people and the gospel for every person by the year 2000”.
And so we are committed to take up the torch for this special kairos decade of evangelism… a decade of harvest, decade of Holy Spirit anointing , decade of great expectations, even so to dissolve as a structure December 31, 2001.
We have been criticized of reductionism_i.e. reducing the gospel and its implications to a time frame, to measurable objectives. However, we embrace the Lausanne covenant and proclaim a whole gospel _not a truncated gospel, not a mutilated gospel with all of its demands, but with the fruit of repentance. We embrace the Great Commission Manifesto, drafted at GCOWE `89 in Singapore, which states so clearly, “The Good News of Jesus Christ brings special meaning to suffering humanity. God’s love brings hope to those who live under the bondage of sin, and who are victims of poverty and injustice. We believe that Christians involved in world evangelization should live among people as servants and minister to the needs of the whole person.” 12
In 1997 the AD2000 Movement held an event in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. A Press Release was issued that read:
The following organizations participated with stands in the exposition area: Iphata Productions, Gethsemani Baptist Church, Grace Community, Renovo Productions Ltd., VINDE Magazine, Wake up Deborah, Pr. Paulo (ex- Paulinho Bang Bang), LR Consulting, Residential Sauna Ltd., Brazilian Bible Society, Hope Publishers, Ultimato Publishers, MIAF (AIM Brazil), Horizons Mission, Brazilian Bethel Mission, New Tribes Mission of Brazil, Children Mobilization Track, Silio Photos, The Bible in Bytes, and CCI Brazil. 13
NTB & Wycliffe Bible Translators (WBT)
As with NTM, WBT has as its mission the aim of translating the Bible into every language possible. In 2011 WBT came under fire with regards to its translation of the Bible for Muslims by removing terms deemed offensive to Muslims. Involved is the removal of any references to God as “Father,” to Jesus as the “Son” or “the Son of God.” One example of such a change can be seen in an Arabic version of the Gospel of Matthew produced and promoted by Frontiers and WBT’s partner the Summer Institute of Linguistics (SIL). It changes Matthew 28:19 from:
“baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit”
“cleanse them by water in the name of Allah, his Messiah and his Holy Spirit.”
This controversy has even caused an investigation by the World Evangelical Alliance.14
In spite of WBT’s mistranslating the Bible, which undermines essential Christian doctrine, NTM has had no problem with working with WBT to translate and publish a new translation for the Emberá people of Panama and Northern Colombia15
Child Abuse Scandals
In 2010 NTM hit the headlines after it was revealed that at least 50 children were sexually and physically abused at an NTM boarding school in Senegal, Africa, in the 1980s. It is estimated that 22 to 27 children whose parents were missionaries for New Tribes Mission were sexually abused while 35 were physically and emotionally abused.16
A report into the abuse was compiled by the US based charity Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (GRACE). Part of the report stated:
They were repeatedly told by those in authority at Fanda that such complaints would hinder their parents’ work and result in Africans going to hell,” the report said. “In some cases, their letters were censored of all bad news in the name of the Lord’s work. The authority of Fanda dorm parents over the children was allowed to trump that even of the parents in their children’s lives.1
This is not the only instance where NTM missionaries have been involved in abuse. In 2013 New Tribes Mission (NTM) missionary Warren Kennel was arrested for alleged sexual abuse of children. After being detained at an airport in Orlando, Florida. Kennell admitted that he had molested children and photographed the incidents while working with NTM in Brazil. 18
On March 26, 2014 Lori McAlister publicly told her story of abuse by Gary Earl, a New Tribes missionary. Lori is the daughter of NTM missionaries (MK) who attended a New Tribes boarding school in Numonohi, Papua New Guinea.19 No action was taken against Mr. Earl, even though Scott Ross (legal counsel to NTM) investigated her accusations and found that she had been severely beaten and sexually traumatized by Mr. Earl. NTM took no action against him until 7 years later with the publication of the report by GRACE when it became a matter of public record. NTM forced Earlto take “early retirement”. Mr. Earl has since applied to work with another Missionary Organisation, ROCK International, which works with children. Until relatively recent Gary Earl still featured on the NTM website where he was able to receive financial support from donors.20
Jeff Herman, an attorney who represented some of the abused in a lawsuit against NTM, stated:
Sexual abuse within the New Tribes organization has been a closely kept secret. Only within the last year, and only through the courage of several courageous and amazing survivors of child sexual abuse who refuse to be silenced, has the general public become aware of what really happened when parents were forced to leave their children behind. Based upon what we know from other religious organizations like the Catholic and Baptist churches, there is no doubt that we have only seen the tip of the iceberg. 21
Reports of child abuse within NTM have come from various parts of the world including, Philippines, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Venezuela and Panama. 22
It is totally unacceptable that any organization that seeks to represent Christ in any capacity should show such a lack of love and concern for those children under its care. Staff members that abuse children should be dismissed immediately and reported to the police. The names of abusers should be passed on to other organizations so that they are prevented from having access to children. NTM is guilty of gross misconduct in the case of Gary Earl and simply has no excuse for its actions. This is not simply a “mistake” on the part of Mr. Earl but a case of Criminal Abuse. Having looked at similar reports that have arisen from various other parts of the world and the arrest and imprisonment of NTM missionaries like Scott Kennel, who is currently serving a sentence of 58 years imprisonment for sexual assault and creating pornography in Brazil, it is difficult to see how that NTM can recover its reputation. As of yet none of the victims of abuse have received any offer of compensation or counseling from NTM. It remains to be seen what will be the result of any litigation.
The Full report into NTM’s Fanda School showing the extent of the widespread and systematic abuse of children can be read at:
- Culbertson, Howard (2011). “Christian mission history: Important events, locations, people and movements in World Evangelism”. Southern Nazarene University. Retrieved 2013-12-25. Ecumenical Missionary Conference in Carnegie Hall, New York (162 mission boards represented); 189 missionaries and their children killed in Boxer Rebellion in China”
- https://www.lausanne.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Bibliographic-Resources-for-CTC.pdf (Pg.5)